The 1939 film “Gone With The Wind” features four beautiful staircases that have come to define the elegance, grace and grandeur of interior stair design.
One of the most popular staircases in movie history is the red carpeted stair within the opulent Butler Mansion, on which Scarlett O’Hara sits in the final scene.
The staircase is a straight stair with 23 treads and 24 risers. It is approx.12 ft. wide and features an ornate balustrade of William and Mary architecture. The ornate panels inset below the handrail are hand-carved wood with a pattern that is similar to the carving on the newel posts.The massive handrails were made from several pieces and have height of nearly 12 inches. Each of the four newels are approx. 12″ wide and the top caps form a pedestal for a light fixture at each location. At the top of the stair, there are horizontal rail sections that form an overlook to the foyer on the left and the right.
This elaborate stair case was designed by Lyle Wheeler who won an Academy Award for his design work on the 90 sets and 50 full size buildings used in the movie. The stair was built on a Holly wood sound stage and torn down as soon as filming was completed. Little is known about the craftsmen that built one of America’s most amazing staircases.