Natchez Off The Beaten Path

  • creek along the natchez trace
    creek along the natchez trace
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  • great sun mound
    great sun mound
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  • reconstructed native american hut
    reconstructed native american hut
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Most Recent Off The Beaten Path in Natchez

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    Natchez Indian House and Granary

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Reconstructed Natchez Indian House
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    On the grounds of the Grand Village of the Natchez Indians is a reconstructed house like those the Indians built of locally gathered materials. It has mud walls, dirt floor, pole beams and a thatched grass roof. Watch out for wasps if you are here in warm weather.

    Beside the house is a granary which would have been used to store surplus grain. There is also a small pole and thatch structure which would have been used as a drying platform, as well as to provide shade.

    The Natchez Indians were not nomads, but lived in permanent houses and grew crops which included corn, beans and squash. They also hunted, fished and gathered wild edibles.

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    Windsor Ruins

    by leafmcgowan Written Feb 20, 2010
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    One of Mississippi's most fantastic secrets, hidden away in the swamps out in the middle of nowhere, are the ghostly remains of the Windsor plantation. The Windsor plantation was built from 1859-1861. The plantation was built, owned, and first inhabited by Smith Daniell who only was able to live in the mansion for a few weeks before he passed away at age 34. Smith Coffee Daniell II was born in 1826 as a son of a Indian fighter turned farmer. He was married to his cousin Chatherine Freeland (1830-1903) who bore him three children. Construction of the mansion cost him $175,000 to build it which included its furnishings. It was built with slave labor. The construction was designed by David Shroder. The original grounds were well over 2,600 acres. Atop the mansion was a roof observatory where Mark Twain would muse over the Mississippi River that inspired his works of art. Twain compared the plantation to a college instead of residence because of how large the plantation was. This observatory was also home to signal equipment that would notify Confederate troops of Yankee movement. The mansion was fixed with elaborate furnishings in its beginning, hosting wrought iron staircases to get from each of the four floors. Tanks resided in the attic to provide water for the baths within. There was 25 rooms with 25 fireplaces, a basement with a school room, dairy, commissary, doctor's office, and plenty of storage rooms. The main floor held the master bedroom, a bath, 2 parlors, a study, a dining room, and a library. The third floor were 9 more bedrooms and an additional bath. The fourth floor held a unfinished ballroom. The roof held an observatory. It was a distinct portrayal of Southern Life during its era. The Mansion saw a bit of death - from Smith Daniell's death to a yankee who was shot in the front doorway. Other deaths took place when the mansion once served as a union hospital and observation post during the civil war. Its involvement in the Civil War as a hospital saved it from being burned down to the ground during the Civil War. After the War it was burnt down during an accidental fire involving a misplaced cigar on the upper balcony during a house party on February 17, 1890. After the fire, it was never rebuilt. Parts of the mansion were scavenged, and even the wrought iron staircase found its home at nearby Alcorn State University. All that remain of the ruins is the foundation and the 23 - 30' high Corinthian columns, some pieces of broken china, a set of wrought iron stairs, and portions of the balustrade. The Ruins have become famous, especially by Hollywood, as it was used as a setting for films such as "Raintree Country" (1957) and "Ghosts of Mississippi". The property is now owned and maintained by the Mississippi Department of Archives and History. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places on November 23, 1971. The Ruins are located 12 miles southwest of Port Gibson off Highway 552. Also of interest in the area is the Ghost town of Rodney. A must see for any history buff. Rating : 5 stars out of 5.

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    rosemont

    by doug48 Updated May 16, 2009

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    rosemant
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    located 35 miles south of natchez on US 61 is rosemont the boyhood home of jefferson davis. davis was born in kentucky in 1808 and moved here when he was two years old. his parents samuel and jane davis built this house in 1810. this historic home has period furnishing and relics relating to the early life of the president of the confederacy. tours of rosement can be arranged by calling 601-888-6809. also see the attached web site for more information.

    from natchez take US 61 south to woodville miss. rosemont is located one mile east of woodville.

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    grand village of the natchez

    by doug48 Updated May 16, 2009

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    reconstructed native american hut
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    the grand village of the natchez indians is a native american ceremonial complex. the grand village has three mounds and and reconstructed native american hut. a very interesting place to visit for those interested in native american culture. admission is free.
    the grand village of the natchez indians is located about 5 miles south of natchez on US 61. the address is 400 jefferson davis blvd.

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    natchez trace

    by doug48 Written May 16, 2009

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    creek along the natchez trace

    the natchez trace is a scenic 444 mile parkway that begins near nashville tennessee and terminates in natchez. the trace was originally a native american trail and later was used by white explorers and slave traders. along the trace are numerous native american mounds and sites. if you are not in a hurry this is a beautiful and historic road to take through central mississippi.

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    Take a Peaceful Ride On the Trace

    by t-craw Written May 10, 2009

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    Mammy's Info
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    I live just an hour and 1/2 from Natchez and although I've passed thru it many times to cross the river mainly, never explored regions in the town until recently.

    Don't have a lot of recommendations regarding dining and lodging, however, Natchez does offer spectacular views of the river along the bluffs. If you drive and follow signs to "Natchez under the Hill", you take a street that tees at the bluffs. You can go right or left. Right will delight you with a magnificent view UP the river as you descend down the pavement a hundred feet or so. Left will give you a view DOWN the river toward bridge and bring you to Natchez under the hill establishments, which the loops back up in front of a Casino.

    Residential streets along the bluffs to the North displays wonderful VERY OLD houses that are still occupied and cared for religiously by the residents.

    Main St. seems to have very popular shops and dining for a few blocks and of course, there is Mammy's Cupboard on the South side of town on HWY 61. I can remember seeing this place as a kid when we would go North to Lake Bruin in LA. or when we'd take a camping trip up to Bull Shoals, AR. After all these years, it's still there and operating. Next time I come up, gonna have to finally eat there.

    I think the drive along the Natchez Trace was really what I think about when in that area. Such a peaceful drive with no commercial trucks allowed and speed limit is only fifty. No billboards, no traffic lights or heavy traffic whatsoever because most folks are after the "time saved" advantage of traveling State Highways.

    If you do a little research on Natchez Trace and read just a few minutes of the history surrounding it as well as attractions on and nearby the trace along it's entire route up to Nashville, you may be surprised and quite enlightened with it's very interesting facts and stories about it, which makes for that much better of a drive.

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    Frogmore Plantation

    by Toughluck Written Apr 23, 2007

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    An operating Cotton Plantation, which has preserved it's original 'cotton gin', and slave quarters. Here, you can learn about the historic cotton growing and see how it has changed to the modern industry it is. You'll even have a chance to pick some cotton.

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    Elizabeth Female Academy Ruins

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Jan 16, 2007

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    These ruins are all that is left of the Elizabeth Female Academy, the first college for women in the state of Mississippi.

    The school operated from 1818-1845 and primarily served the emerging upper class of Natchez society. The famous naturalist and artist John James Audubon once taught here. One of the graduates was Varina Howell, who would later marry Jefferson Davis, the future President of the Confederate States of America. The Academy closed after the Capitol of Mississippi was moved from the nearby community of Washington, Mississippi to Jackson.

    This very interesting historic site is about 4.7 miles northwest of Natchez, and is best reached via the Natchez Trace Parkway.

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    Natchez Trace Parkway

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Jan 16, 2007

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    Natchez Trace Parkway
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    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.

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    Historic Plaza

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Jan 13, 2007

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    The Natchez Indians used this Historic Plaza, between the Great Sun's Mound and the Temple Mound, for festivities which included religious ceremonies.

    The funeral for the brother of the Great Sun, the Tattooed Serpent, was held here in 1725, and was witnessed by Le Page du Pratz, who lived in Natchez at the time. He gives a detailed description of the event in his book, Historie de la Louisiane, which was published in 1758. It is well documented that human sacrifices were made at the funerals of deceased chiefs. Those thus sacrificed were to serve the chief in the after life.

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    Temple Mound

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Jan 13, 2007

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    The Temple Mound
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    The second mound you will see on a walking tour of the Grand Village of the Natchez Indians is the Temple Mound. The Temple building would have stood atop this mound. It was the spiritual center of a mound building community or chiefdom.

    Inside the temple a sacred fire was maintained, along with religious objects and bones of past chiefs. Like the Great Sun's Mound, this one was also built in four stages. This mound was first described in 1700 by Pierre LeMoyne Sieur d'Iberville, discoverer of the Mississippi gulf coast.

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    Great Sun's Mound

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Jan 13, 2007

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    Great Sun's Mound
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    The most prominent of the mounds at the Grand Village of the Natchez Indians is the Great Sun's Mound. "Great Sun" was the title of the hereditary chief of the Natchez tribe. His house stood atop this mound, giving him a commanding view and also lifting him above his followers.

    An archeological excavation in 1962 revealed that the mound was built in at least four different stages. It is believed that each stage was built by a successive chief, each building his house a little higher than the one before him.

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    Grand Village of the Natchez Indians

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Jan 10, 2007

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    Indian Mound at Grand Village of the Natchez
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    Before European settlers came to the area that is today known as Natchez, it was inhabited by people of the Natchez Indian tribe. Just south of the city is a state operated archeological site, Grand Village of the Natchez Indians, which preserves a bit of their history and culture. It is a National Historic Landmark and admission is free.

    There is a Visitor Center and a small museum and gift shop here. However, the main attraction is a series of ancient Indian ceremonial mounds, a plaza, and a re-constructed Indian dwelling. The site is located on the banks of the Natchez River, and was still in use, but already in decline, when the first French explorers came to the area in the early 1700s.

    We enjoyed taking a very interesting self-guided walk here. Interpretative signs help explain the sights along the way.

    Address:
    400 Jefferson Davis Boulevard
    Natchez, MS 39120

    Visiting Hours:
    Monday-Saturday 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
    Sunday 1:30 p.m. - 5 p.m.

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    Forks of the Road

    by leafmcgowan Written Jun 23, 2005

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    Forks of the Road

    Located one mile east of downtown Natchez at the junction of Liberty Road, St. Catherine Street, and D'evereux Drive (Hwy 61). The site is nothing more than a empty field behind a curch with a series of Mississippi Department of Archives and History historical markers established by the Natchez Juneteenth Committee. Its more or less a history lesson stop and a place to reflect on the lives of thousands of enslaved people who were traded, bought, and sold from 1830's until 1863.

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    Emerald Mound

    by leafmcgowan Written Jun 20, 2005

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    Emerald Mound

    Ancestors of the Natchez built this ceremonial mound about 1400. The nation's second largest of its type, it covers nearly 8 acres. Only Monk's Mound in Cahokia, Illinois, is larger. This 8 acre mound, constructed from a natural hill, was built and used from about 1300 to 1600 by the Mississippians, ancestors of the Natchez Indians. Unlike dome-shaped mounds constructed only for burials, Emerald Mound supported Temples, ceremonial structures, and burials of a complex society's civic and religious leaders.

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Natchez Off The Beaten Path

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