Friday, January 13, 2017

A Painting of the 1886 Depot Addition!

I wanted to highlight a painting of the 1886 Depot addition!
Cite:  Keith, Minerva. Depot. 1950. Holly Springs, MS.
This was given to Aline Cox Kerr (wife of O.B. Kerr) as a present in the 1950's.  On the back it reads "Painted by Minerva Keith 1950".  Minerva Keith might have used this photo (or one similar) as a template:
Cite: Unknown.  The Depot. 1900-1930.  Copy of Photograph.  The Holly Springs Depot, Holly Springs, MS.

Let us look at the changes made to the Depot from the top to the bottom.


1. Chimneys
2. Awning
3. Doors and Windows
4. Fences
5. Holly Tree


1.  The Chimneys: 

Cite:  Keith, Minerva. Depot. 1950. Holly Springs, MS.
Sadly, for safety, the chimneys were deconstructed to the roof line.  We were told that each chimney was unique and built by a brick mason brought from France.  These fancy chimneys helped to heat the entire Depot and provided homes for many Chimney Swifts. To learn more about Chimney Swifts click this link to Strawberry Plains Audubon Center ].  Gwen Wyatt remembers how she heard a family of Chimney Swifts through her bedroom wall that was right next to one of these chimneys. In future, with the saved brick from the deconstructed chimneys, we hope to reconstruct these beloved chimneys on the Depot.
Cite:  Kerr, O.B. Kerr's Castle. circa 1940.  Photograph.  The Depot, Holly Springs, MS.



2.  The Awning: 

Cite:  Kerr, O.B. Kerr Castle. circa 1940.  Photograph.  The Depot, Holly Springs, MS.
The awning in the painting looks to be the same color as the roof.   Based on this painting, the color of the awning was slate-ish or white in color. This might just be artistic license.  However, the awning does look to be a lighter color in this black and white photo:
Cite: Unknown.  The Depot. 1900-1930.  Copy of Photograph.  The Holly Springs Depot, Holly Springs, MS.

If the color was white/grayish it was probably changed to its present red color by O.B. Kerr in the 1940's.

Now, the 1886 slate roof was not replaced until the early 1970's (lasted for at least 84 years until Hurricane Camille hit in 1969).  


Here is a colored photo of the slate roof in 1968.  Look at the slate roof and you might get an idea of what the awning looked like, if it was a white/gray color.
Cite: Thomas, William.  (1968, March 3).  Home Sweet Depot.  The Commercial Appeal, Memphis, TN, Sunday Morning, p. 6-7. Print.  It shows Dr. R. L. Wyatt walking our dog named Rebel.



3.  The Doors & Windows:

Cite:  Keith, Minerva. Depot. 1950. Holly Springs, MS.

Over the years at the Depot, many doors turned into windows and windows turned into doors.  In the painting, you can see one door is facing the tracks and reads "Cafe".  Today, that door is a window, while a corner window is now a door. 
Cite:  Ashmead, Alexa.  Working on a New Roof.  2016. Photograph.  The Depot, Holly Springs, MS.



4.  The Fences: 

Cite:  Keith, Minerva. Depot. 1950. Holly Springs, MS.

 The trackside fence is no more.  The backside six foot fence was recreated in July 2015.  In the painting, the tall fence enclosed the Dining Room so diners would look out onto a private area.
Cite: Unknown.  The Depot. 1900-1930.  Copy of Photograph.  The Holly Springs Depot, Holly Springs, MS.

Today, the fence only encloses two Dining Room windows.  This was done to follow the 1950s metal fence line that avoided going over the brick walk and sidewalk.
Cite:  Ashmead, Alexa.  A New Dining Room Roof.  2016. Photograph.  The Depot, Holly Springs, MS.


5.  The Holly Tree: 

Cite:  Keith, Minerva. Depot. 1950. Holly Springs, MS.


It is not clear what kind of tree is in this painting.
Cite: Unknown.  The Depot. 1900-1930.  Copy of Photograph.  The Holly Springs Depot, Holly Springs, MS.


It could be a holly tree in this black and white photo.  It would make sense if it was. 


Cite:  Weems, A.G. (1948, February 29). Mr. Kerr No Longer Broods Beneath A Honeysuckle Vine. The Commercial Appeal, Memphis, Sunday Morning, Section I pp. 12.



In early 1950s, Aline Cox Kerr re-planted a holly tree that can be seen today.  That holly tree is at least 60 years old!
Cite:  Ashmead, Alexa.  Depot's Front in September 2016.  2016. Photograph.  The Depot, Holly Springs, MS.

Again, a Holly tree is welcoming travelers to The Holly Springs Depot!
Cite:  Ashmead, Alexa.  Working on a New Pyramidal Roof.  2016. Photograph.  The Depot, Holly Springs, MS.
What are your thoughts?
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As always, thank you for reading!

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