We are, we admit, a land of contradictions: Confederate generals beat their swords not into plowshares but into pens--Stephen D. Lee headed up Mississippi State University and Mark Perrin Lowrey sdleefounded Blue Mountain College for the education of young women. On the other hand, the first Christian marriage ceremony in America was performed here, but the bride was an Indian captive of Hernando DeSoto’s. The first law in the nation allowing women to own property outright was enacted here, but it arose from litigation involving property that happened to be a slave.

Sometimes we have been America at its worst; frequently we have been America at its best, but in any and all events, our heritage is the American heritage through and through.

Now, we invite you to share that heritage with us, in history-rich towns vibrant with life, in beautifully preserved homes, churches, battlefields (both Civil War and Civil Rights), museums and many other cultural, historical and recreational venues.

othacolorUnderstand that history and culture in the Mississippi Hills are far more than structures and scaffolding; rather they are a living, breathing, captivating experience. In the early 1990s a record company was formed here in the Hills for the express purpose of recording blues artists like R.L. Burnside, Junior Kimbrough and Mississippi Fred McDowell, whose raw driving “dirty blues” style owed as much to their own rough and tumble Hills experiences as to the fife and drum beat of Otha Turner, whose celebrated music was also a highlight of the soundtrack to Martin Scorsese's Gangs of New York. Today, while those blues greats have passed away, their children carry on their traditions every year at the North Mississippi Hill Country Picnic in Marshall County.

In Oxford, the legacy of Faulkner has begat a writing community of legends in their own right: Willie Morris, Larry Brown, Barry Hannah, Donna Tartt, Ace Atkins and many others in the John and Renee Grisham visiting writers series. In Taylor, an artist colony thrives, and all around the campus at the University of Mississippi you’ll find scholars at work preserving and amplifying the genius that is the American South, from the University's Center for the Study of Southern Culture to its Blues Archive, where you’ll find B.B. King’s donnatarttmusical papers housed in the world’s largest repository of blues recordings and other blues materials.

So, come experience this extraordinary region, this "postage stamp" of genius that has shaped so much of America. But come soon, you wouldn't want to miss anything...if the past is any guide, you just never know what's liable to crop up next in the Mississippi Hills.


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