Belhaven University’s Fitzhugh Hall Endangered

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!

Categories: Jackson, Renovation Projects, Universities/Colleges

9 replies

  1. I just love it when you send posts at unexpexted times such as this one on a Saturday evening! I hope funding will be forthcoming and this will be taken care of in a timely manner. Lovely campus!


  2. Not another Methodist building in decay just after Cap[itol Street Methodist Church has been razed.I guess I am glad I am no linger there to see all my childhood and teen age memories gone. jackson has changed so much since we left in 1967. Makes me sad to see what has become of the old home town. At least I still have many fond memories of our time there. True southern hospitality was there then. My friends say too many areas are no longer same to go after dark.


  3. I do hope the building can be repaired. It would be a shame to lose it.


  4. I hope they get it fixed too. I am an atypical student in that building at 58, and probably couldn’t scramble out very fast in an emergency. I brought Elizabeth Spencer back to it last year for a visit. When she was a student there in the 1950’s and a friend of Eudora Welty, she won a campus contest to name the yearbook “Columns” because of the two columns that stand out front, overlooking the pool between Fitzhugh and Preston Halls. The Hoods and Irby’s were its greatest supporters in early years. The campus has one building named after Stuart Sr. and one after Bitsy. The library was named after Warren Hood. Not sure where the assistance will come form for this project, but I am confident it will come.


  5. Thought you’d like to know that your photo is showing Preston Hall, on the south side of the fountain and Gillespie Commons.



  1. MissPres News Roundup 6-18-2012 « Preservation in Mississippi

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