Solve the Mystery

In each issue of Mississippi Farm Country is a Mystery Photo. Everyone who solves the mystery will have his or her name entered into a drawing for a weekend getaway at a Mississippi Bed and Breakfast Inn sponsored by Farm Bureau. When all correct guesses have been received, we will randomly draw 20 names. These 20 names will receive a prize and have their entry placed in the hat twice for the drawing at the end of the year. This procedure is to accomodate members who receive their magazine at a later date than others. Families may submit only one entry. Federation staff members or their families are ineligible to participate in this contest. Good luck!

Answer the question correctly and you will qualify for the random drawing that determines our top twenty winners. You will also qualify for the bed and breakfast drawing at the end of the year.

This month's mystery

Our mystery city, named for a Spanish coin, is the largest city in Pearl River County.  Chartered as a township in 1904, it grew up around the railroad and logging industries.  At one time, it was home to 14 railroad tracks and some of the largest sawmills in the nation. Tung oil was also big back in those early years. Our mystery city boasted the original Crosby Chemical, which made varnishes from tung oil. Back then, the area grew thousands of acres of tung oil trees.

This city has been called, “A precious coin in the purse of the South.” 

Name this town.

Here are your clues from the magazine:

Today, our mystery city is home to a close, caring community of 12,600 citizens.  The Stennis Space Center is located only 10 miles south of town, and Amtrak stops by twice a day. The city is 45 miles from New Orleans, the Mississippi Gulf Coast and Hattiesburg.  It is located close to four ports and has easy access to I-59, I-10 and I-12.

Our mystery city boasts a great police department and three fire departments with a strong Class 6 fire rating.  Fire Chief Keith Brown was named 2011 Fire Chief of the Year for Mississippi by the Mississippi Firefighters Memorial Burn Association. He serves as director of the Southeastern Division of the International Association of Fire Chiefs.

This city is home to Highland Hospital, affiliated with Forrest General Hospital in Hattiesburg, and the renowned Crosby Arboretum, administered by Mississippi State University. The arboretum teaches people about the environment.

In our mystery city, you will find the Margaret Reed Crosby Library, which serves as the library headquarters for the Pearl River County Library System.  You will also find the Lower Pearl River Valley Transportation Museum, which is designed to provide future generations with a sense of history and education in the way early residents traveled and worked. This city is home to Friendship Park and Boley Creek as well as a Bed and Breakfast located in the historic Henry Smith House.

Our mystery city is working with the Main Street Association to attract more businesses to the downtown area. It has adopted a beautification program, which uses flowers and plants grown by students involved in the horticulture programs in the county high schools. Van Zyverden has contributed 14,000 bulbs to the beautification effort.

Of historical significance are City Hall, the Hermitage and a number of churches. The Anglican Church is the city’s oldest church.

Built from an outpost started by Moses Cook, a member of Andrew Jackson’s army, the Hermitage was constructed by Leonard Kimball, a successful businessman and uncle of Eliza Jane Nicholson, who named the city. Eliza owned the local newspaper and was the first woman publisher of a major daily newspaper in the United States. She wrote under the name of Pearl Rivers.
The Crosby family, who owned lumber mills and tung oil businesses, also occupied the Hermitage at one time.

In the industrial park, you will find, a tire manufacturer who makes ballast for the military; two polymer companies; St. Tammany Box manufacturers; an organic cleaning materials manufacturer who markets worldwide; and Farmer Fresh, a produce distributor.

Lots of businesses in this city are family owned.  One of the biggest is Paul Bounds, a feed store/nursery.  Mickle’s Pickles is popular nationwide.  Paul’s Pastry Shop is a worldwide business that specializes in cream cheese- and fruit-filled king cakes as well as delectable baked goods and pastries. Our mystery city is home to WRJW radio station and a daily newspaper (which bears the name of the city).

This city recently purchased the 1952 Crosby Hospital with plans to tear it down and create a green space in the downtown area, where walking tracks and an amphitheater will be built.  Ornate street signs have been installed for two city blocks on Canal Street and Goodyear Boulevard.  Attractive pavers will be used for a parking lot in front of City Hall.  The city is updating its infrastructure, especially the gas and water pipes.

Special events include the spring and fall street festivals, the Easter Egg Drop at the airport, Christmas on the Rails, Storybook Fest, Blues Q & Brew & Art Market, Backyard BBQ Challenge, Run with the Pigs 5K Run, National Small Business Saturday, Storybook Christmas Parade, Shop by Candlelight and the Christmas pilgrimage.  The local theater group is active and presents productions from time to time.  For more information, call (601) 799-3070.

Our mystery city has a 12-foot-tall Frostop Mug. In 1951, the mug was located in front of a local restaurant.  It was officially unveiled the night of the Christmas Parade as it rode atop a float. A platform will eventually be built to display it. There are very few of these mugs left.

The downtown boasts great restaurants, including Stonewall's BBQ, Southern
Char Steak House, Crescent Cafe and Krumbs. It is home to Crystal Gallery, Glass Porch and April's Art Studio, stores that sell home and outdoor furniture, unique gifts, jewelry and candies. The stores also have seasonal displays that attract tourists from miles around. Our mystery city is the home of “Whitman’s Christmas Village,” with an Internet site

Name this town.

To enter the contest:

Write your answer on a piece of paper and include your name, address and phone number. Send your entry to:

Solve the Mystery Contest
Attn: Glynda Phillips, Editor
P. O. Box 1972
Jackson, MS 39215-1972

Or you may e-mail your entry to

Deadline for entries is March 31.


© 2007 Mississippi Farm Bureau Federation