Devereaux Shields House

709 North Union Street, Natchez, Mississippi, 39120, United States
Devereaux Shields House
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Travel Tips for Natchez

Choctaw Territory

by VeronicaG

As we drove the Natchez Trace Parkway, we took the opportunity to learn a little more about this part of the country and its Native inhabitants.

The Choctaw Indians of Mississippi are thought to have been the largest of the Muskhogean tribes, which included Creeks, Chickasaw, Seminioles, Apalachi and other small groups. Recently, it is believe that the Chicasaw and Choctaw are related--their language is very similar and their traditions show a close relationship. Some surmise that when the white man moved into this territory, the tribe split into these two groups.

This photo marks Lower Choctaw Territory, which has been a boundary for over two centuries. It was established in 1765 and designated the eastern limits of the Old Natchez District.

*For more history on the Choctaw Indians, go to

Amnesty and Pardons

by VeronicaG

Although this document is not easily read, it states that the bearer has received amnesty for his participation in the Civil War.

Individuals from the 'rebellious' states had to receive this pardon if they wished to be involved in commerce of any type. I was hoping to find out more information on this process, but was unable to do so.

This particular letter of pardon was displayed in one of the historic homes open to the public during the Natchez Pilgrimage.

Natchez Trace Parkway

by leafmcgowan

This parkway, a unit of the National Park System, commemorates the Natchez Trace (1800-1820)

Along the parkway there are historical structures, Indian mounds, roadside exhibits, nature and history trails, and museums which help illustrate the history of the Trace. The Old Natchez Trace - worn by a century and a half of traffic, the Old Natchez Trace is now a sunken tree-lined road in places 30' deep. Mount Locus - From the original three rooms, this house grew with the family and region, and by 1836 was the "Big House" of a medium-sized plantation. The High Bluff is a deposit of loess, windblown topsoil, through which the Old Natchez Trace cuts deeply in many places. Emerald Mound is the second largest temple mound in the United States. It was erected by predecessors of the Natchez Indians between 1300 and 1600 A.D. (source: roadside sign)

Natchez Trace Parkway

by Stephen-KarenConn

Natchez is the southern terminus of the Natchez Trace Parkway - a delightful 444-mile long National Park which stretches from Natchez, Mississippi to Nashville, Tennessee.

Karen and I took three days to drive the entire length of the Parkway, although we could have easily driven the entire distance in a day. Actually three days was not enough to stop at all the many historic and natural sights along the way. The Parkway is a very well landscaped two-lane highway which is off limits to commercial vehicles. There is not a single billboard along the way, and only one business - a small country store with a gas pump in front, operated as a park concession. The top speed limit is 50 miles per hour.

Along the way there are numerous picnic areas, three campgrounds, hiking trails, and dozens of interpretative exhibits which provide a satisfying smorgasboard for anyone who has the slightest interest in nature and/or history

The original Natchez Trace had its beginnings in pre-historic times as an animal trail and Indian path. It was later used by early pioneers as a highway. In the early 1800s, thousands of "Kaintucks" from the Ohio River Valley floated their crops down river to markets in New Orleans, sold their wares and their boats for lumber, and walked or rode horses back home along the Trace. Then it was a very difficult and dangerous journey. Today the Natchez Trace Parkway provides a not-to-be-missed excursion through the beauty of nature and the fascination of a bygone era.


by VeronicaG

Longwood was constructed in 1860-61 for Haller and Julia Nutt and retains the original furnishings for the home. The mansion's landscape is studded with mature live oaks and surrounded by a lovely wooded area. It sits way off the road, in a very secluded plot.

We toured Longwood on our last day in Natchez. Although this estate can be visited by purchasing a discounted ticket during the Pilgrimage, we purchased individual tickets that morning.

An excellent guided tour took us to the Nutt family quarters in the basement area which was fitted out for the family to live in while the upstairs was being completed, however, the Civil War ensued and the upper level was never finished (pic #2).

No photographs were permitted in the living area, but once on the upper level we were encouraged to snap all the pictures we desired. How sad that their grand plan was never completed! Building supplies, uncovered rafters and scaffolding still signify a dream unrealized.

*Admission is $12 per person, or $10 pp when purchased during the Pilgrimage


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