Master plan next step toward Verandah House restoration

CORINTH – The Verandah House Museum soon will be restored to its 1862 character.
Rosemary Williams, chairwoman of the Siege and Battle of Corinth Commission, said the Civil War era “would be the appropriate period” to which the house should return, based on assessments and recommendations by a consulting architect.
The city of Corinth, which owns the historic landmark, approved Oxford architect Tom Howorth to conduct an in-depth assessment of the building – its structural needs, historic restoration and a master plan to accomplish it all.
Work on the master plan is under way and should be completed by September, Williams said, but Howorth presented the facility’s structural report during a public meeting in June.
People concerned about the future of the museum have worried about structural problems that have kept the property closed to regular visitors for almost two years.
They also have worried that historical reference to the Curlee family, which owned the house for several generations, could be lost if restoration returned it to the Civil War period.
The house, built in 1857, was used as a headquarters for both Confederate and Federal generals during the Civil War. For that reason, Howorth said, it is fitting that the house be restored to that period.
Grants totaling about $380,000 are available to begin the work once Howorth completes the master plan, Williams said, though it is not enough to complete the restoration.
A grant from the Save America’s Treasures program is being sought to help with the costs, with the prospect that the National Park Service will assume management of the property in the future.
Contact Lena Mitchell at (662) 287-9822 or lena.mitchell@djournal.com.

Lena Mitchell/NEMS Daily Journal