VICKSBURG, Miss. (WJTV) – The Southern Cultural Heritage Center is located in Vicksburg. It’s an old convent, an old antebellum home, an old school, and it takes up a whole city block.
The center was nearly lost at one time. When the Sisters of Mercy moved to other accommodations several years ago, the whole block of buildings was put up for sale. There we’re all sorts of rumors of what might happen to it.
:17:00 >> Stacey Mahoney: Ex. Dir. Southern Cultural Heritage Foundation:
“I’m not completely sure what they intentions were, but yes. There was a group of people who fought very hard to save this complex of buildings,” stated Stacey Mahoney, executive director of the Southern Cultural Heritage Foundation.
Long story short, they were successful. The buildings have been saved, and inside the buildings is the Southern Cultural Heritage Center. Performances, art shows, open air concerts and lessons of all sorts go on all the time.
“That’s the one part of our mission to be a cultural center offering events, and the second part of our mission is to preserve the historic foundation of these buildings,” explained Mahoney.
The Sisters of Mercy came to Vicksburg just before the Civil War and purchased the Cobb House as their headquarters. It was built in the 1840s. They taught school downstairs and lived upstairs. Then in 1868, the Sisters built their convent. Later, they added the auditorium and Academy. You’ve seen the auditorium in the movie ‘Oh Brother Where Art Thou.’ It’s a big tourist attraction now.
“They’ll call and, you know, ‘I just want to know if I can come and stand on the stage where George Clooney was.'”
And they can by appointment.