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Mississippi is a southern state that played a key role in the United States Civil War.

It’s home to a wide variety of historical monuments and museums.


The state is also known for its magnolias, catfish, bluegrass music, and southern charm.

Quick Facts

Capital: Jackson

Population: 3 million


Nickname: The Magnolia State

Key Cities: Biloxi, Jackson, Hattiesburg, Gulfport

Postal Abbreviation: MS

Major Industries: Agriculture, manufacturing, mining, fishing



How did Mississippi get its name: The name Mississippi was originally given to the Mississippi River by the Chippewa Indians.

In their language, “Mississippi” means “large river.”


The French explorer Robert Cavelier Sieur de La Salle used the name on his map of the area in 1695.

Date admitted to the Union: Wednesday, December 10, 1817


Size: 48,430 sq. miles

Lowest point: Gulf of Mexico at sea level


Highest point: Woodall Mountain at 806 feet

Counties: 82

Famous locations: Biloxi Lighthouse, Gulf Islands National Seashore, Elvis Presley Birthplace, Old Capitol Museum, Vicksburg National Cemetery, Windsor Ruins


Famous Mississippians

Elvis Presley- singer/actor

Oprah Winfrey- talk show host

Britney Spears- singer

Rick Ross- rapper

Oprah Winfrey
President Barack Obama awards the 2013 Presidential Medal of Freedom to Oprah Winfrey during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House, Nov. 20, 2013.

Jerry Rice- football player

Ray J- singer

Fun Facts

Mississippi residents go to church more than people in any other U.S. state.

There are also more churches in Mississippi per capita (for each person) than in any other state in the country.

The nation’s largest Bible-binding plant is located in Greenwood, Mississippi.

bible-churchIf you’ve ever wondered where to find the world’s largest shrimp, it’s in Pascagoula, Mississippi at the Old Spanish Fort Museum.

In 1902, Theodore “Teddy” Roosevelt refused to kill a trapped bear while hunting in Onward, Mississippi.

Theodore Roosevelt circa 1902

Related: All About US Presidents.

A candy shop owner who heard about the event decided to make a stuffed animal that he called “teddy bear.”theodore-roosevelt-teddy-bear

63 percent of Mississippi’s land is covered in forest. That’s 19.5 million acres of forest!

Belzoni, Mississippi is considered the catfish capital of the world.

The state of Mississippi contains over 100,000 acres of catfish ponds. 94% of all farm-raised catfish in the United States are raised in Mississippi.


In Jackson County, you can find the Mississippi Sandhill Crane, the rarest crane in North America.

It’s about 44 inches tall and has a wingspan of eight feet!

Mississippi sandhill crane
Mississippi sandhill crane

View more US state facts.


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