Founded in 1920, the 20-piece brass ensemble has evolved to its current number of 300. Having performed for such events as Franklin D. Roosevelt's inaugural parade in the 1930s, gubernatorial inaugurations, the Senior Bowl Classics and professional and collegiate bowl games, the Pride of Mississippi Marching Band (the Pride) has enjoyed more television and national audience exposure than any other band in the South. Additionally, the Pride has toured throughout the United States and to England and Ireland. Most recently the Pride performed at half time during alumni Brett Favres' Green Bay Packers game in Wisconsin. In 2009, The Pride was selected to march in the 2010 Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, making it the first university marching band in Mississippi to be selected for this honor.
In 1977 when Jimmy Carter was sworn in as 39th President of the United States in Washington, D.C., the Southern Miss Pride of Mississippi Marching Band was invited by him to be present. Twenty-five members from each college band in Mississippi were selected by their college directors to make up an All-Star Band to represent Mississippi in the inaugural parade in Washington. The band rehearsed in Jackson, Mississippi prior to flying to Washington on the "Peanut Special" (plane that brought the Carter Family to Washington, where they participated in the event).
Although mainly made up of music majors enrolled in the University of Southern Mississippi School of Music, the Pride of Mississippi is open to all students enrolled at the University of Southern Mississippi. Scholarships are offered to both music majors as well as non-majors.
The Pride of Mississippi was referred to in the 1980s as the most televised band in the land for being televised on national television numerous times as well as supposedly being placed in the Guinness Book of World Record for this feat.