Sheridan Orphanage (real name: Zachary/Echols House)
The exterior of this house can been seen in the first episode of The Dukes of Hazzard as the Sheridan Orphanage. The home is first introduced to us when Bo delivers two bags of money to Jill Dodson in an effort to help her keep the property. In another scene, the Duke boys are chased by Rosco and Enos onto the front lawn of the property after crashing through the white fence with the General Lee. In the latter scene, take note of the banner that reads “Welcome Sheriff Roscoe.” The name “Roscoe” is actually spelled incorrectly. The correct spelling is “Rosco.”
The Zachary/Echols House was built in 1854 by Thomas Jones for Louis Zachary, then-Sheriff of Newton County, Georgia. In 1874 the house was sold to John and Sara Echols for approximately $2,000. Hence, the name of the house. The Zachary/Echols House was also used in the television series In the Heat of the Night.
As you can see in the photos, the appearance of the house has definitely changed over the last 35 years. Today the house sits behind a short iron fence with a well-groomed yard. As for the white property-line fence seen in the first episode, it’s no longer standing. Perhaps that’s because it was never rebuilt after the Duke boys wrecked it evading Hazzard County’s finest – aka Rosco and Enos. Other noticeable differences to the house include the removal of the railings on the rooftop deck and the black shutter treatment added to all the windows.
Here’s a side note for all the National Lampoon film fans: The boy repairing the stairs with Jill, and then seen later squirting Crush soda on the rear window of the General Lee, is Jason Lively, better known as Rusty Griswold in National Lampoon’s European Vacation. This was his first role as an actor. He also played the role of Rod Moffet in the sixth season episode “The Boar’s Nest Bars.”