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Old Natchez on the Mississippi (1939)

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This Traveltalks short focuses on the city's preservation of the architecture, apparel, and customs of the antebellum South.

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Title: Old Natchez on the Mississippi (1939)

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Complete credited cast:
James A. FitzPatrick ...
Narrator (voice)
Aunt Jenny ...
Uncle Mose ...
Uncle Ned ...


In Natchez, Mississippi, we experience the flavor of antebellum days. The Natchez Garden Club restores old homes, and it hosts a spring pilgrimage featuring costumes, song, and dance to celebrate the old South. We visit Connolly's Tavern and three mansions: Edgewood where costumed children play, Englewood with its echoes of Jenny Lind, and Melrose where ladies and gents dance. The emphasis is on the romance of days before the Civil War. The travelogue also notes the contributions to music, dance, and folklore of "the colored folks," one pipe-smoking former slave is quoted assuring that "no merrier people ever lived than the colored folks of the pre-war South." Written by <>

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Release Date:

30 December 1939 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)


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Did You Know?


Despite focusing exclusively on Natchez, Mississippi, much of this short film's score features Kentucky's state anthem, "My Old Kentucky Home." See more »

Crazy Credits

Narrator FitzPatrick identifies the other credited cast members verbally. See more »


Oh! Susanna
Written by Stephen Foster
Performed by the studio orchestra
See more »

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User Reviews

This is just not going to be for everybody...
18 January 2014 | by (USA) – See all my reviews

Traveltalks was a fun series of short travelogues by James Fitzpatrick. They allowed audiences in the old days to see color footage of various places around the world most of them would never get to see in person. This particular one covers Natchez, Mississippi and does so in rather controversial ways. Basically instead of promoting anything positive about the Natchez of today (1939, that is), it's all about recapturing a bygone era for the South. For very obvious reasons that era won't hold so much romantic value for many so I can see some hating this short based on that alone. The part of the short involving black citizens of Natchez is particularly touchy.

Fitzpatrick's statement early on about how the modern town of Natchez is like any other small town and that this part doesn't hold as much interest as the Antebellum recreations outside of the town itself made me kind of sad. I grew up in a small town so I can understand that the goings-on of any small town would be kind of dull for a travelogue. Still, the comment felt like kind of a put-down that I imagine didn't go unnoticed by the people of Natchez back then. But for most of the last century the only interest Hollywood had in the South was in the Civil War period. As with any Traveltalks I've seen, I would recommend it. It's not the best and it didn't do anything to make me want to go to Natchez, but it's certainly interesting as a time capsule.

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