Capital city Jackson
Population 2,963,914 (2020)
Surface 125,546 km²
Governor Tate Reeves (R)
Member of the US since 1817

A map of Mississippi

Mississippi is one of the fifty states of the United States. The state is located in the southwest of the country on the Gulf of Mexico. It is bordered to the east by Alabama, to the north by Tennessee, and to the west by Arkansas and Louisiana. Mississippi is named after the Mississippi River that flows right into the state. Mississippi’s nickname is “The Magnolia State”. A magnolia is a type of flower and it can be found on the state flag. Mississippi has the abbreviation “MS”. The capital of Mississippi is Jackson. About 2.9 million people live in the state. The state officially became a member of the United States on December 10, 1817. It became the 20th state to join. Mississippi was a slave state, which meant there was a lot of slavery to be found. Mississippi had a lot of plantations where cotton was picked. By 1860, 55% of the population were slaves. During the American Civil War, Mississippi seceded from the United States along with other slave states. They formed a new country; the Confederate States of America(Confederation). The Confederacy lost the war and fell apart in 1865. Mississippi then rejoined the United States, but its citizens did not regain their voting rights until 1870. After the civil war, great poverty arose in the state. Racial segregation was also introduced. This meant that white and black Americans had to live separately from each other. This racial segregation did not end until the 1960s. Mississippi is still one of the poorest states in the country. Inhabitants are mainly dependent on tourism, agriculture and industry. Mississippi is a “red state”. This means that the Republican Party has a large following in the state. Mississippi is one of the most conservative states in the country.

Geography

Landscape

The state is named after the Mississippi River, which flows west along the state. Many different rivers flow into the Mississippi, such as the Big Black River, the Pearl River, and the Tombigdee. The state of Mississippi is very flat. The highest point is Woodall Mountain at 804 meters. Yet most of the state is flat to hilly. There are many swamps in the state. Mississippi has a small coastline on the Gulf of Mexico with several smaller islands.

Largest Cities in Mississippi

Number City Inhabitants County
1. Jackson 166.965 Hinds County
2. Gulfport 71.822 Harrison County
3. south aven 54,031 DeSoto County
4. Hattiesburg 46,377 Forrest County
5. Biloxi 45.908 Harrison County
6. tupelo 38,114 Lee County
7. Meridian 37,940 Lauderdale County
8. Olive Branch 37,435 DeSoto County
9. Greenville 30.686 Washington County
10. Horn Lake 27,095 DeSoto County

Climate

Mississippi has a humid subtropical climate. The state has high temperatures all year round with long, hot summers and short, mild winters. During the winter, it can get much colder in the north of the state than in the south. The temperature is often around 6°C in winter and around 27°C in summer. Often there is no snow in winter, as it is too hot. However, it can sometimes happen that snow does fall, such as the snowstorm on New Year’s Eve 1963. Mississippi has to deal with precipitation throughout the year. Most precipitation falls in the winter, but there is also a lot in the summer. The state is located in the area where many hurricanes occur, namely around the Gulf of Mexico. It often happens that a hurricane makes landfall near Mississippi or passes Mississippi. This can cause a lot of damage and even flooding. The worst hurricanes were Camille in 1969 and Katrina in 2005. Severe thunderstorms also occur in the state. Tornadoes can also form in the north of the state. About 27 tornadoes occur here every year.

The Mississippi Landscape

Population

General

Mississippi has about 2.9 million inhabitants. For a long time, the population of the state increased, but today the population is shrinking. This is quite unusual for the United States, as almost all states experience population growth. The reason the population is shrinking is because people are having fewer children or moving to other states. The latter is mainly due to the high unemployment rate in Mississippi. The largest group of residents in the state are white Americans (54%). Mississippi also has a large number of African Americans (37%). This makes Mississippi one of the states with the highest number of African Americans. There are also even smaller groups of Latinos and Asian Americans.

A Baptist Church in Mississippi

Language

The official language of Mississippi is English. English is used in education, law and politics. It is also the native language of most residents. 97% of the population only speak English. Mississippi’s second language is Spanish, which is spoken by 1.9% of the population. In addition, there are small groups that speak French, Vietnamese and German.

Religion

Mississippi is one of the most religious states in the United States. Mississippi is part of the so-called Bible Belt where many conservative Christians live. In the Bible Belt, Christianity plays a major role in society. Many people go to church and many people are also against same- sex marriage, euthanasia and abortion. 83% of the population sees themselves as Christian. Of these, 77% are Protestant, 4% Catholic, and 1% Mormon. Most Protestant inhabitants adhere to Methodism or baptism. 14% of residents do not believe in any religion or are unbelievers. 2% adhere to another religion, including Judaism, Islam, or Buddhism.

Politics

State politics

Mississippi’s House of Representatives

The day-to-day administration of Mississippi is in the hands of a governor. The current governor of Mississippi is Republican Tate Reeves. A governor is elected every four years and can only be re-elected once. The governor is aided by a lieutenant governor. It is elected through separate elections. The lieutenant governor replaces the governor in his absence. There are also several ministers. These ministers are also directly elected by the people. The state also has its own parliament; the Mississippi Legislature. It consists of two different rooms:

  • The House of Representatives, consisting of 122 members. These members are elected every four years.
  • The Senate, consisting of 52 members. These members are elected every four years.

Republicans have a majority in both chambers. The remaining seats are taken by the Democrats.

Administrative division

How many counties in Mississippi? The State of Mississippi comprises 82 counties.

  • Adams County
  • Alcorn County
  • Amite County
  • Attala County
  • Benton County
  • Bolivar County
  • Calhoun County
  • Carroll County
  • Chickasaw County
  • Choctaw County
  • Claiborne County
  • Clarke County
  • Clay County
  • Coahama County
  • Copiah County
  • Covington County
  • DeSoto County
  • Forrest County
  • Franklin County
  • George County
  • Greene County
  • Grenada County
  • Hancock County
  • Harrison County
  • Hinds County
  • Holmes County
  • Humphreys County
  • Issaquena County
  • Itawamba County
  • Jackson County
  • Jasper County
  • Jefferson County
  • Jefferson Davis County
  • Jones County
  • Kemper County
  • Lafayette County
  • Lamar County
  • Lauderdale County
  • Lawrence County
  • Leake County
  • Lee County
  • Leflore County
  • Lincoln County
  • Lowndes County
  • Madison County
  • Marion County
  • Marshall County
  • Monroe County
  • Montgomery County
  • Neshoba County
  • Newton County
  • Noxubee County
  • Oktibbeha County
  • Panola County
  • [[Pearl River County]]
  • Perry County
  • Pike County
  • Pontotoc County
  • Prentiss County
  • Quitman County
  • Rankin County
  • Scott County
  • Sharkey County
  • Simpson County
  • Smith County
  • Stone County
  • Sunflower County
  • Tallahatchie County
  • Tate County
  • Tippah County
  • Tishomingo County
  • Tunica County
  • Union County
  • Walthall County
  • Warren County
  • Washington County
  • Wayne County
  • Webster County
  • Wilkinson County
  • Winston County
  • Yalobusha County
  • Yazoo County

National politics

Mississippi has been a “red state” since the 1990s. This means that the Republican Party has a large following in the state. In presidential elections, the state almost certainly goes to the Republican voters. The last time a Democrat won the state was in 1976 with Jimmy Carter. Since then, Mississippi has always voted for the Republicans. They often win the state with about 70% of the vote.

Harvesting Cotton in Mississippi

Mississippi is represented in the United States Congress by four representatives and two senators. Of the four delegates, 3 are Republican and 1 Democrat. Both Senators (Roger Wicker and Cindy Hyde-Smith) are members of the Republican Party. None of the US presidents came from Mississippi. Yet there was a president who had Mississippi as his home state. This was Jefferson Davis who was President of the Confederate States of America between 1861 and 1865.

Economy

Mississippi is one of the poorest states in the United States. After the American Civil War, the state’s economy collapsed due to the abolition of slavery. The economy has never recovered and the state still faces poverty and high unemployment. The economy of the state is mainly dependent on agriculture. Mississippi continues to grow a lot of cotton. There are also some factories of car companies to assemble cars. In addition, many tourists come to Mississippi for its climate and gambling.

Mississippi - The Magnolia State

Mississippi – The Magnolia State
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