Contributions by Reuben V. Anderson, Haley Barbour, Kane Ditto, Myrlie Evers, John E. Fleming, Dennis J. Mitchell, and William F. WinterIn December 2017, in celebration of our state's bicentennial, the Mississippi Department of Archives and History will open two state-of-the-art museums-the Museum of Mississippi History and the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum. The Mississippi Museum of History will explore the entire sweep of the state's history. The Mississippi Civil Rights Museum, the first state-operated civil rights museum in the country, will explore the period from 1945 to 1976, when Mississippi was ground zero for the Civil Rights Movement nationally.This companion book highlights some of the Mississippi stories captured in the two museums. The book also tells the story behind the museum project, honoring those who made these museums possible and celebrating their commitment to making the museums the signature project of Mississippi's bicentennial celebration.Mississippi's story comes to life through artifacts like a circa-1840 cotton gin, a contemporary Choctaw beaded medallion necklace, a banner from the state's first black Masonic lodge, a boll weevil trap used in Grenada County, a chess set molded from bread by a Freedom Rider at Parchman Penitentiary, and a clock that stopped at the moment Hurricane Katrina flooded a Biloxi home. Never before have these objects been gathered together in one place or publication.