December 5, 2009 9:42:00 PM
The Tennessee Williams Home and Welcome Center is among 16 historic locations statewide to be awarded restoration funds from the Mississippi Department of Archives and History.
The iconic yellow and blue home on Main Street downtown was awarded $108,000, which will be used for repairs including a new roof and work to the building''s chimneys and flooring.
The money was "sorely needed," said Dewitt Hicks, president of the Columbus Convention and Visitors Bureau''s board of directors.
"This grant will go a long way toward helping us do some much needed repairs," Hicks said. "This will be a great help."
The CVB had applied for $340,000 in grant funds, which would have covered a wide range of repairs including a new roof, the removal of chimneys, room renovations and replastering, and painting of the building inside and out.
Hicks said that the board applied for more than it expected to receive, and would probably use the funds to tackle work to the building''s roof first, as it was the most pressing need.
The state archives department awarded a total of $2 million to preservation and restoration projects as part of the Community Heritage Preservation grant program, authorized and funded through the Mississippi Legislature.
The program helps preserve and restore historic courthouses, schools and other historic properties. Over the life of the program the department has awarded more than $22 million in Community Heritage Preservation grants to 140 projects.
The Tennessee Williams Home, built around 1875, is the first home of Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Tennessee Williams, who was born in Columbus in 1911. The building was originally the rectory for St. Paul''s Episcopal Church. The home was moved away from the church to its present location on Main Street in 1993.
Other projects awarded grants include:
· Col. William P. Rogers Civil War Statue, Corinth, Alcorn County--$19,800 for repair and restoration of the Confederate monument.
· Curlee-Veranda House, Corinth, Alcorn County--$266,000 for restoration of the exterior of the house.
· Bolivar County Courthouse, Rosedale, Bolivar County--$300,000 for repair and stabilization of the courthouse wall and foundation.
· Carrollton Town Hall, Carrollton, Carroll County--$26,100 for the stabilization and restoration of the back three walls of the building.
· (Old) West Clay Agriculture High School, Pheba, Clay County--$51,170 for interior rehabilitation of the first floor.
· Gov. A. M. Scott Monument, Jackson, Hinds County--$4,000 for stabilization of the monument.
· Lowry-Flannegan House, Jackson, Hinds County--$92,928 for exterior restoration.
· Prentiss Institute Rosenwald School, Prentiss, Jefferson Davis County--$164,000 for exterior and interior renovations.
· Ventress Hall (Old Geology), University, Lafayette County--$40,724 for repair and restoration of the stained glass window.
· (Old) Matty Hersee Hospital, Meridian, Lauderdale County--$300,000 for asbestos abatement.
· (Old) Carthage Elementary School, Carthage, Leake County--$134,400 for preservation of the building.
· Elizabeth Cottage, Brookhaven, Lincoln County--$98,260 for stabilization of structural components and restoration of exterior architectural features.
· Amory (Old) National Guard Armory Re-roofing Project, Amory, Monroe County--$132,775 for roof replacement.
· Liberty-White Depot Museum, Summit, Pike County--$56,843 for restoration of depot.
· Tallahatchie County Courthouse, Sumner, Tallahatchie County--$205,000 for replication of windows and doors.
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