There are perfectly preserved churches all over Mississippi. However, it’d be nearly impossible to maintain every single one of them. And from time to time, we come across abandoned chapels, left to slowly fade away; here are 7 prime examples.
1. Dundee Methodist Church
This church can be found in Dundee, a small unincorporated community in Tunica County. Presently, there are only a handful of residents in Dundee, but at one time it was a blossoming town with several stores and a post office. According to readers, services at Dundee Methodist Church came to a halt sometime in the 1970s. As of today, the building is still standing but sadly, close to caving in.
2. Mt. Zion Baptist Church
Fittingly, this abandoned chapel can be found in the ghost town of Rodney. Constructed in 1850, it was the second of two churches built in the town. Also known as First Baptist Church, it features several styles of architecture, making it as unique as it is charming. Sadly, it's been abandoned for years. And with a structure made almost entirely of wood, it's extremely susceptible to water damage, which is a big problem since the area is prone to flooding. The historic church is quickly deteriorating and before long, could disappear forever.
3. Rodney Presbyterian Church
Built between 1829 and 1832, this church is also located in Rodney. Its unkempt state landed it a spot on the Mississippi Heritage Trust's "10 Most Endangered List." The fact that it's among the oldest surviving churches in Mississippi, makes its dilapidating state even upsetting. Clues regarding the church's rich history are visible to this day. In September of 1863, a small battle broke out near the church. During the battle, a cannonball was fired in to its brick wall and remained lodged there for some time. Eventually, the cannonball fell out but was replaced several years later.
4. First Christian Church
When thinking about abandoned sites, big cities don't usually come to mind. However, that's exactly the case with the First Christian Church in Jackson. And though the church is not yet in a deteriorating state, it could certainly end up that way. In 2002, First Baptist Church purchased the building, with the intent of tearing it down, but after public outcry, changed its mind. Since then, all of the stained and leaded glass windows, original pews, woodwork, and the organ have been removed. However, according to Mississippi Preservation, the building "continues to languish and suffer from neglect," which means one of Jackson's architectural treasures will eventually be diminished, if not destroyed.
5. Bethany Baptist Church
Despite its state, this tiny church hasn’t lost any of its charm. Tucked away on the side of a dirt road, it can be found in Enid, an unincorporated community just north of Oakland, MS. There isn’t much information on the church; however, it’s speculated it was built around the early 1900s. Today, it sits abandoned, left for nature to reclaim.
6. Chapel of the Cross
Of all the abandoned sites and forgotten places in Mississippi, Nitta Yuma is one of the most interesting. Part ghost town and part time warp, the tiny town consists of only a handful of buildings – some of which are in complete disarray, others perfectly preserved. Chapel of the Cross falls somewhere in between. And sadly, the fate of the church doesn’t look good, since a new Chapel of the Cross has been constructed across the street from the original.
7. Old Grand Gulf Church
Grand Gulf became an official town in 1833. Within a few short years, it was a major shipping hub and the 3rd largest town in Mississippi. Grand Gulf's success was short lived, and by 1861, the town was all but deserted. Unfortunately, this old church, which is nearly camouflaged by vines and overgrowth, is one of the only remnants of former port city.
So, were you aware of these abandoned churches? Know of any others? Tell us in the comments section!