Ocean Springs Harbor

 

 

 

 

   

Ocean Springs Inner Harbor

[images made circa 1947. from the F.L. Westbrook Jr. collection]

 

The present Clan Harris imbroglio is not the first serious controversy to become inexorably attached to the nearly fifty year chronology of the Ocean Springs Inner Harbor.  In 1938, A.P. ‘Fred’ Moran (1897-1967), Jackson County Beat Four Supervisor and resident of Ocean Springs, began acquiring easements from landowners for Jackson County to create a small craft harbor at Ocean Springs in the trace of Mill Dam Bayou.  At this time, the salient lands for the proposed anchorage were possessed on the eastern perimeter by Annette McConnell Anderson (1867-1964) of the Shearwater Pottery.  On the west side, the property of Charles E. Clark (1879-1945), the Rehage family; and the Reconstruction Finance Corporation, owner of the former Charles G. Parlin (1880-1940) property, which was acquired by Albert B. Austin (1876-1951) and Alice Tee Wier Austin (1908-2001) in 1940, was essential for the budding harbor project.

 

Mill Dam Bayou

Mill Dam Bayou, a small intermittent stream, originally called Bayou Bazienne or Bauzage during the LaFontaine era (pre-1846), was named in the mid-19th Century by William Gray Kendall (1812-1872), a Kentucky solicitor, brick maker, and U.S. Postmaster at New Orleans in 1854.  It is rumored that Kendall damned the bayou in an attempt to operate a small grist mill during his habitation on the Hansen-Dickey tract fronting Biloxi Bay and in recent years referred to as ‘Shadowlawn’.

 

1939 Dredging

In June 1938, Jackson County built a dredge, later called the Wahalak.  It was perfected by Captain Adam Gautier (1873-1963).  The dredge began operation in December 1937 as a suction dredge, which proved unsatisfactory.  It was then converted into a 'cutter' dredge and was used primarily to provide protection for the seawalls at Pascagoula and Ocean Springs.  In March 1939, the Jackson County dredge started work on the 100-foot wide channel to the mouth of Mill Dam Bayou.  By September 1939, the harbor was essentially completed when Russell Carver (1888-1961), foreman of the Jackson County bridge crew, finished a 200-foot by 10-foot, east-west striking, dock on the north shore of the new harbor.( (The Pascagoula Chronicle-Star, June 17, 1938, p. 1 and The Jackson County Times, March 18,1939, p.1 and The Jackson County Times, August 26, 1939, p. 2)

 

WWII

In late 1943, U.S. Army Air Corps personnel from Key Field at Meridian, Mississippi were sent to man a Crash and Rescue Boat Base on the inner harbor at Ocean Springs.  B.L. Knost Company of Pass Christian, Mississippi was awarded a $14,730 contract to erect pre-fabricated barracks, a mess hall, and lavatory on Hellmers Lane on the north shore of the inner harbor.  In January 1944, A.P. ‘Fred’ Moran (1897-1967), Beat Four Supervisor, committed Wahalak, the Jackson County dredge, to excavate slips for the 3rd Air Force crash boats.  These craft were used to monitor bombing ranges in the Gulf of Mexico and assist downed flyers.(The Jackson County Times, December 11, 1943, p. 1 and January 15, 1944, p. 1)

After V-J Day on September 2, 1945, activity at the US Army Air Corps crash boat base at Ocean Springs began to diminish rapidly.  The air-sea rescue vessels were relocated to Brookley AFB, Mobile, Alabama.  By March 1946, the military facility on Hellmer's Lane was still open, but not operational.  It was permanently closed shortly thereafter.(W.H. Yarrow, Hattiesburg, Mississippi, April 10, 1999) 

 

1947 Hurricane

During the evening and early morning of September 18 and 19, 1947, a category three hurricane struck southeast Louisiana and the Mississippi Gulf Coast.  The inner harbor at Ocean Springs moored and sheltered over two hundred Biloxi shrimp boats from this September tempest.  These vessels were valued at $1,000,000.(The Jackson County Times, December 1947, p. 1 and The Daily Herald, May 9, 1957)

 

Schmidt v. Moran

The first major conflict that developed at the Ocean Springs inner harbor occurred in 1948 when Charles Ernest Schmidt (1904-1988) and Fred Moran, Beat Four Supervisor, had different ideas on the best utility for the facility.  In 1947, C. Ernest Schmidt had entered the political arena at Ocean Springs and was elected Alderman-at-Large for one term.  In the spring of 1948, Mr. Schmidt resigned in a furor from his position as Secretary of the Commission for Sea Food Development.  He was an outspoken advocate for industrial development in Jackson County and wanted the Ocean Springs harbor to be developed for commercial fishermen.  Supervisor Moran favored the inlet as a haven for pleasure craft and recreational sailors.(The Jackson County TimesMarch 19, 1948, p. 1 and June 1948, p. 1)

 

In August 1948, C. Ernest Schmidt lost a hotly contested race for his Alderman-at-Large post to J.C. “Champ” Gay (1909-1975).  The Citizens Progressive League had been organized in the spring of 1948, with the specific purpose of unseating incumbent Schmidt.  They vehemently opposed his platform of establishing a seafood industry at Ocean Springs, and his criticism of tax evaders.(The Jackson County Times, August 20, 1948, p. 1)

 

Kensington Basin

December 1947-Supervisor A.P. ‘Fred’ Moran proposed a plan to double the size of the inner harbor.  The new ‘back harbor’, later called the Kensington Basin’, would be a shelter for small boats, while the original  ‘front harbor’ would be reserved for larger vessels.(The Jackson County Times, December 1947, p. 1.

'Blessing of the Fleet'

Blessing of the Fleet

[This circa 1943 vintage image was taken aboard a shrimp boat moored in the Inner Harbor.  It appears that the Catholic priest is blessing the fishing boats at this time.[L-R: Chester ‘Mac’ Baker [boy on pier]; Oscar L. Seymour (1912-1964); Congressman W.R. ‘Bill Colmer (1890-1980); Hermes F. Gautier (1895-1969); Mayor Albert Westbrook (1900-1980); John E. Catchot (1897-1987); Gene Seymour, alter boy; Father Joseph Holland?, priest; and Lloyd J. ‘Joe Boy’ Ryan (1928-1985), altar boy.  From the F.L. Westbrook Jr. Collection]

 

The 'Blessing of the Fleet' at Ocean Springs occurred on a Sunday usually in mid-September.  In 1946, Father Deignan blessed the boats in the Inner Harbor from the Radar, the 40-foot shrimp boat of Bernard Beaugez (1909-1969).  John E. Catchot (1897-1987), who owned the Alice, also a shrimp trawler, was harbormaster at this time.(The Jackson County Times, September 21, 1946, p. 1 and Raymond S, Beaugez, September 23, 2009)   

 

Harbormaster J.E. Catchot and Ethel C. Cates

John Edward Catchot (1897-1987) was the first harbormaster.  He was born at Ocean Springs and grew up on the water.  As a young man John E. Catchot left Ocean Springs and found employment in the L&N railroad shops at New Orleans.  Here in September 1917, he married Alice Dupont (1893-1984).  John A, Catchot (1918-1998), their first child, was born in the Crescent City and shortly thereafter the family retuned home to Ocean Springs and John began to shrimp aboard the Alice C.named for his spouse.  The other children of John and Alice D. Catchot were born in Ocean Springs: Collus B. Catchot (1920-2002); Thelma I. Sawyer (1923-1999) m. ; and Ethel L. Catchot (b. 1927) m. Ernest F. Beaugez (1920-1954) and Elmer Joseph  ‘Penny’ Cates (1930-2015).

 

In mid-September 1947, Captain Catchot and Collus B. Catchot (1920-2002), his son, fled the Louisiana marsh retreating from the threatening hurricane and found shelter in the Wolf River with the Madridanother shrimp boat from Ocean Springs, which was owned by Bernard Beaugez (1909-1969).  As harbormaster, John E. Catchot collected rental fees to maintain the anchorage and make occasional improvements.  His harbor commissioners were: Bernard Beaugez, Wilford ‘Wiffy’ Beaugez (1913-1994), and Philip J. Benezue (1909-1978). 

 

In December 1952, Captain Catchot retired from his position as harbormaster, Ethel C. Cates, his daughter, became ‘Harbor Mistress’.  Over fifty years would pass before another woman, Lesley Hamm (b. 1981), was appointed to Harbormaster at Ocean Springs.  Some of the other past harbormasters were: Leonard Gavins (1912-2000), Malcolm J. Beaugez (1916-1978); Malcolm J. Beaugez Jr., Bill Baker, Jerry Dildy from 1982-1984; Mark Hare from 1985-1992; Louis ‘Bill Harvey (1935-1996); Ben Brown from 1993-2000; and Johnny Hughes from 2001-2008.(The Gulf Coast Times, January 17, 1952,  The Daily Herald, May 9, 1957 and The Ocean Springs Record, February 7, 2008, p. A1, and Herbert Beaugez, Brad Lemon and Raymond Beaugez)

 

1952 Controversy

 It was not apparent that when the Board of Aldermen adopted the initial zoning ordinance in Ocean Springs on January 2, 1952, that the Inner Harbor would be the first controversy to challenge this unpopular regulation.  By the late summer of 1952, the fishermen and boaters utilizing the boat basin at Ocean Springs were adamant in having a service dock and boat way built on the west side of the Inner Harbor.  John E. Catchot, who was then serving as Alderman representing Ward 3, took a firm stand against all opposition to petroleum service facilities at the harbor.  He openly declared that he would battle for: “the rights of the fishermen who were instrumental in building the city of Ocean Springs.”  Mr. Catchot also advocated that N.C. Covacevich be granted permission to erect a boatyard for repair and construction of watercraft.  In early September 1952, Mayor R.C. Miller (1887-1953), the Board of Aldermen, and the zoning commission composed of J.K. Lemon (1914-1998), C. Ernest Schmidt (1904-1988), and Bruce L. Thomas (1908-1969), met with citizens, both protagonists and antagonists in regards to commercial development on the Inner Harbor.  J.C. ‘Champ’ Gay (1909-1975), Alderman-at-Large, related to the audience that the City had been approached by developers to allow the erection of a boat yard, gas, oil, and diesel station, ice crushing and marine supply business on the Harry Rehage tract situated on the west side of the marina.  A recently passed zoning ordinance prohibited such activity in this area.  In order for commerce to proceed on the banks of the boat basin, the City would have to amend the zoning ordinance.  Emotions ran high as Alderman Catchot hreatened to have the zoning ordinance repealed, if the fisherman were not allowed a fuel service dock and boat way.(The Gulf Coast Times, September 8, 1952, p. 1)

 

Bruce L. Thomas presented a petition which stated that the signers had no objection to the proposed commercial harbor development if the City would prohibit the sale of alcohol, disallow boat repairs, and excessive noises before 8 a.m. and after 5 p.m.  Colonel Herman J. Bankston Jr. (1894-1965), a chemist and native of Raymond, Mississippi, who was the summer manager of the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory, vehemently opposed any changes in the current zoning fearing the devaluation of property values near the harbor.  Lulu Haviland Clark (1880-1972), the widow of Charles E. Clark, one of the original donors of land for the harbor dredging, was represented by Miss Amy Burkett.  Miss Burkett also strongly protested and reminded the City government of the 1938 promise from the Jackson County Board of Supervisors that no part of the donated lands would ever be used commercially.  Lottie Moore Schoemmell (1895-1966), property owner on the north side of the anchorage, stated that if permission were granted by the City for commercial development, she would sell and relocate.  At Ocean Springs, Lottie M. Schoemmell was a former marathon swimmer.  In October 1926, she set a record by averaging 14.5 miles per day during a marathon event in the very frigid Hudson River from Albany, the state capitol, to New York City, a distance of 153 miles.  It has been called the greatest performance of marathon swimming every made by a woman.  Lottie taught swimming at the Community Pier.  Ten private lessons were given for $25.  She also operated a health clinic at Biloxi on West Howard Avenue.  Here Mrs. Schoemmell engaged in physio-therapy.  She was a graduate Swedish masseuse.(Ibid., p. 1,The Gulf Coast Times, June 3, 1949, p. 1,  The Daily Herald, December 29, 1959, The Jackson County Times, June 25, 1948, p. 4 and The Daily Herald, February 7, 1947, p. 5)

 

At this time, James McConnell ‘Mac’ Anderson (1907-1998), Bruce R. Edwards (1925-2003), J. Duncan Moran (1925-1995), and Gordon Van Cleave (1906-1964) spoke kindly towards a fuel dock and other commercial development at the Inner Harbor.(The Gulf Coast Times, September 8, 1952, p. 1)

Harbor improvements

In January 1952, Board of Aldermen asked for $1500 in harbor improvements.  It wasn’t until March 1953, that thirty-two boats slips were built at the Inner Harbor.  J.C. Jumonville directed the work, which was performed by Contractor James Voorhies of D’Iberville.  Local fishermen were still disgruntled that they had to fuel up in Biloxi.  The strong opposition of property owners bordering the anchorage continue to prohibit commercial development.(The Gulf Coast Times,  January 17, 1952. and The Gulf Coast Times, March 19, 1953, p. 1).

 

1957-Marine fuel station

It took five years before the fishermen and boaters utilizing the Inner Harbor got their wish for a fueling station.  A single-story, structure was erected on the southwest side of the anchorage and west of Harbor Drive by the Mitchell Brothers on land owned by Alice T. Austin (1908-2001).  It was opened for service in February 1957, with the Mitchell Brothers as operators vending Shell oil petroleum products, cold drinks, and boat supplies.  Their interest in selling gasoline and crackers to fishermen and boaters was short-lived.  In March 1958, Donald Benezue, operator of the Fort Bayou Fish Camp, acquired the lease from Mrs. Austin and became the proprietor of harbor station.(The Ocean Springs News, The Daily Herald, March 25, 1958)

 

The Austin Trailer-In July 1958, Alice T. Austin (1908-2001) placed a house trailer in the rear of her Marine Service Station.  The house trailer was used to domicile her employee.  The mobile home was ruled legal by the Zoning Board, but the Board of Aldermen overturned their decision and in a close vote.  One alderman demanded its immediate removal allowing Mrs. Austin only two hours to have it relocated.  She appealed and took her grievance to the Circuit Court and was allowed to keep the trailer on her property.  The Board of Aldermen then amended the Zoning Ordinance prohibiting mobile homes in the City.  Courtesy of Alice Austin Martin from The Ocean Springs News, August 7, 1958, p. 1.

 

 

1958 Marine Service Station imbroglio

Alice T. Austin (1908-2001) created her own ‘hurricane’ at the Inner Harbor in July 1958, when she located a house trailer in the rear of her Marine Service Station.  The house trailer was to be utilized by a Keesler Field based airman and his spouse who were operating the gas station and store for her.  The house trailer seriously divided the Alderman and the Zoning Board.  The Zoning Board had ruled together in that Mrs. Austin’s mobile home was legal in the rear of the Marine Mart.  On July 21, 1958, the Board of Aldermen rejected their ruling by a three to two vote.  John H. Seymour (1923-1991), Alderman representing the 3rd Ward, who was irked about the Austin house trailer, had demanded its immediate removal allowing Mrs. Austin only two hours to have it relocated.  Mrs. Austin replied that it had taken three days to install the mobile home on her Inner Harbor property.  The Board of Alderman then agreed to give her four days, deemed by them a reasonable time for its relocation.(The Ocean Springs News, August 7, 1958, p. 1)

 

The Board of Alderman’s ruling was appealed by Alice T. Austin and the mobile home issue was referred to the Jackson County Circuit Court.  Immediately, Alderman Chester McPhearson (1924-2006) and John H. Seymour passed a motion “authorizing the city attorney to proceed with a proposed amendment to the zoning ordinance to exclude Trailers from residential areas and Limited Commercial areas.”

 

In November 1958, Circuit Court Judge Leslie B. Grant ruled that ‘The proposed use of the [Austin] property would not be in violation of the zoning ordinances of the City of Ocean Springs.  The ordinances do not prohibit specifically the use of the property in question for the purpose contemplated by the petitioner.  Zoning ordinances ar ein derogation of common law rights as to the use of private property and they should not be extended by implication to include restrictions not clearly prescribed.  The order of the Mayor and Board of Aldermen of the City of Ocean Springs rendered in this case is therefore reversed….the application of Mrs. Alice T. Austin to locate a portable living unit or trailer at the rear of her Marine Service Station on her property in the limited commercial district of the City of Ocean Springs is granted.”  Mayor J.C. ‘Champ’ Gay (1909-1975) said of the trailer debate, “It’s still there and will just remain there.  That’s the end.”(The Ocean Springs News, November 27, 1958, p. 1)

 

Mrs. Austin Marine Service Station was the victim of Hurricane Camile in August 1969.  A large pine tree crushed the roof, before it was inundated and destroyed by the surging waters of the tropical cyclone.  The marine service station was rebuilt after Camille on the east side of Harbor Drive and called the Marine Mart.  In addition to the Mitchell Brothers and Donald Benezue some of the other former lessees of Mrs. Austin Marine Mart tract have been: Sammy Zanca, Ed Jacquet, Ed Jumonville, Wally Ramage, and since 1996, Sherman ‘Rock’ Sekul, and Kenny Dinero.(The Ocean Springs News, February 7, 1957, p. 1 and Herbert Beaugez and Alice Austin Martin-March 2008)

 

1958-Shearwater Bridge and Kensington Basin

As early as April 1954, plans for enlarging the Ocean Springs harbor to the northeast were in place.  The land in this area, which was south of Kensington Avenue and west of Pine Drive, had been platted into three subdivisions: Point-O-Pines (1950); Schluter Park, platted by R.W. Schluter (1890-1966) in March 1952; and Harborland, platted by Julius J. Strayham (1912-1991), et al in May 1956.  The Board of Supervisors began acquiring marsh and wetlands tracts in the Point-O-Pines Subdivision at this time.  Point-O-Pines, a corporation,  was owned by Audrey B. Brou, Harry H. Hayden (1881-1954), and J.K. Lemon (1914-1998), among others.

Schluter Park

Reinhold W. Schluter (1890-1966) was a native of Siegersleben, Germany.  He was born there on November 6, 1890.  During WWI, he joined the German Navy and saw combat on the high seas.  Post war, Mr. Schluter became a merchant sailor and sailed the seven seas until his retirement.  Reinhold W. Schluter came to Ocean Springs to reside in 1938.(The Ocean Springs News, April 19, 1962, p. 1)

 

In March 1952, R.W. Schluter platted his pecan orchard lands along Kensington Drive as the Schluter Park Subdivision.  This tract situated in Sections 29 and 30, T7S-R8W, consists of twenty-four lots formerly Block 7 thru Block 14 of the Alto Park Subdivision,(JXCO, Ms. Chancery Court Plat Bk. 2, p. 39)

 

In May 1962, R.W. Schluter commenced a scholarship fund for the Ocean Springs High School.  Nominations for the award were to be made by the faculty based on scholastic ability, personal qualifications, and financial necessity.  The initial gift by Mr. Schluter was $500.  The R.W. Schluter scholarship is extant today.  It is managed by a Gulfport based bank and awarded on a need basis to a selected Ocean Springs student.(The Ocean Springs News, April 19, 1962, p. 1 and Schmidt, 1972, p. 130)

 

Schluter Park tracts and Inner Harbor Park

In August 1968, the Jackson County Board of Supervisors acquired for $27,900 from Charles Ernest Schmidt (1904-1988), the executor of the R.W. Schluter Estate, several lots in the Schluter Park Subdivision along Kensington Avenue and Pine Drive and the slough extending east from Pine Drive.  This land was for further extension of the harbor and for more harbor and recreational facilities.  Robert D. Mitchell and spouse conveyed Lot 87-Schluter Park, a key parcel to any new harbor park develop, to the Board of Supervisors in October 1970.  It is situated on the southwest corner of Kensington and Pine Drive.(Schmidt, 1984, p. 129, JXCO, Ms. Land Deed Bk. 338, p. 447 and Bk. 388, p. 505)     

 

Harbor Bridges and the Mill Dam Bayou

In the 19th Century, Bayou Baiziene became known as the Mill Dam Bayou.  Captain Ellis Handy (1891-1963) who in the late 1940s wrote a column "Know Your Neighbor" for The Gulf Coast Times, interviewed local historian, Joe Lewis "Dode" Schrieber (1873-1951).  Mr. Schrieber related that the "Mill Dam" was created by William Gray Kendall (1812-1872), an entrepreneur from Kentucky, who erected a weir or small dam across the bayou to trap tidewater and provide a source of energy to grind corn or other grains at a mill located on that site.  The grinding wheel fell into the mud and silt of the bayou when it was abandoned in the 1870s.(The Gulf Coast Times, August 26, 1949).

 

Naturally, the road crossing the dam was called the Mill Dam Road.  It became known as, Anola, probably for W.G. Kendall's daughter, Anola Philomela Kendall (1843-1899).  We know this thoroughfare today as Shearwater Drive which derives its name from the Shearwater Pottery established in 1928 by Peter Anderson (1901-1984) and his parents George Walter Anderson (1861-1937) and Annette McConnell Anderson (1867-1964).

 

1936 Bridge

In January 1936, the old bridge across the "Mill Dam" was replaced.  The refurbished span opened for road traffic on January 30, 1936.  Ed Voivedich in his Model T Ford was the first to cross the new span.(The Jackson County Times, January 25, 1936, p. 1 and February 1, 1936, p. 3)

 

1958 Bridge

Construction of the 1958 Shearwater Bridge was commenced in January 1958 by Newsom Construction Company.  The18-foot tall bridge across the Ocean Springs Inner Harbor cost $17,000.  The bridge was named "Shearwater" to honor the Shearwater Pottery and the George Walter Anderson family for their contribution to the development of the Ocean Springs Inner Harbor.(The Ocean Springs News, January 16, 1958, p. 1)

 

Mill Dam Bayou-Shearwater Bridge-This aerial photograph made circa 1944 depicts the road level span that crossed the Inner Harbor at this time.  The old bridge was refurbished in in 1935-1936 and when opened in late January 1936, Ed Voivedich (1904-1972) in his Model T Ford was the first to cross it.  The large structure on the west side of the Inner harbor is the John A. Rehage house at 1220 Harbor Drive, which was erected in February 1904.  The Army Air Corps crash boats and base situated on Hellmer’s Lane were in operation at this time.  Mill Dam Bayou, which would be dredged in the late 1950s or early 1960s, to createthe Kensington Basin harbor was dug by the County using a dragline operated by H.F. ‘Dubie’ Dubuisson (1922-2008).{Courtesy of Guy L. Gammon (1916-2011), Laverne, California-1999]    

 

The 2003 Shearwater Bridge-An excellent example of governmental and bureaucratic ineptness, this small span replaced the 1958 bridge that was closed in October 2001 due to public safety concerns.  Contractors weren’t able to commence construction of a new structure across Shearwater Drive until May 2003 until the USCG completed its assessment of the Inner Harbor as a navigable waterway.  Formal dedication of the new span was held in April 2004 with the Peter Anderson family, HOSA and city officials participating.[Credit: Ray L. Bellande-June 2003]

 

2003 Bridge

The 1958 Shearwater Bridge ceased operations in October 2001 due to concerns for public safety.  After multiple delays especially the difficulty with obtaining permits from environmental and governmental bureaucratic czars, construction began on a new span across the small craft harbor at Ocean Springs in late May 2003.  A permit from the United States Coast Guard was the last to be obtained.  The bridge erection at a cost of $360,000 was supervised by Batson & Brown Inc.   Subcontractor, the Tony Parnell Construction Company, built the structure.(The Mississippi Press, May 30, 2002, p. A-1, The Ocean Springs Record, May 15, 2003, p. 1 and The Sun Herald, September 16, 2003, p. A3)    

 

Aesthetics

In March 2002, HOSA [Historic Ocean Springs Association], a small but aggressive civic organization, which for over twenty-five years has supported the local community in financing projects beneficial to the cultural and commercial growth of Ocean Springs, came forward with a proposal to place ‘aesthetic railing and street lighting’ appropriate for the new Shearwater span.  Jack Kling Garrard (1950-2012), representing HOSA, informed the City that HOSA would provide $10,000 of the estimated cost of about $26,000 for their lighting and railing scheme for the new bridge.(The Ocean Springs Record, March 7, 2002, p. A1)

 

Dedication

The new Shearwater Bridge was dedicated on April 20, 2004 with Mayor Seren Ainsworth, District 4 Supervisor Franklin Leach and city aldermen and members of HOSA in attendance.  A bottle of champagne was broken on the new structure by Marjorie Anderson Ashley, the daughter of Peter Anderson (1903-1984), James McConnell Anderson, the son of Peter Anderson, and his spouse, Margaret Hollingsworth Anderson.(The Ocean Springs Record, April 22, 2004, p. A1)

 

The plaque placed on the new Inner Harbor span reads as follows:

SHEARWATER BRIDGE

OPENED OCTOBER 8, 2003

This bridge was built through the efforts of: The City of Ocean Springs Mayor & Board of Aldermen

The Jackson County Board of Supervisors

The Historic Ocean Springs Association (HOSA)

The Taxpayers of the City of Ocean Springs & Jackson County

 

 

OSYC

The Ocean Springs Yacht Club was conceived on the Ocean Springs Inner Harbor in the Hellmer’s Lane home of Bache Whitlock (1915-2002) in January 1969, with the cooperation and enthusiasm of his neighbor, Dr. Richard T. Furr (1929-2006).  Bache and Dick Furr  were soon joined by William R. Allen (1911-1985), A. Russell Moran (1930-1981), A. Bruce Duckett, and Janet Ferson Green to found the OSYC.  The OSYC initially used the ski dock at Gulf Hills on Old Fort Bayou as their home with fourteen Sunfish as their ‘bateau de jour’.  Because the shallow water in Old Fort Bayou was not conducive for enjoyable sailing, the OSYC relocated to the lawn of Dr. Kenneth Davidson at Point Porteaux.  The ‘gypsy’ sailors then relocated to the Inner Harbor in 1970 acquiring a lease at present day 1215 Harbor Drive from Harry Rehage (1914-1999).(Whitlock, 1980, pp. 1-2)

 

Construction of the first OSYC clubhouse began in August 1970.  At this time, Matt Grace was building modular homes and he took a contract to prepare the site, drive piling, and erect the yacht club on Harbor Drive.  Before the two-halves of the modular structure were assembled, it mysteriously burned in situ.  Another building was soon delivered and in January 1971, the OSYC opened on the Inner Harbor.  The local sailors relocated to Front Beach into a $180,000 building erected by Neirynck Construction Company, which was dedicated in December 1977.(The Ocean Springs Record, August 20, 1970 and January 28, 1971, p. 14 and A.Bruce Duckett, March 2009 and Whitlock, 1980, p. 2)

 

Ironically, both the old and new OSYC buildings were victims of Hurricane Katrina in August 2005.  The original building on the Inner Harbor had been converted into a residence and owned by Jack and Beth Riley at the time of Hurricane Katrina.  Only the two-story, east addition which was built in 1995, by Robert ‘Bobby’ Schrieber and Adrian Turner, the then owner, survived the tempest and is utilized today by the Rileys as a short-term rental.

 

1974-Bowring v. Board of Supervisors

Wilda Lopez Bowring (1899-1977), the spouse of Lynden Bowring (1889-1980), sued the Jackson County Board of Supervisors because she claimed that the boat docks in front of her property at the foot of General Pershing Avenue belonged to her.  This cause was settled out of court, as it was determined that the tract in question had been used by the County uncontested since 1945 for piers and boat slips, i.e. adverse possession.  Mrs. Bowring received some relief as it was ordered that those boat slips constructed at the extreme west end of the harbor in front of her lot be removed since they were erected only a year past.(The Ocean Springs Record, December 12, 1974, p. 1 and December 19, 1974, p. 1)

 

1984-Inner Harbor Park

The Inner Harbor Park which is located on the northeast corner of Kensington and Pine Drive was dedicated on April 7, 1984 by US Senator Thad Cochran (R) of Mississippi.  Over sixty people attended the event and were served BBQ chicken.  The Ocean Springs High School tennis team was invited to the dedication to play on the new tennis courts.  Although a federal grant and local matching funds of $154,000 was appropriated for the park’s construction, the actual cost was only $119,500.  Jackson County officials returned the remainder of the funds to the federal government.  Senator Cochran remarked that this was the first time that he could recall that the government ever received grant money back.  David Scruggs and Design Collective Inc. of Biloxi designed the new facility(The Ocean Springs Record, April 12, 1984, p. 1)

 

Playground equipment

In June 1994, Beat Four Supervisor Sharon Landry replaced the playground equipment in the Inner Harbor Park and had it revitalized.(The Ocean Springs Record, June 16, 1994, p. 1)

 

1985 Renovations

Extensive renovations of the Inner Harbor were undertaken commencing in the spring of 1985.  The first phase of this $125,000 project consisted of improving and adding to the existing facilities which were utilized by the public: boat launch ramps, pier and parking.  The two existing boat launch ramps at the channel mouth were rebuilt and two new ramps were constructed.  Tie-up piers, both north and south of the boat ramp, were erected and new bulk heading was built from the launch ramp south to the Public pier. Land for the new boat ramps was leased from Alice Tee Weir Austin (1908-2001) and Alice Austin Martin, her daughter.    A new Public pier to feature a pavilion and improved lighting was also planned.  The Jackson County bridge and maintenance and construction crew performed the Phase I work at the Inner Harbor.(The Ocean Springs Record, May 30, 1985, p. 2)

 

1987-Dr. Furr v. Board of Supervisors

In early May 1987, Dr. Richard T. Furr (1929-2006) and spouse filed litigation against the Jackson County Board of Supervisors to confirm title on their land in the Harborland Subdivision.  The Furr tract ran from Warren Drive to the shoreline of the Kensington Basin anchorage.  Tommy Brodnax, Beat Four Supervisor at this time, contended that the lands along the Kensington Basin harbor, including the asphalt road and pier belonged to the people of Jackson County, Mississippi because it had been deeded to the County in 1954.  Larry Corban, Biloxi attorney, represented Dr. Furr who requested that the County remove its equipment and moored vessels that were trespassing on his client‘s property.(The Ocean Springs Record,  May 14, 1987, p. 1)

 

In August 1992, the Chancery Court ruled against Dr. Furr in favor of Jackson County in his litigation over his Kensington Basin acreage.  The Furrs considered an appeal to the State Supreme Court.(JXCO, Ms. Chancery Court Cause No. 50767-May 1987)

 

1989-Jackson County vies with BMR

In April 1989, the Bureau of Marine Resources, now called the Department of Marine Resources, issued a cease and desist order to Jackson County for their work at the Inner Harbor because it had determined that the appropriate permit had not been granted.  The County was halfway through its new docking and bulk heading work at the facility.  One of the salient concerns of the BMR was that the County create ‘new’ wetlands near the Inner Harbor Park to replace wetlands lost by the Inner Harbor improvements. 

 

This impasse was resolved in October 1989 as the County agreed to create 1500 square- feet of wetlands near the Inner Harbor Park to replace the 1400 square-feet of water bottom that was filled.  District 4 Supervisor Tommy Brodnax opined that “the agreement that was worked out….could have been worked out on the spot five months ago if we had agencies that that were interested in saving the public money.”   Brodnax estimated that the delay added an additional $50,000 to the project’s cost.(The Ocean Springs Record, April 20, 1989, p. 1 and October 15, 1989, p. B-1)

2003 Halcyon Days-This image was made in early June 2003 looking south from the Shearwater Bridge ramp before Hurricane Katrina’s unwelcomed August 2005 visit.  The ranch-style home on the west side of the Inner Harbor  at 1310 Harbor Drive was the domicile of Thomas Reynolds Jr. at this time.  It was acquired in January 2005 by Jackson County and became the Harbor Master’s House.  Harbormaster Johnny Hughes moved his office from the Jackson County Tax Collector's Office on North Washington Avenue to the Inner Harbor.  It was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina in August 2005.[Courtesy of Ray L. Bellande-June 2003]

 

‘For the Birds’

In early 1994, the Board of Supervisors made a decision to add ten additional boat slips on the west side of the Kensington Basin adjacent to Dr. Richard T. Furr’s (1929-2006) property.  This area of the harbor was also to be dredged and the parking lot improved with funds derived from State Tidelands leases.  Near the water’s edge on the Furr  tract is a grove of shrubs and trees, which serve as a gathering place for large accumulations of egrets, especially in the evenings.  This ‘rookery’ was threatened by the Inner Harbor expansion and local conservationists vehemently protected.  Public opinion ruled and this area of the Kensington Basin remained undisturbed for nearly a decade. (The Ocean Springs Record, February 3, 1994, p. 3 and February 1, 1996, p. 1) 

 

1996-Kensington Basin projects

In late February 1996, the Ocean Springs Harbor Commission, ably led by Brad Lemon  again planned to add seven boat slips to the Kensington Basin portion of the Inner Harbor and dredge areas germane to boat traffic in this area.  Typical of Ocean Springs, the proponents of Inner Harbor improvements were greeted by caveats from the opposition citing that the “heron” rookery would be disturbed and that the heavy metals and other pollutants in the water bottoms would be stirred and released into the waters of the harbor.(The Ocean Springs Record, February 29, 1996, p. 1)

By July 1996, the Department of Marine Resources had provided the County with $150,000 of funds from its tideland lease revenues to commence improvements in the Kensington Basin.    The project was to consist of dredging 10,000 cubic yards of sediment from the anchorage and build a pier and bulkhead the Pine Drive area of the basin. (The Ocean Springs Record, July 25, 1996, p. 1)

 

Tony Parnell Contractors was engaged by the County to build seven boat slips and dredge the harbor.  By late October 1996, Parnell was forced to cease his operations because the site in Biloxi that he was to use for the dewatering of the dredge spoils was no longer available for this purpose.  It wasn’t until May 1997, that Parnell Contracting received its permit to use a site on Old Fort Bayou for dewatering Inner Harbor dredge spoils.  By mid-June 1997, dredging operations were resumed and the project expected to be completed in sixty days.(The Ocean Springs Record, October 31, 1996, p. 1, May 1, 1997, p. 1, May 29, 1997, p. 1 and June 19, 1997, p. 1)

 

1997 Pier and dredging

In late November 1997, Jackson County announced plans to dredge a new channel from Biloxi Bay into the Ocean Springs Inner Harbor.  A new pier was also planned.  $150,000 allocated for these projects.(The Ocean Springs Record, November 27, 1997, p. 1)

 

Harbor Landing Marina and Restaurant

 

Harbor Landing Dry Stack Marina-This large, recreation and fishing boat storage structure was erected between March 2004 and March 2005 by Anchor Realty Company for Harbor Landing LLC.  The building was damaged in Hurricane Katrina and demolished in November-December 2013. [L-R: June 2004 and July 2004-images by Ray L. Bellande]

 

The Harbor Landing Dry Stack Marina and Restaurant have been venues of controversy since their completion in 2005 and 2007 respectively by Harbor Landing LLC , a Mississippi corporation owned by  local entrepreneur,  I. David Harris Jr. et al.  

 

In early January 2004, Harbor Landing LLC acquired 1.81 acres on the west side of the Inner Harbor from Earl H. Fayard Jr., former Front Beach seafood retailer.  The Fayard tract was about 190 feet wide by 410 feet deep with some water bottom acreage in the Inner Harbor.  Mr. Fayard had formerly operated a small ice plant here.  The Haviland family had once possessed this particular tract and had conveyed it to Mr. Fayard earlier.(Jackson Co., Mississippi Land Deed Bk . 1328, p. 278)

 

In February 2004, Harbor Landing LLC acquired a building permit from the City to erect a large metal building at 1709 Harbor Drive.  The $575,000 structure was to be utilized to store recreational and fishing boats for a fee based on the length of the watercraft.  Construction began in March 2004 with Anchor Realty Company, a local company owned by Danny Jalanivich, as general contractor.  Mr. Jalanivich served the citizens of Ocean Springs as its Alderman-at Large from 1997 until 2005.(City of OS, Mississippi Building Department)

 

Harbor Master Quarters

Until very recent times, the Ocean Springs harbor master lived at his residence before an office with clerk was established at the Jackson County business and tax collector’s office complex at 6912 North Washington Avenue. 

 

In January 2005, the Jackson County Board of Supervisors and Ocean Springs Harbor Commission acquired a house and lot at 1310 Harbor Drive from Thomas L. Reynolds Jr. This structure cost about $250,000 and was utilized as an office to oversee functions at the small craft harbor facility.   Harbormaster Johnny Hughes moved his office from the Tax Collector's Office on North Washington to the Inner Harbor.(TheBay Press, January 19, 2005 and The Ocean Springs Record, January 20, 2005, p. 8B)

 

The ‘new’ Harbor Master House, a ranch-style structure, had been erected probably in 1959 by James T. Andrews and Fay Moran Andrews who acquired the lot from Gunnar J. Johnson for $4200 in March 1959.  It was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina in late August 2005 and the roof settled in the harbor and was visible at low tide.(The Sun Herald, September 18, 2006, p. A-8)

 

Hurricane Katrina was remembered by Harbor Master Johnny Hughes as follows:  “the harbor was [in] a shock after Katrina.  They had backed up the harbor computer records, double bagged them and placed them and other things in in the top cabinets of what had been the kitchen before the [Reynolds] house was converted into an office.  We found the kitchen cabinets on Hellmer’s Lane across from the harbor, but the harbor’s record of the 200-person waiting list for boat slips was intact.  This was probably the most important information that was saved.”(The Sun Herald, September 18, 2006, p. A-8)

 

[L-R:  Trailer building [image made September 2006] utilized until about November 2006 when it was replaced by a Katrina cottage [image made December 2010].  Third image an idea for the Harbor Master house proposed at the October 2005 Charrette planning sessions held a Biloxi.  It was rejected by the Board of Supervisors.[images by Ray L. Bellande]

 

Between the Katrina disaster of August 29, 2005 and the completion of a new Harbor Master house in July 2011, Inner Harbor business was conducted briefly in a trailer and then relocated to a Katrina Cottage.(Donna Hipp, March 5, 2014)

 

November 2010                                         December 2010                                    August 2011

 

2011 Harbor Master House

In 2006, when it came time to discuss the building of a post-Katrina Harbor Master House, Brad Lemon, Chairman of the local Harbor Commission made a logical recommendation that the architectural style of the structure mimic that of the old Dolph Schrieber oyster house at Marsh Point which Mr. Schrieber had christened "The Little Black Diamond".  Known locally as ‘the shack’, this small over-water structure on creosote pilings was completed on July 4, 1904, by Frederick “Dolph” Adolph Schrieber (1871-1944) who had been active in the oyster business as early as March 1902, when he and E.N. Ramsay (1832-1916) and George W. Dale (1872-1953) applied to the Jackson County Board of Supervisors for an oyster planting lease on eighty acres of "land that is underwater" west of Marsh Point.  Dolph planted over ten thousand barrels of oysters in Davis Bayou opposite his house.  He and his wife, Lilly Alice Rupp (1889-1972), occasionally lived here to protect their oyster beds from poachers.  Mrs. Lilly Schrieber reported that she once shot several holes through the skiff of an oyster thief one night.  The Schrieber oyster house survived storms and hurricanes for many decades, but was probably finished off by Hurricane Camille in 1969.(The Progress, July 9, 1904, p. 4 and The Daily HeraldNovember 16, 1957)

 

Dolph Schrieber left the oyster business and the United States Public Health Service to join the US Lighthouse Service in 1908.  After a peripatetic career mostly in Louisiana, he retired as Biloxi’s lighthouse keeper in 1937.  Mr. Schrieber’s father-in-law, Marshall Robert W. Rupp (1857-1930). found the iconic ‘Iberville Plaque’ or ‘Fort Mauepas cornerstone’ on Front Beach at Ocean Springs in 1910.  

 

The October 2005 Charrette planning meetings held at the Isle Casino in Biloxi following Katrina produced some interesting recommendations for future architectural designs along the Mississippi Gulf Coast.  Architects from many areas of the country met and the committee assigned to Ocean Springs recommended that a new harbor master house at our Inner Harbor have the appearance of a 19th Century, Horn Island lighthouse.  By September 2006, FEMA had pledged$340,000 to the Jackson County Board of Supervisors for the new structure and another $60,000 if the building had hurricane prevention measures, like special shutters.(The Sun Herald, September 18, 2006, p. A-8)

 

2011 Harbor Master House

By the time construction of the new Harbor Master house began in the spring of 2010 its cost had escalated from $400,000 in 2006 to over $1 million dollars. 

 

Fletcher Construction Company was awarded the $399,000 contract to erect the foundation for the $1.2 million Harbor House in January 2010.  Construction for the 2100 square-foot structure was scheduled to commence in March 2010.  Beat Four Supervisor Tommy Brodnax said that the new Harbor Office is more like a 'Taj Mahal' than a building to house three employees.  The new quarters were built at an elevation at 21-feet above sea mean level or about 8-feet above the ground level.  The building has  a meeting space for the Ocean Springs Inner Harbor Commission meetings; a harbor Master's office; kitchen; showers; washer and dryer; and another office space for the administrative staff.  Harbor business commenced here in July 2011 with Bill Richman, as harbor master  and Donna Hipp, as the office manager.(The Ocean Springs Gazette, January 6, 2010, p. 1 and Donna Hipp-March 2014)

 

July 2007

Harbor Landing Restaurant

In the summer of 2006, Harbor Landing LLC received a permit from the City of Ocean Springs to erect a restaurant building on its tract of land on the west side of the Inner Harbor and opposite its Dry Stack Marina and east of Harbor Drive.  The tri-level,  wood-framed and exterior Hardie cement board, structure on pilings with a large deck on the south side was built by Anchor Realty Company, general contractor.  Anchor also built the Harbor Landing LLC Dry Stack Marina in 2004-2005.

 

The City of Ocean Springs issued the Harbor Landing Restaurant a privilege business license in late September 2006 to operate a delicatessen, ship’s store and office from their new enterprise on Harbor Drive.

 

Demolition Day-Commencing in November 2013, the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources through their contractor, Demolition Inc. of D'Iberville, Mississippi, began removing the dry stack marine and restaurant, the two commercial structures, erected by Harbor Landing LLC.

 

Controversy on the Water

The Harbor Landing Dry Stack Marina and Restaurant were venues of controversy since their completion in 2005 and 2007 respectively by Harbor Landing LLC.  The restaurant in particular disliked by some for its visual pollution,  creation of parking issues and ‘noise’.  Like other divisive issues along the Inner Harbor, this resolution was decided in the Jackson County court system. 

 

In July 2008, the Jackson County, Mississippi Circuit Court ruled favorably for the defendants, City of Ocean Springs and the Harbor Landing Restaurant, against the plaintiffs, 'Friends of the Harbor", led by A. Bruce Duckett, Alice P. Duckett and other denizens with interest in preserving their quality of life in propinquity to Inner Harbor activities.  The Ducketts and many neighbors along the Inner Harbor believed that the City erred in issuing a building and use permit for the Harbor Landing Restaurant.  The Ducketts et al contended that the harbor area was not zoned for such activity and appealed the Circuit Court’s July decision.(The Ocean Springs Record, July 10, 2008, p. A1)

 

Harbor Landing 'Yacht Club' 

In December 2009, the 'Friends of the Harbor' saw the State Court of Appeals reverse the Jackson County Circuit Court decision that allowed the Harbor Landing Restaurant to operate.  In January 2010, the Board of Aldermen also reversed their 2007 decision allowing the I. David Harris Jr. family to operate a restaurant at the Ocean Springs Inner Harbor.  

 

Since City ordinances would allow the controversial Inner Harbor eatery to continue if it were a private club.  Harbor Landing Restaurant was transformed and allowed to continue in the food and beverage service business at this attractive site on the Inner Harbor when I. David Harris Jr. converted his business into a "private yacht club'.  The annual membership dues of $15 were also applied towards the 'new members' first meal.(The Sun Herald, January 20, 2010, p. A7)

 

Sale

In late November 2010, the Harbor Landing Yacht Club and Boat Shed was acquired by the Mississippi Department of Marine Resourcesfor $3.65 million dollarsusing Coastal Impact Assistance Program [CIAP] money.  A report by the Office of the Inspector General of the US Department of Interior for land appraisals criticized DMR for its high appraisal of the Harbor Landing LLC tract.  Jackson County tax rolls had the property valued at $1.3 million.  Anyone who owns property in Jackson County, especially Ocean Springs, and has vended or acquired real property in recent years knows that the selling price and the County appraisal price can vary by more than 100%.  In this regard, there is a high degree of certitude that DMR was paying ‘fair market value’ for the Inner Harbor tract and not a ‘blue sky’ price as critics of DMR business practices have contended.(Jackson Co., Mississippi Chancery Court Land Deed Bk. 1628, p. 650 and Bk. 1733, p. 213, The Sun Herald, December 9, 2010, p. A4 and December 16, 2010, p. A1)

 

Before DMR formulated a plan to demolish both structures and donate the land to the County for more parking and beautification, the City of Ocean Springs promoted the idea of  ‘land swap’ by DMR with Steven Carter who owned of a tract on Back Bay in Biloxi.  Carter would continue operating the dry stack marina on the Inner Harbor at Ocean Springs with its capacity to store about 170 boats.(The Sun Herald, November 8, 2012, p. A2)

 

 

Demolition

The State Department of Marine Resources accepted the low bid $118,545 to demolish and remove the boat storage shed and restaurant that it had acquired from Harbor Landing LLC to Demolition Inc. of D'Iberville, Mississippi.  Their low bid was $118,545.  The highest of the ten bids received by DMR was $433,000.  The demolition project officially started on November 5, 2013 and the company had until February 4, 2014 to complete the work.  when the property was on the Jackson County tax rolls at a value of $1.3 million.   A 2012 federal audit questioned the purchase partly because Harris and then-DMR Director Bill Walker were friends.(The Sun Herald, November 4, 2013)

 

Inner Harbor-September 2005

[images by Ray L. Bellande]

 

Katrina

In the morning of 29 August 2005, the effects of the tidal surge created by Hurricane Katrina, a category 3 storm, began to be felt in the Biloxi-Ocean Springs area as water began to slowly rise in Biloxi Bay and proceed to inundate Back Bay and all low-lying areas and to follow bayous, steams, ravines etc. until reaching the 15-foot to 20-foot above mean sea level. 

 

The Inner Harbor and Shearwater Pottery on its eastern perimeter were particularly hard hit by this powerful tempest.  My personal experiences at 525 Jackson Avenue were fairly typical of past hurricane experiences-loss of electricity; hurricane-gale force winds; rain in varying amounts and intensity; trees bending and an occasional uprooting; flying objects-particularly roofing materials and unsecured objects. 

 

By 3 p.m. of 29 August 2005, the winds had diminished to about hurricane force and I ventured out of my residence to make a cursory assessment of local damage.  Other than a most old and venerable sycamore tree, which had fallen in my yard and across Jackson Avenue from the east, all seemed relatively well.  Soon an adventurer in a small truck stopped and began to inform me of the more serious nature of Katrina’s uninvited and much to long visit.

 

After hearing about the virtual destruction of the Biloxi Bay Bridge and inundation of the Front Beach and surroundings, I was joined by the Snyder family who had spent the day in the safety of the Bradford-O’Keefe Funeral Home on what had once been called O’Keefe’s Corner.  Susan O’Keefe Snyder entered a state of angst when she heard the news of the wide spread flooding.  She and Chris, her spouse, walked south down Jackson Avenue to discover that their wonderful, 19th Century home had indeed survived the storm.  Others were not so fortunate as our oldest street in its lower areas had been dealt some catastrophic damage.

 

For your viewing today, I am sharing some of my Katrina images of the Inner Harbor made shortly after Katrina’s visit.  Yes, Katrina there was a tomorrow and we have recovered well, but please don ‘t return anytime soon!  auRayvoir!!

 

Post-Katrina improvements

As part of the US Army Corps of Engineers Mississippi Coastal Improvements Program, work was commenced in March 2009 to protect the elevated road bed on both sides of the Shearwater span from erosion.(The Ocean Springs Record, March 26, 2009, p. 15)

 

Harbor Pier

A Katrina replacement Inner Harbor pier into Biloxi Bay was built on the footprint of the old structure, which had been erected commencing in June 2008.  The new wharf was 770 feet in length, ten feet wide, and had two gazebos with picnic tables and benches.  The pilings for the structure were concrete and the finished project cost was $777,000 dollars, which was funded by FEMA.  It was completed in early January 2009.(The Ocean Springs Record, June 12, 2008, p. A1 and The Sun Herald, January 18, 2009, p. A3)

 

Christmas boat parade

The first Ocean Springs Inner Harbor Christmas boat parade was held on December 13, 2008.  The Pete and Sharon won honors for Santa's Best of Fleet.(The Sun Herald, December 7, 2008, p. A4, The Ocean Springs Record, December 11, 2008, p. B1, and The Ocean Springs Record, December 18, 2008, p. A1)

 

Kensington Basin improvements and Shearwater Park construction in 2012

[images by Ray L. Bellande]

 

Harbor renovation and improvement planned

With $3 million dollars of Federal funds remaining from replacing the US Highway 90 fishing bridge with a planned $2.2 million dollar, 1320-foor fishing pier, the Board of Supervisors used these funds to replace bulkheads and make electrical repairs at the Kensington Basin area of Inner Harbor.  Mayor Connie Moran pointed out that $350,000 could be saved by not replacing the entire Kensington bulkhead because some of it is in good condition.  The savings could be spent on landscaping, parking and lighting.(The Ocean Springs Gazette, September 23, 2009, p. 1 and The Ocean Springs Record, September 24, 2009, p. 1)

 

2011- New Harbor Parks

In the summer of 2011, the City of Ocean Springs with HOSA in concert developed plans for two additional green spaces on the Kensington Basin or northern portion of the Inner Harbor at Ocean Springs.  One park, to be called 'Shearwater Park', because of its propinquity to Shearwater Drive and also because it is situated just north of the Shearwater Pottery, was built with as a simple, site with walkways, a butterfly garden, and a viewing area with seating to observe the snowy, egret rookery on the northwest side of the back harbor near the Henry Hansel Furr property. An interesting feature of this green space will be a pet drinking fountain!  HOSA in addition within Shearwater Park had built a garden in memory of John Blossman (1943-2009), a gentleman, scholar and philanthropist.(The Sun Herald, August 14, 2011)

Shearwater Park dedication-On May 22, 2013, HOSA [Historic Ocean Springs Association] held a dedication ceremony at its most recent civic accomplishment-the John R. Blossman (1943-2009) Garden within Shearwater Park.  This small green space on the Inner Harbor’s Kensington Basin and Shearwater Drive opposite the Shearwater Pottery was preserved from commercial development through the efforts of the Department of Marine Resources, the Jackson County Board of Supervisors and the City of Ocean Springs all in concert with HOSA and the Mississippi Land Trust.  In this image Larry Cosper [center], businessman, community leader and volunteer and former City Alderman, is honoring the memory and accomplishments of John R. Blossman for whom the gardens were named.[Image courtesy of HOSA]

 

Shearwater Shearwater Park

The Shearwater Park and John Blossman Garden was envisioned by HOSA [Historic Ocean Springs Association] in 2008 to utilize a small tract of land on the Inner Harbor’s Kensington Basin and Shearwater Drive, just east and north of the Shearwater Bridge.  It had formerly been the site of a 1950s Arkansas tile house that had been devastated by Hurricane Katrina.  While zoned commercial the small parcel was acquired by the Department of Marine Resources, who made arrangements with HOSA to maintain the parcel as an Inner Harbor green space.

 

Ground breaking for this verdant venture was on July 25, 2012.  It was built by Orocon Incorporated, who also were responsible for Fort Maurepas Park, another City treasure.  Shearwater Park was designed and built with a walking path; flower and shrub plantings; benches to view the Kensington Basin and egret rookery; planting as examples of Ocean Springs five protected trees-the Live oak, sycamore, cypress, magnolia, and cedar, and a plaque honoring John R. Blossman (1943-2009).  The Shearwater Park and John Blossman Garden were dedicated on May 22, 2013.  Larry Cosper, long time HOSA member and City activist, spoke of Mr. Blossman’s contributions to Ocean Springs, the City that he deeply loved and appreciated.(The Ocean Springs Record, August 9, 2012, p. 1 and May 30, 2013, p. 1)

 

2014-New Harbor Master

Danny Jalanivich, former Alderman-at Large and OS Harbor Commissioner, was hired by Jackson County as OS Harbor Master in mid-August.  His salary was approximately $50,000 annually.  In mid-September, Amanda Kennerly, an attorney, reported that Jalanivich was inquiring about the condition of her husband's sailboat moored in the harbor.  Kennerly was concerned that Jalanivich might seek revenge on her family as she was a leader for Friends of the Ocean Springs Harbor in its litigation over the Harbor Landing Restaurant and boat storage facility.(The Sun Herald, August 15, 2014, p. A-5 and September 11, 2014, p. A-2)

 

[image made October 17, 2017]

 

Thomas D. McIlwain Harbor Green

 

Ground breaking on November 7, 2014 and fill dirt- [L-R: Mayor Connie Marie Moran; Kristen Smith-U.S. Fish & Wildlife, Jennifer Wagner-DMR; Hank Zuber-State Representative; Jamie Miller-DMR; Danny Jalanivich-Harbor Master;  Alderman Greg Denyer; Jackson County Supervisors John McKay and Troy Ross; Stacey McIlwain Randall; Janet McIlwain; and Alderman John Gill.(The Ocean Springs Gazette, November 13, 2014, p. 1-Ground breaking image courtesy of James Ricketts)  Fill dirt image made November 14, 2014 and grass lawn image made December 2014 by Ray L. Bellande.

 

 

Thomas David McIlwain

 

from The Sun Herald, “Thomas McIlwain: McIlwain remembered as pioneer in marine biology”, November 2, 2012.

 

Thomas D. ‘Tom’ McIlwain (1940-2012), age 71 years of Ocean Springs, Mississippi died peacefully on October 31, 2012 at home with his wife and daughter by his side after a long battle with cancer.  A lifelong resident of the coast, Tom was born in Pascagoula, Mississippi on November 15, 1940 and graduated from Capitol Page School in Washington D.C. in 1958.

 

After graduation, Tom served briefly in the U.S. Army, and then attended the University of Southern Mississippi and graduated with a B.S., an M.S and a PhD in Zoology. Tom had a career in marine fisheries and science that spanned almost 5 decades, and he was affiliated with the University of Southern Mississippi- Gulf Coast Research Laboratory (GCRL) for most of his career.  From 1978-1989, Tom served as Assistant Director of Fisheries at GCRL. In 1983, he served for 9 months as special fisheries legislative assistant to Congressman Trent Lott, and from 1989-1994 he served as the Director of GCRL. In 1994, Tom retired from the GCRL and served the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) Laboratory as a fisheries administrator.

 

After a second stint in Washington D.C as a legislative fellow, he returned to his position at NMFS-Pascagoula until his retirement from federal service in 2003.

 

McIlwain returned to GCRL in 2003 to coordinate the expansion of facilities for the Thad Cochran Marine Aquaculture Center at the Cedar Point site. He retired from GCRL in July 2012 after completing this project.

 

Spanning his career at GCRL and NMFS, McIlwain had a major impact in several areas of marine research, policy development and management. He was instrumental in establishing a striped bass fishery along the Mississippi Gulf Coast, the development of the MARFIN project to support marine fishery research nationally and the United States Marine Shrimp Farming Program; the major U.S. effort to develop a national program in shrimp aquaculture. He served from 2006-2012 as a voting member of the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council representing the state of Mississippi and served as Chairman from 2007-2009.

 

Tom was an active member of First Presbyterian Church of Ocean Springs where he served as a deacon, elder, trustee, and clerk of the session. His favorite job however, was serving as the official greeter, welcoming people to the service every Sunday morning. He was also one of the founding members of the Mississippi Presbyterian Cursillo movement which was near and dear to his heart.

 

Tom loved the water, was a lifelong sailor, and found solace aboard his beloved vessel, the Stacey L. Tom was also a long-time member of the Ocean Springs Yacht Club where he served as Commodore from 1976-1977. He also served as chairman of the Jackson County Harbor Commission.

 

Dr. McIlwain was preceded in death by his parents, Julius and Kathleen McIlwain of Pascagoula. Tom is survived by his wife of almost 50 years, Janet Chapman McIlwain; his daughter, Stacey McIlwain Randall (Bradley); granddaughters, Allie and Lindsay; brother, Barry McIlwain (Jane); sister, Martha McIlwain Murray (James) and numerous nieces and nephews.

 

He was a wonderful husband, father, grandfather, friend and a mentor to many. Memorial services will be held on Wednesday, November 7, 2012 at 3:00 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church in Ocean Springs.

 

 

from The Sun Herald, “Thomas David McIlwain”, November 4, 2012

Thomas David McIlwain, longtime marine biologist, fishery scientist and educator, died Wednesday after a three-year battle with cancer.   He was 71.  His career of about 50 years was mostly spent at the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory in Ocean Springs. He was the lab director from 1989 to 1994 and retired in 2011. He also was a former fishery administrator with the National Marine Fisheries Service Laboratory in Pascagoula.  

 

McIlwain was chairman of the Ocean Springs Harbor Commission, and remained active until a couple of months ago, said his daughter, Stacey Randall.  "He was known as a great scientist, but to me, his greatest accomplishment was being a wonderful father," she said. "He loved God, was humble and honest and loved the gulf."

 

McIlwain, born in Pascagoula, grew up wanting to be a marine biologist. He earned his bachelor's, master's and doctorate degrees from the University of Southern Mississippi.  He was considered a pioneer in marine and fisheries research at the GCRL, and was credited with helping it transition from an independent lab to a part of an academic program at USM.  He also was known for his work in support of change to state and national marine policies and in developing aquaculture programs to raise striped bass for recreational purposes and in shrimp farming.

 

"His contributions to the GCRL and to fisheries generally in the Gulf of Mexico are quite substantial," said Jeffrey Lotz, chairman of USM's Department of Coastal Sciences.  McIlwain chaired a national subcommittee on aquaculture while working with the NMFS from 1994 to 2003. His focus included research and education on shrimp virus, work experts said has affected shrimp production worldwide.  Colleagues said the research he directed has helped shape policies and regulations at state and national levels.  For all his education and scientific knowledge, he was a down-to-earth person, said Ocean Springs Harbor Master Bill Richman.  "He was a friendly, very unassuming person," Richman said. "It gave people a warm feeling being around him. The community will miss his positive influence."

 

McIlwain and his wife, Janet, were married nearly 50 years. Their only child earned a marine biology degree before becoming a veterinarian.  Stacey Randall said she will lovingly remember the father who encouraged her to work with dolphins and sea lions at the old Marine Life, and frequently took her sailing, to visits on Horn Island and on beach walks.  "He would take the time to point out the flotsam and jetsam, the horseshoe crabs and mermaid's purses," she said. "He enjoyed his life on the Gulf and shared that love with me."

 

Visitation will be at First Presbyterian Church of Ocean Springs at 1 p.m. Wednesday, followed by funeral services at 3 p.m.

 

 

The Thomas D. McIlwain Harbor Green was designed by Bryan K. Parks, landscape architect with Linfield, Hunter and Junius Inc.  The property was acquired by the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources [MDMR] with funding through the Coastal Impact Assistance Program.  The improvements were funded by Tidelands grants to the City of Ocean Springs in partnership with MDMR.  The large wood-blasted sign was designed and built by Millie McGinty Jarrell of Gulf Graphics and installed in early September 2017.(The Ocean Springs Gazette, October 1, 2015, p. 1 and eye witness of Ray L. Bellande.)

 

2017-New Harbor Master

With the resignation of Danny Jalanavich in June 2017, the Board of Supervisors selected in August 2017, August J. Derouen as the new harbor master for Ocean Springs.  Derouen will earn about $40,000 per year as a Grade 13 Jackson County employee.

 

 

October 10, 2015

2015-Boat Launch and Road Improvement

In early October 2015, the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources [MDMR], City of Ocean Springs, Jackson County Board of Supervisors and The OS Harbor Commission commenced improvements to the OS Harbor boat launch and Harbor Drive.   

 

 

 

Images made late November and early December 2015

January 26, 2016

 

 

 

 

 

Hurricane Nate

Barely a Category 1 Hurricane, Nate visited the Mississippi Gulf Coast in the early morning of October 8, 2017.  After crossing the Mississippi River delta, a second landfall was made near Biloxi, Mississippi resulting in a storm surge of between seven and nine feet.  The lobbies of the Golden Nugget and  casinos were flooded.

 

At Ocean Springs, the harbor suffered minor damage as several floating piers owned by beer and bait vendor Kenny Dinero floated off.  Dinero was required to move his building, a former Katrina cottage to higher ground.

 

Nate made landfall near the mouth of the Mississippi River in Louisiana. After crossing the marshland of the Mississippi Delta, it made its second U.S. landfall near Biloxi, Mississippi early on on October 8, causing a storm surge to flood the ground floor of coastal casinos and buildings, as well as causing rip currents, hurricane-force winds, and beach erosion.

 

Moving northwestward at 28 mph, Nate was the fastest-moving storm ever recorded in the Gulf of Mexico. It is also the fourth Atlantic hurricane of 2017 to have made landfall in the United States or one of its territories; such a quartet of landfalls has not occurred since 2005. In addition, Nate was the first tropical cyclone to move ashore in the state of Mississippi since Hurricane Katrina.   As of October 10, the hurricane had killed at least 45 people: 16 deaths were counted in Nicaragua, 11 in Costa Rica, 5 in Guatemala, 7 in Panama, 3 in Honduras, 1 in El Salvador, and 2 in the United States.

 

REFERENCES:

 

Jackson Co., Ms. Board of Supervisors Minute Book 17, “Application directed to be filed to Federal government for financing a small craft harbor at Ocean Springs and Pascagoula”, September Term-1938, p. 279.

C.E. Schmidt, Ocean Springs French Beachhead, (Lewis Printing Services-Pascagoula, Mississippi-1984).

 

Chancery Court

Jackson County, Mississippi Chancery Court Cause No. 18,956, “The Estate of R.W. Schluter-.

Jackson County, Mississippi Chancery Court Cause No. 50, 767, “R.T. Furr v. Board of Supervisors-May 1987.

 

Journals

The Bay Press, “HOSA to sponsor additional costs of Shearwater Bridge”, April 2, 2002, p. 1.

The Daily Herald, “Know Your Coast”, ‘Snug Harbor’, May 9, 1957.

The Daily Herald, “Ocean Springs News-Harbor station sold”, March 25, 1958.

The Gazette, "New harbor on the horizon", September 24, 2009.

The Gazette, "New $1.2 million Harbor Office readies to turn dirt", January 6, 2010.

The Gazette"Phase two bidding for Harbor house opens", January 13, 2010.

The Gazette, "Harbor Landing signs papers to operate as yacht club", January 20, 2010.

 

The Gulf Coast Times

The Gulf Coast Times, “Col. Bankston named head of Laboratory school”, June 3, 1949.

The Gulf Coast Times"Know Your Neighbor", August 26, 1949.

The Gulf Coast Times, “Need for service dock inner harbor”, September 8, 1952, p. 1.

The Gulf Coast Times, “Ocean Springs adopts zoning ordinance”, January 3, 1952.

The Gulf Coast Times, “Town board asks $1500 harbor improvements”, January 17 3, 1952.

The Gulf Coast Times, “Alderman Catchot asks repeal zoning ordinance if amendment fails”, September 18, 1952.

The Gulf Coast Times, “Zone commission says no word on Inner Harbor amendment”, September 25, 1952.

The Gulf Coast Times, “Zone amendment at stalemate”, October 2, 1952.

The Gulf Coast Times, “Letters protest zone amendment on harbor”, October 9, 1952.

The Gulf Coast Times, “John Catchot resigns as harbormaster”, December 4, 1952.

The Gulf Coast Times, “Start work on docks and improvements at Ocean Springs inner harbor”, March 19, 1953, p. 1.

 

The Jackson County Times

The Jackson County Times, “Rebuild bridge on the ‘Mill Dam’”, January 18, 1936, p. 3.

The Jackson County Times, “Mill dam bridge near completion”, January 25, 1936, p. 1.

The Jackson County Times, “The Column”, February 1, 1936.

The Jackson County Times, “Yachts can now harbor at Ocean Springs”, September 27, 1937, p. 2.

The Jackson County Times, “A.P. Moran working on inner harbor project”, September 10, 1938. p. 1.

The Jackson County Times, “Work started this week on inner harbor and sand beach for Ocean Springs”, March 18, 1939, p. 1.

The Jackson County Times, “Inner harbor dock ready for use soon”, August 26, 1939, p. 2.

The Jackson County Times"Contract is let for barracks for Key Field men", December 11, 1943.

The Jackson County Times"70 French Sailors at Magnolia Park Await Ship Repairs", December 18, 1943.

The Jackson County Times, "Dredge 'Wahalak' doing fine job in Inner Harbor", January 15, 1944.

The Jackson County Times"Charles Clark dies suddenly Thursday p.m.", April 7, 1945.

The Jackson County Times"Crash Boat Base Has 'Open House' Last Saturday", December 8, 1945.

The Jackson County Times, “Small craft harbor to be improved”, December   1947, p. 1.

The Jackson County Times"Schmidt Resigns from Sea Food Post; Blasts Supervisor A.P. Moran", March 19, 1948, p. 1.

The Jackson County Times"Alderman Schmidt Blamed for Loss of Funds", June 1948, p. 1.

The Jackson County Times, "Westbrook, Hodges Are Reelected; Ald. Schmidt Loses to J.C. 'Champ' Gay", August 20, 1948, p. 1.

The Mississippi Press, “Shearwater bridge design offered”, January 16, 2002.

The Mississippi Press, “OS Press”,  'Harbor Landing almost ready", February 16, 2005.

The Mississippi Press, “New Shearwater Bridge Under Construction”, May 30, 2003.

 

The Ocean Springs Gazette

The Ocean Springs Gazette"New $1.2 million Harbor Office readies to turn dirt", January 6, 2010.

The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part I, December   19, 2013.

The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part II, December  26, 2013.

The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part III, January 2, 2014.

The Ocean Springs Gazette"PUDs, haror landscaping put on hold", January 9, 2014.

The Ocean Springs Gazette, "The Inner Harbor", part IV, January 9, 2014.

The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part V, January 16, 2014.

The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part VIII, January 23, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part VII, January 30, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part VIII, February 6, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part IX, February 13, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part X, February 20, 2014.

The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part XI, February 27, 2014.

The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part XII, March 6, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part XIII, March 13, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part XIV, March 20, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"Land Trust invites public to Shearwater Park meet", part XVI, March 20, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part XV, March 27, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part XVI, April   3, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part XVII, April   10, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part XVIII, April   17, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part XVI, April  24 , 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part XVI, May 1, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part XVII, May 8, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part XVIII, May 15, 2014.
 

The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part XIX, May 22, 2014.

The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part XX, May 29, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part XXI, June 5, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"The Inner Harbor", part XXII, June 12, 2014.
 
The Ocean Springs Gazette"Ground broken for McIlwain Harbor Green", November 13, 2014.

The Ocean Springs Gazette"Work begins in harbor area, [boat] launch closed", October 1, 2015.

 
 
The Ocean Springs News
The Ocean Springs News“Attention….[advertisement for Inner Harbor Shell stationFebruary 7, 1957.

The Ocean Springs News“Station Open”February 7, 1957.

The Ocean Springs News“Let Contract on Shearwater Dr. Bridge Work”, January 16, 1958.

The Ocean Springs News“Board acts to amend ordinance to bar all trailers from limited and residential areas”, August 7, 1958.

The Ocean Springs News, “Circuit Court rules City wrong in Harbor Trailer Case; It stays”, November 27, 1958.

 

The Ocean Springs Record

The Ocean Springs Record, “?”, August 1, 1968.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Ocean Springs harbor commission seeks improvements”, June 26, 1969.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Piling set [construction photo]”, August 20, 1970.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Yacht Club burns”, September 10, 1970, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Fire Marshal releases Yacht Club”, September 10, 1970, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Yacht Club opens new facilities”, January 28, 1971, p. 14.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Whitlocke named Yacht Club Commodore”, February 18, 1971, p. 18.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Supervisors turn down Harbor land purchase”, October 7, 1974, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor suit filed”, December 12, 1974, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor suit settled out of court”, December 19, 1974, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Inner Harbor Park [photo]”, June 16, 1983, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Senator Cochran dedicates new Inner Harbor Park”, April 12, 1984, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor renovation underway”, May 30, 1985, p. 2.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Dispute over Ocean Springs harbor [Dr. Furr v. Board of Supervisors] land goes to court”, May 14, 1987.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Work stopped at Harbor”, April 20, 1989, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harvey named new harbormaster”, August 20, 1992, p. 3.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Land use dispute [Dr. Furr], February 3, 1994, p. 3.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor playground replacement hoped for by summer”, March 10, 1994, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Kensington Park gets equipment, facelift”, June 16, 1994, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Tideland leases aid harbor”, October 26, 1995, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “New pump focus of harbor panel”, November 23, 1995, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, "Dredging project on the go in O.S.", December 9, 1995.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Slips on hold dredging to begin”, February 1, 1996, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor panel onhold pending members”, February 29, 1996, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Inner Harbor work to begin with parking area”, May 2, 1996, p. 1

The Ocean Springs Record, “Dewatering dilemma may delay dredging”, June 20, 1996, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor Board epands work list”, July 25, 1996.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Boats clear out of OS harbor for dredging”, August 11, 1996.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Kensington Basin dredging job delayed again”, October 31, 1996, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor panel seeks role”, March 6, 1997, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor funding not gone, officials say”, March 13, 1997, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor’s money safe, Board told”, April 3, 1997, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor panel seeks to end dredge delay”, April 17, 1997, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor boat ramps, piers in bad shape”, May 1, 1997, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor panel skeptical dredging will resume”, May 29, 1997, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Dredging underway”, June 19, 1997, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, [Hurricane] Danny spurs preparations”, July 24, 1997, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Officials discuss responsibility of Harbor upkeep”, September 4, 1997, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Projects, tight rules lead meet on Harbor”, September 25, 1997, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “County to go ahead with harbor dredging, new pier”, November 27, 1997, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor future topic of meeting”, May 7, 1998, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor to stay under County”, May 14, 1998, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor commissioners consider slip rate hike suggestion”, June 25, 1998, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Fee hike puts boaters, Harbor panel, County at odds”, August 27, 1998, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Low tides delay Pine Street basin dredging”, January 21, 1999, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Majority wins debate over bridge on Shearwater”, November 1, 2001.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Objections stall harbor bridge”, February 21, 2002.

The Ocean Springs Record, “County seeks Harbor Master”, February 21, 2002.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor bridge and others”, March 7, 2002.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor bridge held up”, January 23, 2003, P.A-1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Bridge hurdles gone”, May 15, 2003, P.A-1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Bridges may be open in 90 days”, June 26, 2003.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Shearwater Dedication”, April 22, 2004.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbormaster’s office [photo]”, January 20, 2005, p. B8.

The Ocean Springs Record, “ Harbor View [photo]”, February 24, 2005, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor balks at Charette”, May 25, 2006, p. A-1

The Ocean Springs Record, “Bellande: harbor house plan wrong for OS”, September 21, 2006, p. A10.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Write on”, March 6, 2007, p. A2.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor Landing under scrutiny”, March 13, 2008, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor’s ‘wine only’ license will be appealed”, April 3, 2008, p. A1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor pier countdown”, June 12, 2008, p. A1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harkey rules on Board-Harbor Landing”, July 10, 2008, p. A1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “County will rebuild Harbor Master house”, October 23, 2008, p. A3.

The Ocean Springs Record, “County launches 'Christmas at the Harbor'”, December 11, 2008, p. B1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “It's beginning to look like Christmas”, December 18, 2008, p. A1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Harbor project: bulkhead v. beautification”, September 24, 2009, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Mayor Moran comments on Harbor Landing purchase by DMR”, December 16, 2010, p. 2.

The Ocean Springs Record, “HOSA dedicates Blossman Garden”, May 30, 2013, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, "Christmas at the OS Harbor"December 19, 2013, p. 1.

 

The Sun Herald

The Sun Herald, “Jackson County, BMR settle Ocean Springs Harbor dispute”, October 15, 1989.

The Sun Herald, “Harbor work leaves boaters stuck in mud”, May 4, 1991, p. 3.

The Sun Herald, “Dredging project on the go in Ocean Springs’, December 9, 1995.

The Sun Herald, “Boats clear out of Ocean Springs harbor for dredging”, August 11, 1996.

The Sun Herald, “Shearwater Bridge plans get new flair”, January 16, 2002.

The Sun Herald, “Ocean Springs gets permit for Shearwater Bridge”, May 3, 2003.

The Sun Herald, “Ocean Springs plans harbormaster office”, September 18, 2006, p. A8.

The Sun Herald, “Harbor Landing loses bid to serve hot food”, April 11, 2007, p. A8.

The Sun Herald, “New marina and deli opens”, September 27, 2007, p. D8.

The Sun Herald, “Harbor Landing deli approved”, September 27, 2007, p. D8.

The Sun Herald, “Hearing on Ocean Springs harbor restaurant today”, February 29, 2008, p. A3.

The Sun Herald, “Harbor restaurant questioned”, March 1, 2009, p. A3.

The Sun Herald, “ABC holds hearing”, March 8, 2008, p. A2.

The Sun Herald, “O.S. harbor's first boat parade", December 7, 2008, p. A4.

The Sun Herald, “Harbor pier reappears", January 18, 2009, p. A3.

The Sun Herald, "Bar to convert to Yacht Club", January 20, 2010.

The Sun Herald, "Harbor master subject of probe", September 7, 2010.

The Sun Herald"Makeovers planned to add features to two parks", August 14, 2011.

The Sun Herald, “Thomas McIlwain: McIlwain remembered as pioneer in marine biology”, November 2, 2012.

The Sun Herald, “Thomas David McIlwain”, November 4, 2012

The Sun Herald"Former alderman, commissioner is Ocean Springs harbor master", August 15, 2014, p. A-5.

The Sun Herald"Boat owner voices concern about harbor master", September 11, 2014, p. A-2.