Natchez Trails: Hospital Hill Neighborhood - Natchez, MS
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Markerman62
N 31° 33.525 W 091° 23.825
15R E 652133 N 3492642
Located on St. Catherine Street at Abbott Street, Natchez
Waymark Code: WM13FG7
Location: Mississippi, United States
Date Posted: 11/30/2020
Published By:Groundspeak Regular Member scrambler390
Views: 0

The portion of St. Catherine Street that extends from the site of the Rhythm Night Club to D'Evereux Street was originally part of the property of the city's first public hospital (above).
The hospital fronted St. Catherine and stood on a hill on the north side of the street across from where Holy Family Church now stands.
An 1813 newspaper described the proposed hospital as fifty-feet square and two stories above the basement.
Henry Gurney photographed the hospital in 1866 when it was used as an encampment for Union soldiers during the Civil War. A tent is visible on the far left in the picture above. The rear wing of the hospital survives and is accessed from Bowles Alley.
After acquiring the U.S. Marine Hospital in 1884, the city sold the 1813 hospital, which was demolished in 1886 and its property divided into building lots.
Over a century later older residents of St. Catherine were still referring to the property as "Hospital Hill." The Louis Kastor House, John Banks House, George Bowles House and the parsonage of Zion Chapel A.M.E. Church were built on the hospital property.
In a 1902 publication Evidence of Progress Among Colored People, G.F. Richings described Louis Kastor (above) as "a first-class harness maker by trade" and owner of "one of the largest and best-equipped stores in his line in the country."
According to Richings, "Mr. Kastor began first with $65.00 and is now doing a business of $22,000 a year, He owns a fine property for a residence and has the respect and confidence of the best people of Natchez." Kastor lived at 7 St. Catherine Street and his business was on Franklin Street.
The Louis Kastor House at 7 St. Catherine Street (left) was built ca. 1890 in the Queen Anne style but later remodeled in the craftsman style. Merchant Samuel Krouse owned the house in the 1920s.
By 1935 the Kastor House had become a funeral home, operating as West and Webb Funeral Home by 1947. The partnership dissolved and Aubrey Webb continued operations in the Kastor House. George West opened a new funeral business on Martin Luther King Street. In the 1950s Webb remodeled the house and built a front addition.
The George Bowles House at 13 St. Catherine (left) was one of several houses built on the hill after the 1886 demolition of the hospital. Partially visible is the parsonage of Zion Chapel A.M.E. Church.
African American George F. Bowles moved to Natchez in 1871 and was admitted to the Mississippi Bar in 1875. He married Laura Davis, sister of local banker William Minor Davis.
Bowles was both a member of the school board and a city attorney during Reconstruction. He was elected to the Mississippi House of Representatives and served two terms from 1887 to 1891.
Bowles served as Grand Chancellor of the Knights of Pythias, the fraternal organization that erected his tombstone in the Natchez City Cemetery at his death in 1899.
Date Installed:: 2010

Organization that placed the object:: City of Natchez

Photo or photos will be uploaded.: yes

Related Website:: Not listed

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Markerman62 visited Natchez Trails: Hospital Hill Neighborhood - Natchez, MS 12/15/2020 Markerman62 visited it