James Furniture still going strong in Picayune

Published 7:00 am Tuesday, October 8, 2019

There are two things that run in the family for James Whitfield, furniture and cattle farming.

As the owners of James Furniture, James and his wife Monty, have been meeting the furnishing needs of Picayune and Pearl River County residents since the business was established in 1972.

Previously occupying two locations in Picayune, in the 300 and 600 blocks of East Canal Street, the business can now be found at 405 Memorial Boulevard. There, customers can find an array of dining tables, coffee tables, end tables, sofas, recliners, mattresses and bed sets to name a few. James Whitfield said he especially likes to carry the La-Z-Boy brand of furniture in his business.

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James Whitfield said he’s been working in the furniture business since he was “big enough to tote furniture,” starting in his grandfather’s and also working in his father’s furniture businesses.

On his mother’s side of the family, he was introduced to cattle farming at a young age, a tradition he still holds dear to this day by tending to his own herd of about 100 cattle.

James said he was born on a cattle farm in the Savannah community near Poplarville.

When asked which of his jobs he considers work, he said, “Furniture is the work. Farming is kind of like… crossfit for old people.”

But his furniture business, just like his cattle, were not inherited.

James said he started his own business separate from the paternal side of his family, and unlike how his mother’s side of the family raised dairy cattle, he raises his cattle for beef.

Both James and Monty Whitfield are also artists. Customers of James Furniture can find some of their custom paintings adorning the walls of the locally owned business.

James Furniture employs three other people full and part time. The business is open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.  and on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Staff can be reached by calling 601-798-8434.

The store is closed on Sunday and Wednesday of each week.