Vicksburg & Jackson, MS - 04/03/2012

Published at 6:25 PM in , ,

Mississippi State Capitol

Today we drove the 16 mile trail through the Vicksburg National Military Park.  The park is beautiful, lined with over 1,300 markers and monuments.  The markers honor the soldiers from both sides of the Civil War and are beautiful.  Some are simple signs and others are ornate marble monuments.

In the back of the park there is a cemetery with over 18,000 soldiers buried in it.  Perhaps the most interesting part of that area is the USS Cairo, the first-ever mined or torpedoed ship to be sunk in U.S. history.  It laid at the bottom of the Yazoo River for 102 years before it was finally raised in three sections.  Its restoration and renovations were completed and the ship was put in place in the national park in 1977.

The USS Cairo

The way the ship is laid out allows viewers to really see a lot of the insides of the ship.  The adjoining museum houses artifacts and personal items from the crew, from scissors to glasses.

Once we finished in the park, we traveled the short distance to the state capitol in Jackson.  We found a great parking place for the RV right across the street from the capitol.

Us with Reps. Haney & Arnold

It was a busy day in the Mississippi capitol.  We were exploring on our own and went to the House chamber into the viewing gallery.  The House had just adjourned, so again we missed seeing the action.  However, several Representatives were still on the floor.  Representative Greg Haney invited us down onto the floor to talk with him and take pictures.  Representative William Tracy Arnold joined us, too.  Rep. Haney is a real estate agent from Gulfport, Mississippi, and Rep. Arnold is the pastor of a church in northern Mississippi.  Both men so generously spent time with us discussing issues that were up for debate in Mississippi, as well as various places we might want to visit on our next trip through Mississippi, along with politics and Rachael's future presidency.  Rep. Haney then took us all over the capitol on a personal tour to see important and historical rooms.  For instance, there is a little cafe underneath the front steps of the capitol. This area used to be the stables, and the structure itself hasn't changed very much over time.  We really appreciated the time they spent with us.  It made the day extra special!

We are on a downhill run now towards home.  Tomorrow is the day!

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