Mississippians can now add Freedom Trail markers in their communities for free

Published 8:00 am Sunday, January 15, 2023

Thanks to additional funds from Visit Mississippi, the Mississippi Humanities Council is hoping to double the amount of Mississippi Freedom Trail markers in the state.

The cost to install each marker is $10,000, and for the first time, that fee will be 100 percent funded by money from Visit Mississippi. Submissions are now open, but the public has a limited time to apply if they want to take advantage of the program.

There are currently 30 Mississippi Freedom Trail markers throughout the state, honoring such heroes of the civil rights movement as Fannie Lou Hamer, Aaron Henry and Medgar Evers, and historic sites such as Biloxi Beach, the site of a 1960 wade-in.

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MHC’s program and outreach officer John Spann said the Council’s scholars committee has already approved 13 new markers and he believes that number will rise quickly once citizens realize they can honor civil rights pioneers in their community at no cost.

“This is a great opportunity for all Mississippians to explore their own community’s civil rights history and highlight a lesser-known event or person permanently,” Spann said. “The expansion of the Freedom Trail is not only an educational tool for tourists but Mississippians as well.”

The application process is open now until March 31. After that, funding for the markers will be a 50 percent match requirement from the marker sponsor.

All the new Mississippi Freedom Trail markers will be in place by the end of 2024. To learn more about the Mississippi Freedom Trail and to apply for a marker, visit www.mshumanities.org.