Oxford was incorporated in 1837, and named after Oxford, England. It was hoped that naming the town Oxford would help it be chosen as the site for Mississippi's first university. In 1848, the University of Mississippi became a reality. Since its founding, the University has developed into a well-respected institute, which plays a central role in the community.
Oxford's colorful downtown, centered on courthouse square, exemplifies southern charm. Chic boutiques, diverse art galleries, upscale bookstores, casual cafes, and active pubs are just a few of the finds visitors will discover here. Although much of the city was destroyed by fire in 1864, a remarkable number of historic homes and buildings remain and a walking tour makes for a fulfilling afternoon. When evening approaches, excellent choices in dining abound. From fine dining to eclectic cuisine, Oxford has it all. For night owls, Oxford offers incredible live blues and dynamic jazz.
Oxford is proudly a diverse, culturally rich town. Famous Nobel Prize-winning author William Faulkner called Oxford home, and captured many of the town's lively characters in his novels. Several events draw large groups of writers to Oxford. The Oxford Conference for the Book, held in April, and The Annual Faulkner and Yoknapatawpha Conference, held in July, are two such examples. In fact, Oxford has become famous as a writer's destination. The Oxford Film Festival is growing in recognition, and draws people from near and far every June. Music and artwork are equally popular expressions. The Double Decker Festival, also held annually in June, is a giant celebration. Held on courthouse square, the event features a select group of regional art vendors, a diverse selection of live music, and local restaurants serving festival goers their best grub.
Oxford is located in the northern part of the state, just off Highway 278, approximately 170 miles north of Jackson, MS.