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Holt Collier National Wildlife Refuge Dedication Ceremony



February 16 , 2005

John Rounsaville,
Governor Haley Barbour’s Office, 601-576-2016
Jenny Manley,
Senator Thad Cochran’s Office, 202-224-6404
Lanier Avant,
Congressman Bennie Thompson’s Office, 202-226-5805
James Cummins,
Mississippi Fish and Wildlife Foundation, 662-686-3375
Tim Wilkins,
Holt Collier National Wildlife Refuge, 662-839-2638
Connie Light Dickard,
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 601-321-1121
Libby Hartfield,
Mississippi Museum of Natural Science, 601-354-7303



Senator Thad Cochran
Congressman Bennie Thompson
Marsha Barbour, First Lady of Mississippi
Sam D. Hamilton, Southeast Regional Director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Minor Ferris Buchanan, author of the book “Holt Collier His Life, His Roosevelt Hunts, and the Origin of the Teddy Bear


News conference and media availability at the dedication ceremony for the Holt Collier National Wildlife Refuge.


Tuesday, February 22, 2005 at 11:00 a.m.


Mississippi Museum of Natural Science
2148 Riverside Drive
Jackson, MS 39202-1353
If headed north on Interstate 55, take Exit 98/Lakeland Drive and merge right onto Lakeland Drive. Turn right at your first traffic light onto Highland Drive. Directions continued below.

If headed south on Interstate 55, take exit 98/Lakeland Drive and go to the end of the long exit ramp where there is a traffic light. Turn left on Lakeland Drive. Pass back over the interstate and get in the right lane. Turn right at the 2nd light onto Highland Drive. Directions continued below.

Once on Highland Drive, follow it around the switchback curve and after Highland straightens out, look to your left for the entrance to LeFleur’s Bluff Park. Turn left into the park onto Riverside Drive (there is no street sign). Tell the gatehouse attendant that you are going to the museum for a press conference. Follow Riverside Drive around to the museum. Enter in the museum’s main doors and let the information desk attendant know you have arrived. Someone will be called to escort you to the press conference.


  • Announce the establishment of the Holt Collier National Wildlife Refuge – the first national wildlife refuge named after an African-American.
  • Honor the legacy of Holt Collier – a freed slave, Confederate War veteran and legendary sportsman – who guided President Theodore Roosevelt on his 1902 hunting trip to Mississippi.
  • Honor the conservation legacy of President Theodore Roosevelt who established the National Wildlife Refuge System in 1903.


The Holt Collier National Wildlife Refuge was authorized by Congress in January 2004 through legislation sponsored by Senator Thad Cochran and Congressman Bennie Thompson. The legislation also included authorization to design and construct the Holt Collier Environmental Education and Interpretation Center in the south delta region. Presently, the refuge is 1,400 acres with the acquisition boundary including an additional 16,600 acres in an area known as Holt Collier’s historic hunting grounds. The refuge is located southeast of Greenville, Mississippi, and near Hollandale. Currently, rabbit hunting and archery hunting for deer are allowed on the refuge. Future plans include expanded recreational opportunities.


VIPs at black bear exhibit
Unveiling new Holt Collier sign
Black bear b-roll available


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