It’s easy to see why Oxford, England is the top result when you search “Oxford” on Google. The southeast England town is a city for kings and queens, and it is the home of the University of Oxford, which has been around at least since the 12th century. Oxford lies near the River Thames and other major lakes, and various museums, such as the C.S. Lewis house or the University Museum of Natural History litter the city. Gothic style buildings and castles along with a rich history make Oxford a prime tourist attraction. Why else would J.K. Rowling want to film for Harry Potter in the famous Bodleian Library?
Rewinding to the mid-19th century, the founders of a new town in Lafayette County knew that Oxford, England was one of the greatest and most beautiful cities in the world, and so they used that knowledge to their advantage. The state of Mississippi was ready for its first public university, and by naming Oxford, Mississippi after Oxford, England, the founders secured the honor of hosting the University of Mississippi in 1848.
Oxford, England is known for its rich history, but so is Oxford, Mississippi. Formed from southern, rural roots, big literature moguls like William Faulkner and John Grisham serve as Oxford’s kings, and museums like the Burns-Belfry Museum preserve memories of Oxford’s controversial past. While tea may be preferred in England, down in Mississippi, Oxford is home to heartier soul foods as well as fancy feasts. If you aren’t involved in football culture or nightlife on the historic downtown square, you may as well live elsewhere.
While both Oxford, Mississippi and Oxford, England have their differences, both cities are considered beautiful in their own ways. However, if I were given the chance, I’d probably take that trip to Oxford, England. I wouldn’t dare give up a chance to stand where Harry Potter once stood.