Mary Landry was appointed to serve as the Zachary Historic Village Director for the City of Zachary in April 2018. She is presently serving as the Old Town Hall Curator and is charged with keeping the city's history relevant. She is responsible for assembling, cataloguing, managing and presenting/displaying artistic and cultural collections pertaining to the history of the City of Zachary. The museum, which is located on Virginia Street is open by appointment Monday through Thursday and holds an extensive archival collection of land documents and genealogical information.
Mary is also responsible for planning, coordinating and implementing city and community events in the downtown Zachary Historical District.
Prior to accepting the Zachary Historic Village Director position, Mary, was the owner of a successful sign and banner business for 15 years. In 2013, her company received the Zachary Chamber Small Business of the Year. In 2015, she was named "Volunteer of the Year" by the Zachary Chamber of Commerce. She has devoted herself to charitable work benefitting the Zachary community for numerous years. She is also a member of the Zachary Rotary Club, Zachary Chamber of Commerce and Zachary Athletic Foundation.
The Zachary Historic District consists of eight buildings within a two-block area in the historic downtown area of Zachary, Louisiana. This district offers a rare picture of neighborhood life in a small town during the waning years of the 19th century through the 1960s. Three dwellings, a barn, a carriage house, a pavilion, a Railroad Depot and the Old Town Hall with an adjacent firehouse provide the setting for a leisurely walk down "Main Street USA". Within view are several more (private) dwellings, the old movie theater and the Zachary Bank.
The city museum began its development when a prominent family donated the first of the eight buildings in 1975. The City of Zachary assumed the administration of the museum, and soon expanded the museum facility by reconstructing a barn (about 1980) near its original location and acquiring two other dwellings and a carriage house. By 1990, the City of Zachary had turned over the Old Town Hall building to the museum, constructed a pavilion, and acquired the depot to complete the collection of buildings.
Making way for a more robust business scene in downtown Zachary, Zachary officials sold three city-owned houses in the Zachary Historic District in 2020. The goal was to create a family-friendly environment that can become the heart of this city. The city wants to bring in new businesses and restaurants and make the downtown district more friendly for drivers and pedestrians. Under an ordinance introduced by the City Council, the houses were declared as surplus and put up for auction. The houses, which were once owned by the Allison, Bauman and McHugh families are currently privately owned as commercial businesses and restaurants. The houses’ new owners will be required to preserve the structures’ historical appearance.
The City of Zachary currently holds in its possession the gazebo, Historic Zachary Depot, The Old Town Hall and the Annison House, which is considered part of the Historic District, but is located on Old Scenic Highway.
In an effort of boosting the city’s sales tax collections and revitalize the Zachary Historic District, in 2021, the City of Zachary entered into a lease agreement for the Historic Zachary Depot for commercial business.
City leaders are pursing revitalization efforts with the help of Downtown Strategies, a firm that specializes in reviving downtown economies. Plans are underway now for transforming the downtown area into a hub for entertainment, community events and shopping. The First phase of the redevelopment plan is focused on building a new governmental complex that will replace the existing City Hall Building. The City of Zachary plans to begin construction in the Spring of 2021.