Many Of The Mississippi State Parks Have Been Named After Local Politicians
There are presently twenty four State Parks in Mississippi which is the 32nd largest of the states in America.
As you would expect, the state receives its name from the mighty river that forms its western boundary.
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This name derives from the Ojibwe Native American tribe who called it the "misi-ziibi" meaning Great River.
The state parks in Mississippi come under the control of the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks.
Think Of Mississippi And You Think Of Steamboats On The River
(Photo By Sampitech)
They are having a difficult time in the last few years dealing with budgetary shortfalls and the damage caused by Hurricane Katrina which hit the state hard.
Indeed two of the parks, Buccaneer State Park and Shepard State Park were forced to close for a number of years because of the damage they sustained.
As much of the state is low lying coastal plains created by the Mississipp River the highest point, which is Woodall Mountain, is only 806 feet above sea level. T
here are some low hills in the south called the Pine Hills and in the north-east there are the Fall Line Hills and the Pontotoc Ridge. Other than these areas the average elevation across the state is only 300 feet.
An integral part of the history of Mississippi has been the flooding of the rivers and the building of levees in an effort to control this flooding.
Although the early settlers were`nt aware of the long term effect of their actions, their logging activities to provide fuel for steamships and the ground clearance for cultivation became the cause for some of the floods.
Many Old Plantations And Their Wonderful Houses Still Exist In Mississippi
However, when people think of the state of Mississipi they imagine a flat land dominated by the river. What is not generally realised is that over half the state is covered by natural forests.
The Mississippi State Parks feature two notable long distance travel routes. The first is the historic Natchez Trace which is remembered at Trace State Park. This is on the site of the spot where the famous frontiersman Davy Crockett once lived. The Trace also runs through Tishomingo State Park.
Hundreds of years old, the "Old Natchez Trace" extends for 440 miles from Natchez, Mississippi to Nashville, Tennessee. Native Americans created this trail and used it for centuries, often following paths made by bison, deer and other large game.
Part Of The Old Natchez Trace
The second famous route to be highlighted by the Mississippi State Parks is the Great River Road. This is actually a collection of roads which follow the course of the great Mississippi through ten states, from its source in Lake Itasca State Park, Minnesota to where it meets the sea in the Gulf of Mexico.
Great River Road State Park is located off Mississippi Highway 1 near Rosedale. Sited inside the levee, it has fantastic views of the "Father of Waters" and the 75 feet high lookout tower there is extremely popular.
Interestingly nearly thirty per cent of the Mississippi State Parks are named after politicians who have served the state. For example, Hugh White State Park, J.P.Coleman State Park and Paul B.Johnson State Park are all named for former Governors while Leroy Percy State Park and Wall Doxey State Park honor former Senators.
Here is a county map of Mississippi, the western border of the state follows the course of the river.