Mississippi, Where We've Been

Biloxi, Mississippi & President Jefferson Davis

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Biloxi, MS

Biloxi is a coastal city in southern Mississippi. It’s considered a hidden gem, as one local told me, due to the fact that “most people don’t seem to realize Mississippi even has a coast.” We visited Biloxi during the slow winter season when most tourism spots were closed, but given the extent of the advertising signs at the marinas, the city does have a tourism boom the rest of the year. Boats can be chartered to go fishing in the gulf, you can tag along on shrimping trips, or go swimming with the dolphins.

Not too far off shore is a Gulf Islands National Seashore. A chain of several islands located approximately 12 miles off of Mississippi’s southern coast. Most of these islands are only accessible by private boat, but during the spring, summer, and autumn seasons, ferries run between Gulfport and Ship Island to visit Fort Massachusetts.  

Below is the Biloxi lighthouse built in 1848 and sponsored with legislation Mississippi Representative Jefferson Davis. 

Biloxi Lighthouse
Biloxi Lighthouse

Biloxi is also the hometown of Astronaut Fred Haise. Haise holds an impressive list of accomplishments over the course of his career. He was a NASA astronaut, engineer, fighter pilot with both the U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Air Force. He was the Lunar Module Pilot on the fated Apollo 13 mission set to land on the moon, but due to multiple mechanical failures had to be aborted en route. He piloted five space shuttle approach and landing tests before eventually retiring from NASA in 1979. 

The beaches in Biloxi stretch for miles along the coast and the birds frequent the area in droves.  

Blue herons are an infrequent sight, but they do frequent the gulf coast shores so there’s a possibility of seeing one if you’re in the area.

Once again, we tried some local seafood at the seafood market – cobia this time. I’d never heard of it, but being adventurous souls we decided to give it a try. It was really good. It tasted like a fish steak. It wasn’t flakey or “fishy” but was more meaty.

We also picked up a package of king cake to make at home. The family thought it was just ok. Just like the slice Ellie tried in New Orleans, she said it was just like bread with icing – nothing special.


President Jefferson Davis

“Who is President Jefferson Davis? He’s not in any record of U.S. Presidents I’ve seen,” you might say. That’s because he was the President of the Confederate States of America. 

For four years Davis presided over the southern states during the Civil War. He was originally a U.S. Senator for the state of Mississippi and the Secretary of War under President Franklin Pierce. South Carolina called for secession in December 1860, followed closely by Mississippi a few weeks later. Davis didn’t like the idea of seceding from the Union, in fact he called it the “saddest day of my life” when he delivered his farewell address to congress. But he also believed whole-heartedly that slavery was justified and citizens had a constitutional right to bring slaves into the territories. 

A constitutional convention convened in Alabama soon after his departure from the U.S. Senate and quickly elected Jefferson Davis as a provisional President of the Confederacy. Davis was chosen because of his political status, his military reputation, and his moderate approach to secession. 

President Jefferson Davis
President Jefferson Davis

The home that resides in Biloxi, Mississippi, also known as Beauvoir, was willed to Davis after the Civil War by a close friend named, Sarah Dorsey. The grounds also serve as his Jefferson Davis’s Presidential Library and Museum. It was here that Davis spent the last 12 years of his life.

Jefferson Davis' house
Jefferson Davis’ house

Davis is pictured below with his dog, Traveler.

Jefferson Davis Portrait
Jefferson Davis Portrait

Outside the museum and library, Davis’s statue stands with his right arm outstretched as he is posed giving a speech in front of a crowd. The reason for this, as our tour guide explained, is that Davis was 90% blind in his left eye. He moved his right hand while speaking in order to drawn attention away from his left side.

Jefferson Davis Statue
Mrs. Varina Davis Bedroom

Below is the bedroom of Davis’s wife, Varina. A tub in the shape of a woman’s shoe sits along the side of the room.

Mrs. Varina Davis Bedroom
Mrs. Varina Davis’ Bedroom

In the Presidential Library, visitors are allowed to handle the old rifles from the Civil War era. Ellie remarked how heavy they were to hold. One was just as tall as she was when stood up next to her.

Ellie with gun
Ellie with rifle



Boomtown Casino RV Park

The campground is located on the Biloxi peninsula surrounded by a multitude of casinos. There’s a train that runs through the area at all hours. The campground is not staffed and entry is through a gate code. Call ahead 10 minutes before arrival and they can give you the gate code. Once you enter, we were told to look around and find a site we like and call to see if it’s available. We chose a site, called in and told it was not available. So we chose another with the employee still on the phone to confirm availability. 

Starlink was 41 down 7 up. Our Verizon phones had 4 bars. Verizon and AT&T were at 5 bars with the cell antenna.