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Local history in the headlines

Anything of historic value was on the mind this week in yesterday’s papers, including museum efforts, saving a high school and showing off clothing through the years. Read these EAGLE excerpts from 2013, 1996, 1980, 1975 and 1938.

Feb. 26, 2013

Burns Belfry gets bell back

A bell with more than 40 years of tradition of being outside Oxford Elementary School will return to its original home, Burns Belfry Church.

The church asked the Oxford School Board to give the bell back in light of its transformation into a museum to celebrate African-American heritage.

Feb. 26, 1996

Grass fire threatens Lafayette High

A grass fire spread through kudzu, over fences and stopped just short of Lafayette  High School on Saturday.

Officials believe the blaze started when a resident burned trash outside his home, but dry conditions and high winds made the fire spin out of control.

“It burned right up to the building,” said Lafayette County Fire Department official Ottis Anderson. “There wasn’t any loss because we stopped it from getting on top of the building.”

Some school shrubbery was damaged.

Feb. 25, 1980

First lady fashion show set at UM

A fashion collection of replicas of dresses worn by the first ladies of Mississippi will be modeled at the University of Mississippi Continuing Education Gym on Monday night.

The “Salute to Cotton Fashion Show” is programmed by the Mississippi Department of Economic Development to show the importance of cotton in the history and economy of the state.

The majority of the show is replicas of garments worn by governor’s wives from 1830 to the 1970s.

Feb. 24, 1975

Oxford to get grants for saving landmarks

Oxford will receive a grant to ensure historic preservation of two town landmarks.

The Mississippi Department of Archives and History let the city’s officials know via letter it is one of the first communities in the state to participate in the Community Development Block Grant Program.

The two sites that will fall under the grant are Ammadelle, at 637 North Lamar Avenue, and William Faulkner’s home, Rowan Oak, on Old Taylor Road.

Feb. 24, 1938

Mrs. M.C. Buie’s will provides for establishment of museum in Oxford

A civic-minded resident left her estate holdings estimated to yield between $15,000 and $30,000 in order to set up a museum.

The city is now doing its part legally to accept the funds and create a museum and hired attorney Carl Bratton to examine the situation.

Buie and her sister, Miss Kate Skipwith, are considered two of Oxford’s finest philanthropists.

Buie’s will indicates that a “strong brick room” be built on the lot east of her home and that all of her objects of art and possessions of value be placed in the museum.