Isaiah Thomas Montgomery was a leading figure in the founding of Mound Bayou, one of Mississippi's most successful communities established by freed slaves. He and a cousin, both former slaves from the plantation of Confederate President Jefferson Davis had been part of an unsuccessful attempt to establish such a community at one corner of Davis's plantation.
After a railroad line was built through Bolivar County in the 1880s, this land, granted to the railroad, was considered a more suitable site for such a settlement. Montgomery was instrumental in recruiting settlers and helping to build the new community, which was given a town charter by the state in 1912.
This house was built for Montgomery in 1910, and was his home until his death. After Montgomery's death in 1924 the home was used for nursers, teachers, and a private residence.
A Save America's Treasures grant was secured through the National Trust for Historic Preservation and matched by the Mississippi State Legislature and the African American Heritage Preservation Grant Program for exterior renovations totaling more than $110,000.
Planning is currently underway to determine the best course of action for the building.
It was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1976 and a Mississippi Landmark in 2003.
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