Help build a list of required Mississippi places

After a recent post about the book 1001 Buildings You Must See Before You Die, W. White suggested that we answer the snub of having no Mississippi buildings included in the book by creating our own list, eliminating one zero to get us to a more manageable 101 Mississippi places.

At first I thought the best way to get that list would be to create a new poll, but alas, as you may recall from the first MissPres poll, when a voter writes in an entry, it disappears from view and is only seen as “Other” in the results. What we need instead is a way for other readers coming along later to vote on those entries, and poll technology hasn’t gotten there yet. Apparently, we can beam a man from a planet to his starship and create detective novels in our holodecks, but we can’t create a poll that works the way I want it to.

Nevertheless, Malvaney is all about “Can Do,” so the current plan is to create our list via comments to this post. Other readers can “Like” individual comments to show their approval and add their own suggested places in their own comments. At the end of December, I’ll compile the comments with the most “Likes” into an organized list that I hope will have at least 101 places on it. I’m not sure how this will work, but we’ll give it the old college try. Maybe we’ll break the comments down by region and do polls to pick the top favorites for each. At any rate, we will post the resulting list will be viewable 24/7/365 via a tab up at the top of the blog.

I’m going to get us started, using the Mississippi AIA’s “12 Favorite Buildings” list from last year as a jumping-off point. Here’s their list:

  • Longwood, Natchez
  • Dunleith, Natchez
  • Old Capitol, Jackson
  • New Capitol, Jackson
  • St. Richard’s Catholic Church, Jackson
  • Governor’s Mansion, Jackson
  • Bailey Junior High School, Jackson
  • Woodworth Chapel, Tougaloo College
  • Windsor Ruins, Claiborne County
  • Beauvoir, Biloxi
  • Biloxi Lighthouse, Biloxi
  • Chapel of the Cross, Madison County

Now that I type that list out geographically, I see that there is nothing north of Madison County, which is a problem, isn’t it? So here are some other places I think are worthy of consideration.

Natchez:

  • Auburn
  • Rosalie
  • Melrose
  • Jefferson College
  • Emerald Mound/Grand Village of the Natchez Indians

Jackson:

  • Standard Life/Tower Building
  • King Edward Hotel
  • Lamar Life Building
  • St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church
  • War Memorial Building
  • Medgar Evers House
  • Belhaven neighborhood/Eudora Welty House
  • “downtown” Fondren
  • Farish Street neighborhood
  • Manship House
  • Covenant Presbyterian Church

Gulf Coast:

  • Charnley House, Ocean Springs

Columbus area

  • Waverley
  • Riverview
  • MUW front campus
  • Errolton
  • White Arches
  • Lee Hall, MSU

Carrollton area

  • Stanhope
  • Capt. Ray House
  • Blackhawk School–S of Carrollton
  • Acona School–in Holmes County

Piney Woods/South of Jackson

  • First Presbyterian Church, Laurel
  • Stewart M. Jones School, Laurel
  • Eastman-Gardiner Lumber Co. offices, Laurel
  • Hattiesburg P.O.
  • Walthall School, Hattiesburg
  • Saenger Theater, Hattiesburg
  • Administration Building, USM
  • Bexley School, George County
  • Whitworth College/Mississippi School for the Arts, Brookhaven
  • Crystal Springs High School

Hills/Northeast

  • Corinth Machinery Works
  • The Lyceum/The Circle, Ole Miss
  • Booneville Church of Christ
  • Jacinto Courthouse
  • Tishomingo State Park
  • Church Street School, Tupelo
  • Mississippi Industrial College, Holly Springs
  • Chalmers Institute, Holly Springs
  • Walter Place, Holly Springs

Over Meridian Way

  • Threefoot Building
  • Grand Opera House
  • Witherspoon School
  • Meridian City Hall
  • Wechsler School
  • Merrihope
  • Simmons-Wright Company Store, Kewanee community
  • Stonewall Mill Village

Vicksburg

  • old Warren County Courthouse
  • St. Paul’s Catholic Church
  • old Post Office/Federal Courthouse
  • St. Francis Xavier School and Convent

Delta

  • Refuge Cotton Oil Mill, Greenville
  • Mt. Holly, Lake Washington
  • “Belmont”
  • Dockery Plantation
  • Hopson Plantation
  • Red Barn, Rolling Fork
  • Cotton Row, Greenwood
  • downtown Clarksdale
  • Drew Rosenwald School (Lil’ Red), Drew

Should we limit the list to individual buildings rather than “downtown Clarksdale”? Maybe.

Admittedly this is an idiosyncratic list based on the places I’ve been to, especially recently. I’m missing a lot here, so y’all need to help fill this list out. I’ve also probably included places that you think aren’t worth the effort–say so in your comments. If you don’t vote, don’t blame me for the final product!

——————————-

Later Edit:

Here are a few rules we’ve made up as we’ve gone along:

  1. Individual buildings only. No historic districts or large groups of buildings such as neighborhoods, college campuses, etc. There’s a fuzzy area about small collections of buildings that all go together such as plantation complexes (Melrose, Dockery, etc.)
  2. List one place per comment so that we can vote up or down on that particular place instead of trying to parse out what we agree with from a long list.
  3. While Mississippi has some fascinating landscapes and events that include buildings, this particular list is focusing on buildings and man-made structures.

Even Later Edit:

I’ve created a comprehensive list that includes all of the suggestions made in the comments below up to this point (give or take a few hours), so be sure to check that out if you don’t want to read through all the comments before posting your own suggestions.



Categories: 101 MissPres Places, Books, Contest, Historic Preservation

243 replies

  1. first thoughts:
    Add: Margaret’s Grocery in Vicksburg
    Add: MSU cafeteria
    Delete: downtown Fondren?
    also a slightly wonky add: I love the Millsaps gymnasium

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    • Never been to the Millsaps gym–I’ll have to wander over there sometime.

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      • Its got these big laminated arched beams and a wonderful base detail with weirdo light wells at the base… like I said, kinda wonky, but worth a look. :)

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        • Since a 10-ish year old building (if my memory serves me right for when they did the Gym at Millsaps) is now up for debate, I guess we have to ask our moderator if “new” buildings count for the list.

          Besides, if we’re going to but a Millsaps building on the list, I think it should be the Observatory.

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          • not the new annex to the gym… the old vaulted gym adjacent to it… If I had to guess it’s 60’s vintage.
            I would hope there are new buildings on the list,.. though woefully absent now. The new Library Commission building?

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            • Delete Fondren? You may find yourself on “The List”

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            • Oh, I like Fondren, but I can imagine that if we have a list of 101 buildings/areas, that Fondren would be an easy one for me to delete. If that lands me on whatever Theodore’s “List” is, well then, um, I guess put me on it?!

              Like

  2. Love the Star Trek reference – I’m guessing you’ve been watching The Next Generation a lot lately.

    Now to the matter at hand:

    I can go either way on if we should focus on individual buildings rather than areas – On one hand, we are inspired by a book listing individual buildings, so we might want to keep to that same spirit. On the other, I’d have a hard time arguing to eliminate downtown Fondren and the Belhaven Area for a list of Mississippi must see places.

    Once we finish our debate and get the 101 buildings, what are we going to do with it from there?

    Some more contributions to be considered:

    Eastland Building, Jackson
    Ricks Library, Yazoo City (despite being a Zucker building . . . )
    Wilkinson County Courthouse, Woodville
    Y & MV (Illinois Central) Depot, Durant

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  3. Aren’t Emerald Mound and Grand Village different places?

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  4. I didn’t see anything from Starkville/MSU. Was that intentional. Just kidding.
    Montgomery Hall and Perry Cafeteria at MSU
    Curlee-Veranda House, Corinth (but hurry)
    Can we include civil war earthworks like those around Corinth?
    Coliseum Theatre, Corinth
    Ammadale and Rowan Oak, Oxford
    Fountainhead in Woodland Hills, Jackson
    Cotesworth near Carrollton
    Temple Theater, Meridian
    Yazoo Street RR Depot, Vicksburg
    BB Building, Vicksburg
    Beuavoir, Biloxi
    Lighthouse, Biloxi
    White House Hotel, Biloxi since it is a rare survivor of a once numerous type
    Lauren Rogers Museum, Laurel
    Pembertons HQ and Balfour House in Vicksburg
    African American Museum (former Branch Bank of MS), Woodville
    West Feliciana (?) Railroad Office/Bank, Woodville

    I think including downtowns is ok, but if its not limited and explained as to why this or that, it could almost become meaningless. Just my opinion.
    This is all I can think of now.

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  5. Historical significance? Rowan Oak should be on it, in Oxford.

    Others:

    Lyceum Building and Ventress Hall, campus of U. of Mississippi
    First Presbyterian Church, Port Gibson

    I’m going to add a personal plea for this old law office building

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    • In my mind I can see myself typing Rowan Oak, but I sure didn’t did I? That would have been a huge miss! I did get the Lyceum though, and Ventress Hall is on The Circle, so I was close :-) We’ll put the law office building on there and see whether it flies. It certainly is a wonderful building!

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  6. I don’t have a building to add (you covered all my favorites), but I applaud the Star Trek reference! :)

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  7. Rosemont in Woodville could be added to the list. Definitely agree with the White House! Chapel of the Cross in Madison? Will try to think of more. I like this idea!

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  8. Another one not up for discussion yet is the Tennessee Williams house in Columbus

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  9. I see someone has added Ricks Memorial Library in Yazoo City, and yes that one should be on the list. Also, being the railroad buff that I am, I would like to add the railroad depots in Meridian, Laurel, and Hattiesburg. All have been beautifully restored and are still serving the public.

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    • They’re all great depots, but I’m voting for Hattiesburg’s especially because it’s the best of the three in my opinion. Meridian’s is pretty much a new building from the 1990s. Laurel’s is very nice and well-done, but there are others in that same category around the state and it gets hard to choose just one of the group for a relatively small list. How about the Natchez Depot?

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  10. The old Deason House in Ellisville.
    And the Carroll County Courthouse in Carrollton.

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  11. Great idea. I will just list a few of the places I have visited and liked that nobody else has mentioned yet.

    Union County Courthouse (New Albany)
    St. John’s Episcopal Church (Aberdeen)
    Monroe County Chancery Building (Aberdeen)
    Tate County Courthouse (Senatobia)
    St. John the Baptist Catholic Church (Sardis)
    College Hill Presbyterian Church (Lafayette County)
    Downtown Clarksdale: lots of buildings with individual merit but may work better combined (While I love the moderne lines of both the Greyhound terminal and auditorium, they may not be significant enough for separate entries)
    St. John’s Episcopal Church Ruins (Glen Allan)
    Hebrew Union Congregation (Greenville)
    Cedarhurst (Holly Springs)
    Airliewood (Holly Springs)
    St. Peter’s Episcopal Church (Oxford)
    Temple Beth El (Lexington)
    Jackson Greyhound Terminal (love these moderne stations)
    Tougaloo College Dormitories (Jackson)
    Jackson City Hall
    Carroll County Courthouse (Carrollton)
    Grace Chapel (Carrollton)
    Hinds County Courthouse (Raymond)
    Immaculate Conception Catholic Church (Raymond)
    St. Mark’s Episcopal Church (Raymond)

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    • I had forgotten the Clarksdale auditorium and the bus station–both very cool buildings! Also forgot the dormitories at Tougaloo, which are definitely a must-see, even if they aren’t to some/many people’s taste.

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  12. I see all these buildings, but what about events? Must sees should include Tailgating in the Grove, Blessing of the Fleet on the Coast, Mardi Gras in Biloxi, Otha Turner Picnic in Senatobia, the Choctaw Games in Philidelphia, just to name a few quickly.

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  13. Pinecote Pavillion (near Picayune)
    Cat House (Ocean Springs)
    Old Hattiesburg HighSchool
    Hercules Employees’ Store and Club Room (Hattiesburg)
    Summit Water Tower and Town Hall
    Fort Massachusetts (Ship Island)

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  14. I think it would be a good idea if we list the buildings one at a time in our comments (only one building per comment). That way, a more accurate representation of everyone’s feelings can be measured. I like some of the buildings in the previous comments, but some I don’t like, which makes it hard to approve of someone’s comment.

    My only recommendation at the moment is the Patterson Engineering Laboratories at MSU. It was built in 1949 and looks, inside and out, like it did in 1949. No drop ceilings, no window replacements, no flooring replacements, almost no interior changes. Its intact state alone should give it a spot on the list, seeing as most educational buildings in Mississippi are gutted every 30 or 40 years. N.W. Overstreet had a hand in the construction, so it should get plus marks for that. Also, it’s modern, which should win the approval of the rabid modernists.

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    • Washington County Courthouse, Greenville. A Mississippi Landmark that is probably the best remaining Richardson Romanesque structure in the state. It was constructed in 1890 by John F. Barnes and designed by McDonald Bros., Architects. Despite unsympathetic additions and renovations in the 1930s and 1950s/60s, the Washington County Courthouse in Greenville is still a worthy addition to the list.

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      • As to Malvaney’s original list, I say no to the Chalmers Institute in Holly Springs, the Corinth Machinery Works, “downtown” Fondren, and downtown Clarksdale. The Chalmers Institute and Corinth Machinery Works are great buildings, but not architecturally significant enough to make the top 101. They would have a place if this was the top 1001. Besides, both will likely collapse before the list is finished.

        I don’t think we should include downtowns in the list. They are too nebulous and vague and often include too many inappropriate architectural intrusions. I also don’t think Fondren is worthy either on architectural or historical grounds. I know that will probably seem anathema to you Malvaney, but I call it like I see it. Downtown Corinth is far better than Fondren. Corinth is larger, older, and surprisingly intact. Still, I don’t believe any downtowns, neighborhoods, or Universities should belong on the list, only single buildings (or related complexes of buildings, like an intact plantation).

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      • I think you’re right about downtowns and entire campuses. It gets a little fuzzier for me on small groups of buildings like the front campus at MUW, which almost all of a piece.

        I don’t agree about Fondren being architecturally or historically insignificant. In fact, when viewed as a mid-century “downtown” it is more intact than most National Register-listed downtowns and has a couple of “firsts” for the entire state: first shopping center and first suburban office building–maybe not cultural trends you agree with, but architecturally significant trends nonetheless. Nevertheless, since we’ve decided against districts, I’ll propose a couple of my favorite Fondren buildings as individuals.

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        • I think you misinterpreted my statement. Downtown Fondren is not architecturally or historically significant enough to put it in the 101 top Mississippi buildings. Also, the remuddlings of some modern structures (like the Morgan Center) is worrying due to modern structures relying so much on clean lines and an ideological purity of design that cannot be messed with very much on a building.

          I still say no to Universities, all of them would probably end up on the list. I am only vaguely familiar with MUW’s campus. I will agree with you that it did seem a pretty cohesive unit from the front (the only side I’ve seen in person), but I think part of that is the clear deliniation that has been created between MUW and Columbus. Still, if we include Universities than The Circle at Ole Miss, The Drill Field at MSU, the R.H. Hunt-designed central campus at USM (whatever the center of that campus is called), and all the other college campuses will end up on the list, whether they belong there or not. A sense of place cannot be quantified for these places to everyone’s satisfaction, but architectural merit and historical merit of the individual buildings can be quantified, and that is what this list is about. The best buildings in Mississippi.

          We may have to create a best landscapes in Mississippi list at a future date. That way people can put their favorite downtowns, Universities, and whatever on that list.

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    • I’ll have to agree with W.White’s comment about voting.

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    • W. I agree about posting one at a time. I thought about it while posting mine but decided against it out of shear laziness. Having to list every building in a separate comment will probably make one think about each building more carefully as one posts it.

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  15. The old chapel at Alcorn (which has the stairs from Windsor)

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    • I’m not familiar with this building. Does it have another name or am I just exceptionally unfamiliar with MSU?

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      • I thought the post office was in the basement of the former YMCA building across from the Union building.

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        • Yes, that’s the same building. Generally, everyone on campus refers to the building as the Post Office. I think it has been decades since the building was actually used as a YMCA; whereas, I’m going to check my mail there later today.

          I didn’t know it was an Overstreet. The building lacks a cornerstone other than a small one which states “1914.”

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        • Ok, I know it now. That’s a sweet building and a very early Overstreet, when he was still in partnership with Raymond Spencer. I thought I recalled a plaque inside the building back toward the old auditorium space?

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  16. Doggone, did anyone do their real jobs this afternoon!? As I was diligently working away for pay, I see others were hard at work on the list–hopefully you’re all self-employed and didn’t have to resort to subterfuge with your bosses :-)

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  17. Morgan Center, Fondren–first shopping center in the state (1946), a nice Art Moderne piece that has had some alterations, most egregiously Dryvit cladding, but still retains enough of its original swagger for me to like it.

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  18. Kolbs Cleaners, Fondren–designed by Robert Overstreet, a truly stunning International/Art Moderne hybrid with its swooping cantilevered awning.

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  19. And to summarize the above, I agree with the emerging consensus that we post each building in a separate comment, that districts aren’t allowed, and that the building doesn’t have to be “historic” or meet an age requirement. It could be built yesterday. If you love it and think others will too, write it down!

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  20. Maybe I missed it, but don’t forget the Episcopal church at Church Hill, north of Natchez.

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  21. Bethel Church near Rodney

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  22. Instead of downtown Clarksdale, consider these:

    1. Alcazar Hotel

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  23. 4. The original Carnegie Library building (built 1914, housed original blues museum)

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  24. 5. The old Clarksdale Hospital located on Pecan Street

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  25. 7. Clarksdale Press Register Building (used as background in filming “The Help”)

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  26. 8. Many churches in Clarksdale. The rector’s home next to St. George’s Episcopal Church (Tennessee Williams significance) should get some consideration as well as the Beth Israel Synagogue. Another place is the Riverside Motel. Lots of history, but nothing to much to look at it in my opinion.

    Of what I listed, the old Clarksdale Hospital is probably the least significant.

    Hope these contributions are helpful – WMS

    Like

  27. The BB King Museum & Delta Interpretive Center in Indianola.
    Unlike some others, I agree with your comments about the dormitories at Tougaloo

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  28. I’d like to nominate the Ricks Memorial Library in Yazoo City. It is truly a beautiful city library. Fortunately, the urban decay that has destroyed most of the rest of the town has bypassed the library. I worked there while in high school (class of ’61) and it will always hold a special place in my heart.

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  29. I just remembered the John Ford House outside of Columbia

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  30. I’m going to re-list mine from earlier so everyone can vote:

    Eastland Building, Jackson

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  31. Wilkinson County Courthouse, Woodville

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  32. Y & MV (Illinois Central) Depot, Durant

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  33. While one could debate the architectural significance and the preservation methodologies – I wouldn’t leave out the Elvis Presley Birthplace in Tupelo

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  34. I’m starting to compile these into a list that we can read a little more easily to see what’s already been suggested. I hope to have that up by tomorrow night at the latest. I’m happy to report that so far we have 170 suggested places, which means we’ll have to come up with a way to cull the list down to 101 places. That’s a good problem to have!

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  35. And the William Johnson House in Natchez, it tells a different part of the story of the region…

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  36. …and a personal Natchez fave, Mammie’s Kitchen (I think that’s right) just outside of Natchez, a great survivor from a different time and place.

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  37. +1 Mammie’s Kitchen

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  38. +1 John Ford Home

    Columbia High School is another, N.W. Overstreet if I’m not mistaken.

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  39. The pink and gray moderne-ish office/apartment building on N. State at Arlington in Jackson. I believe it has also been known as the Morgan building.

    If anyone knows anything else about it (architect) or could get me inside … I’d very much appreciate it.

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  40. I’ve compiled what I think is a complete list of where we are so far at https://misspreservation.com/101-mississippi-places-to-see-before-you-die. I’ve arranged it roughly geographically to make it easier to figure out if something has already been suggested. Make sure to check it out before posting a new place. If a place is already on the list, go back in the comments and find it to add your vote to whoever posted it already.

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    • Do we post new buildings on this page or the new page?

      If it’s this page, I will go ahead and nominate the Oxford City Hall.

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    • Also, no one has nominated the Wesson Public School in Wesson. I was looking at various photographs and this building definately belongs on the list.

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    • The Liddon Castle (also known as the Liddon House) in Corinth. This house is the centerpiece of Benjamin Liddon’s stone-constructed business empire in Corinth. Next time everyone is in downtown Corinth, notice all the large stone structures in the downtown. That is Liddon’s calling card. His house is a few blocks away from the courthouse.

      Like

    • I’ll also add the Alcorn County Courthouse in Corinth, another Overstreet. The interior is pretty much 60s/70s institutional but most of it is offices that the public can’t enjoy anyway.

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    • Hawkins Middle School, Hattiesburg, yet another Overstreet.

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    • Vicksburg City Hall, despite the alterations, it is the only Mississippi building that I know of that would look at home in Baroque Prague or Vienna.

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    • Harned Hall, the Biology Building at MSU. They have been gutting the building for the past two years and dumping the interior into dumpsters. If the building hasn’t been ruined, then it is possibly the best Collegiate Gothic structure in Mississippi.

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      • The supervising architect was Theodore C. Link while the associate architect (the one who probably did all the work) was Wilbur T. Trueblood.

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  41. I would like to add Mount Helena, Rolling Fork.

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  42. What? No Chris Risher buildings yet? I nominate the Vise Clinic building as a can’t miss in Meridian.
    Vise Clinic, Meridian, Mississippi

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  43. Another one not on the list to consider:

    Gulfport Library

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  44. Stanton Hall in Natchez

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  45. The old Madison County Courthouse in Canton

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  46. Lafayette County Courthouse in Oxford

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  47. The “New” Federal Courthouse and Post Office in Vicksburg. Construction completed in 1937, designed by our old, mysterious friend Claude Lindsley as a great example of 1930s Federal Classicism.

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  48. The old Warren County Jail in Vicksburg

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  49. The “New” Warren County Courthouse in Vicksburg. A WPA project designed by Havis & Havis and completed in 1940. An excellent late example of Art Deco and Federal Classicism.

    How come Vicksburg managed to have all these great buildings? The rest of Mississippi should be envious.

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  50. The Leflore County Courthouse and Jail in Greenwood, a large and in charge design by R.H. Hunt.

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  51. Fountainhead, the Frank Lloyd Wright house in Jackson.

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    • This brings to mind a couple of issues I have with naming things. There are some buildings out there, such as Fountainhead, that are almost completely off-limits to viewing yet should be seen if possible. There is another “home” like this, a building designed by Robert K. Overstreet known as the lodge.

      Then there are the great buildings (Malvaney named the Morgan Center in Fondren) that are so significantly altered or dilapidated from what they were in their glory. Can they be included? I’m thinking of the Overstreet designed former WHDX distance transformer building on N. State in Jackson (both altered and dilapidated (and on private property)), the Coliseum in Jackson, the former gas station in Fondren that is now the Everyday Gardener.

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      • Erk, the W*J*DX distance *transmitter* building was designed by N.W. Overstreet, just to clarify. I guess I need more coffee.

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      • Since we’re already well over 101 buildings/places, we can see the list will have to be culled to get it back down to places we can all (or at least mostly all) agree to. People can give thumbs up or down to any and each of these comments, and places that get no votes at all might get culled first. Then, depending on how many we have left at that point, I might do small polls for each region, allowing people to vote on their top 5 or something like that from each region. We can then use that information to post the “final” 101.

        So, bottom line, suggest away and see what flies in this first round.

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      • I think the transmitter is too altered. If the addition was to the rear of the structure, it might have a place on the list.

        There are enough pictures of the Frank Lloyd Wright house to make up for the fact that it is inaccessible private property. It seems like I see magazine articles and other coverage of the house on a fairly regular basis so between that and the pictures on the Internet, people should have a general idea of what the house and grounds look like.

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  52. There’s a Frank Lloyd Wright house in Jackson. It’s called Fountainhead, aka the J. Willis Hughes House. It’s very cool, although hard to see from the street.

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  53. The Crystal Grill, Greenwood

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  54. Mayflower Cafe, Downtown Jackson

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  55. Old Taylor Grocery, Taylor

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  56. Doe’s Eat Place, Greenville

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  57. Ocean Springs Community House, Ocean Springs

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  58. Mary Mahoney’s, Biloxi

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  59. Little Dooey, Starkville (eclectic vernacular/fire hazard + great bbq)

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  60. Square Books, Oxford

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  61. Alluvian Hotel, Greenwood (getting over the changed entrance, etc. and they do have a fabulous art collection in the public spaces)

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  62. Lauren Rogers Museum, Laurel

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  63. Mississippi Museum of Art, downtown Jackson

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  64. Stennis Space Center, Hancock County (NHL)

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  65. Now I’m hungry . . . . :-)

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  66. Yes, I know we’re supposed to stop, but another Meridian landmark – the Dentzel Carousel might be worthy:

    fotos extras  (113)

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  67. No, don’t stop! That’s a good one for sure. We’re way over 101, but I’m even now devising an evil plan to cull the list down to 101 through the use of finely tuned polls over the next month or so. This larger list will still be available, but our “final” list will be perhaps more cohesive and indicative of the larger group’s opinion.

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  68. St. Mary Basilica in Natchez

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  69. Is the list inexplicably missing Bailey Jr. High School? Seriously?

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  70. A few schools that are worthy of consideration for the list:

    West Point School, built 1928 and designed by Memphis architect George Mahan in a Collegiate Gothic or Jacobethan style.

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  71. Shaw School (a 1923 Prairie/Craftsman design similar to the late and much-lamented Inverness School and by the same architect, N.W. Overstreet) and the gymnasium on the same campus, designed by Overstreet and Town in a unique Art Moderne style.

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  72. Durant School, at the top of this blog

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  73. Witherspoon School in Meridian, built in 1888 and the oldest public school building in the state. Unfortunately, I have heard it’s recently been closed as a school and so may possibly be endangered.

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  74. Prentiss Institute, the Rosenwald building, constructed in 1926.

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  75. and the old Ocean Springs High School, now known as the Mary C. O’Keefe Cultural Center, built in 1927 and designed by New Orleans architect William T. Nolan, who also designed Jackson’s King Edward Hotel.

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  76. Thought of another one

    Yazoo County Courthouse . . . despite the, let’s call it “unfortunate” addition, it’s a cool Italinate building

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  77. After visiting the building last week for the first time, you have to put the Prentiss Club in Natchez. The gaudiness of the rehab starts to grow on you. I expected Liberace to enter at any minute.

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  78. Vicksburg City Hall

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  79. Copiah County Courthouse

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  80. Hattiesburg USO (now the African-American Military History Museum)

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  81. The Tate Log Cabin in Tunica, MS. Well-preserved early-19th century log cabin, moved to the middle of Tunica a few years ago.

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  82. Old Rocky Springs Methodist Church, Claiborne Co.

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  83. Add: St. Mary Chapel at Laurel Hill Plantation near Natchez – uniquely beautiful little Gothic revival structure for the Christian edification of the enslaved.

    Also – Forks of the Road slave market site in Natchez – as 2nd largest slave market in the Deep South, an important place to visit for contemplation of our shared tragic inheritance, though not much “to see” per se … yet. [the absence of remaining above-ground structures being a point of major contention that has thus far kept FOR from NHL status]

    And – Emerald Mound and Grand Village of the Natchez Indians are two distinct sites. We wouldn’t lump all antebellum mansions together, would we?

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    • As others have pointed out, my lumping of two mound-like places is biased against mound-like places. Honestly, if I had to choose between the two, I would say that Emerald Mound is the more impressive site, although obviously not as well interpreted as Grand Village. But I don’t know enough about mounds to make much of an argument.

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  84. I’m surprised not to see Barnard Observatory, on the Ole Miss campus, listed.

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  85. Woodworth Chapel, Tougaloo College

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  86. Cook House (Mockbee), Oxford

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  87. Barton House (Mockbee), Madison County

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  88. Looking at another “Must-See” architectural guidebook, Sourcebook of American Architecture, I see four Mississippi entries, two of which are already covered here: Beauvoir, Longwood, D’Evereux, and the Tougaloo College Dormitories and Library by Gunnar Birkerts & Associates. Comparing ourselves to the other Southern states, we again fall near the bottom in number of entries: Virginia (of course, 27), South Carolina (12), North Carolina (10), Georgia (10), Florida (9), Alabama (7), Louisiana (6-none of which are in New Orleans!!!), Tennessee (5), Kentucky (4), Mississippi (4), Arkansas (2), West Virginia (1). Hah! We beat Arkansas and West Virginia at least!

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  89. Tougaloo College dormitories and Coleman Library, designed in the early 1970s by Gunnar Birketts & Associates

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  90. I nominate Poplar Hill School of Fayette, Jefferson County, MS to be listed on the 101 MS places to visit. It is one of only two rural schools (two room schoolhouse that taught African American children) remaining in Jefferson County. This school is considered one of the “ghost schools” of the Rosenwald school building program. In an article written in 2010 by Ms. Jennifer Baughn of MDAH: “In addition to the known Rosenwald schools, Mississippi has some “ghost schools,” a group of schools that were supposed to have received Rosenwald Funds but the money was fraudulently diverted for personal use between 1923-1928. The Rosenwald agent at the Mississippi Department of Education, Bura Hilbun, who was responsible for overseeing the Rosenwald Fund in Mississippi and sending in final reports to the Nashville office, was later found to have falsified records and pocketed the money meant for certain schools.”

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  91. A. Stewart says:

    December 29, 2010 at 7:13 pm

    I nominate Poplar Hill School of Fayette, Jefferson County, MS to be listed on the 101 MS places to visit. It is one of only two rural schools (two room schoolhouse that taught African American children) remaining in Jefferson County. This school is considered one of the “ghost schools” of the Rosenwald school building program. In an article written in 2010 by Ms. Jennifer Baughn of MDAH: “In addition to the known Rosenwald schools, Mississippi has some “ghost schools,” a group of schools that were supposed to have received Rosenwald Funds but the money was fraudulently diverted for personal use between 1923-1928.

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    • So there is no confusion from what I see no other “ghost schools” are listed. Additionally, several persons must think that only their ideas and suggestions should be considered…mmmm. There is room for 101 places to be recognized why must all be Gothic something or other. Keep in mind much of rural MS did not have Gothic Revival, Roman, or ancient Euro-centric designs most were built with what materials were available and built for shelter not for design and awards. For these few examples of how persons were sheltered, where they were educated, and where they received spiritual enrichment they need to be recognized. I vote for POPLAR HILL SCHOOL!!!!!

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    • And just a note here, now that Poplar Hill (and other places like St. Mary’s Cathedral, etc.) has been nominated several times, you can show your support for the existing nominations by clicking the thumbs up sign for the buildings you think are most worthy. And if you do have something further to say about a particular place, make sure to place your comment in the same string as the original, as A M Fritsch has done here, to keep conversations together and easily readable.

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  92. I think the Pearl River Courthouse is a pretty amazing place, inside and out. And it will help boost the Coast’s numbers, if we can count it as “Coast.”

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  93. I think that the buildings from earlier comments should be re-commented separately, while we still have a few days to vote on them and determine which should be on the list. Also, I think that Aberdeen has been ignored on the list so far.

    Monroe County Chancery Building in Aberdeen. It is a large red brick expression of Richardson Romanesque/Queen Anne that was constructed in the 1880s.

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  94. St. John’s Episcopal Church in Aberdeen. A great 1850s Gothic Revival structure, in the classic Episcopal-Gothic style that borrows heavily from the work of Richard Upjohn.

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  95. The Old Homestread at the corner of West Commerce and Long St. in Aberdeen. The urban plantation complex is anchored by the Old Homestead mansion (which I believe is also referred to as the Sykes House), a columned Greek Revival house with Gothic and Italianate elements, a blending of styles often found in 1850s southern architecture (the Old Homestead was constructed in 1852). Also, the Old Homestead complex contains what is probably the only Gothic Revival barn in Mississippi. With all due respect to the Red Barn in Rolling Fork, the Old Homestead barn is probably the most architecturally significant barn in Mississippi.

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  96. Hebrew Union Congregation in Greenville, an impressive neoclassical synagogue.

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  97. Union County Courthouse in New Albany, more Neoclassical greatness with many towers and an unusual clock tower/dome.

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  98. The Hinds County Armory in Jackson. The 1927 Gothic Revival/Collegiate Gothic structure is a very unusual building that has been discussed before on this site, mostly in regards to its deplorable state of disrepair.

    Of course, if it is put on the list, it could be the first building on the list to be demolished given its tenuous hold on existence due to neglect.

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  99. Perry Cafeteria on the MSU campus. The building is a great Collegiate Gothic when viewed on the outside but must seen on the inside to be fully appreciated. The length of the structure is one long vaulted ceiling, the spitting image of a Gothic cathedral with the large roof beams and columns.

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  100. Montgomery Hall on the MSU campus. Perry Cafeteria’s neighbor to the south. A noteworthy feature (besides the large columns on the front facade) is the circular wing on the rear facade which formerly held the MSU library for about two decades. Although much remodeled on the interior, the library wing still retains the original three story atrium space.

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  101. The Poplar Hill School in Fayette, MS is a great place to visit.

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  102. I visited Poplar Hill School in Fayette, MS. when I was in Mississippi because I had heard about its history and that it was still intact after all these years. I had to see for myself. What an experience! What a facility! Everyone should see this extremely rare two-room schoolhouse built in the early 20th century. I enthusiastically nominate Poplar Hill school be listed on the 101 MS places to visit. It is one of two rural schools left in Jefferson County, MS and is well worth the tour and the time.

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  103. The Carroll County Courthouse in Carrollton. Constructed in 1878, it is a late example of Greek Revival with some Italianate influences. The breezeways are interesting features of the courthouse.

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  104. Since the Carroll County Courthouse has been nominated, it is only fair to nominate the Monroe County Courthouse in Aberdeen. The Monroe County Courthouse is an older, similar version of the Carroll County Courthouse.

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  105. I would also like to comment on some buildings on Malvaney’s list.

    While Acona School is a great building worthy of preservation, I do not think that it belongs on the final list. There are too many other schools and other structures that are more worthy than Acona School.

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    • I think that Black Hawk School near Carrollton falls into the same category as Acona School, a great building but not one of the 101 best.

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    • Given Mississippi’s rural and agricultural history, I think the list should include rural and vernacular places like Acona, Blackhawk, and Poplar Hill schools. Acona is one of, if not the, earliest consolidated schools in the state, and it’s on a site that also includes a two-story Methodist church that housed a lodge upstairs and an old well-tended cemetery. I think it evokes a piece of our past that is quite important in the state’s history, a past of rural communities built around churches, lodges, and schools. Both Poplar Hill and Blackhawk also have churches on or adjacent to their sites, and this was so common as to be the norm.

      Either way, they’ll be in the polls and can stand or fall on their own merits.

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      • That is why I made comments for them, everyone can vote for their inclusion or against their inclusion on the list.

        Thanks to your post I know the history of Acona School. I also know about the church/lodge building. However, the nomination of Acona School does not include the church. The church is a separate structure and, even though it is close to the school, should be considered completely separate. We have already decided against including downtowns and university campuses, and I believe that excludes a nomination of Acoma School and Church together. They must be nominated separately, just like any other two structures near each other.

        Also, while all of these buildings should be preserved, I do not believe that any of these rural Rosenwald schools are architecturally significant enough to be placed on the list. If you include Black Hawk School, why not include Midway School or Banner School. All three of those schools are very similar, plus Midway and Banner are constructed of more substantial brick, not frame. If you include Acona School, why not include Oakland Normal Institute or West Clay Agricultural High School in Pheba. Oakland Normal is older. West Clay is more architecturally significant. There are important rural schools that belong on the list. Prentiss Institute (which, despite its similarities to many of the schools I have mentioned, could probably be considered the most architecturally significant Rosenwald school in Mississippi due to its size, the use of rusticated concrete block, and general substantial construction), Shaw School, Runnelstown School Gymnasium, and Brooklyn Consolidated School are all historically and architecturally significant enough to warrent a place on the list in my opinion.

        If a bunch of idiots in Inverness had any working brain cells there would be another school on the list.

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        • To say that no Rosenwald school is architecturally significant enough to be on the list is to have a very narrow or perhaps too-high-style view of architectural significance. The Rosenwald School standard plans were revolutionary in rural school architecture. Black Hawk, Midway, Banner, etc. all flowed from the Rosenwald plans, not vice versa. I do agree that Prentiss is the most substantial and impressive of the remaining buildings, but in reality, they are all architecturally significant for their effect on rural school buildings, both black and white, for the next two generations.

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        • Also, while I didn’t mention the church or cemetery for Acona, I think they could legitimately be thought of as a complex, just as your Old Homestead nomination included both the house and the barn. I believe they are all on the same piece of property and are all accessed from the highway by the same dirt drive. Either way, I still think the school could stand on its own as a vernacular architectural statement and one of the oldest rural consolidated schools, if not the oldest.

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      • Since I mentioned a few schools, I might as well nominate them to the list.

        Brooklyn Consolidated School in Forrest County. Constructed in 1925 and designed by Robert E. Lee (no, not the general). It is one of the few Spanish Colonial Revival buildings nominated for this list.

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      • Banner School, in the middle of nowhere, Tishomingo County if I remember correctly (could be Itawamba County). It is a brick school, very similar in form to the Prentiss Institute, Midway School, and Black Hawk School.

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        • If I recall correctly–it’s been probably ten years since I saw this school–the back classroom wings have been torn off of Banner School, so I don’t think it’s integrity is high. In plan, it was a virtual twin of Prentiss, but not Midway or Black Hawk, but now with its wings torn off, it is similar to both of those.

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          • I could not tell that there were originally back wings when I visited the school. That is why I thought it was an “architectural twin” of Midway. They completely eliminated those wings, so unless one knew they were once there, one could never tell they were missing.

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      • Midway School, in the middle of nowhere, Itawamba County near the state line. It is a brick school, very similar in form to the Prentiss Institute, Banner School, and Black Hawk School.

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      • West Clay Agricultural High School, in Pheba, Clay County. I remember traveling along the back roads of Clay County a couple of years ago (before there was a Preservation in Mississippi), going through Pheba, a bump in the road next to railroad tracks, and being amazed at the two story brick school I found boarded up. West Clay still sticks in my mind, the gleam of the summer sun off the hipped metal roof, hornets swarming from boarded windows. Nearby, a neighboring structure, possibly associated with West Clay, maybe a dormitory, brick-rustled, half-demolished, with a Prairie-style door the only trace of its former architectural refinement, as little a trace as it was, glassless like all the windows, surrounded by wood framing where brick should have been and formerly was.

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        • I hate to hear that the old dormitory has gone down so badly. Last time I saw it (probably 2003 or so), it was not in great shape, but still could have been saved. The agricultural high schools have virtually disappeared, so this is a site of real importance.

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      • Oakland Normal Institute, in extreme rural Itawamba County. Narrow roads winding miles away from the highway leading to a white frame structure and a monument to the school’s founders, placed there by grateful alumni who enjoyed lifetimes of success because the Holley brothers of Tuscumbia, Alabama (my area of Alabama) established Oakland Normal Institute to bridge the gap between rural schools and colleges. The school ran from 1887 to 1904 and a building still survives in the woods, with that granite monument placed in those woods five decades after the Institute’s existance ended.

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  106. Castalian Springs Hotel, in the middle of nowhere near Durant. Constructed sometime around 1900, it is a rare surviving rural resort hotel, which were once found near many major springs (in this case Castalian Springs).

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  107. St. Mary’s Cathedral in Natchez – the oldest and most beautiful Catholic Church in Mississippi!

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  108. Church of the Annunciation Catholic Church in Columbus. Completed in 1863, there are few more solid Gothic structures in Mississippi. Also, there are few older Catholic churches in Mississippi, and it is the oldest in the northeast part of the state.

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  109. Forrest County Agricultural High School, which still has not only its wacky Art Deco administration building (which apparently contains the auditorium of the original 1912 building) but also one of its original dormitories: https://misspreservation.files.wordpress.com/2010/10/4339830468_f9af288a45_b.jpg

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  110. Perhaps an early consolidated school more substantial than Acona would be the old Salem Consolidated School in Noxubee County on Hwy 14. It’s listed on the National Register, but last I saw it was pretty much abandoned, so I don’t know what kind of condition it would be in now. It looks like the National Register site has finally started making Mississippi nominations available, pictures and text, but I can’t seem to find a permanent link. Just type in Salem, Mississippi, and Noxubee County and it shows the building before it was fixed up (before it was again abandoned).

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  111. I NOMINATE POPLAR HILL SCHOOL HATS OFF TO ALL

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  112. The Tallahatchie County Courthouse. As architecturally and historically significant as any courthouse in the Delta or the entire state of Mississippi.

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    • I should clarify. The Tallahatchie County Courthouse in Sumner. Constructed in 1902, rebuilt in 1909 after a fire the previous year, and the site of the Emmett Till trial in 1955. Designated a Mississippi Landmark in 1990.

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  113. Hays Barn, near Walthall in Webster County

    Webster County Courthouse, Walthall (1916 – Overstreet)

    New Hope Presbyterian Church, near Clarkson, Webster County (1846)

    former Wells-Lamont factory, Eupora (Overstreet)

    Eupora High School (Malvaney, with Overstreet addition)

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  114. Bowen Hall on the MSU campus. A Spanish/Mediterranean Revival style structure designed by Claude Lindsley. It currently houses the Political Science department. While the interior was renovated in the 1960s and the 2000s, there are actually some original interior features remaining.

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  115. Herbert Hall, Bowen Hall’s neighbor at MSU. Also designed by Lindsley in the same style, though in a different form. Herbert Hall is currently a dormitory and has always been housing of some type since it was constructed in the 1920s.

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  116. Hull Hall on the MSU campus, still used as a dormitory after over 70 years of continuous use. How could anyone vote against a WPA building with bulldog sculptures over each front entrance.

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  117. The Bessie Taylor Home in Greenville, a designated Mississippi Landmark. Currently a nursing home, it is a great example of Spanish Mission style.

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  118. The Leavenworth-Wasson-Carroll House in Greenville, listed on the National Register. One could almost refer to the house as Japanese inspired, with the white surfaces broken up by wooden beams arranged in Mondrian-style geometric patterns and a shallow sloped tile roof. The house was constructed in 1913 by George Leavenworth. The house was also the home of Ben Wasson, the journalist, writer, and friend to William Faulkner.

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  119. The Burdett House in Washington County. The full two-story verandas are a very unusual feature.

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  120. The Benevolent and Protective Order of the Elk, No. 148 Lodge in Greenville, also commonly known as the Cotton Pickers Elk Lodge. Quote from Flickr: “Originally chartered in 1890, the “Cotton Pickers” built their once proud Neo-classic home in Greenville in 1906 and opened the doors in 1907. The Greenville Times of February 16, 1907, described the building as including a billiard hall, a barbershop, and a full library decorated with rare and expensive oil paintings and as being lighted by both gas and electricity. The “Cotton Pickers” Lodge has been converted many times since the Elks left. Now the home of the Mississippi Action for Community Education (M.A.C.E.), an organization committed to the preservation and education of African-American culture, the building is in urgent need of help. In the 1990’s, M.A.C.E. and other concerned citizens saved the building several times from the bulldozer and had the building designated a Mississippi Landmark in 2002. If care is not taken soon to restore the building, the city could force demolition.”

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  121. I think a camp meeting site should be included. There is an active camp meeting at Shiloh Methodist Church in Rankin County, between Brandon and Pelahatchie.

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  122. Longfellow House in Pascagoula, one of the few antebellum estates left on the Coast after Katrina.

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  123. Old Spanish Fort in Pascagoula, probably the earliest building in Mississippi.

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  124. The old Starkville High School on Greensboro St. From the Starkville Central Neighborhood Foundation: “Jacobethan Revival. Two-story-on-raised basement, parapeted-flat roofed, brick institutional building. The nine-bay façade has projecting blind, end pavilions ornamented by diapered brick panels with a three-bay, central, stone entrance pavilion flanked by crenellated octagonal towers and a Tudor-arched entrance and curvilinear parapet. Designed by C.H. Lindsley. Circa 1927.”

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  125. Also, I think an agricultural building is in order. There is an interesting barn on the east side of Highway 49, between Hattiesburg and Magee. I always thought it looked rather out of place for Mississippi.

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  126. There is also a round barn in the delta, near Chatham. Pretty cool.

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    • I believe you are referring to the Sharecroppers’ Cotton Storage Barn.

      “Sharecroppers’ shares were kept separate in this structure which was divided into compartments. Cotton trailers were backed up to the high openings and the cotton was unloaded into the individual farmer’s section.”

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    • What a great building–glad you suggested it!

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  127. Hotel Chester in Starkville. This large 1920s Overstreet design is located in the heart of downtown, anchoring a corner of the most prominant intersection in downtown.

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  128. West Point City Hall

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  129. Holmes County Courthouse, Lexington. Built in 1894 and designed by Knoxville architects Walter Chamberlain and Co. It’s everything a courthouse square courthouse should be.

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  130. Another of my favorite courthouse square courthouses, the Simpson County Courthouse in Mendenhall:

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  131. And back in Lexington, a rare survivor, the old stagecoach inn on Depot Street: https://misspreservation.com/2009/08/04/to-lexington-miss-and-back/

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  132. Asia Missionary Baptist Church, Lexington, a pretty amazing African American Gothic Revival church built in 1904.

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  133. And it looks like we’ve completely left Macon out. I’m not as familiar with Macon as I should be–I don’t think they’ve had a pilgrimage anytime recently–but what about the Harrison House, built in 1852? It looks like it has octagonal columns, which I’ve seen in Columbus a few times too.

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  134. One or both of the old jails in Macon, rare survivors of that type, the older one built c.1870 and the more impressive Romanesque style on that is now the public library, built 1906.

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  135. And the Stennis Law Office, c.1838, a sweet little Greek Revival frame law office building across from the Noxubee County Courthouse in Macon. Only a few of this type of building around the state, and I think this one is the most intact and still (again) in use as a law office.

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  136. The Stringer Grand Lodge on Lynch Street here in Jackson. The headquarters of Medgar Evers’ NAACP, and the site of his funeral after his assassination. The only pictures I see immediately available are of the interior: http://www.mwstringergl.org/ and click on Gallery. Here’s a historic photo showing at least most of the facade: http://westjxn.com/2010/11/18/westerday-trivia-answer-the-mississippi-free-press/

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  137. And that makes me think of the Alamo Theater, on Farish Street in Jackson.

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  138. As of 9 minutes ago, the suggestion period has ended. I’ll be working on getting links to at least pictures and hopefully a little description for this very long list, and then in the coming month(s) we’ll narrow this list down through the use of formal polls. Thanks for all these suggestions–I know we probably missed some worthy buildings, but this is a great list from which to start!

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