By EVE M. KAHN
Published: July 25, 2013
WALLACE, La. —
John Cummings is restoring a 1790s plantation house as a museum, but he hopes that future visitors will spend only a few minutes there.
The main attractions will be the grounds, with slave quarters, workshops and 250 acres of former sugar and rice fields. Having worked on the site here since 1998, he plans to open it to the public early next year. So far he has spent more than $6 million of his own money on restoration, new construction and acquisitions of antiques.
Mr. Cummings, a trial lawyer, sometimes taps his listeners on the shoulder or arm to make sure they are grasping the thoughts and emotions he hopes to stir at the Whitney Plantation. (The property has been so named since a branch of the wealthy Whitney family took it over after the Civil War.)
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