House on Ellicott's HillEdit profile
House on Ellicott's Hill, also known as Connelly's Tavern, James Moore House, or Gilreath's Hill, is a historic house in Natchez, Mississippi. It was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1974 and a Mississippi Landmark in 2001.History
James Moore, a merchant from Natchez, built the house in 1798. It was one of the first built when Spanish settlers laid out the city of Natchez, and it is believed to have influenced architecture in a wide region. At the time of the building's construction, only people of importance such as doctors and wealthy merchants could purchase lots on Canal Street. Moore's House is the last of the merchants' houses remaining from this time period. One side of the house overlooks the Mississippi River from atop a bluff and contains a two-story gallery, while the other side's upper story is at ground level, where it is reached by bridges across a dry moat.
In 1797, before the house was built, Andrew Ellicott was sent by George Washington to mark the boundary between the United States and Spanish Louisiana, which had been set at the 31st parallel by the Treaty of San Lorenzo de Real. When he arrived on February 24, he set up camp on the bluff atop which the house is located, raising the American flag for the first time over the new territory. After Moore moved to a plantation in Washington, Mississippi, the house underwent various ownership changes, eventually being sold in 1850 and converted into Natchez High School, owned by J.R. Gilreath, before closing in 1878.Restoration
The house was purchased in 1934 by the Natchez Garden Club and restored, since it was in a dilapidated condition. Architect Richard Koch worked to restore the house, rebuilding collapsing masonry, repairing carpentry and plasterwork, and restoring wood trim, among other things. At the time of the restoration, the house was believed to be a former tavern owned by Patrick Connelly, but later research by the Natchez Garden club revealed that the tavern was actually located one block southeast of the house on Ellicott's Hill.