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Come help us renovate Margaret Martin

Last week was a sad week for the Mississippi Landmark we all know and love as Margaret Martin — the old Natchez High School.

Vandals desperate to make a dime off of stolen copper and other items wreaked havoc. There are some who, after this senseless act, worry that the old building has seen its best days.

A group of us beg to differ: we say that Margaret Martin’s best days are still ahead and that the time is coming quickly when it will shine again with new purpose.

“Friends of The Natchez Centre at Margaret Martin” was formed in 2019 for the purpose of revitalizing this historic building. To assist in this effort, we engaged an architect renowned in the field of historic restoration, Belinda Stewart from Eupora.

Belinda is known and admired all across the country for her numerous accomplishments in historic restoration.

Put simply, our plan is to create a center of multi-cultural enrichment for the entirety of Natchez, the Miss-Lou and the Southern Region. As a venue for the performing, visual and culinary arts, intertwined with a Museum of Music, Literature and Film, The Natchez Centre at Margaret Martin will celebrate diversity and become a significant partner in the region’s booming tourism industry.

Next Thursday, Jan. 30, at 7 p.m., the Natchez Grand will host “An Evening with the Architect.” We urge everyone interested in this important project to attend. At this event, Belinda Stewart will present her Margaret Martin Report, a much-anticipated study that has been completed to assist us in raising funds and support to save this beloved building.

Vandals may have had their say for now, but we plan to have the last say. Will you help us? Please spread the word. Working together, we can make this happen!

For more information, including an opportunity to view the Architect’s Report online, visit our website: www.natchezcentre.com. We look forward to seeing you at the Natchez Grand on the night of Thursday, Jan. 30.

Dan M. Gibson is chairman of Friends of the Natchez Centre at Margaret Martin.