Mississippi Fred McDowell (1904 – 1972) is buried in the Hammond Hill Missionary Baptist Church Cemetery, near Como, in Panola County, Mississippi.

Hammond Hill Missionary Baptist Church, Como, Mississippi
Hammond Hill Missionary Baptist Church, Como, Mississippi

The Hammond Hill Missionary Baptist Church is located at the intersection of Hammond Hill Road and Tate Panola Road near Como, Mississippi. The GPS location of the Hammond Hill Missionary Baptist Church is: N 34° 33.241′ W 90° 00.234′.

The church’s cemetery is located directly across Hammond Hill Road from the church.

Hammond Hill Missionary Baptist Church cemetery, Como, Mississippi
Hammond Hill Missionary Baptist Church cemetery, Como, Mississippi

Mississippi Fred McDowell’s grave is approximately at the center of the cemetery. The GPS location of the grave is: 34° 33.255′ W 90° 00.267′

Mississippi Fred McDowell grave marker, Hammond Hill Missionary baptist Church cemetery, Como, Mississippi
Mississippi Fred McDowell grave marker, Hammond Hill Missionary baptist Church cemetery, Como, Mississippi

The headstone on Mississippi Fred McDowell’s grave is the second marker to be placed here. The original headstone is now in the Delta Blues Museum in Clarksdale, Mississippi.

Mississippi Fred McDowell grave marker, front side, Hammond Hill Missionary baptist Church cemetery, Como, Mississippi
Mississippi Fred McDowell grave marker, front side, Hammond Hill Missionary baptist Church cemetery, Como, Mississippi

The headstone is inscribed on both sides. The front side reads:

“Mississippi Fred McDowell

Jan. 12, 1904 – July 3, 1972

Ester Mae McDowell

1906 – 1980″

There is is also a photo of Mississippi Fred McDowell and a carving of Masonic Square and Compass symbol. Mississippi Fred McDowell was a member of a Prince Hall Freemasons Lodge. We are currently trying to find out more about which Prince Hall Lodge Mississippi Fred McDowell was connected with.

The rear side of the headstone reads:

“You may be high, You may be low, You may be rich, child, You may be poor, But when the Lord gets ready, You got to move.”

Mississippi Fred McDowell grave marker. rear side, Hammond Hill Missionary baptist Church cemetery, Como, Mississippi
Mississippi Fred McDowell grave marker. rear side, Hammond Hill Missionary baptist Church cemetery, Como, Mississippi

The epitaph on the rear side of Mississippi Fred McDowell’s grave is taken from the lyric of his song You Got To Move, which was covered by the Rolling Stones on the 1971 album Sticky Fingers.

Here is a 1969 documentary about Mississippi Fred McDowell:

You may also want to see the Mississippi Blues Trail marker for Mississippi Fred McDowell in Como, Mississippi, which is a short drive from Hammond Hill Missionary Baptist Church.

Mississippi Blues Trail marker for Missisippi Fred McDowell, Como, Mississippi
Mississippi Blues Trail marker for Missisippi Fred McDowell, Como, Mississippi