Historic Natchez Foundation to host annual meeting

Published 2:02 pm Sunday, January 7, 2024

The Historic Natchez Foundation invites the Natchez community to attend its annual meeting on Thursday, January 11th, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Historic Natchez Foundation headquarters, 108 South Commerce Street.  The meeting is a free community event and you do not need to be a member to attend.  We encourage everyone to come and bring a friend.  The annual meeting will begin with a cocktail buffet and conclude with a short business meeting to elect new board members and present the 2023 awards.

2024 marks the 50th anniversary of the Historic Natchez Foundation.  It was founded in 1974 by a committee of the Natchez Historical Society composed of: Grace MacNeil, Peggy and Howard Peabody, Dr. Thomas Gandy, Joan Warren (later Gandy), Brent Forman, and Everette Truly. The mission of the Foundation since its establishment has been to do all in its power to foster, encourage, and engage in the preservation, restoration, and development of historic or important buildings, sites, and personal property.  This broad mission has allowed the Foundation to undertake an extensive range of projects over the years.  A new exhibit by Ben Hillyer that highlights the accomplishments of the Foundation over the last 50 years will be unveiled at the meeting.

Historic preservation awards will be given out at the meeting for recent projects.  This year, we will present the largest number of awards ever thanks to the amount of high quality projects underway in Natchez.  The Ethel and George Kelly Restoration Award will be given to Cathy Stewart and Montie Chapman for their extensive restoration of Twin Oaks and to Clara and Chip Newman for their meticulous restoration of the Briars. The Mimi and Ron Miller Visionary Award will be given to the Banta Family for their stewardship of Hope Farm and its collections after it suffered a devastating fire in March 2023.  A new award, the Stewart Collections Award, will be given to the Stewart family for the donation of their incredible collection of artifacts, photographs, and decorative arts that document centuries of Natchez history.  Awards of merit will be given out for the following projects: Preservation Society of Ellicott’s Hill, House on Ellicott’s Hill Gallery Restoration; Debra and Brett Hines, 612 State Street; Samuel Mohon, 419 South Commerce Street; Chris and Chuck Borum, 510 High Street; Wanda and Ricky Smith, Ravennaside Outbuilding; Cathy and Martin Buchman, Agricultural Bank (Frankie’s on Main); Abby and Tate Hobdy, 307 North Commerce Street; Sharon and James West, 403 N. Martin Luther King Jr. Street; Laine and Kevin Berry, 211 Linton Avenue; City of Natchez, North Natchez Youth Center; Lynette Tanner, Frogmore; Tammy and Wes Pack, Holly Hedges; Barbara Hanley, 313 South Pearl Street; Mac Hazlip, 35 New Street; Key Whitehead and Kevin Williams, 203 S. Martin Luther King Jr. Street; Val and Chip Sloan, Raphael Building; David and Marjorie Feltus Hawkins, Linden; and John Dahl and Eric Shanoski, Mellen House.

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Carter Burns is the Executive Director of the Historic Natchez Foundation.