Happy Preservation Month! A couple of our stories relate to events being held this month – some specifically noting that they are for Preservation Month, others that aren’t, but are still in pretty cool historic places.
First up is this story out of Biloxi that talks about their “Thursdays in May” program. This is an annual event down there on the Coast, and it is specifically related to Preservation Month. Included on the schedule is the 50th Anniversary of the Biloxi Wade-In.
Something else I saw that’ll be this month and that is this coming Saturday is another Cemetery Workshop hosted by our friends in Natchez. It is a repeat of the one they did in December – which was so popular they needed to schedule another. Talking with our friends at the Historic Natchez Foundation, I understand that there are still a few spaces if you want to join them.
This past weekend, Columbus hosted their 18th Annual Market Street Festival. The event has music, classic cars, kid’s activities – and all of it happens in Downtown Columbus (surrounded by great historic buildings!). The “after story” made it sound like a successful event – even quoting one family (who’d been the past few years) as saying that this one was the “best ever.” I hope that the other events that go on around the state this month are equally successful!
Speaking of good news – word out of Biloxi is that the White House has a buyer – one interested in restoring it! A development company out of Ridgeland is the buyer, and they already have a building permit to do work on the primary facade and some of the initial landscaping (that will keep the live oaks). The White House made one of Mississippi Heritage Trust’s 10 Most lists because of Katrina Damage and sitting vacant for so long. No mention of whether the company was planning to take tax credits on the work – but the plans outlined in the story make it sound like they are at least familiar with the Secretary’s Standards for Rehabilitation. I’m hoping that in about a year we can chalk this one up as another “Save” for the MHT list!
In Natchez, plans to renovate the former downtown depot have continued to pick up steam. The latest story is that MDOT is committing approximately $750,000 to the project – which they will disperse in three phases. The city is partnering with Alcorn State & Mississippi State on the renovation and one of the plans is to relocate the farmer’s market there. The architectural plans for the renovations are already being developed by Mills and Mills architects of Greenville.
Speaking of renovation projects – down near Picayune, one of our 101 Places buildings will be having some work done soon as well. According to the press release from MSU, Pinecote Pavilion suffered moderate damage during Katrina – damage that apparently has not been addressed until now. Our friends at MDAH are mentioned in the release as being involved to make sure that the project plans are in accordance with the Secretary’s Standards. No word on how long it’ll take, but I think we should all plan a visit (and check it off out “To See” list) once it’s done.
A new historic marker is in place in Summit. The marker commemorates Grierson’s Raid – which involved the destruction of rail lines in Southern Mississippi. The story doesn’t say where in town it is, but I’ll bet that a shiny new marker will be easy to spot if you’re visiting the Pike County town anytime soon.
An interesting story I spotted this week includes film footage of Capital Street in Jackson from the 1930s. Specifically, the film is from 1938 – and WAPT news included a lot of the footage in a story they did last week. WAPT focused on how the film clearly shows the segregation of the era for the story. If you watch the story (which I recommend!) you see blocks full of buildings and a bustling downtown. Nothing in the story about where the film was found – or where it is now – but I hope that the archivists at MDAH get a hold of it for long term preservation. The film will be a great resource for those who might be looking at restoring buildings along Capital Street.
Categories: 101 MissPres Places, Biloxi, Columbus, Cool Old Places, Gulf Coast, Historic Preservation, Jackson, Mississippi Heritage Trust, MS Dept. of Archives and History, Natchez, News Roundups, Picayune, Preservation People/Events, Renovation Projects, Summit