Cultural Icons – Itinerary
America has rolled out the red carpet for a wide range of Mississippi-made cultural superstars such as Elvis Presley, Tammy Wynette, Howlin’ Wolf, William Faulkner and Tennessee Williams, just to name a few. From rock-n-rolling excitement to page-turning anticipation, these Mississippi Hills natives have significantly impacted American culture and entertainment. If you’re ready for an electrifying ride packed with world-class talent, strap in for a trip through the places that helped define these creative giants.
The city of Oxford overflows with culturally-significant sites such as Rowan Oak, William Faulkner’s home; St. Peter’s Cemetery, Faulkner’s final resting place; J.D. Williams Library, home to the Rowan Oak Papers, a collection of Faulkner’s works; and the Historic Oxford Square and Lafayette County Courthouse, where many of Faulkner’s friends’ and family member’s offices were located. Travel about 30 miles east to find the beautiful Faulkner Gardens and exhibits of the Union County Heritage Museum in New Albany. Head over to Tupelo, just 30 miles away, to see the Elvis Presley Birthplace and Museum and Tupelo Hardware which help interpret the life of the “King of Rock ‘n’ Roll”. From here, you’ll want to travel south to West Point, to find one more bit of music history at the Howlin’ Wolf Statue and Mississippi Blues Trail Marker. Make a pit stop in Columbus at the Tennessee Williams Home and Welcome Center, the famous playwright’s childhood home and now visitor’s center, and St. Paul’s Episcopal Church where Williams’ grandfather served as the pastor. To finish your cultural icon tour, head just 25 miles south to Starkville and stop by the Mississippi State University Library to see the John Grisham Room, featuring pieces of this award-winning author’s writings and life.
Commemorate your journey through the Hills by stamping your NPS Passport at various locations: Visit Oxford, Rowan Oak, Greater Starkville Development Partnership, Tennessee Williams Home and Welcome Center, Elvis Presley Birthplace and Museum, Tupelo Hardware and Mississippi Hills Exhibit Center.
As you will learn, the Mississippi Hills have run through the veins of many talented entertainers, spurring them to great success. What will the Mississippi Hills do for you?