Wednesday, August 24, 2011

A Tour of the Hotel Vicksburg

One of the most prominent landmarks in downtown Vicksburg is the old Hotel Vicksburg building located at the corner of Clay and Walnut Streets. The following postcard depicts the hotel when it was in its prime, somewhere between 1925 and 1949.

[Postcard: Courtesy of the Mississippi Department of Archives and History]

Here is the way the hotel looks today (photo taken from opposite side shown on postcard) ...

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the hotel is currently being used for apartment rentals, a theatre, and the Old Southern Tea Room, which recently reopened in the building.

I have photographed the outside of the hotel on numerous occasions, but had never ventured inside until a couple of days ago.

Notice the ceiling and lights of the overhang which graces the main entrance into the hotel.

And the beautiful windows and ironwork ...

Remember when these "Fallout Shelter" signs were a familiar sight? I'm curious about how far down under the hotel you would have to go to reach the shelter.

I've always found the back of the hotel interesting, too — especially the fire escape. Let's just hope that no one ever has to use it!

But enough of the outside — let's go inside!

From the moment I stepped through the doors, I felt as if I had gone back in time. I looked for someone to request permission to take pictures, but no one was around, so I took the liberty of shooting a few pictures in the lobby and main floor.

I loved the old elevators ...

But my attention was immediately drawn to what was between them — just look at this old treasure!

And speaking of treasures

The sign above this beauty indicates that it is an ice water fountain original to the 1928 hotel, a novelty in its day, and similar fountains could be found on every floor of the hotel (I'm not sure where the water came out?).

It looked as if it was glowing!

The fountain was located next to the front desk, which, I assume, is original, too ...

I loved the elegant staircase and so wanted to climb it to see more, but since I wasn't able to ask permission to photograph the interior of the hotel, I didn't think that would be a good idea.

I did, however, go down these stairs which led to the Walnut Street entrance of the hotel (notice the unique iron newel post and stair railing).

This old map hangs above the doors leading to the street ...

I'm so glad I ventured inside the hotel and would love to go back sometime (with permission) and capture with my camera some of its other treasures. Perhaps we can visit the Old Southern Tea Room at the same time. Their daily menus posted on their Facebook page sound scrumptious!


racheld said...

How charming and polished and still with the air of another time! I can just hear the swish of the dresses, and smell the faint scent of cigars from the lounge.

(And at LAST!!! We know where Mr. Jingles went to Heaven).

Must rush, but want to see more---especially the Tea Room---could you go to tea just ONCE and report, with pictures?

Tonja said...

Oh, what a grand and elegant place! Wonderful that it has been kept in such fine condition. I do wonder what the rooms look like though, don't you? That letter oh my! I'll bet there were treasures on every floor!

I love to go into places like that and see what all is still there. The 'grand and elegance' of today doesn't even come close to what used to be.

Hoping all is well with the baby...and the rest of his family.

Dayle Allen Shockley @ A Collection of Days said...

As a former Vicksburg resident, I thoroughly enjoyed your photos of the history Vicksburg Hotel.

borgrabbit said...

I spent a night in the hotel in 1973 on a road trip to the newly built Disney world. It cost five dollars a night, was clean, and had the most fascinating radiators.