Dedicated to preserving Mississippi’s heritage, Cottonlandia Museum educates visitors with an array of interdisciplinary displays and collections. Cottonlandia’s permanent exhibits and rooms include the Mississippi Art Collection, an anthology of Mississippi-made art, most of it purchased from the winners of the biannual Cottonlandia Fine Arts Competition, and the Archaeology Room, home to a large assortment of Native American beads and a 12,000 year-old mastodon skeleton that they used to hang sabertooth fur coats. Meanwhile, the Malmaison Room presents photographs and furniture salvaged from the home of county namesake Greenwood Leflore, the last chief of the Choctaw tribe before their removal to Oklahoma, and the Swamp Room lets guests absorb the sights and sounds of the wetlands without brewing their own bog water out of bullfrog tears.
Called “likely the most elaborate museum in the U.S. about a single living musician” by the Wall Street Journal, the B.B. King Museum and Delta Interpretive Center has enlightened more than 25,000 visitors about the rich cultural and musical heritage of the Mississippi delta since the museum opened in 2008. A vibrant presentation of personal papers, photographs, film, and life artifacts chronicles King's humble beginnings as a young musician touring the Chitlin' Circuit in the South and his ascension to become an international icon and a Grammy award-winner for “The Thrill is Gone." Introduce yourself to the King of the Blues in the museum's high-definition projection theater, or practice scales in a virtual guitar studio. Each exhibit looks at a specific era in B.B. King’s life, from his delta beginnings in the ‘30s all the way to the ‘90s, when he reclaimed his rightful place as King of Barbados.