Historic Markers Across Alabama



Robert Wilton Burton



Marker ID: HCC 
Location: in front of Burton House Apartments on East Magnolia, in Auburn, Alabama.
County: Lee
Coordinates: N 32° 36.403    W 085° 28.645
  32.60671666    -85.47741666
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: WMKYWV
 



Text:

Near this site once stood "Four-Story Cottage," the home of Robert Wilton Burton. A one-story house with wide porch and bay window, Burton built it in 1885 with proceeds from the sale of four stories to children's magazines. Born in Camden County, Georgia, Burton grew up in Lafayette, Alabama, where he began writing stories for the newspaper, on various subjects. In the early 1870’s, with his brother, he opened a bookstore in Opelika, Alabama. In 1878, at the request of the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Alabama, Burton opened the first bookstore in Auburn. It was soon known as the "Coffee House of the College City."

Erected by the Auburn Heritage Association and Historic Chattahoochee Commission, 1999.

Burton wrote numerous local color stories for national magazines and newspapers. Many of his best tales, in Negro dialect, feature "Marengo Jake" Mitchell, a former slave in Auburn known for his tall tales. In 1991, these stories were published as “De Remnant Truth.” An active Presbyterian, Burton also served as Secretary of the Town Board of Education, County School Superintendent, Clerk of the Town Council, and Secretary to the College Board of Trustees. His bookstore was sold in 1968; his home dismantled in 1993.

Erected by the Auburn Heritage Association and Historic Chattahoochee Commission, 1999.







End of Robert Wilton Burton