Thursday, April 23, 2009

Centennial Baptist, Helena

The current issue of the Arkansas Times has a story titled "Centennial Church is falling down." Here's photographic evidence.

Built in 1905, the church stands testimony to the perseverance of its founders, E.C. Morris and Henry James Price, as well as the Delta's African-American community. It's on shaky ground now, though, as politics and money stand in the way of preserving the structure.

It's been over a decade since the last services were held at Centennial. The steel girders were erected as a temporary means of holding things together until the funds could be raised to do the job right, but doing so has proven to be difficult, to say the least. It's a shame, really, that feelings of pride should be mixed with feelings of hopelessness. Animosity rules in Helena-West Helena.

(That's my brother, Jim, snapping a picture for himself.)

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