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James Earl Price Mississippi History Collection

Identifier: M397

Scope and Contents

The James Earl Price Mississippi History Collection is comprised of diverse materials and subject matter.


  • 1943-2000

Conditions Governing Access

Noncirculating; available for research.

Conditions Governing Use

This collection may be protected from unauthorized copying by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code).

Biographical / Historical

James Earl Price was born on September 3, 1936, in Hinds County, Mississippi. When he was eight years old, Price’s family moved to a farm in Carpenter, Mississippi (a couple of miles down the road and across the county line), in Copiah County. Following his graduation from Utica High School in 1955, Price was employed as a Relief Train Order Operator and Depot Agent with the Central Illinois Railroad. At the time, steam engines were just being phased out and diesel engines were very popular. The Central Illinois Railroad parallels what is now Interstate 55. Much of Price’s employment with the railroad was at the Vicksburg office, although he had many temporary positions in other towns during this time. He was promoted to Train Dispatcher and worked this position from time to time on a temporary basis. He married his wife, Carol, at Hawkins United Methodist Church in 1964. After the Vicksburg railroad office closed in 1968, Price began working in the timber industry where he has remained to this day. Sadly, his wife died of lymphoma in 1994.

While rearing two children in the 1960s and ‘70s, he and his wife struggled with the many changes occurring within the United Methodist church. At the time he and many of the followers of the United Methodist church felt that the church may have lost its way. Many people split from the church at this point, but Price chose to stay and work for change within the church he had always loved.

Price is a Past Master (1983) of W. H. Stevens Lodge # 121 of the Free and Accepted Masons in Vicksburg. He also served his Lodge as treasurer for 20 years. He is also a Knights York Cross of Honor Mason and a member of the Red Cross of Constantine.

Price has been a member of Hawkins Methodist Church since 1966, and he researches various subjects of Mississippi history in his spare time. He served as chairman and vice-chairman of the Methodist Mississippi Conference Commission on Archives and History from 1996 to 2004. Price has served as president of the Mississippi Methodist Historical Society since 1997. He is also on the executive committee of the UMC Southeastern Jurisdiction Historical Society. In 2000, he was honored at the Annual Conference with the Tobias Gibson Award for his significant contributions to the preservation of Methodist history in the Mississippi Conference.


.40 Cubic Feet : MC2.D15

Language of Materials



The collection is divided into six series, which are arranged by subject matter. :

Series 1: Alleged Slaughter at Camp Van Dorn

Series 2: History and Struggles of the United Methodist Church in Mississippi

Series 3: President Theodore Roosevelt’s Bear Hunt in Mississippi

Series 4: History and Records of Mississippi Lodge #56 of the Free and Accepted Masons, Rodney, MS

Series 5: Ku Klux Klan materials

Series 6: Miscellaneous Clippings and Personal Musings on Historic Events

Most series include correspondence, essays, and photocopied newspaper clippings. Some of the larger series contain interviews, newsletters, maps, photocopied texts, and internet print outs as well.


Donated by Mr. James Earl Price between 2000 and 2004.

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Methodist History Collection M451

James Earl Price Mississippi History Collection
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Repository Details

Part of the Historical Manuscripts and Photographs Repository

118 College Drive - 5148
Hattiesburg MS 39406-0001