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Things You May not Know about Mississippi

  • Jackson is one of only FOUR cities IN THE WORLD sanctioned by the International Theater-Dance committee to host the International Ballet Competition, with Moscow, Varna, and Helsinki being the other three.
  • Mississippi is also the home of many scientific and technological advances not the least of which were the first human heart and first lung transplants in the world.
  • More than three-fifths of Mississippi is covered by forests, and it is home to more than 100 species of trees.
  • Mississippi was the first state to plan a system of junior colleges.
  • Petal, Ms. was home to the Checker’s International Hall of Fame before its founder was disgraced and an unexplained fire destroyed the amazing attraction.
  • The world’s largest hydraulic research laboratory is located in Vicksburg at the United States Army Corps of Engineers Waterways Experiment Station.
  • Mississippi suffered the greatest loss in percentage of the state’s population as a result of the Civil War.  Of the 78,000 Mississippians who entered the Confederate military, 59,000 were either dead or wounded by the end of the war. A movie called the “Freestate of Jones,” was based on Jones, MS where a large percent of men chose to leave the confederate army. Some returned home and did not fight in the Civil War. Others went to New Orleans and joined the Union forces. Most of these men were poor farmers and felt they were being asked to fight a war that only benefited rich men. They were especially opposed to the confederate army after their meager supplies of food and livestock were repeatedly confiscated to feed the confederate soldiers.
  • Mississippi is home to eight research center programs that use leading-edge construction techniques to build the United State Navy’s most sophisticated ships. These include advance technology in acoustics, polymer science, electricity, microelectronics, hydrodynamics, and oceanography.
  • Standing at about 44 inches tall with an 8 ft. wingspan, the Mississippi Sandhill Crane (a subspecies of North American Sandhill Cranes) is endangered, largely from conversion of their wet pine savanna habitat into pine plantations after world war II. In addition, modern day fire-fighting techniques have suppressed the natural periodic burning of these habitats that perpetuates the growth of many plant species found in pine savannas. The species is recovering some Mississippi areas since the Mississippi Sandhill Crane National Wildlife Refuge was created to maintain and restore some of the last large acres of wet pine savanna. There are about 100 individuals of this species still known to exist.This beautiful bird can be found in the coastal grassy plains of Jackson County, MS.
  • Mississipi revolutionary war hero Captain Isaac Ross, owner of the plantation called Prospect Hill, freed his slaves upon his death in 1834 and arranged for them to be sent to Africa, where they became part of what is present-day Liberia.
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