Old Brick House restorations underway in Biloxi

By Krystal Allan – bio | email

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - Signs of progress can be seen even before one reaches the historic Biloxi home known as the Old Brick House. Parts of the wall, which surrounded the home, built in the 1840s, have been completed. Wooden beams still shore up the home, but visible signs of a restored Old Brick House are starting to emerge.

"The north wall of the building has been reconstructed, and hopefully, in the next few weeks we'll start building the porch," Biloxi Historical Administrator Bill Raymond said.

This time, Raymond said, the porch will not be enclosed. Inside, improvements are quite literally peaking through the floor boards.

"All these floor beams after the storm, the flooring was still here, but when you walked across it was like walking across a trampoline because there was no support," Raymond said.

The beams have now been pulled up and re-set. Undoubtedly, one of the project's major challenges is repairing or replacing the nearly 10,000 bricks used to build the home. Raymond said trying to work with the differences in the size and strength of the bricks from the 1840s is not easy.

"I'm not going down to Lowe's and picking up bricks and mortar and rebuilding. This is a historic preservation project, and we want to make sure we do it right the first time," Raymond said.

The goal is to once again make the Old Brick House a museum for people to get a better understanding of Biloxi's past.

"[We want] to talk about not only what life was like for the household, but the history of Biloxi during that period," Raymond said.

Repairs are about 30 percent done with FEMA and insurance covering the costs. Construction is expected to wrap up by the end of this year.

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