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Downtown Pascagoula named a historic district by National Park Service

Of the 84 properties in downtown Pascagoula, city leaders say 53 are eligible for the historic tax credits.
Published: Oct. 26, 2021 at 8:02 PM CDT
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PASCAGOULA, Miss. (WLOX) - The National Park Service has designated downtown Pascagoula as a historic district. Buildings within the district now qualify for historic tax credits.

If the walls of Scranton’s Restaurant could talk, we’d hear stories from their early 1920s.

“We tried to keep it as original as possible,” said owner Richard Chenoweth.

Chenoweth walked through his popular restaurant that once housed the town’s firehouse on one side and City Hall on the other.

“So this is what it looks like on opening day and this was the original fire station,” he said. “So that’s why the vault’s there for all the land records, where all the, keeping the money, the tax collections and everything like that.”

The mayor’s office is in the back along with a courtroom and jail.

“It was a fight in here somehow,” Chenoweth said.

From the steel bars to the brick walls and the floor, all have survived about a century.

Chenoweth is also part of the community history on Delmas Avenue.

“I came here in 1962. This was a bustling, you know, main street. You had cars going both ways. It was a two-way street. You had cars parked on both sides. You had businesses all the way down,” he said.

His building has been on the historical registry since opening. He added apartment units to the building, taking advantage of historic tax credits now becoming available for the rest of the area.

“I was thrilled when I heard that they were just gonna go ahead and encompass the whole area into, into the historic district cause I’ve, I know how it’s benefited me,” he said.

City manager Michael Silverman expects the move to bring back a vibrant downtown atmosphere he says Hurricane Katrina took away.

“First, it recognizes the great history that Pascagoula offers to our community and our region,” Silverman said. “And additionally, it provides tax incentives to developers that want to invest in our historic properties.”

Of the 84 properties in downtown Pascagoula, city leaders say 53 are eligible for the historic tax credits.

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