HGTV and Renegades in Jones County {My Mississippi Home}

January 12, 2016

Folks in the Jones County area know that some big things are coming to Jones County in the very near future. For the rest of the world (and perhaps the state) who haven’t been paying attention to this little corner of Mississippi, I’ll fill you in.

First of all, Laurelites Ben and Erin Napier will be hosting an hour-long HGTV original piERin and benlot called Home Town on Sunday, January 24 at 11 a.m. CST. It involves them helping a family find and restore an old house in Laurel. I could tell you more, but honestly, it’s really best if you hear it (or read it, rather) in Erin’s own words.


Then there’s this…

What, you ask, does Matthew McConaughey’s latest movie have to do with Jones County, Mississippi?


If you live in Mississippi, and you don’t know that, at one point, Jones County was indeed “The Free State of Jones”, them shame on you. You need to go back to history class.

Anyway, McConaughey’s character in The Free State of Jones was the leader of the rebellion, Newt Knight. That was long ago, so we may never really know, but it appears there were various factors leading to the establishment of The Free State of Jones, not the least of which was the passing of a law that allowed the wealthy owners of 20 or more slaves to avoid military service (all the while the common man was required to leave his family to fight on their behalf). And so, Newt Knight became a leader and a hero. On the other hand, there are those descended from siblings of Newt Knight whose ancestors have passed down sharply different tales that decry a much more sinister and ruthless side of the renegade, even when it came to his own family.

Who really knows, except for Newt, Rachel, and their contemporaries?

Come on down to Jones County. Everyone has a story. It might not be a pleasant one, but I bet you it will be interesting.

Jenny Mac

Crown & Owl

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