MSU gets possession of old plantation

By The Associated Press

GREENWOOD — Mississippi State University received an $8 million bequest of real estate, the largest in university history, when the late Willis D. McGeary donated Sidon Plantation.

The gift includes 2,637 acres of land and one of the oldest homes in Leflore County.

McGeary died in 2011 at 91. He attended then-Mississippi State College and earned an aeronautical engineering degree in 1940. He flew in World War II and later for American Airlines.

The bequest is designated “unrestricted,” meaning agricultural lease proceeds from the property will provide an annual source of revenue for MSU as part its Bulldog Properties program.

John Doty Porter, the property’s tenant farmer, whose family has farmed the property since the early 1970s, says row crops are still grown on the plantation including cotton, corn and soybeans.