Mississippi’s Ten Regions. in Pictures and Words. Yazoo Delta. Yazoo Delta. Yazoo Delta. Yazoo Delta.
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Also called the Delta, the Yazoo Delta lies along the Mississippi River on the western border of our state. Regular flooding from the Mississippi River and other area rivers helped to create a deep, rich soil that encouraged the development of large-scale cotton farming during the decades following the Civil War.
A region of economic and geographic extremes, the Delta is also is the home of tremendous artistic achievement. It is the long-acknowledged "birthplace" of blues music; countless numbers of influential blues musicians were born and learned to play music in the Delta. The region is also home to many influential gospel musicians and this music continues to be a strong component of community life in the Delta, even as the art transforms.
The Black Belt is one of two prairie or grassland regions. It is located in the northeastern part of the state. The black fertile soil gave the area its name. Long ago the rolling hills were covered with grasslands and wild flowers, but is now mostly farmland covered with cotton, corn, and soybeans. It has very few trees.
Columbus is one of this area’s major cities. Tupelo, the birthplace of Elvis Presley and Starkville, the home of the MSU Bulldogs are located in the area.
Jackson Prairie stretches east from Jackson across the state. It is a prairie region, much like the Black Belt. While the Jackson Prairie has more trees and soil that is not as rich as the Black Belt, it is still good for growing crops, raising cattle, and growing pine trees.
Jackson, the capital of Mississippi and our largest city is in this region.
Along the Gulf of Mexico, you will find the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The region is flat, 85 miles long and extends inland approximately 20 miles. Fishing and ship building are two of the important ways that people along the Gulf Coast make a living. There are many visitors to the beaches, restaurants, islands, and casinos of the Mississippi Coast.
Gulfport, Biloxi, and Pascagoula are three of the state’s largest cities.
The Loess Hills region begins south of Natchez and runs east of the Yazoo Delta from the southern most boundary of the state to the northern most boundary. This hilly region is good for farming and grazing cattle because of the loess or wind blown soil that was blown east from the fertile Yazoo Delta.
Natchez and Vicksburg, historical cities of our state are located in the Loess Hill.
The tree covered red clay hills of the North Central Hills rise 400-600 feet above sea level. This region is located east of the Loess extends north to the Kentucky-Tennessee border. The climate is generally cooler and there is a greater density of hardwood forests than in regions to the south.The soil here is of generally poor quality, therefore few farms exist. The land is mostly used for raising livestock, timber cutting, and some smaller factories.The region is also home to a number of ethnic communities, including the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians.
Meridian and Oxford (Ole Miss) are located in the North Central Hills.
The Flatwoods are comprised of a mostly forested level or lowland area. Most of the land is covered with forests, pastures or hay lands, and some cropland. It is a narrow strip of land along the eastern border of the North Central Hills.
Scooba, a small town in the Flatwoods is about 35 miles from Meridian.
Sandwiched between the Black Belt and the Flatwoods is the highland area, called the Pontotoc Ridge. It ranges south from to the Tennessee border. This ridge, averaging 400 to 600 feet above sea level, is one of the state's most distinctive features. Its fertile, red sandy soil is excellent for orchards.
The Tennessee River Hills area is composed of rugged hills drained by tributaries of the Tombigbee and Tennessee rivers. The steep hills have narrow ridge tops and narrow valleys. The land is covered with predominately oak-hickory-pine forests. Elevations are mostly 400 to 700 feet, and the region includes Mississippi’s highest point, Woodall Mountain in Tishomingo County at 806 feet.This small region is in the extreme northeastern tip of the state. The hills and rocky soil allowed for only small farming operations. The development of the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway that runs through the region has helped to spur new industrial development.
The Piney Woods is in the southern region of the state. It is covered in large pine tree forests. It is important to Mississippi’s lumber business. Hay, cattle, and poultry farms are located across the region.
This area includes the cities of Hattiesburg and Laurel.