Walt's Look Around: Williams Brothers Store - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Walt's Look Around: Williams Brothers Store

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
PHILADELPHIA, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Williams Brother’s Store is a landmark in its own right, one of the few old timey country stores still around. But it is also a museum of sorts, to the First Family of Mississippi football.

Sid Williams: "Well, the store started in 1907 by Amzy and Brown Williams, just a general merchandise store." said Sid Williams. "They moved over here from Leake County and were mule traders and set up shop here and have been here ever since. We tell people that we were too dumb to change and now it’s finally kind of paying off."

So says Sid Williams of his family’s store there on the outskirts of Philadelphia at Williamsville. And looking around the store, if they don’t have it here you probably don’t really need it.

"Feed, wire, clothes, groceries, post, fertilizer," added Sid.

But there is another element of the Williams Brothers store that football fans know about, and that’s the store’s connections to the Manning family. It comes through Archie Manning’s wife, Olivia.

"Olivia is my sister, and of course that makes, I used to tell people that Archie was my brother-in-law. And now I tell them that Peyton and Eli are my nephews," said Sid. Eli and Cooper both worked for two or three weeks at a time here. Peyton played so much baseball that he wasn’t able to work."

As the Manning’s careers have soared, so has the amount of their memorabilia hanging on the walls of the store. From a picture of about a five-year-old Peyton taken at the Neshoba County Fair, with football in hand, of course, to headlines and Super Bowl championship posters and jerseys. Aunt Peggy Dees remembers those summers when the boys were young working in the store.

"Well I tell you, I especially remember Eli," said Aunt Peggy. "I checked right here and Eli stood right where you’re standing when he was just a teenage boy. And I told Cooper, that’s my brother, that’s Eli’s granddaddy, I says, ‘Cooper, Eli impresses me.’ I says, ‘He takes sacking just as serious as anything.’"

It’s the closest thing to a Manning museum in Mississippi, I guess; the menagerie of memorabilia scattered about the Williams Brothers store. And while to lots of people in Mississippi football is a religion, to the Williams, it’s family.

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