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Jackson, Mississippi

Jackson is the capital and largest city of Mississippi, a state of the United States of America. As of the 2000 census, its population is 184,256. Including its suburbs, the Jackson metropolitan area has a population of 302,088. Jackson is one of the county seats of Hinds County; Raymond is the other county seat.



The city (originally known as LeFleur's Bluff) was founded in 1822 based on the need for a centrally located capital for the state of Mississippi and named for the iconic figure General Andrew Jackson. It was originally planned by Peter Van Dorn in a "checkerboard" pattern advocated by Thomas Jefferson, in which city blocks alternated with parks and other open spaces, giving the appearance of a checkerboard. This plan has not lasted to the present day.

In 1839, Jackson was the site of the passage of the first state law that permitted married women to own and administer their own property.

In 1863, during the campaign which ended in the capture of Vicksburg, Union forces won the Battle of Jackson , forcing Confederate forces to flee westward towards Clinton. Subsequently, on 15 May 1863 Union troops under the command of William Tecumseh Sherman burned and looted nearly the entire city of Jackson, which was afterwards nicknamed Chimneyville because supposedly only the chimneys of houses were left standing. Today there are few antebellum structures left standing in Jackson; among the few is the Old Capitol building, which served as the home of the Mississippi state legislature from 1839 to 1903, when the present structure, so-called the New Capitol , was completed.

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Eudora Welty was born in Jackson in 1909 and lived most of her life in the Belhaven section of the city. She wrote a memoir of her development as a writer, One Writer's Beginnings . The book gives a charming picture of the city in the early 20th century. Today, the main Jackson public library is named in her honor.

On May 24, 1961 during the American civil rights movement, a bus full of Freedom Riders were arrested in Jackson for "disturbing the peace" after they disembarked from their bus.

In Jackson, shortly after midnight on 12 June 1963, civil rights activist and leader of the Mississippi chapter of the NAACP Medgar Evers was murdered by Byron de la Beckwith , a white supremacist. In 1994, prosecutors finally convicted de la Beckwith of murder.

The Paul Simon song "Learn How To Fall," found on the album There Goes Rhymin' Simon , was recorded at Malaco Recording Studios in Jackson in 1972 or 1973.


Jackson is located on the Pearl River, and is served by the Ross Barnett Reservoir, which forms a section of the Pearl River and is located northeast of Jackson on the border between Madison and Rankin counties.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 276.7 km² (106.8 mi²). 271.7 km² (104.9 mi²) of it is land and 5.0 km² (1.9 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 1.80% water.


As of the census of 2000, there are 184,256 people, 67,841 households, and 44,503 families residing in the city. The population density is 678.2/km² (1,756.4/mi²). There are 75,678 housing units at an average density of 278.5/km² (721.4/mi²). The racial makeup of the city is 27.79% White, 70.64% African American, 0.13% Native American, 0.57% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.19% from other races, and 0.67% from two or more races. 0.79% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There are 67,841 households out of which 33.7% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 35.4% are married couples living together, 25.3% have a female householder with no husband present, and 34.4% are non-families. 28.9% of all households are made up of individuals and 9.0% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.61 and the average family size is 3.24.

In the city the population is spread out with 28.5% under the age of 18, 12.4% from 18 to 24, 29.1% from 25 to 44, 19.1% from 45 to 64, and 10.9% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 31 years. For every 100 females there are 86.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 81.5 males.

The median income for a household in the city is $30,414, and the median income for a family is $36,003. Males have a median income of $29,166 versus $23,328 for females. The per capita income for the city is $17,116. 23.5% of the population and 19.6% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total people living in poverty, 33.7% are under the age of 18 and 15.7% are 65 or older.

Political Structures

Jackson is governed by a city council, headed by the mayor, Harvey Johnson, Jr. .

Colleges and Universities

Cultural Organizations

  • Mississippi Symphony Orchestra
  • Ballet Mississippi

Sports Teams

Mississippi Braves, AA Affiliate of the Atlanta Braves, scheduled to begin play in the Southern League in 2005


Jackson is served by Jackson International Airport.

Interstate Highways:

U.S. Highways:

State Highways:

  • State Highway 18
  • State Highway 25 (some parts known as Lakeland Drive)


Regions of Mississippi
The Delta - Natchez District
Largest Cities
Biloxi - Greenville - Gulfport - Hattiesburg - Jackson - Meridian - Pascagoula - Southaven - Tupelo - Vicksburg
Adams -

Alcorn - Amite - Attala - Benton - Bolivar - Calhoun - Carroll - Chickasaw - Choctaw - Claiborne - Clarke - Clay - Coahoma - Copiah - Covington - De Soto - Forrest - Franklin - George - Greene - Grenada - Hancock - Harrison - Hinds - Holmes - Humphreys - Issaquena - Itawamba - Jackson - Jasper - Jefferson - Jefferson Davis - Jones - Kemper - Lafayette - Lamar - Lauderdale - Lawrence - Leake - Lee - Leflore - Lincoln - Lowndes - Madison - Marion - Marshall - Monroe - Montgomery - Neshoba - Newton - Noxubee - Oktibbeha - Panola - Pearl River - Perry - Pike - Pontotoc - Prentiss - Quitman - Rankin - Scott - Sharkey - Simpson - Smith - Stone - Sunflower - Tallahatchie - Tate - Tippah - Tishomingo - Tunica - Union - Walthall - Warren - Washington - Wayne - Webster - Wilkinson - Winston - Yalobusha - Yazoo

Last updated: 11-08-2004 00:38:45