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Founded in 1848. Known as "Ole Miss," the school has played a pivotal part in Mississippi history. It was occupied by Gen. Grant and his troops in 1862. William Faulkner was postmaster from 1921 to 1924. In 1963 James Meredith became the first African-American to attend.
Faulkner enrolled at Ole Miss in 1919 and was a member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon social fraternity. He attended three semesters before dropping out in November 1920.
On October 1, 1962, James Meredith became the first black student at the University of Mississippi, after being barred from entering. His enrollment sparked riots on the Oxford campus, and required enforcement by U.S. Marshals sent in by President John F. Kennedy. The riots led to a violent clash which left two people dead. Bob Dylan sang about the incident in his song "Oxford Town". Meredith's actions are regarded as a pivotal moment in the history of civil rights in the United States. He graduated on August 18, 1963 with a degree in political science.
On campus are University Museums, with Greek and Roman antiquities; Theora Hamblett Collection and over 6,000 objects of Southern folk art. Home of the Southern Foodways Alliance and the Center for Southern Studies. The Blues Archive features a large collection of blues memorabilia. Ventress Hall, c. 1889, features stained glass windows depicting the Greys, Ole Miss students who fought in the Civil War. Nearby is a cemetery where Confederate soldiers killed in the battle of Shiloh are buried.
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