It’s too hot for witty intros – so straight to the news:
First, good news in Tupelo where we thought the City Council was going to wait on an opinion from the Attorney General’s office related to the bid laws and the moving of the Spain House, but they ended up accepting both the bid and the MDAH grant. We have been following this story for a while – most recently last week. The local NBC station highlighted the fact that it was a very close council vote, 4-3. Even though it was close, I’m going to put this one optimistically in the “win” column for preservation – but know that we actually have to get the house moved and put back together now.
Another story from last week, the oil well drilling near Arlington in Natchez, has a new development. The latest story is that the oil company is appealing to the state Oil and Gas Board for a drilling permit. They were hoping to get on the docket for the June meeting last week, but the story says they will not be on the agenda until July. I have a feeling that some of our Natchez friends will attend this meeting (and that it will continue to be covered by the local press and therefore included in a future news roundup.)
News from MDAH is that foundation work is to begin on the Manship House in Jackson. The project is to bring the house level, and there are plans for a new HVAC system and new chimneys. According to the press release, the museum’s collection has been in secured storage and the foundation work should be completed by the end of the year. Those interested in following the progress can do so on the museum’s blog.
A fun story out of Mound Bayou where history and healthy living activities are merging. New historic markers are going up on local landmarks that are part of a walking tour and a larger initiative that will include sidewalk and street repairs as well. Right now only five markers are up – but the plan is for 25. I love this idea and look forward to checking them out the next time I’m in Bolivar County.
Another update story out of Natchez on the development at Forks in the Road. The new plan should have less impact on the site – which is good. The developer said that the new plan was going to cost more (which was odd to me since one whole phase of the project is being omitted), but the company wanted to be a “good corporate citizen” in the city.
Down on the coast, two updates on ongoing restoration projects made the news. First was the progress on the Round Island Lighthouse in Pacagoula. I didn’t see any word of the project timeline, but it was nice to see an update. The other project is the White Pillars restaurant in Biloxi. The article says that the owners are balancing code requirements with maintaining the architectural features of the building. I wonder if anyone has mentioned the historic preservation tax credit program to them – I think the review process there can help make sure that balance is met (and make a more cost effective project!).
Finally, the latest in Hattiesburg‘s “Then and Now” series in the American is on the old Post Office, that is now a Courthouse (not the Art Deco Post Office that Malvaney is so fond of). Check it out here.
Categories: African American History, Biloxi, Cool Old Places, Gulf Coast, Hattiesburg, Heritage Tourism, Historic Preservation, Jackson, Mound Bayou, MS Dept. of Archives and History, Natchez, News Roundups, Pascagoula, Renovation Projects, Tupelo
Clarification about the Forks of the Road: the second phase of development is being omitted AT THIS SITE. Developers are looking at other (so far undisclosed) Natchez sites for Phase II. They have also switched names for the housing complex from the anachronistic “Stonehurse Arms” (no rocks anywhere around here) to “Olde Bridge Place” in reference to the old brick bridge (now buried by kudzu) on the Old Washington Road that is located on the north end of the Phase II site. We hope to clean the vegetation off and get a good look at it in hopes of dating it – Mimi Miller says there are turn-of-20th-century photos that show it, but she is unsure how much older it is than that.
Two good news paper stories:
In Gulfport the planning for the Job Corps Center 33rd Ave school has resumed and plans will likely retain the historic buildings. Despite the Dept. of Labor breaking Federal Law by not adhering to the National Historic Preservation Act, the DOL has been allowed to reallocate a good chunk of funding for this project causing both the people of Gulfport and their historic resources to suffer.
The Hattiesburg American ran a great opinion piece titled “If we maintain it, it won’t have to be restored”
I had planned on the Job Corps article being in the next round up (it went online well after I wrote this roundup) . . .
Thanks for sharing the other one though – since I missed it somehow.