One of our discoveries in the south is the beautiful town of Oxford, Mississippi, home to the University of Mississippi. It's a bit off the beaten track and well worth the extra miles to visit. Our aim was to visit Rowan Oak, the home of William Faulkner, a small mansion (and now visitors center) where he wrote most of his novels and short stories about the south he knew. But the historic town center itself is a delight with its tidy courthouse square and little shops and cafes.
This is the view of the courthouse clock from the windows of the Faulkner corner up on the second floor of Square Books, a general independent bookstore in three separate shops around the square. A book lovers mecca if there ever was one.
Faulkner's works are well featured along with a wonderful selection of biographies and criticism.
The shop is also a cultural center of the town with locals and visitors attending book events and signings. It's the kind of place that we could easily imagine settling into for a long stay.
We bypassed the Elvis sites in Memphis, Tennessee and Tupelo, Mississippi, and so this cool poster helped to make up for that! Haha!
The welcoming second level has a coffee bar and cafe tables.
View of the ground floor from the stairs of this wonderful old building.
What a wonderful visit we had here!
The staff recommended the City Grocery, a nice old tavern a couple doors down on the square as a way to beat the heat. (Which really wasn't too bad.)
It's a place where local writers and visiting authors hang out and where everyone cranes their necks to see who is walking in. It felt odd for everyone to look up when we walked in. There was a nice buttoned down crowd on a weekday afternoon in summer.
A bit too hot for time on the balcony overlooking the square.
A little further on is the wildly popular Ajax Cafe. The menu is not what we're used to, but gave us a great sampling of some celebrated southern cuisine.
I am not kidding. The BEST chicken fried steak I have ever eaten! I chose a scrumptious sweet potato casserole as a side dish with pecans in it.
A good shot of the water tower from the square.
Mississippi is amazingly lush and green. The planters are just overflowing on the walkways. And Oxford is simply the loveliest place!
Still writing on the road with more to come!
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