Holy Family Church and School

Holy Family Church and School (HM1ZIS)

Location: Natchez, MS 39120 Adams County
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Country: United States of America
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N 31° 33.519', W 91° 23.802'

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Natchez Trails

In 1889 Bishop Thomas Heslin started the first parish for Roman Catholic African Americans in Mississippi. He first oversaw construction of a small frame church (above left) on Beaumont Street and brought Father A.N.J. Peters to Natchez to become the founding parish priest. The congregation grew quickly, and Father Peters traveled north to raise money for a new, larger church and school. Heiress Katharine Drexel of Philadelphia became a major benefactor. In 1894 the congregation dedicated a Victorian Gothic brick church, constructed by local builder William Ketteringham, and named it Holy Family Church. The building featured an upper-story sanctuary with classrooms below. Pictured above (left to right) are the 1906 school auditorium/cafeteria, the 1894 convent and Holy Family Church. Not visible is the ca. 1895 redtory.
Photo Captions.
Top left The interior of Holy Family has changed little since 1911. The aspe, the arch containing the altar, originally featured a wall painting of the Holy Family: Mary, Joseph and Jesus.Bottom Left In 1899 the Josephite Society of the Sacred Heart, a Baltimore society focused on ministering to African Americans, took charge of the church. They assumed ownership of the property in 1904. Their strong commitment to social justice
had a profound effect on the Civil Rights movement in Natchez.Top right The Gospel Choir of Holy Family presents a musical history of the Natchez African American experience during the Spring Pilgrimage tour of houses and also by special arrangement. Bottom Right Father William Morrissey of Holy Family (far right) was the first white officer of the Mississippi Chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. Also pictured at a 1965 NAACP meeting at Holy Family (left to right) are Civil Rights activists Shead Baldwin, P.K. Pennington, George West and Charles Evers.
Series This marker is part of the series
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Saturday, July 8th, 2017 at 3:02pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)15R E 652170 N 3492631
Decimal Degrees31.55865000, -91.39670000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 31° 33.519', W 91° 23.802'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds31° 33' 31.14" N, 91° 23' 48.12" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)601, 769
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling West
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 28 St Catherine St, Natchez MS 39120, US
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