Make a Difference in the future of the Cutrer Mansion
The CUTRER MANSION...
Then & Now
The Cutrer Mansion in Clarksdale, Mississippi, is a very unique part of the Mississippi Delta’s History and Culture. Built in 1916 by the Cutrer family, this Italian style villa represents a moment in time captured in many of the Tennessee Williams’ plays. After the Cutrer Family sold it to the St. Elizabeth Catholic Church in 1946, it became an educational complex for the Catholic parish for over 50 years. In 1999, the house had fallen in disrepair and the church made a decision to sell it. Hundreds of people from all over Clarksdale and Coahoma County as well as the State of Mississippi came together to raise $750,000 to purchase the house and then donate it to Delta State University, who entered into a partnership with Coahoma Community College, to develop a higher education facility. It has been a long, hard road, but the house is surviving, and in some ways thriving, but the costs for the two institutions to keep it going have been high. In June 2017, Delta State Universtiy decided to pull out of the Coahoma County Higher Education Center due to severe budget cuts. Coahoma Community College has stated that they are committed to the Center and it's growth, and that they desire to continue their committment to the project and the community for as long as they can. In May of 2017, the Coahoma County Board of Supervisors stepped up to fill DSU's funding void for one year while leaders at the center, in the community and at the community college can work on a long-term plan for its future. Financial support is welcome and needed.
Please help the Coahoma County Higher Education Center continue. Our desire is for the center to address the educational needs in this community and in this region. We want it to grow stronger every day with programs that will sustain it. We also want to restore the Cutrer Mansion to the grand cultural center of the Delta that it once was. You can help us by making a financial or in-kind donation whenever you can. We have a long wish list so contact us. We can put your contribution to work in this historic place in Clarksdale. We can let you know what we need and you can be very sure that any kind of support that you are able to give will truly “Make a Difference” for the future of this Center.
For more information about making a donation to the Cutrer Mansion
or finding out what we need on the campus, contact
Jen Waller at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the office at 662-621-9344.
Rev. John Cutrer Smith, grandson of Mr. and Mrs. J.W. Cutrer, celebrated his 97th birthday on January 13th, 2021. Rev. Smith is the last living person to live in the Cutrer Mansion while it was still a private residence.
Recent Donations to the CCHEC & the Cutrer Mansion
In March of 2017, the Reverand John Cutrer Smith, grandson of Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Cutrer, donated six of the Cutrer family portraits back to the Cutrer Mansion.
Rev. Smith also sent two hand-crafted rugs, two sets of fine draperies, two guilded mirrors and an Italian painting that hung in the house when it was a residence.
The three portraits above are (from left to right)
(1) Mrs. Blanche Clark Cutrer, the owner of Belvoir when it was built in 1916;
(2) Mrs. Blanche Cutrer Smith, Mrs. Cutrer's youngest daughter who sold the house to the Catholic church in 1946; and
(3) the Rev. John Cutrer Smith, Mrs. Cutrer's grandson and Mrs. Smith's son who is over 90 years old now and lives in New York.
Over the years, Rev. Smith, also known as Jack Smith, shared his archives and his memories with current stewards of the Cutrer Mansion
so the story would live on beyond his lifetime.