Christ’s Chapel in Townsend, Georgia is known as the “Smallest Church in America.” The church isn’t really the smallest in America but it’s a little church that brought this community together in a big way when someone destroyed this historic structure.
St Mary’s Basilica in Natchez, Mississippi is the oldest Catholic building still in use in the state. The interior of the church is decorated with 23kt gold leaf, multi-color stencils, tromp l’oeil and free-hand artistry.
The church is open to the public and you’ll find a self guided tour guide as you walk inside so you can understand every detail of this architectural and spiritual treasure of the South
St. Mary Basilica 107 S. Union St. Natchez, MS 39120 Telephone: 601.445.5616
Looking for a peaceful and beautiful place to explore? Visit Alabama’s Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament in Hanceville. Exploring the gardens, grotto and beautiful church and chapel is a relaxing experience and offers a peaceful environment for contemplation.
UPDATE: Rodney History and Preservation Society has launched a fundraising effort to preserve history here. You can learn more and help with the effort here
Visiting Rodney, Mississippi takes some patience and intention. If you get there, you were headed there. The drive involves back roads and some dirt roads and once you arrive you have no cell service. But once you see this old place and the architectural treasures and historic sites here, it’s worth the bumpy roads! There are two old churches here including Old Rodney Presbyterian Church that holds a unique connection to the Civil War.
When I was standing in front of the church taking photos I heard a fellow visitor ask a friend “Why on earth would someone attack a church?” He was responding to someone’s mention of Confederate troops shooting in Old Rodney Presbyterian Church. It really happened. The reverend of this church invited crew members of the Union’s USS Rattler to join the church service on Sunday, September 13, 1863. After all, there was a Sunday truce in place and the reverend believed he was doing the right thing. Confederate scouts heard there were Union troops in the church and showed up at the door to demand they leave. When the troops refused to leave, the Confederates starting shooting into the church. Retaliation from the Union followed soon after when they fired a cannonball at the church and damaged the front. The cannon ball was removed, replaced and returned which you can see in the church. You can see it above the window in the photo below.
Rodney is one of those places where you feel like time stood still. And you can clearly hear and see history here because there are few distractions and little noise to cover up the story of what happened here. If you plan a trip to Rodney, do not rely on your GPS. Look up directions and screen shot them like I did. Or follow the basic direction below. You may need a back up because at some point your phone will not have service.
From US 61 go west on 552 towards Alcorn. Turn left on Fellowship Rd (it’s a big hill) and then take Firetower Rd to Rodney Rd on right. Go 10 mi., Rodney Rd is paved until near Rodney.
Have fun and enjoy stepping back in time in Rodney!
The moment you walk into St. Joseph Catholic Church in Port Gibson, Mississippi, you fall silent and you’re struck by a kind of purple haze. The light shining throughout is courtesy of the cobalt blue stained-glass windows. Vivid and beautiful! The church was built in 1849 and is one of the oldest Catholic churches in the state of Mississippi.
If you love churches and architecture, stop by 909 Church Street, off Hwy 61, in Port Gibson for a visit.
That moment you turn around to take a picture of a lovely country church off an Alabama back road and realize it was a filming location for one of your favorite Tim Burton movies, Big Fish. If you’ve never seen the movie, I highly recommend it. Most of the movie was filmed in Alabama and there are many locations you can visit the next time you’re in the state including this picturesque church. Pine Flat Presbyterian Church in Deatsville, Elmore County, Alabama was founded in the early nineteenth century and was the shooting location for Ed Bloom’s funeral in the film.
Just north of Vicksburg, Mississippi, off Hwy 61, you’ll find the ruins of man’s expression of love for his wife, Margaret. It’s still known as Margaret’s Grocery. Margaret’s first husband was shot dead in the market during a robbery in the 1970s. Five years later she met and married Reverend H.D. Dennis who promised her that he would make a castle out of her grocery store if she married him. They transformed the store into a folk art ministry, including a school bus retrofitted into a chapel. The Reverend and Margaret have passed away and since their deaths the store has fallen into disrepair.
While exploring Mooresville, Alabama I almost passed by this church without taking a photo. It seemed so simple. But every church has a story and this one involves a future President of the United States. Mooresville Church of Christ has held services in this building since 1854. Future president James A. Garfield preached a sermon in the building when he was stationed nearby as a federal soldier during the Civil War. Glad I took photos of this place…it’s a historical treasure.