Tupelo, MS

This trip takes me from Memphis to New Orleans, and my first stop is in Tupelo, MS to visit historic Reed's Gum Tree Bookstore. Reed's is named for R.W. Reed, who started a dry goods store right here 107 years ago.  R. W.'s descendant, Mr. Jack Reed, is the current owner. The bookstore's manager and buyer, Emily Gatlin (below) was kind enough to present me with a "Gum Tree" T shirt on my visit. Emily told me that Mr. Reed, who is 87 and a WWII veteran, gives a copy of our best selling book Matterhorn by Karl Marlantes to every author that comes to sign at the bookstore. For more of Mr. Reed's fascinating history, including his early championing of civil rights, see here.

The outside of the store, by the way, has one of the coolest bookstore murals that I've ever seen!

Elvis Presley's birthplace
Tupelo is also famous because a certain well known rock-and-roller was born in a very small house not a mile away from the bookstore!


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