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5 Fun Facts About July 3 In Mississippi History

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

1. Mississippi became the 20th state in the United States on December 10, 1817, but it was not until July 3, 1818, that the state's first governor, David Holmes, was inaugurated. Holmes had previously served as a U.S. senator and played a significant role in the state's founding.

2. On July 3, 1863, during the American Civil War, Union General Ulysses S. Grant captured the Confederate stronghold of Vicksburg, Mississippi, after a six-week siege. The victory was a turning point in the war and gave the Union control of the Mississippi River.

3. One of the most famous blues musicians of all time, B.B. King, was born on September 16, 1925, in Berclair, Mississippi. However, he spent much of his early career performing in the Mississippi Delta, including on July 3, 1950, when he recorded his first two songs in a studio in Memphis, Tennessee.

4. On July 3, 1962, James Meredith became the first African-American to be admitted to the University of Mississippi. His enrollment was met with massive protests and violence, and it took the intervention of federal troops to secure his safety and allow him to attend the university.

5. The Mississippi Gulf Coast is home to several popular tourist attractions, including the Biloxi Lighthouse, which was first lit on July 3, 1848. The lighthouse, which stands 64 feet tall, has been in continuous operation ever since and is now a museum open to the public.
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