Collin Rogers (1791-1845)
Collin Rogers was an
architect and master builder who in the 1830s designed and built large Neoclassical-style houses in west Georgia, especially
in Troup County. Rogers, whose name is sometimes misspelled Cullin Rodgers or Cullen Rogers, is believed to have been born in North Carolina
in 1791. With no formal training in architecture, Rogers learned to design houses through his work as a builder and craftsman
and through builder's guides by such popular authors as Minard Lafever, Batty Langley, and Edward Shaw. Rogers sometimes worked
with his brother Henry, a builder. In 1830 Collin and Henry together owned fifty slaves, most of whom they employed as skilled workers and craftsman.
1830 and 1840 Rogers is known to have designed six houses for wealthy cotton planters in west Georgia. His first, the Magnolias (McFarland-Render House, 1830–33), was built in LaGrange as the town home for Joseph D. McFarland, one of Troup County's wealthiest planters. In the Magnolias, as in all of his houses,
Rogers used a traditional floor plan, here a Georgian plan with four rooms divided by a center hall, and Neoclassical-style
elements that include an Ionic tetrastyle (four-columned) portico and elaborately carved entrance surround. The Henderson-Orr
House (1832), an I-house (one-room-deep, two-story house) in rural Coweta County, includes the original interior woodwork in which Rogers playfully altered the proportions of the pilasters that adorn the
fireplace surrounds. His last four houses, Nutwood (1833), Nathan Van Boddie House (1836), Edwards-Phillips House (1835–40),
Fannin-Truitt-Handley Place (1835–40), represent Rogers's mature work. Located near LaGrange, these Georgian-plan houses are
dominated by two-story temple-front Ionic porticoes. The finely carved entrance surrounds and parlor mantels of these houses
are also characteristic of Rogers's later work.
In addition to his work in the building trade, Rogers served as a judge of the Inferior Court of Troup County from 1832 to
1833 and from 1837 to 1842. He had two children with his wife, Sarah Lawson Womack, and died in Troup County in 1845.
William H. Davidson, Pine Log and Greek Revival: Houses and People of Three Counties in Georgia and Alabama (Alexander City, Ala.: Outlook, 1964).
Forrest Clark Johnson, A History of LaGrange, Georgia, 1828-1900: Genealogical and Historical Register of Troup County, Georgia (LaGrange, Ga.: Family Tree, 1987).
Julie Turner, Travels through Troup County: A Guide to Its Architecture and History ([LaGrange, Ga.]: Troup County Historical Society, 1996).
Steven H. Moffson, Historic Preservation Division, Department of Natural Resources