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The Sheldon Storybook Castle
The tale of Fairhope's Story Book Castles begins with Craig Sheldon. His house is a testament to what the imagination can do within a strict budget.

The Sheldons started this structure in 1946. It was to be a garage, workshop, and laundry room. They had planned to build a Mexican-style house on the west end of the lot. But they grew tired of the small apartment they were renting at Whittier Hall on Magnolia Avenue in Fairhope, so the family moved into the shell, which had no partition walls.

The garage became a bedroom and hence has the only wood exterior wall in the house. Its rippled stained-glass panels were removed in the summer to allow the cool breezes in (there were still cool breezes in those days because the lot was more heavily shaded and the gully was less overgrown). The “shop” became the living and dining room, while the “laundry” became the kitchen.
 
The rolled roof design resulted from his World War II experiences in the South Pacific. Being in the construction business, he’d bring home whatever shingles were left over from various jobs. The random assortment of colors available produced the resulting patchwork-quilt design.
The tower was built in the 1950s with the help of his young son, Craig, Jr. (then called Mac). Mr. Sheldon had always dreamed of building a round room, and in this tower he constructed three of them. The first two allowed Mac and his sister, Suzan Megrez, to have their own rooms. The top room, on the third floor, was Mr. Sheldon’s office, where he wrote his plays and his newspaper column, “Knee Deep in Fly Creek.”

The conical roof was added a little later, but only after many nights of sleeping under the stars. Eventually it became Mac’s room. Years later both daughters threw their wedding bouquets from the window of this room.

Rumor has it, since that time, there has even been a young prince spotted in the area. It seems he was looking for a certain young lady with very long hair...

The house was built of Clay City tile. Mr. Sheldon covered the tile with Mobile Bay stone, first using the stone Mrs. Sheldon had hand-carried up the bluff to line her flowerbeds. He embellished the stone with old tools, Civil War shrapnel, cookware, bottles and more.
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Mr. & Mrs. Dean Mosher & Fairhope Story Book Castles,
456 Oak Avenue, Fairhope Alabama 36532
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