Historic Preservation Happenings in Natchez: 2019 Recap

Source: Natchez Democrat

It has been a little more than a year since Natchez Mayor Darryl Grennell appointed the first members to the Natchez-Adams Economic Development Council.

Looking back, a lot has been accomplished since then, council members said.

An inaugural meeting of the council was held in September 2018 and continued to meet once a week on each Monday since.

Grennell said one of his hopes after he leaves office in July is that the new mayoral administration will take over and continue to lead weekly meetings with community stakeholders and other elected officials so that Natchez and Adams County can keep moving forward in a positive direction in terms of economic growth.

To understand why this assembly is important, Grennell said each council member had been asked to compile a list that highlights milestones achieved in the past year.

Historic preservation

Archaeological research conducted earlier this year at the Grand Village of the Natchez Indians identified a missing mound under layers of flood sediment, said site director Lance Harris, adding the research would be utilized in a “newly imagined Grand Village.”

“Although the full expansion project at the site is scheduled for a later date, efforts have been undertaken to improve the outdoor experience at the site,” Harris said. “New exterior exhibits will be installed in early 2020 and a new virtual reality exhibit will also be unveiled in the spring of 2020 that can be utilized on-site or on electronic devices anywhere in the world.”

Harris said the Mississippi Department of Archives and History has also funded and facilitated several preservation efforts at Windsor Ruins, Historic Jefferson College and other historic structures.

Historic Natchez Foundation Executive Director, Carter Burns said MDAH announced earlier this week that $500,000 from the Community Heritage Preservation Grant Program had been awarded for rehabilitation projects at the Natchez Institute and Temple B’Nai Israel.

A grant had also been received to digitize a portion of historic courthouse records that are being housed in the basement of the Natchez Institute.

Burns said the Historic Natchez Foundation also facilitated changes to the Natchez Balloon Festival for a successful event this year that featured a new name, a new logo and a new partnership with Ardenland music.

Additionally, the Historic Natchez Foundation also finished restoring the exterior of the Prentiss Club building, which burned in September 2018, Burns said.


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