Friday, August 12, 2022

Brandt Memory House in Oxford, Mississippi

Brandt Memory House / Photo By UM Photographer Kevin Bain
Brandt Memory House / Photo By UM Photographer Kevin Bain

Built in 1837 and standing just outside the gates of Ole Miss, this house was the home of John Faulkner, William’s brother. It was here that John wrote Men Working, Dollar Cotton and My Brother Bill, a tribute to William Faulkner.

Growing up in Oxford, there were a lot of Faulkner kids. But they were not from William Faulkner’s direct line. They were from his brother John’s. John and Dolly Faulkner had two sons. Jimmy and Chooky Faulkner were both well known, popular members of Oxford’s social crowd. Jimmy Faulkner being a writer and historian in his own right and his mother, Miss Dolly, being the great family matriarch for years after her husband passed away.

Another thing about the Faulkners that Oxford folks know is that they always have boys, mostly. In my generation of Oxford kids there was the lone girl, Meg, along with Rusty, Buddy, Burt, Ley and Ramey. I don’t know how many children there are on the next generation down, but I’d figure the Faulkner name is in no danger of fading away.

Oxford has three well known “Faulkner Houses” but it is around this one that the activity and day to day life of the Faulkners of Oxford took place during my time. Memory House, like Rowan Oak, is now owned and preserved by Ole Miss. But no matter what use they put it to or what the sign out front says, for Oxford folks, it will always be Miss Dolly’s house.

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