Monday, August 6, 2012


From the John Holly Williams Collection at the Library.  Former First Presbyterian Church. 

Built in 1906-1907, the former First Presbyterian Church is an example of the Gothic Revival auditorium plan with "four short, pyramidal-roofed towers," with windows adorned by "unusually broad, low Gothic arches" -- this according to Sherry Pace's Historic Churches of Mississippi.  (A special Thank You to Danny Dickey for that information.) (Note the above postcards make it appear that one tower is much higher than the other, when in fact, they are the roughly same height in the Williams photo.)

This structure has been "abandoned" for years and for sale for almost as many.  There was worry that roof and mold issues would deter anyone interested in purchasing it.

To rescue came Mimi Roberts Zeini and her husband, Asem.  For further reading, please see this link to the Daily Leader article on the sale. 

And for a little bit of trivia:

Before the current structure was built in 1906 at S. Jackson and W. Chickasaw, the above white steepled structure was its predecessor and was, according to some sources, the first house of worship in town, though other sources state the First Methodist was the first. (That is a debate for another day.)  This  structure was located at Monticello and Second streets and, according to at least one source, was torn down in 1879.  What structure was used as a house of worship in the intervening years is unclear.

This last photograph was found in the Stewart collection at the Mississippi Department of Archives and History.

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