Collecting National Parks - Natchez Trace Parkway Day Three

Missed the first installment of this series?

Collecting National Parks: Natchez Trace Parkway Day 1

Collecting National Parks: Natchez Trace Parkway Day 2

Started our day at Jeff Busby site and drove quickly to the top of the "mountain" to see the view from one of the highest points in Mississippi. Sorry...but it's underwhelming.

Destination: Tishomingo State Park (mi 305)
Planned stops: Tupelo National Battlefield, Parkway Visitor Center, Brices Crossroads National Battlefield
Soundtrack: 100 Cupboards by N.D. Wilson (audiobook)

Tupelo National Battlefield (off the Trace)

I am married to a Civil War fanatic. He is always in the middle of at least one book about the Civil War, he has read the biographies / autobiographies of every major (and lots of not-so-major) generals on both sides of the conflict, and he makes a point to stop and tour even the most obscure battle sites whenever possible. As a concession to him, I allowed for three battlefield stops this trip. Tupelo was the first and we were disappointed to find that it was nothing more than a small grassy spot in the middle of the town on Tupelo. There's a monument. That's it. Not the treasure-trove of play-by-play signs that he hoped to find. Not worth the time to stop, even for a die-hard like The Engineer.

Parkway Visitor Center (mi 266)

Because the boys are collecting their Junior Ranger Badges, we were bound to stop at the visitor center. They enjoyed filling out the little booklet that enables them to earn their badge while we ate a picnic lunch. After they were sworn in as Junior Rangers, we headed off the Parkway for another nearby Battlefield.

Brices Crossroads National Battlefield (off the Trace)

We spent some time in an earlier homeschool lesson preparing for the visit to this site. (check out this video for a quick run-down on the battle). From everything I read about Brices Crossroads, I planned for a thirty-minute stop. Read the few signs, ooh and ahh at the cannons, get back into the car and go.


You can't do that to an enthusiast. Nearly two hours later, after reading every sign, walking the battlefield and watching The Engineer point this way and that way ("General Forrest is coming with his Cavalry from that direction and - look over here - the Federals are exhausted after that double quick march..."), stopping in at the cemetery to read the names on the headstones, we finally loaded up and left. It was about an hour-and-a-half too long for the mommy and two littlest. But for the grinning Engineer, I guess it was worth it.

Tishomingo State Park (mi 305)

We set up camp for two days here since there was so much we planned to see splintering off from this section of the Trace. It is a beautiful spot! We easily could have vacationed here for an entire week, considering all there is to see in the area and the amazing hiking trails in the park itself. And there was a shower in the bathhouse. With the nights so cold, getting in a warm shower was heaven itself.

Next up is Day 4 of our Natchez Trace Parkway adventure! Did you ever chance a vacation at a spot you weren't exactly sure you'd like? How did it turn out? Sharing is caring! Leave a comment and tell me about it. :)

#camping #campingwithkids #familyvacation #historytravel #nationalparks #natcheztrace #natchezstatepark #travel #tishomingo #tupelobattlefield #bricescrossroadsbattlefield #civilwar

Check out some of my other travel posts:

Minimalist Packing for Camping with Kids

Collecting National Parks: Natchez, Mississippi

Our Quest to Collect National Parks



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