A while back I was going from Mt. Olive to Laurel, and decided to take the back road, County Road 532, which goes through the exotically named Covington County community of Hot Coffee. Hot Coffee isn’t an incorporated town, and Google and Bing maps had a little trouble pinpointing it, but the area I’ve always thought of as the center, or at least the beginning of the community is the Harper Store and the house across the road, both probably built in the early 20th century.
The story goes that Hot Coffee got its name in the late 19th century from J.J. Davis’ store at the crossroads, which sold unusually memorable hot coffee. Well, it may not be true, but it may–who knows? National Geographic did an interesting photo essay and an article in January 2005 about the community and its German Baptist residents.
The last time I was through this way was probably 2002 or 2003, but as I recall, the store was still in operation. Unfortunately, this time around “downtown Hot Coffee” showed fewer signs of life. In fact, it showed no signs of life other than me and my dog. Both the store and the house were for sale. Here’s hoping that someone buys these little pieces of rural Mississippi history and brings new life to them.
Categories: Historic Preservation
Loved the story about the Hot Coffee community. You didn’t show the picture of the for sale sign for the store or the house. What highway or road is it on?
Sorry about that, I’ve now added a close-up of the For Sale sign, which appears to be for Byrd Realty. The buildings are on Hwy 532, and if you click the link for the “Harper store and house” in the post, it will take you to a map of the area.
One would think that an enterprising soul would buy the place and capitalize on the name alone. I hate to see the store sit empty and forlorn.
Could anyone comment with an update on Hot Coffee?