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The Mississippi Portal

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Location of Mississippi

Mississippi is a state located in the Deep South region of the United States. Mississippi is the 32nd largest and 34th-most populous of the 50 U.S. states. Mississippi is bordered to the north by Tennessee, to the east by Alabama, to the south by the Gulf of Mexico, to the southwest by Louisiana, and to the northwest by Arkansas. Mississippi's western boundary is largely defined by the Mississippi River. Jackson is both the state's capital and largest city. Greater Jackson, with an estimated population of 580,166 in 2018, is the most populous metropolitan area in Mississippi and the 95th-most populous in the United States.

On December 10, 1817, Mississippi became the 20th state admitted to the Union. By 1860, Mississippi was the nation's top cotton-producing state and enslaved persons accounted for 55% of the state population. Mississippi declared its secession from the Union on March 23, 1861, and was one of the seven original Confederate States, which constituted the largest slaveholding states in the nation. Following the Civil War, it was restored to the Union on February 23, 1870.

Until the Great Migration of the 1930s, African Americans were a majority of Mississippi's population. Mississippi was the site of many prominent events during the civil rights movement, including the Ole Miss riot of 1962 by white students objecting to desegregation, the 1963 assassination of Medgar Evers, and the 1964 Freedom Summer murders of three activists working on voting rights. With large areas of agriculture and rural towns, Mississippi frequently ranks low among states in measures of health, education, and development, and high in measures of poverty. In 2010, 37.3% of Mississippi's population was African American, the highest percentage of any state.

Mississippi is almost entirely within the Gulf coastal plain, and generally consists of lowland plains and low hills. The northwest remainder of the state consists of the Mississippi Delta, a section of the Mississippi Alluvial Plain. Mississippi's highest point is Woodall Mountain at 807 feet (246 m) above sea level adjacent to the Cumberland Plateau; the lowest is the Gulf of Mexico. Mississippi has a humid subtropical climate classification.

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A single-story building with a high peaked reddish-brown shingled roof, a large triangular paned window divided by white strips, yellowish eaves, and some brown brick facades. In front of it are walkways surrounded by an open poles and a lighted horizontal covering. A well-kept grass lawn is in front of that, with a number of trimmed green shrubs and bushes all around, one of which on the right has bluish blossoms. In front of the lawn, an asphalt parking area, with spots marked in blue and blue signs indicating handicapped parking. Behind the building, an open slope with some telephone wires and then behind that, a continuous stand of tall deciduous trees.
Temple Beth Israel in 2010, viewed from southwest

Congregation Beth Israel in Meridian, Mississippi, is a Reform Jewish congregation founded in 1868 and a member of the Union for Reform Judaism. The congregation's first permanent house of worship was a Middle Eastern-style building constructed in 1879. The congregation moved to another building built in the Greek Revival style in 1906, and in 1964 moved to a more modern building, out of which they still operate.

The congregation was initially made up of only ten families but grew to include 50 members by 1878. By the time their second building was built in 1906, the congregation included 82 members, and Meridian as a whole had grown to include 525 Jewish residents by 1927. By the 2000s there were fewer than forty, mostly elderly Jews remaining in the city, however, and the congregation no longer has a full-time rabbi. Former rabbis include Judah Wechsler, after whom the Wechsler school was named, and William Ackerman, whose wife Paula Ackerman became the first woman to perform rabbinical duties in the country after her husband's unexpected death.

In 1968, the education building of the new complex was bombed by members of the Ku Klux Klan. Pieces of glass were salvaged from the destruction and are now incorporated into the front windows of the current synagogue building. The congregation owns and maintains a historic cemetery at 19th Street and 15th Avenue which was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1989. Read more...

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David Holmes was the last governor of the Mississippi Territory and the first governor of the State of Mississippi.

State symbols

Flower Magnolia Magnolia

Motto Virtute et armis (By Valor and Arms)
Nickname The Magnolia State
Toy Teddy bear
Rock Petrified wood
See: Mississippi Symbols for more


Mississippi topics

Industries: Agriculture - Oil

Counties: Adams - Alcorn - Amite - Attala - Benton - Bolivar - Calhoun - Carroll - Chickasaw - Choctaw - Claiborne - Clarke - Clay - Coahoma - Copiah - Covington - DeSoto - Forrest - Franklin - George - Greene - Grenada - Hancock - Harrison - Hinds - Holmes - Humphreys - Issaquena - Itawamba - Jackson - Jasper - Jefferson - Jefferson Davis - Jones - Kemper - Lafayette - Lamar - Lauderdale - Lawrence - Leake - Lee - Leflore - Lincoln - Lowndes - Madison - Marion - Marshall - Monroe - Montgomery - Neshoba - Newton - Noxubee - Oktibbeha - Panola - Pearl River - Perry - Pike - Pontotoc - Prentiss - Quitman - Rankin - Scott - Sharkey - Simpson - Smith - Stone - Sunflower - Tallahatchie - Tate - Tippah - Tishomingo - Tunica - Union - Walthall - Warren - Washington - Wayne - Webster - Wilkinson - Winston - Yalobusha - Yazoo

Statistics: Population


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Did you know...

  • ...that condensed milk was invented and first canned in Liberty by Gail Borden?
  • ...that the first bottle of Dr. Tichener's Antiseptic was produced in Liberty also?
  • ...that the first female rural mail carrier in the United States was Mrs. Mamie Thomas? She delivered mail by buggy to the area southeast of Vicksburg in 1914.
  • ...that in 1963 the University of Mississippi Medical Center accomplished the world's first human lung transplant and, on January 23, 1964, Dr. James D. Hardy performed the world's first heart transplant surgery?
  • ...that the world's largest cactus plantation is in Edwards?
  • ...that Burnita Shelton Mathews of Hazelhurst was the first woman federal judge in the United States and served in Washington, D.C.?
  • ...that Mississippi was the first state in the nation to have a planned system of junior colleges?
  • ...that David Harrison of Columbus owns the patent on the Soft Toilet Seat? Over 1,000,000 are sold every year.
  • ...that the first football player on a Wheaties box was Walter Payton of Columbia?
  • ...that the Vicksburg National Cemetery is the second largest national cemetery in the country? Arlington National Cemetery is the largest.
  • ...that Pine Sol was invented in 1929 by Jackson native Harry A. Cole, Sr.?
  • ...that root beer was invented in Biloxi in 1898 by Edward Adolf Barq, Sr. and is still sold today as Barq's Root Beer?
  • ...that Natchez was settled by the French in 1716 and is the oldest permanent settlement on the Mississippi River? Natchez once had 500 millionaires, more than any other city except New York City.
  • ...that S.B. Sam Vick of Oakland played for the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox? He was the only man ever to pinch hit for Babe Ruth.
Source: Rep. Bennie Thompson official U.S. House of Representative web site

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