The plantation was caught in the middle of the Civil War and officers from both the Confederate and Union armies stayed in the mansion. The most notable visitor to the home was Confederate President Jefferson Davis who stayed at Oaklands in December 1862.
The mansion was abandoned, vandalized, left in disrepair and almost torn down by the city of Murfreesboro. However, the mansion was restored to its original grandeur by a group of ladies who rallied together to form the Oaklands Association. The home was opened to the public as a museum in the early 1960s. Today thousands of visitors from all over the world view the mansion and grounds each year.