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History and Facts of Mississippi Counties

Today’s Mississippi counties did not always exist in the present form. They went through many different changes in the space of a few short years.

The Mississippi Territory existed from April 7, 1798, until December 10, 1817.

The State of Mississippi entered the union as the 20th state on December 10, 1817.

Mississippi is currently divided into 82 counties. States bordering Mississippi are AlabamaTennesseeArkansasLouisiana.

Fun Facts about Mississippi Counties

Counties by Year

County Size Facts

  • Yazoo County (920 sq mi) is the largest county in Mississippi.
  • Alcorn County (400 sq mi) is the smallest county in Mississippi.

County Population Facts

Mississippi City Facts

Mississippi’s 10  largest cities (2010) are:

  1. Jackson (173,514) is in Hinds, Madison and Rankin Counties
  2. Gulfport (67,793) is in Harrison County
  3. Southhaven (48,982) is in DeSoto County
  4. Hattiesburg (45,989) is in Mississippi and Lamar Counties
  5. Biloxi (44,054) is in Harrison County
  6. Meridian (41,148) is in Lauderdale County
  7. Tupelo (34,211) is in Lee County
  8. Greenville (34,400) is in Washington County
  9. Olive Branch (33,484) is in DeSoto County
  10. Horn Lake (26,066) is in DeSoto County

Boundary Changes of Mississippi Counties from 1785 to 1918

This Interactive Map of Mississippi Counties show the historical boundaries, names, organization, and attachments of every county, extinct county and unsuccessful county proposal from the creation of Mississippi from 1785-1918.

List of Mississippi Counties

List of Old Former / Extinct Mississippi Counties

Mississippi contains some counties that no longer exist because they were discontinued, renamed or merged with another county. These are important for genealogy research purposes.

The below Mississippi counties no longer exist:

Bainbridge County, Mississippi

Created on January 17, 1823 from Covington County

Bainbridge County merged back with Covington County on January 21, 1824.

Bourbon County, Georgia

Created on February 7, 1785 from the Natchez Region.

Bourbon County eliminated by the state of Georgia on February 1, 1788.

Colfax County, Mississippi

Created on May 12, 1871 from  ChickasawLowndesMonroe and Oktibbeha Counties.

Colfax County renamed to Clay County on April 10, 1876.

Davis County, Mississippi

Jones County was renamed Davis County on December 1, 1865. Davis County renamed to Jones County on December 1, 1869.

Pickering County, Mississippi Territory

Created on April 2, 1799 from unorganized land. Pickering County renamed to Jefferson County on January 11, 1802.

Pearl County, Mississippi

Created on February 21, 1872 from Hancock County. Pearl County merged into to Hancock and Marion Counties on February 28, 1878.

Sumner County, Mississippi

Created on April 6, 1874 from  ChickasawChoctaw and Montgomery Counties. Sumner County renamed to Webster County on January 30, 1882.


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