McComb, Mississippi

McComb, Mississippi

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McComb is a city in Pike County
Pike County, Mississippi
-Demographics:As of the census of 2000, there were 38,940 people, 14,792 households, and 10,502 families residing in the county. The population density was 95 people per square mile . There were 16,720 housing units at an average density of 41 per square mile...

, Mississippi
Mississippi is a U.S. state located in the Southern United States. Jackson is the state capital and largest city. The name of the state derives from the Mississippi River, which flows along its western boundary, whose name comes from the Ojibwe word misi-ziibi...

, United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

, about 80 miles (128.7 km) south of Jackson
Jackson, Mississippi
Jackson is the capital and the most populous city of the US state of Mississippi. It is one of two county seats of Hinds County ,. The population of the city declined from 184,256 at the 2000 census to 173,514 at the 2010 census...

. As of the 2010 census, the city had a total population of 13,644. It is the principal city of the McComb, Mississippi, Micropolitan Statistical Area
McComb micropolitan area
The McComb Micropolitan Statistical Area is a micropolitan area in the southwestern Mississippi that covers two counties – Amite and Pike...

. It Is Also Known For Being Home to American Singer Britney Spears.


McComb was founded in 1872 after Henry Simpson McComb of the New Orleans, Jackson and Great Northern Railroad, a predecessor of the Illinois Central Railroad
Illinois Central Railroad
The Illinois Central Railroad , sometimes called the Main Line of Mid-America, is a railroad in the central United States, with its primary routes connecting Chicago, Illinois with New Orleans, Louisiana and Birmingham, Alabama. A line also connected Chicago with Sioux City, Iowa...

 (now part of the Canadian National Railway
Canadian National Railway
The Canadian National Railway Company is a Canadian Class I railway headquartered in Montreal, Quebec. CN's slogan is "North America's Railroad"....

), decided to move the railroad's maintenance shops away from New Orleans, Louisiana
New Orleans, Louisiana
New Orleans is a major United States port and the largest city and metropolitan area in the state of Louisiana. The New Orleans metropolitan area has a population of 1,235,650 as of 2009, the 46th largest in the USA. The New Orleans – Metairie – Bogalusa combined statistical area has a population...

, outside of the attractions of that city's saloons
Bar (establishment)
A bar is a business establishment that serves alcoholic drinks — beer, wine, liquor, and cocktails — for consumption on the premises.Bars provide stools or chairs that are placed at tables or counters for their patrons. Some bars have entertainment on a stage, such as a live band, comedians, go-go...

. Main street is one of the main streets in the downtown area with all the shops, attractions, and business. The railroad purchased land in Pike County, and three nearby communities, Elizabeth town, Burglund, and Harveytown, agreed to consolidate.

During the 1960s, McComb played a critical role in the Civil Rights Movement
African-American Civil Rights Movement (1955-1968)
The African-American Civil Rights Movement refers to the movements in the United States aimed at outlawing racial discrimination against African Americans and restoring voting rights to them. This article covers the phase of the movement between 1955 and 1968, particularly in the South...

. It was the location of SNCC
Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee
The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee ' was one of the principal organizations of the American Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s. It emerged from a series of student meetings led by Ella Baker held at Shaw University in Raleigh, North Carolina in April 1960...

's first voter registration project which was met with violence and intimidation on the part of authorities and the KKK
Ku Klux Klan
Ku Klux Klan, often abbreviated KKK and informally known as the Klan, is the name of three distinct past and present far-right organizations in the United States, which have advocated extremist reactionary currents such as white supremacy, white nationalism, and anti-immigration, historically...

. More than 100 McComb high school students were arrested in 1961 for protesting the murder of voter-registration activist Herbert Lee and the expulsion of Brenda Travis. McComb was the setting for several bombings involving racial strife. Malcolm Boyd
Malcolm Boyd
Malcolm Boyd is an American Episcopal Priest and author.-Biography:In the 1960s Boyd became known as “The Espresso Priest” for his religiously-themed poetry-reading sessions at the “Hungry i” nightclub in San Francisco. Boyd went on to become a prominent white clergyman in the American Civil...

 took part of COFO's Freedom House as a member of a clerical delegation to assist African-American voter registration.

On October 20, 1977, a chartered plane carrying members and crew of rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd
Lynyrd Skynyrd
Lynyrd Skynyrd is an American rock band prominent in spreading Southern Rock during the 1970s.Originally formed as the "Noble Five" in Jacksonville, Florida, in 1964, the band rose to worldwide recognition on the basis of its driving live performances and signature tune, Freebird...

 crashed in a swamp
A swamp is a wetland with some flooding of large areas of land by shallow bodies of water. A swamp generally has a large number of hammocks, or dry-land protrusions, covered by aquatic vegetation, or vegetation that tolerates periodical inundation. The two main types of swamp are "true" or swamp...

 near McComb, killing lead singer Ronnie Van Zant
Ronnie Van Zant
Ronald Wayne "Ronnie" Van Zant was an American lead vocalist, primary lyricist, and a founding member of the Southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd...

, guitarist Steve Gaines
Steve Gaines
Steven Earl Gaines was an American musician. He is most well known as a guitarist and songwriter for southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd, and is the younger brother of Cassie Gaines, who was also a member of the band...

, Steve's sister Cassie (a backup singer), and road manager Dean Kilpatrick.


McComb is located at 31°14'40.1022" North, 90°28'17.7342" West (31.2444739, -90.4715930).

According to the United States Census Bureau
United States Census Bureau
The United States Census Bureau is the government agency that is responsible for the United States Census. It also gathers other national demographic and economic data...

, the city has a total area of 11.6 square miles (30 km²), of which 11.6 square miles (30 km²) is land and 0.1 square mile (0.258998811 km²) (0.54%) is water.


As of the census
A census is the procedure of systematically acquiring and recording information about the members of a given population. It is a regularly occurring and official count of a particular population. The term is used mostly in connection with national population and housing censuses; other common...

of 2010, there were 13,644 people and 5,073 households in the city. The population density
Population density
Population density is a measurement of population per unit area or unit volume. It is frequently applied to living organisms, and particularly to humans...

 was 1,184 people per square mile (424/km²). There were 5,825 housing units at an average density of 500.6 per square mile (193.3/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 31.22% White, 66.29% African American, 0.17% Native American, 0.91% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 0.53% from other races, and 0.82% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.41% of the population.

As of the 2000 census, there were 5,265 households out of which 33.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 35.5% were married couples
Marriage is a social union or legal contract between people that creates kinship. It is an institution in which interpersonal relationships, usually intimate and sexual, are acknowledged in a variety of ways, depending on the culture or subculture in which it is found...

 living together, 25.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.2% were non-families. 32.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 15.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.47 and the average family size was 3.13.

In the city the population was spread out with 29.0% under the age of 18, 9.5% from 18 to 24, 24.7% from 25 to 44, 20.0% from 45 to 64, and 16.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 78.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 71.6 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $26,507, and the median income for a family was $31,758. Males had a median income of $27,899 versus $17,402 for females. The per capita income
Per capita income
Per capita income or income per person is a measure of mean income within an economic aggregate, such as a country or city. It is calculated by taking a measure of all sources of income in the aggregate and dividing it by the total population...

 for the city was $13,790. About 27.4% of families and 31.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 43.7% of those under the age of 18 and 21.3% of those 65 and older.


The City of McComb is served by the McComb School District
McComb School District
The McComb School District is a public school district based in McComb, Mississippi .-Schools:*McComb High School**1982-1983 National Blue Ribbon School *Denman Junior High School*Higgins Middle School*Kennedy Elementary School...

. There are 7 schools in the district, Otken Elementary, Kennedy Elementary, Higgins Middle School, Denman Jr. High School, McComb High School, Business & Technology Center, and Summit Academy. The McComb and the surrounding Pike County area has three separate school districts, three private schools, and a community college in the northern part of the county.
St. Alphonsus Catholic Church is located in McComb and provides classes kindergarten through seventh grade. McComb is also the location of Parklane Academy
Parklane Academy
Parklane Academy is a private Christian school from grades K4 through 12th grade located in McComb, Mississippi. Parklane is a member of the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools .-History:...

, a K4 through 12th grade private Christian school. And Jubilee - Performing Arts - Center, a private school catered in the performing arts. It is the first of its kind in the Pike County Area. It is located in the central McComb region. Southwest Mississippi Community College
Southwest Mississippi Community College
Southwest Mississippi Community College is a two-year community college located in Summit, Mississippi, with accreditation from the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.-History:...

 is located seven miles north of McComb, and northeast of Summit,MS. McComb High School is one of the 100 National Model Schools.

Rail transportation

The National Railroad Passenger Corporation, doing business as Amtrak , is a government-owned corporation that was organized on May 1, 1971, to provide intercity passenger train service in the United States. "Amtrak" is a portmanteau of the words "America" and "track". It is headquartered at Union...

, the national passenger rail system, provides service to McComb. Amtrak Train 59, the southbound City of New Orleans
City of New Orleans
The City of New Orleans is a nightly passenger train operated by Amtrak which travels between Chicago, Illinois and New Orleans, Louisiana. Before Amtrak's formation in 1971, the train was operated by the Illinois Central Railroad along the same route . The train currently operates on a 19½ hour...

, is scheduled to depart McComb at 12:41pm daily with service to Hammond and New Orleans. Amtrak Train 58, the northbound City of New Orleans, is scheduled to depart McComb at 3:38pm daily with service to Brookhaven, Hazlehurst, Jackson
Jackson, Mississippi
Jackson is the capital and the most populous city of the US state of Mississippi. It is one of two county seats of Hinds County ,. The population of the city declined from 184,256 at the 2000 census to 173,514 at the 2010 census...

, Yazoo City, Greenwood
Greenwood, Mississippi
Greenwood is a city in and the county seat of Leflore County, Mississippi, United States, located at the eastern edge of the Mississippi Delta approximately 96 miles north of Jackson, Mississippi, and 130 miles south of Memphis, Tennessee. The population was 15,205 at the 2010 census. It is the...

, Memphis
Memphis, Tennessee
Memphis is a city in the southwestern corner of the U.S. state of Tennessee, and the county seat of Shelby County. The city is located on the 4th Chickasaw Bluff, south of the confluence of the Wolf and Mississippi rivers....

, Newbern-Dyersburg, Fulton, Carbondale
Carbondale, Illinois
Carbondale is a city in Jackson County, in the state of Illinois, within the Southern Illinois region. It is located at the junction of Illinois Route 13 and U.S. Route 51, southeast of St. Louis, Missouri, on the northern edge of the Shawnee National Forest...

, Centralia, Effingham, Mattoon, Champaign-Urbana
Champaign, Illinois
Champaign is a city in Champaign County, Illinois, in the United States. The city is located south of Chicago, west of Indianapolis, Indiana, and 178 miles northeast of St. Louis, Missouri. Though surrounded by farm communities, Champaign is notable for sharing the campus of the University of...

, Kankakee, Homewood, and Chicago
Union Station (Chicago)
Union Station is a major train station that opened in 1925 in Chicago, replacing an earlier 1881 station. It is now the only intercity rail terminal in Chicago, as well as being the city's primary terminal for commuter trains. The station stands on the west side of the Chicago River between Adams...


Notable natives and residents

  • Adrian Brown
    Adrian Brown (baseball)
    Adrian Demond Brown is a free agent Major League Baseball outfielder who has played from through . Brown is a switch-hitter and throws right-handed....

    , Major League baseball player with the Pittsburgh Pirates
    Pittsburgh Pirates
    The Pittsburgh Pirates are a Major League Baseball club based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. They play in the Central Division of the National League, and are five-time World Series Champions...

    , Boston Red Sox
    Boston Red Sox
    The Boston Red Sox are a professional baseball team based in Boston, Massachusetts, and a member of Major League Baseball’s American League Eastern Division. Founded in as one of the American League's eight charter franchises, the Red Sox's home ballpark has been Fenway Park since . The "Red Sox"...

     and Kansas City Royals
    Kansas City Royals
    The Kansas City Royals are a Major League Baseball team based in Kansas City, Missouri. The Royals are a member of the Central Division of Major League Baseball's American League. From 1973 to the present, the Royals have played in Kauffman Stadium...

  • John Brady
    John Brady (basketball coach)
    John Brady is an American college basketball coach and the current head men's basketball coach for the Arkansas State University Red Wolves....

    , head coach of the Arkansas State University
    Arkansas State University
    Arkansas State University is a public university and is the flagship campus of the Arkansas State University System, the state's second largest college system and third largest university by enrollment. It is located atop on Crowley's Ridge at Jonesboro, Arkansas, USA...

     men's basketball team, former head coach of the LSU Tigers men's basketball
    LSU Tigers basketball
    The Louisiana State Tigers basketball team represents Louisiana State University in NCAA Division I men's college basketball. The team is currently coached by Trent Johnson and has enjoyed recent success, including a Final Four run in the 2005–2006 season. Past coaches include John Brady, Press...

  • Bo Diddley
    Bo Diddley
    Ellas Otha Bates , known by his stage name Bo Diddley, was an American rhythm and blues vocalist, guitarist, songwriter , and inventor...

    , blues singer
  • Jimmy Boyd
    Jimmy Boyd
    Jimmy Boyd was an American singer, musician, and actor. He was best known for his recording of the novelty song "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus".-Early years:...

    , singer, musician, actor
  • Charles E. Dunbar
    Charles E. Dunbar
    Charles Edward Dunbar, Jr. , was an attorney who developed the modern civil service system in the U.S. state of Louisiana. He was the first chairman of the Louisiana State Civil Service Commission, having served from 1940-1947.Dunbar was born in McComb, Mississippi, to Charles Dunbar, Sr., and the...

    , New Orleans
    New Orleans, Louisiana
    New Orleans is a major United States port and the largest city and metropolitan area in the state of Louisiana. The New Orleans metropolitan area has a population of 1,235,650 as of 2009, the 46th largest in the USA. The New Orleans – Metairie – Bogalusa combined statistical area has a population...

     attorney and civil service
    Civil service
    The term civil service has two distinct meanings:* A branch of governmental service in which individuals are employed on the basis of professional merit as proven by competitive examinations....

  • King Solomon Hill
    King Solomon Hill
    King Solomon Hill was an American blues musician, who recorded a small handful of songs in 1932. His unique guitar and voice make them among the most haunting blues recorded...

    , early blues musician
  • Steven Ozment
    Steven Ozment
    Steven E. Ozment is an American historian of early modern and modern Germany, the European family, and the Protestant Reformation....

    , American historian
  • Omar Kent Dykes
    Omar Kent Dykes
    Omar Kent Dykes is an American blues guitarist and singer, living in Austin, Texas. In 1973 he formed the band, Omar & the Howlers. The band plays electric Texas blues, rock and roll and blues-rock...

    , blues singer and guitarist
  • Bobby Lounge
    Bobby Lounge
    Bobby Lounge is an American singer-songwriter from McComb, Mississippi. Lounge began playing for house parties while attending Louisiana Tech University in northern Louisiana in the mid 1970s. In the 1980s, Lounge played a handful of shows at Ruby's Roadhouse in Mandeville, Louisiana...

    , blues pianist and songwriter
  • Robert "Squirrel" Lester, singer in the soul music group The Chi-Lites
    The Chi-Lites
    The Chi-Lites are a Chicago-based smooth soul vocal quartet from the early 1970s, one of the few from the period not to come from Memphis or Philadelphia...

  • Sam McCullum
    Sam McCullum
    Samuel Charles McCullum is a former professional American football player who played wide receiver for 10 seasons for the Seattle Seahawks and Minnesota Vikings from 1974 through 1983. McCullum was raised in Kalispell, Montana.-References:...

    , NFL football player
  • Brandy Norwood
    Brandy Norwood
    Brandy Rayana Norwood , known professionally as Brandy, is an American singer-songwriter, producer, actress, and dancer. In 2009, she introduced her rap alter-ego Bran'Nu....

    , singer and actress
  • Matt Tolbert
    Matt Tolbert
    Christopher Matthew Tolbert is an American professional baseball second baseman who is a free agent. After graduating from Centreville Academy in 2000, Tolbert attended University of Mississippi for four years; he was later drafted by the Baltimore Orioles in 2003 and the Minnesota Twins in 2004...

    , Major League Baseball Player for the Minnesota Twins
    Minnesota Twins
    The Minnesota Twins are a professional baseball team based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. They play in the Central Division of Major League Baseball's American League. The team is named after the Twin Cities area of Minneapolis and St. Paul. They played in Metropolitan Stadium from 1961 to 1981 and the...

  • William "Ray J" Norwood
    Ray J
    William Ray Norwood Jr. , better known by his stage name Ray J, is an American singer, songwriter, record producer and actor.-Early life:...

    , singer and actor, brother of Brandy Norwood
  • Willie Norwood
    Willie Norwood
    William Raymond Norwood, Sr. known as Willie Norwood is an American Gospel singer and has been involved in singing since early childhood. His father and mother sang in the church choir...

    , singer
  • Edward Grady Partin
    Edward Grady Partin
    Edward Grady Partin, Sr. , was a business agent of the Teamsters Union in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. His testimony in 1964 helped to convict union president James Riddle Hoffa of jury tampering.-Early years:...

    , Teamsters Union figure, spent his last years in McComb but died in Baton Rouge
    Baton Rouge, Louisiana
    Baton Rouge is the capital of the U.S. state of Louisiana. It is located in East Baton Rouge Parish and is the second-largest city in the state.Baton Rouge is a major industrial, petrochemical, medical, and research center of the American South...

    , Louisiana
    Louisiana is a state located in the southern region of the United States of America. Its capital is Baton Rouge and largest city is New Orleans. Louisiana is the only state in the U.S. with political subdivisions termed parishes, which are local governments equivalent to counties...

  • Britney Spears
    Britney Spears
    Britney Jean Spears is an American recording artist and entertainer. Born in McComb, Mississippi, and raised in Kentwood, Louisiana, Spears began performing as a child, landing acting roles in stage productions and television shows. She signed with Jive Records in 1997 and released her debut album...

    , pop singer
  • Jamie Lynn Spears
    Jamie Lynn Spears
    Jamie Lynn Marie Spears is an American actress and singer. The younger sister of pop star Britney Spears, she rose to prominence for her appearances on Nickelodeon shows All That and for playing Zoey Brooks on Zoey 101....

    , actress
  • Steve Broussard, National Football League player for the Green Bay Packers
    Green Bay Packers
    The Green Bay Packers are an American football team based in Green Bay, Wisconsin. They are members of the North Division of the National Football Conference in the National Football League . The Packers are the current NFL champions...

External links