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Webster County Mississippi

Greensboro80 The first county seat of Webster County was Greensboro, which was located in Section 8, T. 19, R. 9, E. The inhabitants of this place, about 250 in number, were noted for their hospitality. They were especially kind to the members of the Legislature from this and the northern part of the State, who were accustomed to pass through Greensboro on their way to Jackson. There were at this place two or three saloons. After filling their saddlebags with the best whiskey, the legislators would take the old Natchez Trace for Jackson, a distance of 120 miles. They would make the entire journey on horseback in groups of twenty or thirty.

Among the most prominent citizens of Greensboro during her greatest prosperity were J. V. Steen, Wiley Marshall, Prank Liddell, T. N. Davis, John Nolen, Capt. J. B. Dunn, Col. Wm. Brantly, and J. J. Campbell. The place had about ten business houses. Dry goods and groceries were hauled in wagons from Greenwood, a distance of sixty-five miles, or Columbus, a distance of forty-five miles.

The courts that formerly met at Greensboro were always important gatherings, since their jurisdiction extended over the present counties of Choctaw, Webster, and a part of Montgomery and other counties. They were attended by such lawyers as J. Z. George, Reuben Davis, E. C. Walthall, Wiley P. Harris, and Bob Hudson.

During the war the town was burned by the Union soldiers. After the burning of the courthouse in 1871, the Legislature moved the county seat of Choctaw to Lagrange. Greensboro then began to decay. In her last days the saloons had full sway, and she became noted for her desperate characters and the crimes committed within her limits. During the life of this place twenty-three men were killed within its limits. Yet there was only one legal execution here during this time.

At present the site of the old town is one of the most dilapidated looking places in that part of the State. The old log jail, built in 1839 or 1840, is still standing. There is nothing else worthy of note except "gullies and ditches" from four to fifty feet deep. And, if the sand from underneath the surface continues to wash and flow away for the next twenty years as it has in the past, there will be nothing left of old Greensboro but a hole in the ground.

Extinct Towns| AHGP Mississippi

Footnotes:
80. This sketch is based upon information derived from Mr. S. B. Dobbs, of Chester, Miss., Circuit Clerk of Choctaw County.

Source: The Mississippi Historical Commission Publications, Volume V, Edited by Franklin L. Riley,
Secretary, 1902.

 

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