Official MissPres 101 Places to See Before You Die Map

Official MissPres 101 Places to See Before You Die Map (Preservation in Mississippi blog)

Black History Month

The Columbus-Lowndes Public Library is featuring local African American history in Ferbruary on its “Local History Announcements” blog.

The National Archives has photographs related to the Tuskegee Airmen. Find out more in this blog post from NARAtions.

Read about the 1942 Negro League World Series and the match up of two great African American baseball players in this post from the National Museum of American History’s “O Say Can You See?” blog.

This post from the “Picture This” blog surveys civil rights era photographs in the Library of Congress collection.

The Smithsonian Collections Blog uses a photograph of composer Duke Ellington to discuss issues related archival practice and digitization.

Valentine’s Day

The National Museum of American History explores love stories in its collections in this post from the “O Say Can You See?” blog.

Explore historic Valentine’s Day cards on the “Picture This” blog of the Library of Congress.

Of Interest

Check out the “Official MissPres 101 Places to See Before You Die Map” on the Preservation in Mississippi blog.

What did Washington, D.C., look like in the 1860s? Find out in this post from the National Museum of American History’s “O Say Can You See?” blog.

Listen to audio clips from Monitor Records albums such as “Russian Cabaret” and “Vienna by Night” on the Smithsonian Collections Blog.

Natchez Mardi Gras in 1900

On February 21, 2012, in Digital Archives, Paper Archives, by Amanda
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Natchez Mardi Gras Association broadside, February 27, 1900. Call Number: OSXBroadsides/1900 (MDAH Collection)

Natchez Mardi Gras Association broadside, February 27, 1900. Call Number: OSXBroadsides/1900 (MDAH Collection)

This broadside (OSXBroadsides/1900) was discovered within a larger collection of materials from the attic of the Elms in Natchez. The two sided broadside was recently scanned and made available online through the catalog (click here to access both sides). Many of the other materials from the attic are now in Z/1879 The Elms Papers at MDAH.

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Stories from Possum Ridge: Walter’s Caboose

On December 20, 2011, in Artifacts, by Amanda
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The train town of Possum Ridge has been a holiday tradition in the capital city for nearly forty years. Its running trains and detailed model buildings have delighted both children and adults every December. This series explores the history of the town and the stories behind its buildings as related to us by Lucky Osborne, who built most of the town himself. Osborne continues to volunteer his time to maintain the town and read from “A Special Visitor Comes to Possum Ridge,” the children’s book inspired by the exhibit.

Walter's Caboose in Possum Ridge (From the prop collection of the Museum Division, MDAH)

Walter's Caboose in Possum Ridge (From the prop collection of the Museum Division, MDAH)

Walter Hazzlerigg of Vicksburg ran the trains at Possum Ridge for over twenty years. For a time, he was the only engineer staffing the exhibit and he worked all day. He later moved to Texas and ran the trains at the local zoo, but every year, he took his vacation time and returned to Jackson to run the trains.

The last time he was here, Hazzlerigg told Osborne that he would be retiring soon and planned to purchase a caboose in which to live. He also planned to build a model train shop onto the caboose. He passed away shortly thereafter, and Osborne decided that Walter would have his caboose after all. So he built Walter’s Caboose with the train shop on the back and a figure of Walter on the front porch. There is also a statue of the dedicated engineer in Possum Park.

The model train town of Possum Ridge and historic Christmas trees and toys are on display Monday, noon–4:30 p.m., Tuesday–Friday, 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m., and Saturdays, 9 a.m.–12:30 p.m. through December 22 on the first floor of the William F. Winter Archives and History Building at the corner of North and Amite streets in Jackson. Tours for school groups are available by reservation Tuesday–Friday, December 6–16, 9 a.m.–noon. For information call 601-576-6800.

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Stories from Possum Ridge: Ice House

On December 16, 2011, in Artifacts, by Amanda
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The train town of Possum Ridge has been a holiday tradition in the capital city for nearly forty years. Its running trains and detailed model buildings have delighted both children and adults every December. This series explores the history of the town and the stories behind its buildings as related to us by Lucky Osborne, who built most of the town himself. Osborne continues to volunteer his time to maintain the town and read from “A Special Visitor Comes to Possum Ridge,” the children’s book inspired by the exhibit.

The Ice House in the town of Possum Ridge (From the prop collection of the Museum Division, MDAH)

The Ice House in the town of Possum Ridge (From the prop collection of the Museum Division, MDAH)

Lucky Osborne grew up near the original Ice House in Tchula, Holmes County. His family lived down the street from the building. There was a fence on the side of the building with signs saying “Danger, High Voltage, Keep Out.” Inside the fence was a machine that whined and made other curious noises. Although Osborne was never allowed to see it, he always wondered what the mysterious machine looked like.

When he was building the Ice House model for Possum Ridge Osborne decided to put his own machine inside the fence. Using parts from washing machines, televisions, cable television parts, and toys, he constructed a device the way he had imagined it. He never learned what the original machine did, but now you can see his idea for it at the Possum Ridge Ice House, complete with the “Danger, High Voltage, Keep Out” signs.

The Ice House machinery The Ice House in the town of Possum Ridge (From the prop collection of the Museum Division, MDAH)

The Ice House machine in the town of Possum Ridge (From the prop collection of the Museum Division, MDAH)

The model train town of Possum Ridge and historic Christmas trees and toys are on display Monday, noon–4:30 p.m., Tuesday–Friday, 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m., and Saturdays, 9 a.m.–12:30 p.m. through December 22 on the first floor of the William F. Winter Archives and History Building at the corner of North and Amite streets in Jackson. Tours for school groups are available by reservation Tuesday–Friday, December 6–16, 9 a.m.–noon. For information call 601-576-6800.

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Stories from Possum Ridge: Boll Weevil Cafe

On December 14, 2011, in Artifacts, by Amanda
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The train town of Possum Ridge has been a holiday tradition in the capital city for nearly forty years. Its running trains and detailed model buildings have delighted both children and adults every December. This series explores the history of the town and the stories behind its buildings as related to us by Lucky Osborne, who built most of the town himself. Osborne continues to volunteer his time to maintain the town and read from “A Special Visitor Comes to Possum Ridge,” the children’s book inspired by the exhibit.

Boll Weevil Cafe in Possum Ridge (From the prop collection of the Museum Division, MDAH)

Boll Weevil Cafe in Possum Ridge (From the prop collection of the Museum Division, MDAH)

Boll Weevil Cafe in Possum Ridge (From the prop collection of the Museum Division, MDAH)

Boll Weevil Cafe in Possum Ridge (From the prop collection of the Museum Division, MDAH)

The original Boll Weevil Cafe was located in Inverness (Sunflower County) and owned by Lucky Osborne’s grandmother. Although he never saw the country cafe in person, he had seen pictures of it.

During the Depression, his grandmother told him, many people traveled the roads and rails. One day a man came in and told her that he was hungry. He was a sign painter and said, “If you’ll give me a hamburger, I’ll paint a sign for your cafe.” She said, “If you’ll paint what I want you to paint, I’ll feed you for a whole week!” So she had him paint, as she called it, her “menu on the wall.”

If you look on the exterior side walls of the cafe, you’ll see the breakfast menu of eggs, bacon, coffee, and pie painted on one side, and a dinner menu of ice cream, a hamburger, and a hotdog on the other.

The model train town of Possum Ridge and historic Christmas trees and toys are on display Monday, noon–4:30 p.m., Tuesday–Friday, 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m., and Saturdays, 9 a.m.–12:30 p.m. through December 22 on the first floor of the William F. Winter Archives and History Building at the corner of North and Amite streets in Jackson. Tours for school groups are available by reservation Tuesday–Friday, December 6–16, 9 a.m.–noon. For information call 601-576-6800.

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