Mississippi, a state that should have the motto: “You get brownie points for writing ‘Mississippi’ without spellcheck.” The actual motto is “Virtute et armis,” which means “By valor and arms” and sounds more impressive; when it comes to mottos, desserts can’t compete with weapons.
Known for its agriculture background and rich history, the geography of Mississippi contains numerous rivers, forests, and lowlands. That diversity gets reflected in the number of nicknames the state had accrued over the years. The Magnolia State, the Bayou State, the Eagle State, and the Mudcat State, a reference to the catfish swimming in the state’s waters and bayous (not like in the drinking water, mind you; you’re not in danger of turning on the faucet and finding a fish in your glass).
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Living in Mississippi
If the term “antebellum South” still applied to any state in the union, it would be Mississippi. 150 years since the end of the Civil War, the state retains the title of “The Most Southern Place on Earth” by means of providing the flavor and hospitality of the South.
With a population of just under 3 million, it would be understandable to think of the state as mostly rural, an impression made even more pressing by the aforementioned swamps and bayous, which call to mind visions of people riding alligators to and from work and fishing off the front porch. In actuality, relocating to Mississippi can easily involve the state’s major cities such as Hattiesburg and Gulfport, so there’s no need to worry about losing wifi service or satellite television when coming to the Magnolia State. True, there may be dead spots for smart devices, but so does every other state in the union, so rest easy.
Mississippi also boasts more than 50 colleges and institutes of higher learning, four major interstates, two international airports, and 24 state parks. Oh, and the house that Elvis Pressley grew up in. Top that, California!
Working in Mississippi
According to the Census ACS 1-year survey,the median household income for Mississippi was $43,529 in 2017. Compared to the median US household income, Mississippi median household income is $16,807 lower. Throw in the low property taxes and three tax brackets, and relocating to Mississippi can seem very attractive. A family of four with two working adults only needs to make $13.20 an hour to meet the cost of living standard in Mississippi.
Mississippi’s economy relies heavily on agriculture and manufacturing industries, although tourism does play a substantial role as well, thanks to the casinos and beaches. As with most states, the demand for health care professionals currently tracks high, but industrial technicians and specialists also enjoy attention in the job market here.
If you’ve ever spent time in Florida during the summer, you have an idea of what to expect with Mississippi. The state features a humid subtropical climate, so the summers tend to be long and hot and the winters short and mild. Essentially, anyone moving to Mississippi from the north will want to trade in their heavy winter coats for rain slickers, and anyone coming from the other southern states might want to invest in new rain boots. Like Florida, the rain can fall in varying styles at any time during the long summer, from long downpours to quick guerrilla-style rain gusts that show up just long enough to dampen the pavement before the sun comes out and the humidity skyrockets.
The chief concern with the weather in Mississippi, however, rests with the exposure to some of Mother Nature’s more exciting offerings. In addition to heavy thunderstorms, the state also experiences tornados, tropical storms, and the occasional hurricane. If you’ve turned on the Weather Channel and seen a reporter standing on the beach in rain gear as the hurricane comes in, odds are good the reporter was in Mississippi.
Quick note: when facing a hurricane, do not go to the beach and hang out like the reporters. They’re getting paid to walk against the wind. If you’re not a reporter, you’re just an unpaid mime.
Things to do
It’s impossible to discuss Mississippi without considering the river, although it should be noted that floating down the river on a log raft, while not illegal, might raise an eyebrow or two, especially if you’re wearing overalls and a straw hat.
Still, Mississippi can be a fisherman’s paradise. The state offers some of the best fresh fish in the country, and the catfish population means there’s a good chance you can throw a line with a worm into a river and pull in one of the whiskered suckers with little difficulty.
If lazing down the river or catching fish doesn’t seem your cup of molasses, there’s also the Windsor Ruins, a group of standing columns that once served as part of a destroyed mansion. It may sound boring, but there’s something spooky about a bunch of columns without a house.
The Elvis Presley Birthplace lacks the ostentatious camp of Graceland, but there’s something pure and innocent about seeing the two-room house that Elvis called home before he became The King. And even if you don’t consider yourself a fan of his music, it’s difficult to visit that place and not be tempted to try a bad Elvis impression when you leave. Just don’t try it on the people working at the museum; it’s safe to say they’ve heard it before.
Them: “Have a nice day.”
You: “Thank you very much.”
As previously mentioned, the charm of the South goes on full display in Mississippi. And while that may call to mind a bunch of people wearing white and drinking mint juleps, it really means the full force of the Southern kitchen gets featured here. We’re talking crawfish, pecans, biscuits and gravy, Mississippi mud pie, sweet potato pie, catfish, boiled peanuts, and shrimp.
It’s entirely possible to sit down for a Southern dinner at 5:00 p.m. in Mississippi and not leave the table until 8:00 p.m. Not just because the meal took three hours to eat, but because you’d need that time to digest the food enough to move.
Floating Down the River
Mississippi sound like your kind of place? A little intimidated about the process of moving there? Not to worry. Just call a Colonial Van Lines professional and find out how simple getting there can be. Colonial Van Lines has the staff, the expertise, and the desire to make your moving experience enjoyable. Call today to find out more.