Friday, October 17, 2014

Hedy Does the Vicksburg Photowalk

Hedy does not get out often. She is very cranial and usually stays home and ponders the great topics of the day. But a chance to participate on the Worldwide Photowalk was just too good to miss. And who would not want to tour the metropolis of Vicksburg on a hot muggy day in company with other photographers?
We started out at the Old Courthouse Museum at 1008 Cherry Street. The museum features Vicksburg historical exhibits, and many early 20th century photographs taken by J Mack Moore are on display. Hedy likes the Corinthian columns and the view.
Right across Cherry Street (address 1009 Cherry Street) is the Art Deco Warren County Courthouse. According to Mississippi Department of Archives and History:
The Warren County Court House, of Art Deco design, was constructed in 1940 with Havis & Havis as architects and W.J. McGee & Son as the general contractors. The rectangular three-story building features eleven bays on the first floor of the main stepped facade. Ornamental detailing includes decorative panels of floral and geometric designs, decorated parapet around the flat roof, and the decorated lintel of the window surrounds head. The verticality of this building, which is studded with relatively narrow windows of eight lights each rising vertically and one above the other on each successive floor in the central section, is emphasized by tall, rectangular panels of marble. 
Continuing north on Cherry Street near the junction with Main Street, and you are in the historic district.
Adams Street runs parallel to Cherry, but many of the houses are in rough shape. The pavement retained its brick surfacing.
This is an example, the cottage at 722 Adams. I hope someone restores it.
This is the old McIntyre elementary school, closed for decades. The Good Shepard organization uses most of the building.
Adams Lane is perpendicular to Adams Street. It formerly was lined with shotgun shacks, but there are only 3 or 4 left. Years ago, while taking photos here, an older lady told me that she remembered when it was a vibrant African-American neighborhood. A truck would come around in the morning and the men would ride off to farms. Most of the women worked as domestics around town.
Around the corner at 1203 Openwood Street is the former Gore's Hardware. This is a well-preserved example of a late-1800s commercial building, of which Vicksburg once had hundreds. Look at the seven windows and the decorative trim along the roof line. The brick facade above the showcase windows was supported by cast iron beams, possibly brought here by barge from Pittsburgh or Toledo. Now we erect mass-produced sheet steel buildings designed to be a tax write-off in a minimum number of  years.
Mr. Gore passed away in 2014, and someone is cleaning up the stock in the former store. It was always said that he had every type of old-fashioned fitting, lock, or faucet in his storage rooms, although I was unable to buy suitable materials for my old house. Maybe the really old-fashioned fittings were used-up by the 1980s. I wonder if there is any lead paint left?
Hedy gets hungry when she passes Mamma's at 1209 Openwood Street.
Here is another interesting place on Openwood Street.
Across the street is an old filling station, now used as a repair shop (I think). The Vicksburg Art Association's Firehouse Gallery is in  the brick building to the right.
Head back to Cherry Street and head south. At 1411 Cherry is a brick building that formerly housed the Mutual Credit Union. JC's Barber Shop now uses one of the rooms. This utterly banal one-story brick commercial building occupies a lot on which the Baer House once stood, a handsome Queen Anne-style house with a turret. The house was demolished in the 1970s, the era when Vicksburg was subjected to "urban renewal." That translated to tearing down historical architecture and replacing it with cheesy commercial buildings or parking lots (like those crappy monstrosities west of Washington Street, which usually stand essentially empty).
This is an interior view of the gorgeous Church of the Holy Trinity at 900 South Street. At the corner of South and Monroe Streets, it was designed by E.C. Jones and built in 1870. This was an experiment setting my Fuji camera at ISO 1600 and using the dynamic range function at 400 percent. I was surprised how well it handled the exposure range from dark pews to glowing windows.
Finally, time for lunch. Hedy had a sandwich at Martin's at Midtown, at 1411 Belmont Street. It was muggy and hot, and we were both tired. Hedy is too young for a cold beer.

Photographs taken during the Scott Kelby Worldwide Photowalk, hosted here in Vicksburg by David Rorick. I used a Fuji X-E1 digital camera. These are the jpeg files taken with the Astia film emulation.

Please click the link for some views of Vicksburg in the 1990s, taken with film.

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