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Two Mississippi Museums offering free admission Wednesday in honor of late Gov. William Winter

Photo courtesy of the Two Mississippi Museums

The Two Mississippi Museums in downtown Jackson will be offering free admission on Wednesday, Feb. 21 in honor of former Governor William Winter.

Winter, who passed away at the age of 97 in December 2020, served as Mississippi’s 58th governor from 1980-1984. He was later appointed to President Bill Clinton’s National Advisory Board on Race.

The Grenada native’s greatest legacy, according to the Mississippi Department of Archives and History, was convincing state leaders of the need to open the Two Mississippi Museums in 2017. He was also instrumental in attaining the necessary funds to go on with the project.

During the opening ceremony at the museums, Winter declared, “These two museums were built for all of us, but most especially they were built for our children and our grandchildren and future generations.”

Maintaining an annual tradition of honoring Winter, admission will be free to all at both the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum and the Museum of Mississippi History. The day of free admission is being made possible by Jones Walker LLP, which acquired Watkins, Ludlam, Winter, and Stennis where Winter worked for over 50 years.

“We are proud to honor the legacy of Governor and First Lady Winter by providing access to such an enlightening institution – the Two Mississippi Museums,” Jones Walker LLP managing partner Bill Hines said. “We hope those who visit realize how passionate they were not only for the history of Mississippi but also for providing opportunity to its future generations.”

Winter served on the MDAH Board of Trustees for more than 50 years and held the position of president for nearly his entire time on the board.

“We are grateful to the Winter family and to Jones Walker for this special tribute to Governor and Mrs. Winter at the Two Mississippi Museums,” MDAH director Katie Blount said. “What a great way to celebrate his legacy by allowing visitors to explore and learn about our state’s history in the place he worked so hard to help create.”

The William and Elise Winter Education Endowment was established by the Foundation of Mississippi History to memorialize the former governor and first lady and their commitment to education and preservation. Funds are used to defray costs such as admission, travel, and on-site lunches for students.

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