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    Neighboring Counties:
    Clay (North)
    Oktibbeha (west)
    Monroe (north of Clay)
    Noxubee (south)
  • The South Prairie
    (known as Hardylands)

    Magowah Creek begins almost to the railroad tracks that run through the south side of Artesia through Penn Station. Early Settlers included "Big Jim" Cox and his family, Watt Harrison and his family, Evans and Robert Carson, most of which all came from North Carolina.. The Baileys family, from Virginia.

    It is believed that there were four original Hardy brothers who migrated to the area from Lunenburg County, Virginia. Two married Bailey sisters and two married Allison sisters. The Hardys owned land near Smith Oaks plantation southeast of Artesia to near the Tombigbee River.

    The Billups land was to the north and the old home at Billups Gate by 1912 was occupied by Jamie and Vesta Wood Billups. Thomas Carlton Billups and wife Lenore Hardy Billups moved from Columbus to this house some time later, although the exact date is now known. Other families were the Hugh Townsends, who lived at the old Artemus Jenning place his great grandfather's second home he built about 1830. The Turner family, the Potts family, The Charles Richards family, Ed Hardy family, the Love family, and The Cocke family.

    Bethel Presbyterian Church has been the center of the religious community in this area since 1830. It was built in 1838 and the building still is used with its columns of solid walnut and its slave gallery. Bethel Cemetery is there and a few yards away is Magowah Gun and Country Club for the prairie families.


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