- Associated Press - Friday, August 21, 2015

GULFPORT, Miss. (AP) - Twenty-nine Mississippi properties lost to Hurricane Katrina are being immortalized with cast aluminum markers.

Officials say many properties with unique architectural features fall victim to debris-removal projects after a storm.

Kenneth P’Pool, deputy state historic preservation officer, told The Sun Herald (https://bit.ly/1PpAr3c ) that during Katrina cleanup, there was little time to follow the steps required by a National Historic Preservation Act, to document or preserve damaged buildings with unique features.

The act requires federal agencies to consider the effects their projects may have on historic properties. The agencies must review background information and consult with the state historic preservation officer, tribal historic preservation officer and other knowledgeable sources.

Using GPS data, FEMA’s Environmental Planning and Historic Preservation program surveyed historic districts, properties and archaeological sites in the six south Mississippi counties most affected by Katrina and created a database that will help emergency-management officials in future disasters.

“We now have a much better handle on the numbers, locations and types of historic properties and where they’re distributed around the Gulf Coast,” P’Pool said.

One of the buildings being marked is the wooden Church of the Redeemer in Biloxi, officials said. The engraved marker includes the bell tower in front of the church - the only part of the Carpenter Gothic-style church to survive Hurricane Camille in 1969.

“We thought it especially important to have sketches of the destroyed buildings on the markers,” P’Pool said. “It gives people an appreciation of what was lost. Some of these illustrations are the last examples of architectural styles on the coast.”

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Information from: The Sun Herald, https://www.sunherald.com


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