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Meridian is a city in Lauderdale County, Mississippi, United States.
The city serves as the county seat of Lauderdale County, the fifth largest city in Mississippi,
and the principal city of the Meridian, Mississippi Micropolitan Statistical Area.
The population was 39,968 at the 2000 census.
The city's population has been declining slowly since the 1950s, but the decline has slowed somewhat
after an annexation in 2006 and the arrival of numerous displaced coastal residents after Hurricane Katrina
(many of whom have made Meridian their permanent residence).
Meridian is a city with a rich past and deep roots in railroading history in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
The city was the stage for the Battle of Meridian during the American Civil War when much of it was burned to the
ground by General William Tecumseh Sherman.
After the war, the city was rebuilt and entered a "Golden Age"; between about 1890 and 1930,
Meridian was the largest city in Mississippi and a leading center for manufacturing in the South.
During this time, many of the sites and buildings in the city's nine registered historic districts were built,
and most still survive today.
The decline of the railroad industry in the 1950s caused job losses that resulted in a decline of Meridian's population.
The population has since continued to decrease as the city has struggled to create a modern economy based
on newer industries.
In 2003 Mainstreet Meridian, an organization in the city, launched its "Vision 2003" program to restore
downtown to its original prosperity by means of a new, modern economy.
read full wikipedia reference about Meridian, Mississippi
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