Cemetery of Greensboro Baptist Church in Webster County. The large white marble tombstone marks the grave of William F. Brantley, General, C.S.A.
Location within the U.S. state of Mississippi
Mississippi's location within the U.S.
|Named for||Daniel Webster|
|o Total||423 sq mi (1,100 km2)|
|o Land||421 sq mi (1,090 km2)|
|o Water||2.3 sq mi (6 km2) 0.5%|
| o Estimate |
|o Density||24/sq mi (9.4/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC-6 (Central)|
|o Summer (DST)||UTC-5 (CDT)|
Webster County is a county located in the U.S. state of Mississippi. As of the 2010 census, the population was 10,253. Its county seat is Walthall. The county is named after statesman Daniel Webster.
Old Greensboro was known for the old Webster County Seat and is still known for the Old Greensboro Cemetery. In 1872 the county seat was moved from Greensboro to LaGrange. In 1874 Sumner County was formed and Greensboro again became a county seat, but this only lasted until 1876 when it was moved to Walthall. Greensboro, which had already begun to deteriorate, rapidly declined. Today the only sign left of its existence is the old Greensboro cemetery. Greensboro was originally the county seat of Choctaw County. Choctaw County was formed from territory acquired in the Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek in 1833. At that time it was a much larger county taking in what is now all of Webster County, and the eastern part of Montgomery County and a small portion of Grenada County.
The town of Greensboro, which was centrally located and Choctaw County was inhabited by settlers primarily from Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina. The temporary courthouse and log jail were replaced in 1839 by a brick courthouse and jail. This courthouse was destroyed by fire in 1865 supposedly by an arsonist. Almost all of the early records were destroyed in the fire.
Greensboro at one time consisted of several types of stores and shops, saloons, a livery stable, a brick yard, and a newspaper. Greensboro had a Methodist church as early as 1839 and a Baptist church was begun in 1846. The Greensboro Lodge No. 49 of Free and Accepted Masons was chartered in 1842.
Greensboro had the reputation of a rough and lawless town, many notorious criminals and murders were located there. John A. Murell, a famed outlaw of the Natchez trace was tried and convicted of horse stealing but on being transported to Columbus MS for incarceration he killed his guard and escaped. The Edwards-Gray feud, which grew out of the settlement of the estate of Edward Dewitt Edwards Jr., exploded in 1861. Three of the brothers (William, James, and Robert) of Mrs. Mary "Molly" Gray Edwards, widow of the deceased, shot and killed judge Edward D. Edwards Sr. and his son Luther Edwards. The Gray brothers were jailed, however a mob stormed the jail shooting two and hanging the third.
Two brothers W.F. Brantley and Arnold Brantley were both killed in the vicinity. Arnold Brantley was killed in Winona in 1880, and his murderers escaped. Gen. W.F. Brantley was ambushed riding from Winona to Greensboro, by a group believed to have been the killers of an older Brantley brother in Texas. Political candidates frequently campaigned at Greensboro, including, in 1851 Jefferson Davis who was seeking the office of governor. Seven young men of Greensboro and Choctaw County rushed to enlist at the outbreak of the American Civil War. The first company organized was the Wig Fall Rifles, company D 15th MS infantry C.S.A. This unit was formed in Greensboro in April 1861 and the Captain was William F. Brantley of Greensboro later to be one of the youngest confederate generals. In December 1864 federals raided the town and burned much of it. is an external link.
The county had the youngest birth mother recorded in the United States. Dr. V. I. Pittman of Cadaretta, Mississippi reported to have delivered a boy weighing 7 lb (3.2 kg) to nine-year-old Estelle P. on March 16, 1908.
The Mathiston Police Department frequently conducts roadblocks on the highways running through the town in the part located in Webster County to search for and seize any and all alcohol being transported through the county. While the legality of such roadblocks are not in dispute, the ability for the police to seize alcohol from persons over 21, provided containers are unopened, will be prohibited after July 1, 2018, following the passage of Mississippi House Bill 192, which legalizes transport of all alcohol through dry counties within the state.
As of the census of 2000, there were 10,294 people, 3,905 households, and 2,877 families residing in the county. The population density was 24 people per square mile (9/km²). There were 4,344 housing units at an average density of 10 per square mile (4/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 77.55% White, 20.93% Black or African American, 0.11% Native American, 0.17% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.84% from other races, and 0.39% from two or more races. 1.69% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 3,905 households out of which 33.90% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.20% were married couples living together, 13.10% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.30% were non-families. 24.00% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.20% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.59 and the average family size was 3.07.
In the county, the population was spread out with 26.10% under the age of 18, 9.00% from 18 to 24, 26.60% from 25 to 44, 21.80% from 45 to 64, and 16.40% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 93.50 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.40 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $28,834, and the median income for a family was $34,969. Males had a median income of $27,297 versus $19,627 for females. The per capita income for the county was $14,109. About 14.80% of families and 18.70% of the population were below the poverty line, including 24.60% of those under age 18 and 18.30% of those age 65 or over.