Society honors toured homes

Published 8:17 pm Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Nearly two months after Selma’s annual historic pilgrimage concluded, the homes and businesses that participated in the tour were recognized and honored by the Selma Dallas County Historic Preservation Society at the society’s annual meeting Tuesday.

The property owners were awarded with plaques — detailing the years their home or business had participated in the annual tour, many of which had participated in Pilgrimage multiple years.

Nancy Bennett, president of the SDCHPS, thanked everyone for their hard work and dedication during Pilgrimage and updated them on the status of their yearly fundraisers.

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“All of our festivals did pretty good. Not as good as we would’ve hoped, and certainly not as good as those who gave of their time and efforts would feel deserved,” she said, noting the society is in need of major fundraising efforts.

Bennett said the society has done so much for the city of Selma since their incorporation in the mid 1970s, listing examples of helping save the St. James Hotel, donating $50,000 for the stabilization of the Phoenix Building, saving the original Dallas Academy building and numerous homes around town.

“I don’t know of any other organization, for profit or not-for-profit, that have given the amount of time, talent and dollars that this organization has given over the course of the years,” she said. “Think of what we’ve done with the money we have raised to help our community.”

The annual meeting was also a time for the SDCHPS to introduce their new slate of officers. Bennett will serve as immediate past president. President will be Jewell Williamson; first vice president (president elect) will be Sheryl Smedley; second vice president (membership) will be Elise Blackwell; third vice president (meetings) will be Sylvia Smith; secretary will be Marsha Carmichael and the treasurer will be Candi Duncan.

“I know that everybody that is on the board will give Jewell the support that y’all have been so gracious to give me for the past two years,” Bennett told the group, as her final words as SDCHPS president. “If y’all can put up with me for the past two years, then Jewell’s got a piece of cake.”

The SDCHPS also welcomed four new board members, Duncan Hope, Ann Murray, Norm Trotter and Beth Spivey.