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5 Fun Facts About February 19 In Mississippi History

---Learn Every Day: MS Today In History Facts Texted Each Day - Text: history ms To: 618-270-4005---

1. On February 19, 1862, Union forces led by General Ulysses S. Grant captured Fort Donelson during the Civil War. This victory gave the Union control of the Cumberland River and opened up Tennessee for further invasion.

2. February 19, 1942, was the date that President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066, which authorized the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II. This action impacted many families living in Mississippi, as well as other states, causing widespread fear and discrimination.

3. On February 19, 1963, Medgar Evers, a prominent civil rights leader in Mississippi, spoke at Michigan State University about the ongoing struggle for racial equality in the state. Evers would be assassinated just a few months later outside his Jackson home, becoming a symbol of the violence and hatred that characterized the Civil Rights Era.

4. In 1982, the Mississippi Legislature officially recognized the Choctaw Indian Tribe's right to own and operate casino gambling establishments on their reservation lands. This decision paved the way for the growth of Mississippi's casino industry, which has become a major economic force in the state.

5. On February 19, 2018, Mississippi's first-ever female U.S. Senator, Cindy Hyde-Smith, was sworn in to replace Thad Cochran. Hyde-Smith had previously served as the state's Commissioner of Agriculture and Commerce, and her appointment made history as she became the first woman to represent Mississippi in Congress.
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