2011 in review

I was sitting down to post the MissPres annual report for 2011 just before midnight, since my neighbors were shooting off fireworks over my house, and lo and behold, I found that WordPress has already prepared an annual report for me.

Here’s an excerpt:

In 2011, there were 275 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 855 posts. There were 1017 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 306mb. That’s about 3 pictures per day.

Click here to see the complete report.

In addition to these fancy animated statistics, here’s a few more prosaic stats from this year:

General Stats (Jan 1 – Dec 31, 2011)

Page Views: 131,534 (220,904 all-time)
Posts: 275, down slightly from 288 last year (855 total)
Comments: 1655, down from last year’s 1951 (4215 total)
Busiest day: 1287 views on February 4, 2011 (this was for the Natchez poll, and strangely was on the same day as the previous year’s top post)
Busiest month: 12,150 (March 2011, also apparently poll-driven)
E-mail Subscribers: 160, from last year’s 64 (from 6 in 2009)

Nothing like a good bar graph to make you feel like you’ve accomplished something; here’s one showing the monthly views on the blog since almost the beginning in Feb 2009.

As you can see, this year has been all over the place, with some months showing big growth followed by months where everyone apparently just took it easy and stayed off the internet. Overall though, the level of views each month was much higher than in 2010, even in our off months.

As the WordPress report notes, some of 2011′s most-viewed posts were actually posts from previous years. I’m not sure how I feel about that, but WordPress spins it as “having staying power.” Several of the top posts are from the Abandoned Mississippi series, and others are from Tom Barnes’ hotel series and a few from the Katrina series, so we’ve decided from now on, we’ll try to post primarily articles about abandoned haunted hotels damaged in Katrina. Here’s some of the top posts, with their date of posting and their view totals just for this year.

Abandoned Mississippi: Mt. Holly, Lake Washington (2-25-2010) 3,631
101 MissPlaces–Vote Early, Vote Often for the Natchez District (1-21-2011) 1,936
Abandoned Mississippi: Kuhn Memorial State Hospital, Vicksburg (9-23-2010) 1,573
Vote for your favorite Gulf Coast places (2-11-2011) 1,119
Katrina Survivors: Charnley House(s), Ocean Springs (9-2-2009) 1,103
Before and After: Mississippi River Basin Model (2-10-2010) 1,102
Mississippi Landmarks 2010 (12-29-2010) 1,096
Pleasure Domes Past…Biloxi’s Broadwater Beach (5-19-2010) 1,089
Young Bungalow for Sale in Canton (3-25-2010) 1,050
Abandoned Mississippi: School for the Blind (7-6-2009) 1,024
The Edgewater Gulf Hotel, Queen of the Coast (11-19-2009) 964
Update on Mississippi Industrial College (it’s not good) (5-18-2010) 814
Paved, Not Saved…Biloxi’s Buena Vista Hotel (4-19-2010) 769
Gulfport’s Markham Hotel, Threatened Pillar of Main Street (4-5-2010) 762
Book Quotes: Jane Jacobs on Old Buildings (3-19-2009) 750
Rolling Fork’s Amazing Red Barn Collapses (5-2-2011) 695

Most Highly Rated Posts (Thumbs Up)

The WordPress annual report notes that Kathleen Jenkins, Blake Wintory, Gstone, crpiii, and TomL were the most active commenters on MissPres this year. WordPress suggests I send them a thank you note, so thanks for adding your thoughts and new information to the mix, y’all! Let’s have a group hug!

While we didn’t gain any full-time new authors this year, several new contributors added their voices to the mix, including Suzassippi, who posted about Mound Bayou in July; Mark Davis, who allowed us to re-print his articles about Mississippi architects from their original home in the Historical Reporter of Pearl River; Blake Wintory of Lakeport Plantation, who revealed the complex and sometimes very funny story about the construction of the two new capitols in Arkansas and Mississippi in his A Tale of Two Domes series in August; and of course, Frank Brooks, who gave us permission to reprint his 1983 Travelling by Trolley in Mississippi, and reintroduced us to the legacy of streetcars in towns large and small around the state.

Our regular authors kept on keeping on, with JRGordon faithfully keeping track of all the news fit to print, Thomas Rosell checking in with new research on the Coast and points north, and Tom Barnes reminding us of the glory years of hotels and motels around the state. W. White spent his last semester at MSU furiously writing up summaries of the Natchez District properties, among other posts. Hopefully, we’ll all be back for 2012 with new ideas and new research. If you have ever thought you’d like to contribute a post or two or become a regular author on MissPres, just let me know–we would love to add your perspective on Mississippi’s historic places!

On the preservation front, I noted last year that I still wasn’t sure whether digital media was very effective in actually preserving places we care about. In 2011, I think possibly we moved in a positive direction, when the Archaeology Conservancy bought Prospect Hill, a house brought to my attention back in the very earliest days of the blog by a concerned friend of the property, and which resulted in two posts highlighting its endangered status. Then in 2011, the Mississippi Heritage Trust took up the banner in its 10 Most Endangered Places lists in April, and Jessica Crawford saw the place and started moving quickly to save it. Every little bit counts, and I like to think that MissPres played a small role in getting Prospect Hill into its current situation, which is way more hopeful than its been in a long time.

2011 was the Year of the Poll, where we worked hard to narrow down our big list of properties to our final list of 101 Mississippi Places to See Before You Die. As I mentioned after the last poll, we’re going to be publishing the results from our number-crunching in the new year, probably in the third week of January, according to our crack statistician, who will be mining the data and all sorts of other things that statisticians do, to produce some interesting analysis, in addition to the final list.

It’s hard to believe but Preservation in Mississippi will be hitting its 3rd anniversary this February 8th (or is it the 9th?). Here’s hoping for a good 2012 for this little blog and for Mississippi preservationists!

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See earlier annual reports:



Categories: Historic Preservation

11 replies

  1. “Well wowie zowie and you don’t even have to shave your legs.”(circa 1969 or thereabouts, roughly paraphrased). As I head down to Mound Bayou next week with 10 students for the first service-learning Study USA class from the University of Mississippi, I salute MissPres for helping make this happen.

  2. Congratulations and Happy New Year to the MissPres readers and authors.

  3. i’ll look forward to your upcoming “ghosts damage biloxi hotel during katrina” as i do to all your posts. happy new year!

  4. I’ll have to work on that one Mark! The ghosts of Jackpots Past? I’m not sure I’d want to meet the kind of ghosts who haunt casinos…

    • Images of that casino on a fake pirate ship that floated up on shore in Katrina come to mind. A post about the ghosts in THAT would surely blow the roof off all previous MissPres viewer numbers! :-)

  5. (((HUGS)))) back to MissPres!!! I didn’t realize I was so “active” but the first time someone shared this site with me I was overwhelmed with joy. Thank you MissPres for exposing treasures that are endangered such as First Christian Church. Thank you for all the beautiful photos and your time in giving us this excellent place to view things we cannot get to because we live many miles away.

    It kills my heart to see beautiful and historically significant buildings not loved and cared for any longer. I couldn’t remember FBC plans for buying First Christian Church, so I googled FCC and the first entry with information was your post on April 28, 2011. Shocking and very disturbing to read and see again.

    Thank you for your “hound dog on a porkchop” tenacity! Hoping with all my heart you and M can come up with a plan to save FCC. Looking at the photos of Capitol Street Methodist and FCC brings me to tears when I think about all the labors of love and beautiful craftmanship that went into their beginnings.

    Happy New Year to all!

  6. I am sooooo excited over Iron Horse Grill reopening! Article in Clarion Ledger on reopening. Film clip on WLBT. YAY!

  7. Congratulations for a great year! I look forward to the upcoming great posts of 2012!!!!

    Thank you to everyone for the great posts, comments, photos, etc…

    Happy New Year to all!

  8. Thanks for interesting, entertaining, and trips into my childhood. Happy New Year.

  9. Reciprocal (((HUGS))) to my favorite on-line community. Since my first full-time permanent employment at a clerk-typist in the Archives division at MDAH low these many years ago to my current post in the shadow of the AMAZING Historic Natchez Foundation, I have experienced the overall historic preservation community in Mississippi as some of the most knowledgeable, hard-working, and generally fun people around. Special thanks to E. L. Malvaney and other authors for their faithfulness in keeping the gems coming …

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