United States of America, Mississippi, Adams County, Natchez
Bontura (Natchez, Mississippi)
"Bontura" Garden is a garden in two parts, which is divided front from back by a narrow brick carriage area. Three Moorish arch entrances define the front of this building. A brick wall marks the left garden side, while the house, built in 1851, creates the right side of the garden. Across the front is an iron fence of open vertical bars. Major plants in the front space area Southern magnolia tree, a large crape myrtle tree, the largest in Mississippi, and a large banana shrub/tree. Camellia Sasanquas are along the whole left wall. Two thirty-feet tall English Boxwoods are in front of the carriage house, along with Fatsia, ferns, camellias and the large magnolia tree. Azaleas are planted near the house and at corners. The back garden space has Lady Banksia roses, white and yellow, across the full left wall. A dogwood graces the back fence and is part of a flower bed filled with various annuals and perennials as the seasons change. The back garden is entered through a door from within the carriage area.
Persons associated with the garden include: Frances Asberry Newcomb (former owner, 1833); Edward Graham (former owner, 1834-1837); Robert Patterson (former owner, 1837-1839); Robert D. Smith (former owner, 1851-1854); Ann Smith (former owner, 1854-1858); Joseph Bontura (former owner, 1860-1874); Fanny Bontura Hendricks (former owner, 1874); Mrs. Angie Pogue and Mrs. Theresa Pullen (former owners, 1903-1916); Rumble and Wensel Co. Inc. (former owner, 1916-1940); Hugh H. and Gladys C. Evans (former owners, 1940-1962); National Society of the Colonial Dames of America (former owners, 1962-1995); and J. Donald Walp (landscape architect, 1964).
The folder includes a worksheet; site plans; a plant list; copies of book entries and newspaper articles; history of property; and garden tour brochures.
Garden featured in Mary Warren Miller and Ronald W. Miller, The Great Houses of Natchez (Jackson, Mississippi: University Press of Mississippi, 1986), pp. 104-105
Garden featured in Nola Nance Oliver, This Too is Natchez (New York: Hastings House, 1953), pp. 13-14
Garden featured in Hugh Howard, Natchez: The Houses and History of the Jewel of the Mississippi (New York: Rizzoli, International Publications, Inc., 2003), pp. 163-165
Garden featured in Reid Smith and John Owens, The Majesty of Natchez (Gretna: Pelican Publishing Company, 1982), pp. 35-36