Mississippi Delta declared national treasure by U.S. Department of Interior

And, now, the Delta is a national treasure.

It officially has been federally designated the Mississippi Delta National Heritage Area, one of fewer than 50 such treasures spread across the United States, from frigid Alaska to sunny Florida.

“The National Heritage Area program was created specifically to highlight the multifarious culture that we call America,” said former Delta State University President John Hilpert, whom Gov. Phil Bryant in 2012 appointed chairman of the Mississippi Delta National Heritage Area’s 15-member board of directors, prior to its clearing a final hurdle.