Monette structures named to National Historic Register
Town Crier News Staff
The First National Bank building and the Monette water tower are two of the 18 Arkansas properties that have been listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Arkansas Historic Preservation Program Director Frances McSwain announced last week.
The First National Bank Building at 207 W. Drew Street in Monette is a classical revival-style building constructed in 1918.
"This building is the only remaining building in the Buffalo Island area of the classical revival style of architecture," McSwain said. "Although the architecture is outstanding and makes the building very important and unique in the two or three block business district, the primary significance of the institution has been in the areas of commerce and economics."
The city of Monette plans to renovate the old bank building for use as the Buffalo Island Museum.
The water tower, located on the corner of Texie Avenue and Highway 139, was built in 1936 with PWA assistance.
"The water tower serves as a lasting reminder of the PWA's importance in providing jobs, necessary infrastructure and economic development in Arkansas," McSwain said. "Additionally, the Monette water tower is a good example of a 1930s water tower built with PWA funds."
Monette Mayor Chub Qualls, Museum Committee Chairman Ernestine Harrell, and committee member Betty Pylant attended a grant workshop in Little Rock last week to obtain information about applying for a historic grant.
"The grant will be due on April 14, and we have a lot of work to be done in order to seek funding for our museum project," Harrell said. "We currently have three other grant applications for renovation of the museum. It is going to be very costly and we need all the funds available.
"We have already replaced the roof and tore out damaged sheet rock and flooring downstairs. We work until our funding runs out then we start looking for new grants. The competition is very great for grant funding, but we are committed to give it our best effort. The city can't fund the whole project but they are doing everything possible to help. They pay for the utilities and insurance, which is a lifesaver. We plan to host several fundraisers and do a mail out for local support."
For more information about the Department of Arkansas Heritage Agency visit their website www.arkansaspreservation.org.