Mississippi trip - July 2017

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Camping

We drove from Houston, TX to Vidalia, LA, and stayed at the River View RV Park.  This was a perfect home base for exploring the Natchez, MS and Vicksburg, MS areas.  The RV park is situated right on the Mississippi River, across from Natchez.  It was only about 75 miles up to Vicksburg.

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Windsor Ruins

Although Natchez is interesting in itself, my wife became consumed with the ruins of an old plantation home which was burned down ironically by a careless carpenter, rather than the Union soldiers who took it over during the Civil War.   Said to be haunted by the ghosts of a Union soldier who was shot on the porch, and Catherine (the lady of the house) and a few other folks, this place gave me the creeps.  My wife couldn't get enough of it, so we went there 3 days in a row (about 80 mile round trip).  Read on below about the associated cemetery.  Rather than try to explain the history, here's a good historical link on the Windsor Ruins.  

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Windsor and Freeland Cemetery

So if the Windsor Ruins and its supposed ghosts aren't enough to spook you, we read about a cemetery that was supposed to be somewhere out in the woods nearby.  When we couldn't find it ourselves, my wife went up to a guy who was giving a tour and asked him if he knew where it was.  Turns out, that nice guy was a "paranormal" hobbyist (a ghost hunter).  He not only described the cemetery, but he also personally took us there (we'd have never found it).  The cemetery is in limbo land, with no one officially taking care of it, so looked pretty unkempt.  The paranormal dude said he weed-eats it once in awhile.   There are chiggers in Mississippi....ask me how I know.  There are also wild hogs in Mississippi...ask my wife how she knows :)

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Alcorn State University - Stairs from Windsor Ruins

And the saga continued....not only did we find out about the Windsor-related cemetery, my wife also read that the only set of remaining wrought iron stairs from the Windsor Ruins had been donated to Alcorn State University (right down the road), and they were installed on the front of the Chapel on campus.  The other 3 sets of stairs magically had disappeared over the years from the ruins (how do you sneak those heavy staircases off ???).  The staircases were made in St. Louis, Missouri and were brought down the Mississippi River, then hauled about 15 miles overland....I can't imagine.  A few balustrades were also donated, as you can see in the picture to the left.

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Vicksburg National Military Park

Of course, no visit to Mississippi would be complete without a heavy dose of Civil War history.  The Vicksburg National Military Park is the perfect place to get your fill of Civil War information, especially as it pertains to the taking of Vicksburg by the Union.  As President Lincoln stated, the taking of Vicksburg is the key to taking the Mississippi River, and he wanted that key in his pocket (paraphrasing, but almost exact).  We were fortunate enough to be there for the reenactment of firing one of the cannons in recognition of July 4th.  Seeing those actors in their woolen clothing made me really appreciate modern amenities like air conditioning and breathable clothing.

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Natchez National and City Cemeteries

Surprisingly, the Natchez City Cemetery was one of the most beautiful and interesting cemeteries we've visited.  Very old grave sites here, and beautiful trees and surroundings.  There's not a flat spot on it, so graves had to be a challenge to lay out on this property.

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Church Hill - Christ Church

Almost forgot to mention this accidental treasure of a find.  Our RV'ing nextdoor neighbors mentioned they'd gotten lost somewhere off the Natchez Trace Parkway and had run into this beautiful church and cemetery (Christ Church).  Will let the pictures speaks for themselves (it's the church with the reddish brown framed windows).  Also, right across the street lies the remains of an old general store (the one with Coca-Cola signs on the front).