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We were taught tons of things in school about this great state we live in. We learned about all of the wildlife and industry of Mississippi, as well as the state’s history. But there were lots of weird and interesting facts we were never taught or never found out. Here are 10 of them.

  1. Root Beer was first invented in Biloxi. Edward Barq, Sr created the sweet soda in Biloxi in 1898. Since then, Barq’s Root Beer has grown to become one of the most famous drinks in the world, with about ten different flavor variations.
  2. John B. Stetson first learned to start making hats in Dunn’s Falls, near Meridian. Today, the Stetson Hat Company is owned by Hatco, Inc., and has became one of the most reliable names in headwear.
  3. Going back to drinks for a second, while Coca-Cola was invented in Atlanta in 1892, it was only available as a fountain drink. In 1894, at a candy store in Vicksburg, Mr. Joseph Biedenham first bottled the drink in their iconic glass medicine bottles.
  4. The State of Mississippi is located in what is known as the “Bible Belt,” a region of states that have the highest number of churches and Christians living in them. It would only make sense that in Greenwood, where the Norris Bookbinding Company is located, would be the largest Bible-binding plant in the nation.
  5. Despite hardly ever having the icy slopes to try them out on, West Point is home to one trusted names in sleds, the Blazon-Flexible Flyer. Millions of sleds have been produced and sent all over the nation.
  6. The University of Mississippi Medical Center has been the home of many medical marvels. In 1963, Dr. James Hardy completed the first-ever lung transplant. John Russell, who received the new lung, saw improved breathing, but died 18 days later from kidney failure. The next year, 1964, Dr. Hardy performed the first animal-to-human heart transplant, when he took a chimpanzee heart and surgically placed it in Boyd Rush, who was in cardiac arrest. The heartbeat for 90 minutes before Rush passed away.
  7. Lucedale is home to a public scratching post. The 4×4 post stands 8 feet tall, perfect for any height, wherever that hard-to-reach scratch is at. Old stories say that, long before he became president, Ronald Reagan found himself in Lucedale with an itch, and scratched his back on a post on the street. Reagan being the major movie star he was at the time, the scratching post became a major landmark.
  8. Mississippi is home to one of the largest volcanoes in the nation. Well, sort of. Yes, there is a volcano in Mississippi, but you cannot see it. Why? Because it sits 2,900 feet below the Mississippi Coliseum. The Jackson Volcano has been extinct for thousands of years, but is estimated to one of the largest volcanoes, if not in the world, in the US.
  9. Mississippi is home to many innovators of the music world. In 1965, Hartley Peavey founded Peavey Electronics, one of the largest and most trusted names in speakers and other musical electronics. Charley Pride, from Sledge, was the first ever African-American country singer to be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. Conway Twitty, from Friar’s Point, held the record for most #1 Country Music Hits from 1988-2006 (40.) Singers like BB King, Bobby Rush, and John Lee Hooker, and Mississippi John Hurt helped define the soul and blues music genres. And, of course, the King of Rock and Roll himself, Elvis Presley, was born in Tupelo. Mississippi is commonly known as the “Birthplace of America’s Music.”
  10. Bernard Ebbers is known greatly for the WorldCom Scandal in 2002. What many people don’t know is despite being born in Canada, Ebbers lived in Mississippi for much of his life. He owned thousands of acres of farm and ranch land, multiple hotels, and his telecommunication company “WorldCom” was based in Clinton, and the office building sat across I-20 from Mississippi College, Ebbers’ alma mater. Today, the WorldCom Building is now home to the Mississippi Department of Revenue.



Charley Pride
Scratching Post is an online news source serving Simpson and surrounding counties as well as the State of Mississippi.






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