There are some places in our nation whose influence on our history and the society we live in has been so pervasive – has become so much a part of who we are –that we don't often think about or recognize their value. The Mississippi Delta is such a place, and its legacy which has given our nation much in terms of music, political action, race relations, literature and foodways.

Of the various vital cultural threads from which the Delta is composed, the Mississippi Delta National Heritage Area management plan articulates five key themes which capture the essence of this complex region.