I am still fascinated by what we found in Louisiana a couple of weeks ago, with Mississippi ties. It was plantations we wanted to see mostly. Well, that's not exactly true. We just wanted to get out of town for a few days and ended up going and seeing some plantations.
Iconic Oak Alley at Vacherie, Louisiana south of Baton Rouge is one of the most photographed houses in America, I guess.
Up river at St. Francisville is the Myrtles, supposed to be the most haunted house in America. And nearby is Oakley Plantation.
The house at Oakley is located in the Audubon Memorial State Park. While engaged as a tutor at Oakley, naturalist John James Audubon completed a fourth of his portfolio of native birds that would later become his famous birds of America series.
Although Oakley is in Louisiana, it has Mississippi connections, too. For instance the house was built by a successful Natchez planter Ruffin Gray in 1799. He died before the house was finished and his widow remarried and finished and lived in Oakley. It was her daughter that hired Audubon to teach over the summer of 1821.
Another tie to Mississippi in general and Natchez in particular is Audubon himself. In his journal he writes of selling portraits for five dollars apiece to residents in and around Natchez for survival money.
Audubon also mentions going past the mouth of the Yazoo River as it emptied into the Mississippi and commenting on the sparkling clear water pouring from it. That was back in the day when the Delta was still a jungle and swamp before the first plow ever broke the soil there.
By the way it was in Natchez that Audubon decided his fortune wasn't going to be made in selling quick portraits, but in publishing a book of his wildlife sketches, his Birds of America.
And at Oakley Plantation, in St. Francisville, is where the germ of that idea originated; from here to Bayou Sara and Woodville and Natchez and south to New Orleans and north to the Delta, in a day when not only the Yazoo ran clear, but wildlife overflowed the banks of the Mississippi.
And out in the yard you can still hear the calling of birds, the descendents of those that fascinated John James Audubon nearly 200 years ago.
Tuesday, September 16 2014 2:04 PM EDT2014-09-16 18:04:16 GMT
Lincoln County Sheriff Steve Rushing says his office is working a death pending case, involving two bodies found Monday afternoon.Family members went by to check on a mother and son and found both of themMore >>
Family members went by to check on Frances Copsy and her son, Ronald Whittington, and found both of them dead.
Tuesday, September 16 2014 12:24 PM EDT2014-09-16 16:24:15 GMT
We're trying to get more information now on a body found in Jackson this morning. We have few details available, but JPD confirms a man was found dead around 5 am at I-55 North, near Beasley Road andMore >>
We have few details available, but JPD confirms a man was found dead around 5 am at I-55 North and Beasley Road.
Tuesday, September 16 2014 10:39 AM EDT2014-09-16 14:39:00 GMT
MDOT is reporting a large accident at I-55 N before MS 463 in Madison. Skycopter traffic reports that the incident could be 2 separate accidents involving up to 9 cars. All lanes are blocked and theMore >>
All lanes are back open and traffic is flowing smoothly.
Tuesday, September 16 2014 2:18 AM EDT2014-09-16 06:18:35 GMT
We're in the beginning of Fall Harvest season and some Holmes County farmers are already experiencing set backs. A number of thefts targeting farmers have been reported in Holmes County. Sheriff WillieMore >>
Sheriff Willie March says his department has received four reports of stolen farm equipment. Some of the stolen tractors are valued at up to $55,000 dollars.More >>
Tuesday, September 16 2014 12:23 PM EDT2014-09-16 16:23:56 GMT
Fire fighters are on the scene of a massive house fire burning in West Jackson. It started before 4:00am on Patann Street near Boling Street. That's near Medgar Evers Blvd. Flames have completely engulfedMore >>
Flames completely engulfed the home. It's not clear what sparked the flames, but the house was vacant at the time of the fire so there were no injuries.
Tuesday, September 16 2014 10:11 AM EDT2014-09-16 14:11:21 GMT
An 18-year-old University of Virginia student has been missing since Saturday and police are concerned about her safety. Hannah Elizabeth Graham sent her friends a text message around 1:20 a.m. on Saturday,More >>
An 18-year-old University of Virginia student has been missing since Saturday and police are concerned about her safety.More >>
Tuesday, September 16 2014 1:42 AM EDT2014-09-16 05:42:19 GMT
Relief is on the way for motorists in Brandon who travel through the Highway 80 and Interstate 20 intersection. Planned construction will improve a high accident area at the on ramp there. "It's justMore >>
Relief is on the way for motorists in Brandon who travel through the Highway 80 and Interstate 20 intersection. Planned construction will improve a high accident area at the on ramp there.More >>
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