"Turning Angel" Monument Vandalized

Eleanor Rose

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Member of the Month
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Nov 26, 2016
Location
central NC
Turning Angel.jpg

(Photo by @Southern Unionist)

The 112-year-old “Turning Angel” monument in the Natchez City Cemetery is a landmark and has been in its spot since it was placed there by the owner of the Natchez Drug Company. The monument commemorates five girls who were killed in a building explosion in 1908. The angel was found Wednesday toppled off its pedestal with one of the wings broken. The damage has been estimated at $40,000. There isn't any linkage to any national protest or movement. The damage was caused by a 20 year old guy who jumped on the monument and rocked it off its base. @alan polk , have you heard about this? I was so sad to read about this.
 

Dave D

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Joined
Feb 21, 2019
(Photo by @Southern Unionist)
The 112-year-old “Turning Angel” monument in the Natchez City Cemetery is a landmark and has been in its spot since it was placed there by the owner of the Natchez Drug Company. The monument commemorates five girls who were killed in a building explosion in 1908. The angel was found Wednesday toppled off its pedestal with one of the wings broken. The damage has been estimated at $40,000. There isn't any linkage to any national protest or movement. The damage was caused by a 20 year old guy who jumped on the monument and rocked it off its base. @alan polk , have you heard about this? I was so sad to read about this.
They caught the kid that did this ? Good! They should make him work to pay for the repairs (that should keep him busy for about 10 years) and then make it his responsibility to take care of the statue.
 

Eleanor Rose

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Location
central NC
Really sad, I am not familiar with this monument, any details about the 1908 explosion and the loss of the girls?

The Natchez Drug Company, owned by John H. Chambliss, had recently installed a gas-fired stove in a fourth-floor laboratory. Among the workers who installed the gas piping for the stove was 21-year-old Sam Burns, a local plumber and a member of the Natchez Volunteer Fire Department. About noon on March 14, Burns was working at a house on North Pearl Street when he was abruptly called to the Natchez Drug Company to investigate a gas leak. Arriving at the building, Burns went to the laboratory to test for the location of the gas leak using the accepted method of the day, which was a lighted candle. After failing to discover the leak on the fourth floor, Burns went to the basement where, unfortunately, he found it. The force of the resulting explosion blew out the walls of the building and shot brick, wood and shards of glass in all directions. Trapped in the burning building were a number of company employees, including five young women: Luella Booth, Mary “Lizzie” Worthy, Carrie O. Murray, Inez Netterville and Ada White. All five were killed in the explosion. Notably, all but one were still in their teens (the exception being Carrie Murray, who was 22 years old). The youngest, Mary Worthy, was just twelve years old.

The owner of the Natchez Drug Company was so devastated that he purchased a lot to bury his employees and he purchased the angel monument to place at their gravesite. This monument is now referred to as "The Turning Angel" because at night when a car drives by it appears to turn as the car passes by.
 
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Eleanor Rose

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Member of the Month
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Nov 26, 2016
Location
central NC
People do the stupidest things. I'm glad they caught the person who did it. Are they planning to restore the statue?

Natchez City Cemetery Board President Elise Rushing said board members are still in the process of trying to choose a monument restoration company to repair the statue and have set up an account for donations. Donations can be mailed to Turning Angel Fund, P.O. Box 1738, Natchez, MS 39121.
 

alan polk

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Jun 11, 2012
The Natchez Drug Company, owned by John H. Chambliss, had recently installed a gas-fired stove in a fourth-floor laboratory. Among the workers who installed the gas piping for the stove was 21-year-old Sam Burns, a local plumber and a member of the Natchez Volunteer Fire Department. About noon on March 14, Burns was working at a house on North Pearl Street when he was abruptly called to the Natchez Drug Company to investigate a gas leak. Arriving at the building, Burns went to the laboratory to test for the location of the gas leak using the accepted method of the day, which was a lighted candle. After failing to discover the leak on the fourth floor, Burns went to the basement where, unfortunately, he found it. The force of the resulting explosion blew out the walls of the building and shot brick, wood and shards of glass in all directions. Trapped in the burning building were a number of company employees, including five young women: Luella Booth, Mary “Lizzie” Worthy, Carrie O. Murray, Inez Netterville and Ada White. All five were killed in the explosion. Notably, all but one were still in their teens (the exception being Carrie Murray, who was 22 years old). The youngest, Mary Worthy, was just twelve years old.

The owner of the Natchez Drug Company was so devastated that he purchased a lot to bury his employees and he purchased the angel monument to place at their gravesite. This monument is now referred to as "The Turning Angel" because at night when a car drives by it appears to turn as the car passes by.

I had not heard about this at all. Thanks for the heads up. Such a horrible thing. If I hear any local updates about it I’ll let you know!
 

alan polk

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Jun 11, 2012

John Winn

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Joined
Mar 13, 2014
Location
State of Jefferson
Thanks @alan polk for the update. Looks like whoever did the repair did a good job. I just hope it didn't actually cost $40,000 as that would be way more than reasonable for something like that. I could have done that - including flights out and back, room and board, equipment rental, materials - for less than a quarter of that. Now, had it been shattered such that many pieces had to be put back together and missing pieces re-built and the like well, maybe, but it was a simple, clean break not located in a supporting feature. Anyway, I'm pleased it's fixed and back up.

I hope there are consequences for the kid who did that such that he learns a lesson and can maybe spend some time reflecting on his behavior and future. He should at least have to pay for the repair.
 

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