Local History

Published on June 16th, 2022 | by TLV News


Photograph Essay: City Grocery in 1920s-1960s on the Oxford, Mississippi Square

John Currence‘s world renowned City Grocery is celebrating it’s 30th anniversary in 2022, but the building and the name are far older in Oxford, Mississippi. Collection and information courtesy of John Cofield, Jacque Fudge, and Jeff Fudge.

Housed in a 19th century livery stable on The Square, the hardwood floors and exposed brick walls of John Currence’s City Grocery was the site of a different City Grocery started in the 1920s, owned by Levi “Bud” Fudge (second from right), and his son, Earl Fudge (right), a WWI veteran. The Fudge family came to Lafayette County from Edgefield County, South Carolina, and settled in the local area known today as Fudgetown. They later sold their City Grocery to the Mize family and opened Fudge Grocery at 305 South Lamar in 1948. That store closed 30 years later. Photograph and information courtesy John Cofield, Jeff Fudge, and Jacque Fudge.
The City Grocery on the Square. Year unknown. Photograph from John Cofield and Jeff Fudge.
Bank of Oxford’s Robert Hickey inside City Grocery. Year unknown. – Photograph from John Cofield and Mike Jones.
City Grocery circa 1950. Photograph by CityGroceryOnline.com.
City Grocery in the 1960s.
October 1, 1962 on the Oxford Square. Federal troops occupy the Courthouse Square during the James Meredith integration riots at Ole Miss. The City Grocery sign is visible in the upper right hand corner. Photograph from John Cofield’s book, “Oxford, Mississippi: The Cofield Collection” available at Square Books.
Today, John Currence’s City Grocery is the renowned Oxford restaurant that draws in locals and tourists alike. Writers, musicians, artists, and regular folk from all over the world love to visit City Grocery. John Currence’s balcony is the Local Favorite on The Square.
University of Mississippi, Ecru Partners Working to Tell Story of M.B. Mayfield

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About the Author

The Local Voice is a bimonthly entertainment guide and newspaper based in Oxford, Mississippi, covering and distributed in North Central Mississippi, including Oxford, Ole Miss, Taylor, Abbeville, Water Valley, Lafayette County, Yalobusha County, and parts of Panola County, Marshall County, and Tupelo . The Local Voice is distributed free to over 255 locations in North Mississippi and also available as a full color PDF download worldwide on the internet.

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