Word has come from Belhaven University in Jackson this week about disturbing recent structural shifts in the East Wing of their iconic Fitzhugh Hall. Built in 1911, the building was significantly rebuilt and altered after a 1927 fire. Now the south masonry wall appears to be crumbling for some reason, shifting over 6 inches in the last month. Thankfully, it appears that Belhaven, led by president Roger Parrott, is intent on saving the historic structure, rather than giving up on it and building new. Check out this fascinating tour of the building, conducted by Dr. Parrott and showing some pretty disturbing footage of the damage.
While it appears that the damage is confined to the south wall of the east wing, we have watched how quickly a similar structural issue took Mississippi Industrial College’s Cathrine Hall from mostly standing to mostly collapsed in the space of a year. Let’s hope that Belhaven can get that area shored and stabilized in time for them to raise the money for a full-fledged repair and renovation!