Located seven miles from Utica in the extreme northwestern corner of Copiah County is the bygone railroad town of Carpenter.
By the turn of the century, the railroad, known as the "Little J" serviced Natchez, Fayette, Lorman, Hermanville, Carlisle, Carpenter, Utica, Adams Station, Learned, Oakley, Raymond and Jackson.
Methodist church, built in 1901, reflects the late federal style of architecture that was prevalent in Mississippi around the turn of the century. In 1990 the church yard was flanked by a massive water-Oak
tree that measured 20 feet in circumference. This church still stands and is in good condition. Worship services are held each week.
The Baptist church, built in 1903, features a rose type window, that is
also typical of the late federal style of architecture. Several water-oak trees, each one 15 feet in circumference, enfold the church. No longer standing due to bad weather and storms.
One of the
oldest homes in Carpenter built during the 1800's is the home of William L. Lloyd, pioneer settler who donated the land for the depot, and became the first depot agent. The Carpenter depot was dismantled in
the 1970's. Sadie Hudson and Mary Lloyd were the last two depot agents before the Illinois Central closed the line.
The old Dayton R. Little service station located at the intersection of Hwy 18 and the Dentville-Carpenter Road, serviced travelers on Hwy. 18 until approximately 1970.
The old Victorian styled home on Main street that once belonged to Dr. E. L. Green and family, is now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Clifford Strong, grandson of early settler, Willie Strong.
By 1970, the railroad
had closed down completely and the fate of Carpenter sealed. Today, most of the people who reside in Carpenter are descendants of the pioneering families. They love the tranquility of their community, White
Oak creek, the vast fields of cotton, the remnant of the old Main street in town, the country churches and lovely homes.
They also love their memories ... the sound of hymns floating from the open windows
of the church on Sunday mornings ... the hustle and bustle of the railroad depot ... and the whistle of the trains, announcing their arrival at the Carpenter depot.