Mississippi – Life in Natchez

by Funhog Family on September 19, 2011

William Johnson's Home

Since we added Florida to our trip we decided to map out a new route through Mississippi, as our intended stop was many miles north in Tishomingo State Park. We decided on Natchez State Park and the city of Natchez since we kept coming across the Natchez Trace Parkway in our search, and we wanted to find out what it was. We made it to the park in time to let the little ones nap while the older kids played on the playground. And I spoke to a ranger and a gentleman who had been the camp host to find out how to best use our time. We then drove the Natchez Trace Parkway from the park into town, discovering its significance along the way. The Natchez Trace Parkway was a series of Natchez indian trails used by Ohio Valley frontiersmen who brought goods down the Mississippi River and then walked or rode horseback along the trails to get home. It stretches 444 miles from Natchez, MS to Nashville, TN and is now the longest National Park in the US, as the maintenance has been taken over by the National Park Service.

In town, we drove through an area that boasts many antebellum (pre-Civil War) homes and toured the William Johnson home. William Johnson was a free colored man who journaled his life. His diaries are the best representation of what life was like for a free colored man during the pre-Civil War era. He was an incredible businessman, owning four barbershops, and when he was killed by his neighbor over a land dispute his estate was valued at $30,000, an incredible sum at that time.

Natchez Grand Village

We also went to the Grand Village of the Natchez, where we explored a reconstructed Natchez indian dwelling as well as the ceremonial grounds of the Natchez indians. The kids made an adventure out of the indian mounds by running and rolling down them. Great fun was had by all as we learned and experienced a little bit of history.

Family Canoeing

Life Behind Bars

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Melisa Smart November 13, 2011 at 9:53 am

I just wanted to say hello. I missed an opportunity to say hello to you this summer when I saw you. For some reason (God) I was compelled to approach you and really wanted to, but by the time I parked you were leaving. I am not sure why you would have been in our little town, but you were coming out of the Winn Dixie here in Columbia,MS. when I saw you. I’m quite sure I missed out on something wonderful that the Lord intened for me by not sharing a moment with your family but that is what happens when you don’t act quickly enough I guess.I hope that your family was treated well while you were here and that you enjoyed being in MS. it is a wonderful place to be and full of wonderful people.It is quite the adventure you have been on, I will be praying for you on the next part of your journey this spring.Oh by the way, I am from CA. originally and I hope that you have lots of time to spend there, there are so many wonderful places to visit. You should definatly see Yosemite and the Pacific Ocean(San Francisco is great fun) you will surely find the Lord in both of those places!! Best wishes to you on your adventure and God Bless. Melisa.

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Funhog Family November 30, 2011 at 6:43 pm

Thank you Melisa! We would have loved to meet you and make a memory. We met two very nice ladies at your Winn Dixie and enjoyed our stop. Yosemite and the Pacific Ocean are tops on our list for California. God Bless.

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