Built by lawyer Jefferson Franklin Jackson in 1858, this columned I-house became the home of planter Charles Molton when he and his family moved into town from their plantation in 1860. Four years later, believing that the Confederacy had a better chance of survival west of the Mississippi River, he began moving to Texas with his slaves after selling his house to his sister Narcissa for $12,000. In Mississippi, however federal troops stopped them and freed the slaves, forcing Molton to return to Alabama. In 1881 the Association for Aiding Working Women and the Helpless purchased it.
Prominent Montgomery women realized there were many areas of need in difficult circumstances many single women faced. The Association’s mission was to provide a home, which opened in the Molton House, for single working women and their children. The city’s first continuous organized charity, which changed its name to the Working Woman’s Home Association, gained support as local families donated funds to construct small cottages on the grounds, accompanying the two original saddlebag houses flanking the rear of the big house.
Until 1992, the Association provided small apartments for working and elderly women when the organization decided to sell the property and discontinue the housing but to continue their philanthropic activities.
The Working Woman’s Association sold the property to Alabama Hospital Association and offered the house to Landmarks Foundation contributing funds to assist with its relocation. The move occurred in March 1993, and in 2000 the Foundation completed the restoration.
With its graceful colonnade, bracketed cornice, and interior faux painting, the Molton House is a sophisticated example of an urban I-house, a simple form that features two rooms over two rooms separated by a central hall. Two one-story rear lean-tos offer additional rooms and modern conveniences. The Molton House is leased as commercial property.