Mississippi was the 20th state admitted to the Union, on December 10, 1817. It was the second state to secede from the Union as one of the Confederate States of America on January 9, 1861. During the Civil War the Confederate States were defeated and subsequently Mississippi was readmitted to the Union on February 23, 1870.
Mississippi's physical geography is characterized by two distinct regions: the Mississippi River Floodplain and the Gulf Coastal Plain. The Mississippi Floodplain runs along the western part of the state, adjacent to the Mississippi River, and includes the Mississippi Delta region, one of the most fertile regions in the world.
Today, agriculture continues as a major segment of the state's economy. For almost four decades soybeans occupied the most acreage, while cotton remained the largest cash crop.
The state abounds in historical landmarks and is the home of the Vicksburg National Military Park. Other National Park Service areas are Brices Cross Roads National Battlefield Site, Tupelo National Battlefield, and part of Natchez Trace National Parkway.