In 2017, National Day Calendar® began celebrating each state in the order they entered the union starting the week of Independence Day and ending with Hawaii. We highlight a small part of each states’ history, foods and the people who make up the state. Many states have their own state celebrations, and National Day Calendar’s observances in no way replace them. There’s so much more to explore, we can’t help but celebrate our beautiful country even more!
NATIONAL MISSISSIPPI DAY
On November 30, National Mississippi Day recognizes the home of the Delta blues and the 20th state to join the union.
How did you learn to spell Mississippi? Was it the M-I crooked letter-crooked letter-I-crooked letter-crooked letter-I-humpback-humpback-I rhyme? Or did you keep track of the seconds by counting one Mississippi, two Mississippi? If you did, you’re not alone. Millions around the country recall doing this and other similar word associations with the name Mississippi!
The Mississippi River flows into the Gulf of Mexico along the western boundary of the state and derives its name from the Ojibwe word misi-ziibi which means “Great River.”
It was along the Mississippi Delta that the blues developed in the middle to late 19th century. Within a few decades, blues music would slowly grow in many ways creating a crop of musicians and variety of new genres.
Both the American Civil War and the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s were uncertain, turbulent and violent times for Mississippi. Even though the Civil War brought about freedom for enslaved people, that was more than half of Mississippi’s population and the economy had been ruined.
One of the most prolific features of the state is the Natchez Trace. In existence for thousands of years, this ancient pathway was beaten down by the hooves of bison. Hunting and gathering mound builders later used the path which became an ideal road for transporting goods. Today, it’s both a 444-mile scenic parkway and natural timeline through the history of three states (Tennessee, Mississippi, and Alabama).
There are many fun and fascinating tidbits about Mississippi to explore. For example, did you know while hunting in Sharkey County, President Roosevelt came upon a bear he refused to shoot which is how we came to have the teddy bear today.
HOW TO OBSERVE #NationalMississippiDay
Join National Day Calendar as we recognize Mississippi’s historic places and discover her untold stories. Listen to America’s music while traveling all the highways and byways on National Mississippi Day! Use #NationalMississippiDay to share on social media.
Clarkco State Park – Quitman
Golden Memorial State Park – Walnut Grove
LeFleur’s Bluff State Park – Jackson
Wall Doxy State Park – Holly Springs
Mississippi Museum of Art – Jackson
Mississippi Civil Rights Museum – Jackson
Delta Blues Museum – Clarksdale
Walter Anderson Museum of Art – Ocean Springs
Eudora Welty House – Jackson
Maritime & Seafood Industry Museum – Biloxi
INFINITY Science Museum – Pearlington
Chief Tishomingo - Chickasaw Chief -(1734 - abt 1841)
Two counties, one in Mississippi and one in Oklahoma, two state parks, a town, organizations, and a beautiful bridge have been named in Chief Tishomingo’s honor.
Elizabeth Taylor Greenfield - Singer - (1834 - March 31 - 1876)
Elizabeth Lee Hazen - Microbiologist - (August 24, 1885 - June 24, 1975)
William Faulkner - Author - (September 25, 1897 - July 6, 1962)
Tennessee Williams - Playwright - (March 26, 1911 - February, 25, 1983)
Plays like The Glass Menagerie, A Street Named Desire, Baby Doll, and many others have been adapted to screen and earned him critics, celebrity and numerous awards including two Pulitzer Prizes.
Robert Johnson - Musician/Singer - (May 8, 1911 - August 16, 1938)
Legend has it that Robert Johnson sold his soul to the devil there in exchange for his rare talent on the guitar. In his short life, the musician big cities and dirt road juke joints. His limited recordings have influenced modern artists of a variety of genres.