It was 166 years ago this weekend that a die-hard group of Mississippians in red shirts and brandishing Bowie knives changed the course of a battle and history. The Battle of Buena Vista on Feb. 22-23, 1847, sealed the fate of Mexican General Santa Anna's army and ensured a United States victory in the U.S.-Mexican War of 1846-48.
The fever appears to be breaking. The Tea Party movement, much like the Know Nothing Party of 150 years ago, will soon have run its obstructionist course. As is the case with most national trends, that fever will break last in Mississippi, which seems to be on a perpetual two-year time-delay for most national trends.
Both the Mississippi House and the Senate have approved a bill that saddles one-third of Mississippi's homes and businesses with a billion dollars in debt relating to the Kemper power plant. If Gov. Phil Bryant signs the bill, it will become law.
It all started about three days before. The rains were torrential and the lake was so full that most of the center stumps were submerged. "Sam, I think the spillway is dammed up. The water is high." After work Sam took the gator to the spillway and sure enough a beaver had dammed the flow again. In drizzling rain Sam shoveled out the dam and checked the beaver trap. No beaver. "Did you see Leah?" I asked.
When reporter Carmen Sisson, whose story about Magnolia Bowl appears in today's Dispatch, asked me about the old stadium, she unleashed a flood of memories.
Sometimes research and writing takes you in unexpected directions, and that is the case today. As I started writing this column, I stumbled into one of those poignant stories of long ago that touches a present-day nerve.
Writing about love is a tricky thing, especially since my wife might read this column. Fortunately, I heard New Hope Baptist Church minister Jerry Young speak at the Jackson Rotary Club today. His topic was love and marriage. I can't put it any better than he did.
So it finally happened. After years of making and buying King Cakes, I finally got the prized plastic baby. Now granted, my chances dramatically increased due to the fact that the only other person in the baby race was my wife.
There are no states more reliably and consistently friendly to gun owners and gun manufacturers than Mississippi. That's clear, well beyond any doubt.
Hopping over the worm on the asphalt took me back to my childhood when rains brought out red wigglers. I remember hopscotching across sidewalks trying to avoid stepping on icky worms.
Most people pay no attention to the green tubular stalk of a plant that grows along the banks of the Tombigbee River at Columbus' Riverwalk. The plant can also be found in clusters along nature trails at MUW's Plymouth Bluff Center. It is commonly called a horsetail and was here before the dinosaurs.
Young Barney Schoby has an actor's animation and a historian's mind. Who better to guide you through the place that does more to explain the nuanced Natchez heyday than any other?
If a visitor from another planet landed his spaceship in Mississippi and spent some time examining what he found, he would likely be led to ask a question that Mississippians appear to have quit asking long, long ago. He would observe that our state is almost always last in everything good and first in everything bad and ask the obvious question: How come?
Jack, the deaf cat, knowing sign language, responds to the universal sign of flicking your hand. "Come on," I flick my hand; he comes.
Early last week I sent Jeff Smith and Martha Liddell an email. Neither had taken nor returned calls from our reporters who were working on stories in which each of them was a principal player.
From a bomb threat to a windstorm, the early buildings of St Paul's Episcopal Church in Columbus had their problems, but the 154-year-old present structure is a classic. Records of the church provide a view of early church building in Columbus.
A recent Boy Scout camping trip took me to the Sipsey Wilderness Area in north Alabama. It is beautiful. A hidden gem.
Noted 20th Century essayist G.K. Chesterton once wrote that the whole modern world is made up of Conservatives and Progressives. "The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes," he wrote in a 1924 newspaper column. "The business of Conservatives is to prevent mistakes from being corrected."
Even law enforcement will admit Mississippi's concealed-carry gun law is a joke. Citizens already can legally possess a firearm anywhere in their house, car or business without a permit. The average citizen does not want to carry a weapon on his side and walk down the street - although we technically possess that right under the Constitution.
Well, he put it out there. Since the time of Roosevelt's New Deal and Johnson's Great Society, a debate has rumbled over whether government aid programs kill private initiative. Conservatives say it does. Liberals either don't care or insist it doesn't.