A drive on Rodney Road is a journey back in time. Once expected to be the capital of Mississippi, Rodney is now a ghost town near the Mississippi River. Sitting on the Banks of the Mississippi River, Rodney was the busiest port between New Orleans and St. Louis in the 1850s. It once had a population of nearly 4000 with growth rate that surpassed that of Jackson. The Rodney Presbyterian Church is one of the many remaining buildings from the Civil War era. There's still a cannonball embedded in the brick above the church's front doors.
In 1870, a large sand bar began forming in the Mississippi River, forcing the River to change its course two miles to the west. When the River naturally changed course, Rodney was no longer a port city and began a steady decline. By 1930, Rodney was no longer considered an official town. Ghost town enthusiasts will enjoy exploring the town's history, buildings, and a sizable graveyard.
A dirt road portion of Rodney Road enters the town from the south. This is but a section of a much longer Rodney Road. The remaining parts are paved. The dirt portion of Rodney Road is maintained and suitable for most vehicles.
Today, the entire area around Rodney is prone to flooding. Rodney Road is also prone to flooding where the road approaches the ghost town. Local officials close the road when it is impassable.
Camping is not available along Rodney Road.
The Union Army landed troops in Mississippi as part of the Vicksburg Campaign of the US Civil WarMay 1, 1863. The goal was to control the Mississippi River, a vital transportation link, from the Confederate Army by capturing Vicksburg, MS. The first shots, known as the Battle of Port Gibson, took place just outside the home of Abram Keller Shaifer located on today's Shaifer Road. The Shaifer House is the last remaining structure on this historic battlefield. Today, it is part of the National Park Service's Vicksburg National Military Park. History buffs will enjoy the experience of being on this historic battlefield.
Shaifer Road is a dirt and gravel county road with little maintenance and significant erosion. Deep ruts require careful tire placement. A high clearance 4x4 vehicle is necessary to complete the route. The road is suitable for beginning offroad drivers looking for a bit of adventure.
Camping is not allowed along Shaifer Road.
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