2222 Cherry Street was built in 1911

Published 11:02 pm Monday, December 11, 2023

2222 Cherry Street- This house was built in 1911 at 2222 Cherry Street by Charles and Nellie Beer.

The Colonial Revival house may have been designed by Michael Donovan and it incorporates the newer building material- cast blocks that look like stone- in the construction of the porch. Charles was a wholesale grocer who had a grocery store at 1213 Washington Street.

He was born in Ocean Springs, received his education in Port Gibson and Mississippi College and came to Vicksburg in 1871 to work for Alex Kuhn and Company.

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He stayed with that company for eighteen years, until the death of Kuhn, after which he entered into business with Sam Brown, a partnership that lasted only five years. He then started his own grocery store.

On Sept. 18, 1908, the Vicksburg Evening Post reported that Beer would be a candidate in the race for alderman of the second ward.

In an article entitled “Beer a Patriot,” the Post quoted Beer “I did not want to become a candidate for alderman,” said Mr. C. E. Beer today, “but a number of friends waited on me and urged on me the importance of getting businessmen in the board. I reluctantly consented to run.”

As to his qualifications, the Post stated that Beer was a member of the Wholesale Grocers’ Association, the Board of Trade (later called the Chamber of Commerce), the Cotton Exchange, the Elks and the B.B. Club. He was also a member of the Vicksburg Southrons.

In 1890, he married Nellie Winter from Montgomery, Alabama and they had two children; Mathile and Corrine.

In March 1911, Beer tendered his resignation from the board of aldermen because he had bought the lot on Cherry Street and therefore would be living outside of the second ward. Beer died in New Orleans on Nov. 11, 1922, having traveled there for treatment for an illness. Nellie continued to live in the house until she died in 1935.

Her daughter Mathile Hirsch then lived in the house perhaps after her husband, Albert, died in 1937. Mathile and Albert had two children; Charles and Betty Emilie. Charles served as a technical sergeant and radio operator/gunner on a B-17F in the 366th Bomber Squadron, 305th Bomber Group during World War II.

On May 1, 1943, his B17 took off with a crew of ten from England on a bombing mission over France.

They were attacked by German aircraft and shot down, ditching in the Bay of Biscay off of France. The entire crew was lost and their bodies never recovered.

Mathile continued to live in the house, renting out rooms, until she died in 1977. Thereafter the house was used as a rental house until it was demolished in the 1980s.

A new house was built on its site in the 2000s.

Article was contributed by Nancy Bell, Vicksburg Foundation for Historic Preservation.