TUPELO • Unable to find anyone willing to restore or lease several buildings in the Tupelo Homestead Historic District, the Natchez Trace Parkway is proposing to dismantle them instead.
The buildings, built in 1936 by the Resettlement Administration and transferred to the National Park Service in 1940, are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Four years ago, Parkway officials had an open house to gauge public and private interest in preserving some of the cottages that sit just north of the The Mall at Barnes Crossing near NTP headquarters.
Then last year, the NPS issued a Request for Proposals. Even though there was some interest, no proposals were submitted.
“Unfortunately, the Parkway does not have the resources to manage the structures and has made the difficult decision to move forward with removing nine houses (numbers 1-3, 5 and 6, 8-10, and 25) and associated outbuildings,” NTP officials said in a news release.
Eleven of the buildings in the historic district will remain, as they’re being used for office and storage space.
The colony originally had 35 homesteads on 171 acres, each with about three acres. The parkway had renovated similar cottages on the west side of Highway 145 and used them as offices. Most of the houses on the east side of the highway have been vacant for years.
A public comment period will open between May 20 and June 21, 2019. The public is encouraged to comment about the proposal electronically via the National Park Service’s Planning, Environment, and Public Comment website at parkplanning.nps.gov/TupeloHomesteads. Comments will also be accepted in writing. To submit written comments, mail to: Superintendent; Natchez Trace Parkway; 2680 Natchez Trace Parkway Tupelo, MS 38804
Comments submitted must include your address, phone number and email address, Park officials said this information, as well as any other personal identifying information may be made public at any time.
“While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your PII from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so,” officials said.