The History of The Corners Mansion
The Corners Mansion, built in 1873 by John Alexander Klein, was given as a wedding gift to his daughter, Susan and her new husband Isaac Bonham. Mr. Klein owned Cedar Grove, located across the street which was built in 1842. The 62-acre tract of land on this hillside overlooking the Mississippi, known as Kleinston Landing, was owned by Mr. Klein. Between 1876 and 1902, the Mississippi River’s east bank reached the bottom of the hill at the foot of Klein Street, where the railroad tracks are now located. Kleinston Landing served as the only port in Vicksburg at that time. Across the street there once stood a home owned by one of Susan's brothers, George Klein. This house, known as the “ Bellevue,” was built around 1869 in the “steamboat gothic” style of architecture. The house, which had been converted to apartments, burned down in the 1970’s. The structure that is now standing on the property was originally the kitchen and servants quarters for George Klein’s house.
Just beyond the site of George Klein’s house stood the home of Jefferson Davis’ sister, called “Shamrock” and was destroyed when the railroad confiscated the property for a right of way.
On the lot north of the Corners once stood an ante-bellum home that was torn down in the 1960’s for its brick. The brick, apparently, was more valuable than the house itself. Unfortunately, the destruction of historical property happened more often than not in Vicksburg after the Civil War. Unlike Natchez, Vicksburg’s economy was not centered on plantation agriculture. After the war, Vicksburg relied on its established business economy that catered to riverboat traffic. Consequently, many ante-bellum homes were destroyed to make room for more businesses.
The two storied Galleries building now located on this property was completed in October of 1996. The Architect, Gilbert Hickox, designed the building to duplicate the look of The Corners. This architectural design received an award from the Historic Preservation Society for a new building that was constructed compatibly with an old building.