114 South Liberty
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In 1890 according to the city maps the lot at 114 was vacant but then but 1896 there was building at this location.
The first floor was O.P. Stovall grocery store with storage in the basement. The second and third floors were offices and sleeping rooms. One office space was rented by Mr. J E Mercer a typewriter salesman and a number of attorneys.
Two of the prominent ones were Robert F. Spragins and Ancil
Stovall . The stair way between the buildings belonged to 114 but the owners allowed the Tubbs building to access the upper floors of their building also.
In 1909 gone were the sleeping rooms Braum Brothers had cigar shop specializing in fine Cuban cigars on the first floor and their pool hall on the second floor. ( there were a lot of pool halls in Downtown Jackson at this time) the third floor had attorneys, tradesman and other salesmen.
Around 1909 the building changed owners and the old tenants were gone. Replaced by the Elite Theater. An ad ran in the Jackson Democrat dated June 9,1909 that the Elite Theater “was the coolest place in Jackson” Doors opened 2:15 to 5 PM. Admission was 5 and 10 cents you could enjoy
“high class pictures and song.” The second floor was Smith Business School with three classrooms and a lavatory. The third floor had a couple of offices and an area for local productions, with a stage and dressing room. There were several ladies group who would stage plays at this locations.
In 1920 the business school move to a building on Lafayette.
One day I was visiting with a friend at the Village Beauty Salon
located at that time at Highland Park. This was an amazing place to find out about Jackson. One of the ladies told me she was 8 years old when the business school moved. Her older sister was attending the school then.
In 1948 the theater that was located at 114 was the Met.
At the time the Met was there the upper floors were shut off. Then the Met moved in the 1950’s to North Highland where the parking lot is now.
From the 1950’s until the building sold in the 2000’s there were an assortment of Loan offices, Attorneys and other businesses located there.
Some time between the late 60’s and early 70’s that gosh awful siding was put on the building. Thankfully the first thing the new owners did when they took possession was remove the siding . It took awhile but they got the brick and windows repaired or replaced.
Now in the picture of 1909 if you look real close at 116 South Liberty was a Chinese Laundry.
First appeared in Downtown Wanderings I 2002 d n english