Laurel, Mississippi

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Laurel, Mississippi
—  City  —
Location of Laurel in the State of Mississippi
Coordinates: 31°41′51″N 89°8′22″W / 31.6975, -89.13944Coordinates: 31°41′51″N 89°8′22″W / 31.6975, -89.13944
Country United States
State Mississippi
County Jones
Incorporated 1882
 • Mayor Melvin Mack
 • Total 15.8 sq mi (40.8 km2)
 • Land 15.4 sq mi (40.0 km2)
 • Water 0.3 sq mi (0.9 km2)
Elevation 269 ft (82 m)
Population (2000)
 • Total 18,393
 • Density 1,192.3/sq mi (460.2/km2)
Time zone CST (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP codes 39440-39443
Area code(s) 601
FIPS code 28-39640
GNIS feature ID 0672321

Laurel is a city in Jones County, Mississippi. As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 18,393 although a significant population increase was reported following Hurricane Katrina. Located in southeast Mississippi, southeast of Jackson on Tallahala Creek, Laurel was founded in 1882 as a lumber town. An American Indian reservation is located in nearby Sandersville.

Laurel is the principal city of the Laurel Micropolitan Statistical Area. Its major employers include Howard Industries, Sanderson Farms, Masonite, Family Health Center, Howse Implement, Thermo-Kool and South Central Regional Medical Center. Laurel is home to the Lauren Rogers Museum of Art (Mississippi's oldest art museum).


  • Melvin Mack – Mayor elected as the first African American mayor of Laurel in 2005
  • Dennis Keveryn – City Administrator
  • Willie Lavonne Evans – Ward 1 Councilman
  • Tony Wheat – Ward 2 Councilman
  • Tony Thaxton – Ward 3 Councilman
  • George Carmichael – Ward 4 Councilman
  • Manuel L. Jones – Ward 5 Councilman
  • Johnny Magee – Ward 6 Councilman
  • Trey Chinn – Ward 7 Councilman
  • Greg King – Fire Chief


Public schoolsEdit

The City of Laurel is served by the Laurel School District, which has five campuses and a total enrollment of approximately 3,100. The Jones County School District also provides education for Laurel-area students.

Private schoolsEdit


Amtrak's Crescent train connects Laurel with the cities of New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington, Charlotte, Atlanta, Birmingham and New Orleans. The Amtrak station is situated at 230 North Maple Street.

Hattiesburg-Laurel Regional Airport is located in an unincorporated area in Jones County, near Moselle.[1][2]

Major highwaysEdit

The Train Station in Laurel, Mississippi
DwaynePAdded by DwayneP
Lauren Rogers museum
Lauren Rogers Museum of Art
MichlaovicAdded by Michlaovic

Famous natives and residentsEdit

Laurel is the birthplace and/or primary residence of many celebrities.

In addition, the fictional character Blanche DuBois of Tennessee Williams' play A Streetcar Named Desire is described as having come from the Laurel area.


Laurel is located at 31°41'51" North, 89°8'22" West (31.697412, -89.139315).[12]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 15.8 square miles (41 km2), of which 15.4 square miles (40 km2) is land and 0.3 square miles (0.78 km2) is water. The total area of Laurel is 2.09% water.


As of the census[13] of 2000, there were 18,393 people, 6,925 households, and 4,542 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,192.3 people per square mile (460.2/km²). There were 7,804 housing units at an average density of 505.9 per square mile (195.3/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 40.64% White, 55.08% African American, 0.11% Native American, 0.33% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 3.17% from other races, and 0.67% from two or more races. 3.87% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There has been a steady influx of Hispanic migrant labor in the last few years, most of them being employed at Howard Industries, Sanderson Farms and independent labor. Companies in the area tend to recruit foreign workers due to the benefits of the federal government subsidizing their cost for training of those on worker visas. Those on visas also tend to be paid substantially less. There has been some debate regarding the legal status of the majority of these workers, particularly after Immigration Customs and Enforcement arrested nearly 600 suspected illegal immigrants at the Howard Industries plant on August 26, 2008.[14]

There were 6,925 households out of which 29.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 37.2% were married couples living together, 23.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 34.4% were non-families. 30.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.61 and the average family size was 3.21.

In the city the population was spread out with 27.9% under the age of 18, 10.1% from 18 to 24, 25.4% from 25 to 44, 19.4% from 45 to 64, and 17.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 85.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 80.5 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $25,988, and the median income for a family was $30,185. Males had a median income of $27,077 versus $17,336 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,561. 28.9% of the population and 21.4% of families were below the poverty line. 37.5% of those under the age of 18 and 19.3% of those 65 and older were living below the poverty line.

Government and infrastructureEdit

The United States Postal Service operates the Laurel Post Office and the Choctaw Post Office.[15][16]

The Mississippi Department of Mental Health South Mississippi State Hospital Crisis Intervention Center is in Laurel.[17]



  1. ^ "Contact." Hattiesburg-Laurel Regional Airport. Retrieved on July 15, 2011. "Our Address Airport Director, 1002 Terminal Dr. Moselle, MS 39459"
  2. ^ "Hattiesburg city, Mississippi." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on July 16, 2011.
  3. ^ "Ralph Boston". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 31 May 2011. 
  4. ^ "Jason Campbell". Yahoo. Retrieved 31 May 2011. 
  5. ^ "Ed Hinton". CNN/Sports Illustrated. Retrieved 31 May 2011. 
  6. ^ Alberge, Dalya (November 16, 2010). "'Jesuit priest' forger has fooled US museums for more than 20 years". Guardian News and Media. Retrieved 31 May 2011. 
  7. ^ Stoilas, Helen (November 10, 2010). "“Jesuit priest” donates fraudulent works". The Art Newspaper. Retrieved 31 May 2011. 
  8. ^ Kennedy, Randy (January 11, 2011). "Elusive Forger, Giving but Never Stealing". New York Times. Retrieved 31 May 2011. 
  9. ^ Gapper, John (January 21, 2011). "The Forger's Story". The Financial Times. Retrieved January 26, 2012. 
  10. ^ "Cartoonist Doug Marlette dies in wreck". Raleigh News and Observer. Archived from the original on 2007-07-13. Retrieved 2007-07-16. 
  11. ^ "U.Va. professor recalls growing up in Mississippi during the Civil Rights era". Inside UVA Online. Rector and Visitors of University of Virginia. March 30, 2001. Retrieved 2009-08-04. 
  12. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  13. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  14. ^ Tim, Gaynor (2008-08-26). "U.S. immigration cops nab 595 in largest-ever raid". (Reuters). Retrieved 2008-08-27. 
  15. ^ "Post Office™ Location - LAUREL." United States Postal Service. Retrieved on November 1, 2010.
  16. ^ "Post Office™ Location - CHOCTAW." United States Postal Service. Retrieved on November 1, 2010.
  17. ^ "Contact Us." South Mississippi State Hospital. Retrieved on November 1, 2010. "SMSH Crisis Intervention Center 934 West Drive Laurel, MS 39440."

External linksEdit

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Laurel, Mississippi. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.
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