SPIRIT OF ALABAMA: LAKEWOOD HOME SURVIVES FOR GENERATIONS
Even on the gloomiest days, historic homes still shine in all their glory. In Livingston, Alabama the historic Lakewood home has been in Sidney Collins-Freeman’s family for seven generations.
“It was always very important to my great-grandmother, my grandfather, my mom. Everyone that our family held onto it,” Freeman said.
She has done much more than just hold on to the nearly 200-year-old home.
“We began renovations in 2015,” Freeman said. “It was a long and slow process as most things are.”
Sidney Freeman and her husband Jake have completely restored the family property, doing most of the work themselves. The couple wed on the front steps of Lakewood in fall of 2017 and call it home today.
“That is something that will always be very special to us,” Freeman said. “We actually both mentioned that on our wedding day. How special it was that we had done this together and that we were able to get married here, now. Now that we get to raise a family here, that is even more special.”
The Freeman’s are expecting their first child in June, a baby boy with a special name. They have decided to name the boy, James Lake Freeman, after the house that was originally built for James lake and his family.
“It makes me a little emotional, oh my goodness,” Freeman said. “To get to raise him here and his siblings hopefully as well, that’s kind of the end goal, to continue this legacy. I can already imagine him running around, little pitter-patter of his feet and that type of thing. I can only imagine that he will want to slide down the banister and make lost of mischief. There are plenty of places to play hide-and-seek in this house.”
The day the Freeman’s found out they were expecting, they also had some very special visitors at Lakewood. Just a few months before, Southern Living Magazine had reached out to feature their home’s story. The home was featured in the March 2019 Southern Living issue, Freeman said she will never forget the first time she saw the piece.
“I was like holy cow, there it is,” Freeman said. “It was just so surreal to see it.”
A history to be proud of and a future to look forward to.
“That would probably be my favorite part of the entire thing,” Freeman said. “If we don’t get to share this with others because not many people get that opportunity.”