Canton Mississippi, located in the geographic center of Madison County, was settled over 175 years ago as an early cotton farming center because of the rich soil between the Pearl and Big Black Rivers which form the North and South borders of Madison County. While many residents built beautiful antebellum homes, Canton grew as a booming railroad, lumber and saloon center prior to the Civil War.
Our beautiful Greek Revival Courthouse completed in 1858, only one among seven Pre-Civil War courthouses in Mississippi to be in basically unaltered condition, is the center and glory of the downtown central business district. Today the Square is home to unique retail, food and service businesses and is still the center of activity and is the scene twice yearly of the nationally famous Canton Flea Market Arts & Crafts Show held the second Thursday in May and October.
Among all of our historic charm, Canton is home to Nissan, a 3.5 million square foot advanced auto assembly plant that employs 4200 people including residents from 80 of the 82 counties in the state. The plant is one of the most advanced plants in the industry. In the summer of 2011, Canton will welcome our new Madison River Oaks Hospital, a full-service 67 bed hospital with a wide array of services. The 113,000 square foot facility will employ 230+ skilled physicians and support staff.
Canton’s residential areas are among the most pleasant found anywhere. Here, modern homes blend harmoniously with those of an earlier era that have been carefully restored and immaculately kept. Community pride is evident in Canton. Canton offers newcomers a variety of homes diverse in cost, style, and location. Those liking new homes may find moderately priced subdivisions offering lots convenient to all facets of the area.
Canton has a fully accredited public school system. Individualized instruction is the basic philosophy of the learning program in the entire four-school system. The recently completed new Canton Public High School offers an athletic program, including football, basketball, track and boxing.
Canton Academy founded in 1965 is a 12 - grade facility fully accredited by the Mississippi State Department of Education and offers a well-rounded program. Its academic program is basically college preparatory and is balanced by an excellent program of extracurricular activities.
Located about 10 miles from Barnett Reservoir and the Natchez Trace, Canton is the perfect stop for the equine and nature enthusiast. The Multipurpose & Equine Center offers overnight stables and a variety of year-round events. At milepost 114.9 of the Natchez Trace Parkway, access can be gained from the Highway 43 trailhead to a 24 mile trail used for horseback riding and hiking that passes through a variety of areas of historical significance and natural beauty. The Reservoir and the Pearl River offer opportunities to enjoy canoeing, swimming, fishing and boating.
Passive recreational opportunities abound in the Canton area including hiking, picnicking, birding, photography and enjoying the four community parks.
Annual activities include the Championship Hot Air Balloon Race, Victorian Christmas Festival and the Gospel Fest Homecoming.
Arts and Entertainment
Canton is home to many artists who've chosen the beauty and serenity of the area as a backdrop to their work. Artisan and craftsmen shows are regular activities on the Square. The Alison’s Wells School of Arts and Crafts, located in the historic Trolio Hotel, fosters a platform for artists and craftsmen to share their talents with the community.
While in Canton, visit our 2 Blues Markers on the Mississippi Blues Trail and our Movie Museums featuring scenes from ‘A Time to Kill’ and ‘My Dog Skip’ both filmed here. You can also enjoy a driving tour of a grand inventory of historic homes that date back as early as the mid-1820s through the 1920s. Canton's featured homes are owned and lived in by third generation families to new residents that help maintain and preserve the integrity and beauty of these incredible architectural structures.
- Total Area: 18.7 Square Miles
- Land Area: 18.6 Square Miles
- Elevation: 233 Ft. (71 m)
- Total Population: 13,184 (2011 ACS)
- Total Area 752 Square Miles
- Land Area 714.51 Square Miles
- Total Population 97,910 (2011 ACS)
- Median Household Income $60,755
- ZIP code 39046
- Area code(s) 601
- Average Annual Rainfall 55.7 in.
- Average July High Temp 92 F
- Average January Low Temp 35 F