Anchuca’s celebration a major event for the city’s history

Published 9:48 am Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Thursday, Anchuca celebrates a milestone with its 60th anniversary as Vicksburg’s first tour home.

Its anniversary will be marked with a ceremony unveiling a state historical marker dedicated to the memory of owner Tom Pharr’s maternal grandmother, Gladys Marie Garner Barnette, who provided the money to secure the commemorative marker pointing out Anchuca’s significance.

Anchuca, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, opened as the city’s first tour home in 1955. There are other firsts for the home. Built in Greek revival style in 1830, Anchuca was the first columned mansion in Vicksburg and the first historic home in the state to be turned into a bed and breakfast inn.

But it is more than that. Anchuca, like other historic mansions like Cedar Grove and Duff Green are a major part of our city’s history, part of who we are. The charm and elegance they feature, not only as tour homes and bed and breakfasts, but also as restaurants in the city offer visitors more than the opportunity to walk through a historic home. It gives them the opportunity to spend the night in one of their rooms and get a deeper experience and greater appreciation of the home’s history than they could ever get by walking through it.

Combined with the Vicksburg National Military Park and the Mississippi River, these iconic homes give visitors and residents better appreciation for the Vicksburg’s and the area’s history. And the significance of our historic homes is not going unnoticed by our visitors,

“Historic homes are an important part of tourism today, especially with the involvement of the evolution into a bed and breakfast,” Pharr said. “We are excited to celebrate this important milestone in Anchuca’s history.

“When I think of how far tourism has come — especially the opportunities and the reach we now have in this digital age — and the positive economic impact on this community that we have had not only as an attraction for tourists, but also as an employer, I can’t help but be proud of our contribution to preserve such a unique, American historic neighborhood.”

Anchuca’s ceremony is Thursday at 9 a.m., and will include free tours of the home. It’s a good way to catch up on the city’s history.