The MLK Corner Building is one of the most predominate and significant buildings in the Martin Luther King National Register Historic District. Located on the corner of MLK Boulevard and Douglas Street, it housed successful black businesses as well as a fraternal meeting venue on the third floor at the turn of the 20th century.
Constructed in 1924 as Chattanooga’s first fire-proof hotel, this property has been abandoned since the 1980s. It is a contributing structure to the Market and Main Street National Register Historic District. Cornerstones has worked with the last three property owners to try to save and renovate the structure. In 2009, the back portion of the building was demolished before it completely collapsed. Today, only the front section remains. Cornerstones, Lyndhurst Foundation, and RiverCity Company have a Community Partnership specifically targeting historical and architectural significant properties to save … this is one of those properties. While an adaptive reuse vision and plan is in place, financing is not.
Located at the corner of Main Street and Mitchell Street, this building was last used as a furniture store by the Levin brothers. Constructed in ca. 1900, it is a contributing structure to the Market and Main Street National Register Historic District. Working with the property owner, Cornerstones learned in the field how to stabilize a building without a roof and floors – structure steel beams were placed inside and outside the brick walls in order to allow for the roof and floors to be reconstructed. In 2009, a high wind storm blew the back off the building, reducing its footprint. Now the building has on-site parking dedicated to its future tenants. One of our Community Partnership buildings, money used to stabilize the structure – twice. This building is still vacant.
Located immediately adjacent to the St. George Hotel, this is another contributing property to the Market and Main Street National Register Historic District. The footprint of this building is small (app. 3,750 square feet) but it is what holds the St. George to the property immediately to the north. The historic neon sign is what stands out - the sign is the facade of this property. Cornerstones has invested money and is coordinating with the city and present sign regulations while pursuing additional grant funds to renovate this locally significant sign.
And yes, the frogs do jump!
Constructed ca. 1900, these two properties were built simultaneously for commercial use as part of the thriving Market and Broad Street business district. Jazzy was the name of the last furniture store that was housed on one of these buildings. Very interesting architectural façade fronting on Market Street is still intact.
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this property is supported by Cornerstones, the community, and UTC. All dedicated to saving it and using it in the future. The challenge of saving the structure is complicated with future use and retention of historical and architectural significance. This was the site of the majority of the baseball scenes for the 2013 release of “42” – the Jackie Robinson story. The actual baseball field proceeds the stadium and in 1917, then known as Andrews Field, saw the likes of iconic players such as Babe Ruth.
Industrial YMCA. Constructed in 1924, this property was used by working men that came into the city by train and needed a place to stay through the work week. This property is now almost totally renovated but not yet put back into full use. The basketball court, swimming pool, walking track and locker rooms remain. The building has approximately 59 rooms (large enough for a twin bed and night stand) and hall bathrooms are shared.
After being occupied at various times by the Merchant National Bank, a music teacher, Joy’s Flower Shop, and a saloon, the distinctive stone building housed the Burchay’s Furriers for 62 years, until that business closed in 2000. Once slated for the wrecking ball, Cornerstones negotiated an agreement with the owner of the building to preserve this structure until it can be returned to productive use.
The auditorium of the school, Wyatt Hall, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Interestingly, many famous people have attended this school, including Samuel L. Jackson, actor. There is real concern that the school might be vastly altered by removing one or both of the original rear ells to allow for other construction on site, inappropriate repairs to the balustrade of the main school entrance and/or replacement of the original windows.
This property is arguably the oldest and most historical significant in Hamilton County. Located in Ooltewah, this was the home of Chief James Brown constructed ca. 1830s. Cornerstones has contributed $3,000 towards its stabilization in partnership with the National Trust for Historic Preservation, National Park Service, Trail of Tears Association, and the World Heritage Conservation Organization.
This is an important piece of our local history that has not been maintained in the past, but its maintenance has improved. It is immediate adjacent to the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga campus and directly across the street from CSAS. Civil War soldiers are buried in this cemetery.