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Jackson, Mississippi Facts and History for Kids

Located south of the Yazoo River, it is considered to be the southern border of the Mississippi Delta. Jackson is the most populous city in Mississippi, and is one of two county seats of Hinds County, with the town of Raymond being the other. Jackson is ranked 3rd out of America’s 100 largest metro areas for the best “Bang For Your Buck” city according to Forbes magazine.

  • The city is named after Andrew Jackson, who was a general at the time of the naming but later became president of the United States.
  • Under pressure from the U.S. government, the Choctaw Native Americans agreed to removal after 1830 from all their lands east of the Mississippi River under the terms of several treaties.
  • In 1821, the Mississippi General Assembly, meeting in the then-capital of Natchez, had sent Thomas Hinds, James Patton, and William Lattimore to look for a site.
  • After surveying areas north and east of Jackson, they proceeded southwest along the Pearl River until they reached LeFleur’s Bluff in Hinds County.
  • Jackson was named for General Andrew Jackson, later the seventh President of the United States, in recognition of his victory in the Battle of New Orleans.
  • In 1863, during the campaign which ended in the capture of Vicksburg, Union forces captured Jackson during two battles—once before the fall of Vicksburg and once after the fall of Vicksburg.
  • After driving the Confederate forces out of Jackson, Union forces turned west once again and engaged the Vicksburg defenders at the Battle of Champion Hill in nearby Edwards.
  • One of the Confederate Generals defending Jackson was former United States Vice PresidentJohn C. Breckenridge.
  • The northern line of Confederate defenses in Jackson during the siege was located along a road near downtown Jackson, now known as Fortification Street.
  • Among other facilities and units, the Royal Netherlands Military Flying School was established there, after Nazi Germany occupied the Netherlands.
  • On May 24, 1961, during the African-American Civil Rights Movement, more than 300 Freedom Riders were arrested in Jackson for disturbing the peace after they disembarked from their bus.
  • Interstate 55 Interstate 20 Interstate 220 US 49 US 80 Jackson sits atop the Jackson Volcano and is the only capital city in the United States to have this feature.
  • About 19.6% of families and 23.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 33.7% of those under age 18 and 15.7% of those age 65 or over.
  • The 2012 estimate for Jackson, Mississippi is 175,437 residents.
  • In 1978, the USA International Ballet Competition was founded in Jackson by Thalia Mara, who is also the namesake of Thalia Mara Hall where the competition is held.