Sunday, September 28, 2014


This photo shows the historic railroad depot of Vicksburg, Mississippi, located on the Yazoo River, a tributary to the Mississippi River. 

Although the building is no longer used for railroad connections, it continues to serve as a "connections point" for those who want to learn more about the history of railroading, especially how that history is significant to Vicksburg. 

Not surprisingly, there is a gift shop you can visit to buy souvenirs, even if you are not able to tour the museum.

The red railroad car in this photo is about all that remains from the once-thriving railroad era.  It takes one back to the time when railroad tycoons amassed great fortunes from using the hand-laid tracks that criss-crossed out country in days of old. Unfortunately, some of those railroad tycoons who had put all their hope in rail transportation, lost everything when the automobile began to replace rail travel as the preferred method of transportation.  Therefore, I am using this photo as my visual aid for one of my First Place 4 Health ( ) memory verses that says: " [Do not] put [your] hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but ... put [your] hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment."  I Timothy 6:17

Just above the Old Depot Museum, on Washington Street, is the Biedenharn Coca-Cola Museum. 

It is located in a restored 1890 building where Coca-Cola was first bottled  in 1894. 

In addition to the museum, there are over 100 Coca-Cola items for sale in the gift shop, as well as ice-cold Cokes and ice cream floats.

Since the location is listed in the National Register of Historic Places, it seems like the perfect spot to sit down and enjoy a sip of this famous beverage!

Another scenic spot to visit downtown is Levee Street with the famous Vicksburg Riverfront Murals.  These consist of 32 life-like pictorial murals by artist Robert Dafford.

The Historic Washington Street is also home to the Saturday Farmer's Market, and one of  the Highway 61 MS Blues Trail Markers. 

The best way to get the maximum enjoyment from your time in Vicksburg is to stop by one of the locations of the Vicksburg Visitors Information Centers.  There is one located downtown on Levee Street, and another located across from Vicksburg Military Park.  Of course, visiting their website ( ) can get you prepared even before you get into town!

There you can pick up maps of the area that will guide you to all the attractions of either the Red Scenic Drive or Blue Scenic Drive.  In addition to the map, the Scenic Drives are marked with signs like the one shown in this photo. 

The Old Court House sits high atop a hill, and can be seen from throughout the downtown area.  It is considered Vicksburg's crown jewel both architecturally and historically.  The National Landmark towers above the city on a hill hallowed by history.  It was on these grounds that Jefferson Davis launched his political career; it was here on July 4, 1863 that the Stars and Stripes replaced the Stars and Bars, signifying the end of the 47-day siege.  It has been a museum since 1948, and filled with items reflecting the Southern Heritage.  It is said to have the largest collection of Civil War memorabilia in the South.  Plus, when I visited, I noticed their gift shop even had certain relics available for sale. 

Since I was in Vicksburg to pay my respects to my great grandfather that fought in the Siege of Vicksburg, I took the drive to the Cedar Hill Cemetery, which is also the location of the Soldier's Rest Confederate burial ground.  As the late afternoon sun cast long shadows in front of all the Confederate tombstones, I pondered that somewhere, there was a family represented by each of those markers.  And every family represented, has a unique story to tell of their loved one who was swept away by the very bloody Civil War.  Although one of my great grandfathers never made it home from Vicksburg, another of my great grandfathers DID return to his home in Carroll County, Arkansas.  He married a much younger woman, who became a Confederate Civil War widow, and was still alive and receiving a Civil War Widow Pension Check when I was born.  It is interesting that the U.S. Government honored the military service of her late husband, by continuing to send the Civil War Widow Pension check to my Great Grandma Rudd, even though her husband had been on the "losing" side; this illustrates the active steps the government was taking to heal our nation.  That gives me "MILES OF SMILES"!  Tricia