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Laurel is a city in and the second county seat of Jones County, Mississippi, United States. As of the 2010 census, the city had a total population of 18,548. It is located northeast of Ellisville, the first county seat, which contains the county courthouse.Laurel is the principal city of a Micropolitan Statistical Area named for it. Its major employers include Howard Industries, Sanderson Farms, Masonite International, Family Health Center, Howse Implement, Thermo-Kool, and South Central Regional Medical Center. Laurel is home to the Lauren Rogers Museum of Art, Mississippi's oldest art museum, which was established by the family of Lauren Eastman Rogers. It is the headquarters of the Jones County Sheriff's Department, which administers in the county.HistoryLaurel was founded in 1882 as a lumber town, as the industry harvested yellow pine forests in the region. The city was named for laurel thickets near the original town site.By the turn of the century, the city became a site of cotton mills, to process and manufacture textiles from the state's commodity crop of cotton. The city population grew markedly during the early 20th century, as rural people were attracted to manufacturing jobs. Mechanization of agriculture reduced the number of farming jobs. The city reached its peak of population in 1960, and has declined about one third since then.Plan your vacation with our United States visit planner and discover the best things to do in Laurel.
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