Tuesday, March 28, 2023

John Cofield’s Oxford & Ole Miss: The Burial of William Faulkner


At 2:00 p.m. the businesses of the Oxford, Mississippi Courthouse Square locked their doors.

The hearse carrying William Faulkner pulled out of Rowan Oak, went to South Lamar, turned left and ascended the short rise and came in view of the Courthouse in the distance.

Oxford’s businessmen and women stepped to the Square’s curbs and stood solemnly. The Nobel Laureate circled the town’s heart for the last time.

Carried to St. Peter’s with Phil Stone and Mac Reed standing watch, he was laid to rest at the base of a gentle slope in the shade of a mighty oak, fifty-four years ago this afternoon.

Photo by Martin Dain (c) UM Libraries


John Cofield is a HottyToddy.com writer and one of Oxford’s leading folk historians. He is the son of renowned university photographer Jack Cofield. His grandfather, J.R. “Colonel” Cofield, was William Faulkner’s personal photographer and for decades was the Ole Miss yearbook photographer. Cofield attended Ole Miss as well.

Stay tuned for more information on Cofield’s forthcoming book: Oxford, Mississippi ~ The Cofield Collection — a pictorial history book with John’s writing on the history to go along with the photos.

Contact John at Johnbcofield@gmail.com.