Content on this page requires a newer version of Adobe Flash Player.

Get Adobe Flash player

Community Leader

Augusta Jane Evans had been a vocal supporter of the Confederate cause in Mobile.   After the war she continued her support for soldiers by launching a campaign to bring the bodies of Mobilians back home.  At Magnolia cemetery she founded Confederate Rest, where these veterans are interred today.  Her continuing interest in health care led her to found Mobile Infirmary in the 1890s.

After the huge financial success of St. Elmo and her marriage to Lorenzo Wilson, Augusta’s life centered around running the Ashland estate and becoming involved in the life of the community.  Shortly before her marriage she joined the St. Francis Street Methodist Church and sang in the choir there for the next twenty-five years.  She was a patron of the theater and according to Fidler directed a production of the Oriental romance Lalla Rookh for the benefit of the Protestant Orphan Asylum.

Fidler comments that her liberal views on the theater (which some proper Victorians held in low regard) were matched by her stand on prohibition.  She enjoyed her homemade scuppernong wine and, according to Fidler, believed that moral values could not be legislated.  Her stand on prohibition, says Fidler, was “allied to her position on woman’s suffrage, for many suffragettes took an active part in the prohibition movement. She could not bring her mind to accept the spectacle of women forcing legislation at the polls and in the halls of the legislature.”