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Named for James Kimble Vardaman, who was Mississippi governor from 1904 to 1908, the town of Vardaman, Mississippi is in eastern Calhoun County. Mississippi Highway 8 passes through the town, going west to Calhoun City and east to Houston. Other nearby communities include Atlanta, Derma, Hall, Hollis, Lloyd, Pittsboro, Pyland, and Thorn. Grenada, Mississippi is about forty miles west, Tupelo is forty-three miles northeast, and Starkville is forty-seven miles southeast of Vardaman. The Yalobusha River flows past the town one mile to the south. Vardaman and the surrounding area is know for its production of sweet potatoes. The Vardaman Sweet Potato Festival, sometimes referred to as the National Sweet Potato Festival, is held in Vardaman during the first week of November each year. White settlers began coming into the area in 1839, after the Treaty of Pontotoc opened the area to settlement. The town grew up around the Mobile & Ohio Railroad, although the railroad suspended service to the area before long, and its tracks were sold in 1939. Vardaman was first incorporated as a village in 1904, upgrading to a town a few months later, in July of 1905. Although the town was named Vardaman from the beginning, the post office was initially established as Timberville due to political enmity between the Postmaster General and the town’s namesake, a situation that continued until 1912, when the post office took on the name of the town.



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