Clinton, Mississippi
Mount Salus (original name)
You Belong Here
Location in Hinds County, Mississippi
Location in Hinds County, Mississippi
Location of Mississippi in the United States
Location of Mississippi in the United States
Coordinates: 32°20′30″N 90°19′18″W / 32.34167°N 90.32167°W / 32.34167; -90.32167[1]
CountryUnited States
 • TypeStrong Mayor-Council
 • MayorPhil Fisher (R)[2]
 • Board of AldermenKaren Godfrey, Jim Martin, Robert Chapman, Chip Wilbanks, Beverly Oliver, James Lott III, Ricki Garrett
 • Total42.14 sq mi (109.15 km2)
 • Land41.87 sq mi (108.44 km2)
 • Water0.28 sq mi (0.71 km2)
Elevation358 ft (109 m)
 • Total28,100
 • Density671.16/sq mi (259.13/km2)
Time zoneUTC-6 (CST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC-5 (CDT)
ZIP codes
39056, 39058,
39060 (P.O. boxes)
Area codes601 and 769
FIPS code[4][5]28-14420
GNIS feature ID668609[1]

Clinton is a city in Hinds County, Mississippi, United States. Situated in the Jackson metropolitan area, it is the 10th most populous city in Mississippi. The population was 28,100 at the 2020 United States census.[6]


Camp Clinton entrance in 1943. The sign reads "Prisoner of War Camp Clinton, Miss."
The Cedars in Clinton is listed on the National Register of Historic Places

Founded in 1823, Clinton was originally known as Mt. Salus, which means "Mountain of health". It was named for the plantation home of Walter Leake, third governor of Mississippi, which was located in Clinton and built in 1812. The road east from Vicksburg was completed to Mount Salus and the federal government located the United States General Land Office at Mount Salus in 1822.[7] The original federal survey in 1822 references a spring called "Swafford's Spring" at the site of the town.[8] In 1828, the city changed its name to Clinton in honor of DeWitt Clinton, the former governor of New York who led completion of the Erie Canal.

The first road through Mount Salus/Clinton was the Natchez Trace, improved from a centuries-old Native American path. Currently Clinton has three major highways that pass through the city: the Natchez Trace Parkway, U.S. Route 80, and Interstate 20.

Mississippi College, a Christian university located in Clinton, is the oldest college in the state of Mississippi. It was founded January 24, 1826, as Hampstead Academy, the second male college in the state after Jefferson College.[9] Mississippi College is the second oldest Baptist university in the world, and was the first coeducational college in the United States to grant a degree to a woman. Clinton is home to sports teams known as the "Clinton Arrows" and "Mississippi College Choctaws". Hillman College, originally for women, was founded in 1853 as Central Female Institute, supported by the Central Baptist Association.[9] It changed its name in 1891. Mount Hermon Female Seminary, a historically black college, was established in 1875 by Sarah Ann Dickey.[9] It closed in 1924 as students moved to co-educational institutions.

The Clinton-Vicksburg Railroad was the second oldest in the state, incorporated in 1831. It contributed to the export of 20,000 bales of cotton annually from this city, the most of any city between Vicksburg and Meridian.[9] Cotton from three surrounding counties was shipped through Clinton and by rail to Grand Gulf on the Mississippi.

During the Civil War, Confederate forces, as well as Union troops— the latter commanded by generals Ulysses S. Grant and Sherman—briefly occupied Clinton on their way to the Battle of Vicksburg in May 1863. Grant had mistakenly believed that John C. Pemberton, a Confederate general, would attack him at Clinton. Grant finally took Vicksburg in this campaign.[10]

Clinton Riot

See also: Mass racial violence in the United States § Post–Civil War and Reconstruction period (1865–1877)

In September 1875 during the election campaign, a Republican political rally was held in downtown Clinton, where 3,000 people were gathered expecting Governor Adelbert Ames and other prominent speakers. White insurgents disrupted the rally, attacking blacks in what was called the "Clinton Riot." It resulted in the deaths of several white men and an estimated 50 blacks later that night and over the next few days. More armed whites arrived by train and attacked blacks.[9] Among the black victims were schoolteachers, church leaders, and local Republican organizers.[11]

Whites had been attacking black and white Republicans in every election cycle, and that year the paramilitary Red Shirts arose in the state as a force to intimidate blacks and suppress black voting.[11] The governor appealed to the federal government for protection and the U.S. government sent more troops. But election-related violence continued through the fall and, together with fraud at the polls, resulted in white Democrats regaining control of the state legislature and, in 1876, the governor's seat. This political shift signaled the end of the Reconstruction era, confirmed when the federal government withdrew remaining troops in 1877.

20th century to present

During World War II, Camp Clinton was established as a German POW camp south of town; it housed about 3,000 German soldiers. Most of the prisoners were from the Afrika Korps. Of the 40 German generals captured in the war, Camp Clinton housed 35 of them. The German soldiers provided the labor to build a replica model of the Mississippi River Basin for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, used for planning and designing flood prevention.

Clinton, the smallest city to ever host a Fortune 500 company, was the headquarters for WorldCom from the mid-1990s until 2002. WorldCom went bankrupt due to what was at the time the largest accounting scandal in U.S. history. The financial dealings resulted in fraud-related convictions of Bernard Ebbers, CEO, and Scott Sullivan, CFO. The company changed its name to MCI and moved its corporate headquarters location to Ashburn, Virginia. Verizon, MCI's successor, owns SkyTel (no relation to Bell Mobility's Skytel brand). It still occupies the massive former WorldCom compound in Clinton.

On April 15, 2011, an EF3 tornado struck the city at about 11:00 am. CDT. It produced damage near Interstate 20, which included total destruction to the BankPlus building. Malaco Records was destroyed as well. Ten people were injured by the tornado.[12]


According to the 2010 United States census, the city has a total area of 42.147 square miles (109.16 km2), of which 41.822 square miles (108.32 km2) is land and 0.325 square miles (0.84 km2) is water.[4][13]


Historical population
U.S. Decennial Census[14]
Clinton racial composition as of 2020[15]
Race Num. Perc.
White 14,410 51.3%
Black or African American 10,693 38.1%
Native American 49 0.2%
Asian 1,291 4.6%
Pacific Islander 7 nil%
Other/Mixed 865 3.1%
Hispanic or Latino 785 2.8%

Up from 2010's 25,216 people,[16] the city of Clinton had a population of 28,100 people, 9,047 households, and 6,187 families according to the 2020 census.[15] According to the 2020 census, its population was 51.3% non-Hispanic white, 38.1% Black and African American, 0.2% Native American, 4.6% Asian, 3.1% two or more races, and 2.8% Hispanic or Latino of any race.


Clinton operates as a code charter form of government, divided into six Wards. The local governing body consists of the mayor, one Alderman representing each of the six Wards and one Alderman-at-Large whose duty is to represent the entire community.

As of July 3, 2017, Philip R. Fisher, a retired major general in the Mississippi National Guard,[17] is the city's mayor. The Board of Aldermen are Karen Godfrey (Ward 1), Jim Martin (Ward 2), Robert Chapman (Ward 3), Chip Wilbanks (Ward 4), Beverly Oliver (Ward 5), James Lott III (Ward 6) and Ricki Garrett (Alderwoman-At-Large).[18]


At one point WorldCom (now Verizon) was headquartered in Clinton. In 2003 the company announced that it would move its headquarters to Virginia.[19][20]

Automotive component manufacturer Delphi Corporation operated a plant in Clinton from the early 1970s until its closure in 2009, making cable and wiring connectors.[21] When Delphi closed the plant in late 2009, with the loss of 280 jobs, production moved to Delphi's Warren, Ohio facility.[21][22]


Universities and colleges

Primary and secondary schools

The city of Clinton's public schools are served by the Clinton Public School District.


Private schools:

Public library

Jackson/Hinds Library System operates the Quisenberry Library in Clinton.[23] In 2018 the Clinton city government, citing problems with the sanitary condition, closed the library. It stated that it would reopen if the library system revised the terms of the library lease.[24]


The Mississippi Brilla is a soccer team competing in USL League Two (PDL), the fourth highest league of the American Soccer Pyramid, and play in the Mid-South Division of the Southern Conference. They play their home games at Traceway Park in the city of Clinton.

Notable people


  1. ^ a b c U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Clinton
  2. ^ "Fisher elected Clinton's new mayor". WAPT News. June 4, 2013. Retrieved February 3, 2016. Republican Phil Fisher will become Clinton's new mayor
  3. ^ "2020 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 24, 2022.
  4. ^ a b "Places: Mississippi". 2010 Census Gazetteer Files. United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 28, 2013.
  5. ^ "FIPS55 Data: Mississippi". FIPS55 Data. United States Geological Survey. February 23, 2006. Archived from the original on June 18, 2006.
  6. ^ "Clinton city, Mississippi".
  7. ^ Claiborne, J.F.H. (1880). Mississippi, as a Province, Territory and State. Jackson, Mississippi: Power and Barksdale, Publishers and Printers. p. 525
  8. ^ Department of the Treasury. General Land Office. 1812–1849. Mississippi. Township Six North, Range One West. Map. September 30, 1822, approved by Levin Wailes, Surveyor General Mississippi, United States Lands South of Tennessee. Washington, DC: National Archives.
  9. ^ a b c d e Mississippi: Comprising Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions ..., ed. by Dunbar Rowland, Southern Historical Publishing Association, 1907, pp. 455–459
  10. ^ John Keegan (1987). "Grant and Unheroic Leadership". The Mask of Command: A Study of Generalship. Pimlico (Random House). p. 214. ISBN 1-84413-738-4.
  11. ^ a b Eric Foner, Reconstruction, 1865–1877, 1988, paperback: Perennial Press, 1989, p. 560
  12. ^ Unattributed (April 15, 2011). "Malaco Records destroyed by tornado in Mississippi". Oregon Music News. Archived from the original on July 18, 2012. Retrieved April 16, 2011.
  13. ^ "U.S. Census Bureau: State and County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on January 26, 2012. Retrieved March 16, 2012.
  14. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Retrieved June 4, 2015.
  15. ^ a b "2020 Race and Population Totals". Retrieved December 7, 2021.
  16. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  17. ^ "Military Service". Phil Fisher For Mayor of Clinton. Retrieved November 7, 2015.
  18. ^ "Board of Aldermen | City of Clinton". Archived from the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved February 13, 2014.
  19. ^ "MCI Inc – SC 13D/A – LCC International Inc ." Securities and Exchange Commission. March 14, 2003. Retrieved September 25, 2009.
  20. ^ "WorldCom to emerge from collapse." CNN. Monday April 14, 2003. Retrieved September 25, 2009.
  21. ^ a b "Delphi closes Clinton, MS plant", Plastics Today, October 5, 2009
  22. ^ "Delphi plant in Mississippi to close", Business Week
  23. ^ "Quisenberry Library." Jackson/Hinds Library System. Retrieved December 29, 2018.
  24. ^ Vicory, Justin (July 13, 2018). "Clinton mayor shuts down library for sanitation issues, won't reopen until new lease agreement in place". The Clarion Ledger. Retrieved June 10, 2021.
  25. ^ Chisholm, Chad. "Clinton". Barnes & Noble. Retrieved May 1, 2014.