The Antoine Victoire Bellande Family

THE BELLANDE FAMILY FROM MARSEILLE TO MISSISSIPPI

The Family of Antoine V. Bellande (1829-1918)

FORWARD

Historical research and writing are fun. Since moving to Ocean Springs in May 1990, I have enjoyed visiting the libraries and courthouses, reading old newspapers, and conversing with others interested in the local history of coastal Mississippi. In the process of assimilating new knowledge, I have made discoveries about our Family Bellande. I would like to thank Louis E.Bellande Jr. of Chicago for his valuable assistance with our Midwest Family. Mary Blair Kleyn of Laguna Hills, California sent me timely information about our west coast Family. Locally, Regina Hines, J.K. Lemon, and Murella Powell have been of great assistance and support in making From Marseille To Mississippi a better document. I personally again thank all of you who responded with letters and calls after receiving your first addition. Please enjoy this, your Family History "its the only one you've got". I always appreciate comments and criticism. Thank you again for your support and patience.

 

THE AUTHORS

Heidi Balje Good was born in Germany in 1947. She is married to Paul Good whose great grandmother was Zoe Willamine Bellande (b. 1863). Zoe was the youngest daughter of Joseph H. Bellande (b. 1813) in Marseille, and Roseline LaFauce (b. 1821) probably at Vieux Biloxy (Ocean Springs). Paul and Heidi Good reside in the Sultanate of Oman were Paul is employed with the Petroleum Development of Oman, a joint venture between Shell Oil and the Omani Government. Their children are: Sebastian (b. 1975), Adriane (b. 1979), Marian (b. 1982), and Elisabeth (b. 1983). Heidi received her Doctorate in Biology from UCLA.

 

Ray L. Bellande (b. 1943) is a Biloxi native.  He is the great grandson of Antoine V. Bellande.  Presently Bellande resides at Ocean Springs, home of his ancestors, where he has written since 1993, a weekly history column for The Ocean Springs Record titled, "Sous Les Chenes" and “Images Under the Oaks”.  He has published several books:  The Bellande Cemetery:  A History and Register (1990); From Marseille to Mississippi, A Bellande Family History (1991); Ocean Springs Hotels and Tourist Homes (1994); and Ocean Springs, The Way We Were 1900-1950 (1996). (1829-1918), born at Marseille, France, and Marie Harvey (1840-1894) of Back Bay (now D'Iberville).  Bellande attended Biloxi parochial and public schools.  He matriculated at New Mexico Tech in 1961, and graduated with a B.S. degree in Petroleum Geology from Mississippi State University in 1965.  Bellande was employed by Humble Oil (Exxon), Tenneco, and others before becoming an independent geologist and oil operator at Lafayette, Louisiana in 1980.  His oil exploration activities brought him to many petroleum provinces as he has resided or worked in Louisiana, California, Alaska, Texas, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Mississippi, and Alabama. 

1971 Ray Bellande, and now in 2009

Marsaille, France

This story commences in Marseille, France.  Marseille with a population approaching one million people is the second largest city in France and the nation's chief port.  It was founded by Greek mariners about 600 BC, and called Massalia (Massilia).  There is some archaeological evidence to suggest that Phoenicians settled here even earlier.    

Marseille has always been France's gateway to the East.  Since ancient times, both the goods and culture of Africa, the Middle East, and Asia have entered France at the Marseille docks.  The economy of Marseille is based on trade and manufacturing.  The city's port handles about a third of the traffic of all French seaports.  Industries in the area process chemicals, food, and petroleum from many parts of the world.  The city's chief manufactured products include bricks, candles, engines, medicine, soap, and tiles.  Until the intensified police action of the early 1970s, it was a center for the manufacture and shipping of drugs, especially heroin.  Remember the "French Connection" with Popeye Doyle (Gene Hackman)?

Marseille has many beautiful churches.  The hilltop church, Notre-Dame de la Garde, the patron saint of the city's fishing fleet has a large image of the Virgin Mary on its tall steeple.  (See photo).  This holy image can be seen far out at sea.

 

Dr. Andre' Bellande and
Madame Rene'e Bellande
[1973 image] of Marseille
and Bonnieux, France.  
 
Sonia Tchiftbachian Bellande
and Clement Bellande of Marseille,
daughter-in-law and son,of Andre'
and Rene'e Bellande.[2008 image]

 

In September 1972, I was returning from an assignment with Esso Exploration Malaysia and decided to visit the Cote d'Azur and Marseille.  I drove a rental car from Nice to Marseille, an easy day drive.  My arrival in the large port city took place late in the afternoon.  A search of the local telephone directory for the name Bellande surprised me as their were only a few listed.  One was an Andre' Bellande, le medcin (medical doctor).  Rather than telephone, Dr. Bellande, I chose to take a taxi to his domicile the following morning.  This was a mistake as he was not there.  His duties that day took him into the country side making house calls.  I did meet his delightfully charming wife, Rene'e, and her children.  They were all quite surprised to meet this American "cousin"!

Although I remained in Marseille for only one day, I was able to establish good relations for future communications.  One very interesting fact I did learn that day was a plausible explanation for the origin of the family name, BELLANDE.  Jean Bellande, the uncle of Andre', related that the name was derived from two French words, Bel (beautiful) and Lande, an evergreen tree which is prevalent in the area around the city of Bordeaux in southwest France.  The Department or State in which Bordeaux is situated is called Landes for the trees.

Heidi Balje Good in her detailed research of the Simmons-Bellande families located a Frederick Bellande residing in St. Lambert, Quebec, Canada.  Messieur Bellande was told by his family that "the Bellandes were Jewish originating from a little town called Uppsala in Sweden and that they went afterward to live in Bordeaux".  A copy of this letter is included in the appendix of this document as it is a valuable reference for clues to the relationship of the Bellande families of Haiti, Canada, the United States, and the French cities of Marseille and Bordeaux.

We know that our common ancestor, Antoine Victor Bellande, was born September 11, 1829 in Marseille.  His parents were Jean Antoine Joseph Marie Bellande (1790-1874) and Marceline Vezian of Marseille.  His father and grandfather were naval workers, probably caulkers, in a local shipyard.

Antoine left his native France as a deck hand on a vessel at the age of twenty-two years, and arrived in New Orleans in 1851.  Shortly, he joined his "brother" in Ocean Springs, Mississippi.  I use "brother" because at this time there was a Joseph H. Bellande, also a French immigrant, residing there.  Heidi B. Good whose husband, Paul, is related to Joseph H. Bellande has done an excellent job of researching Joseph and his family.  I will present shortly in this text her story of Joseph for your general information and interest.  It should answer some of the questions about the "other" Bellande Family of the Gulf Coast region who you may recognize as a relative.

The true relationship between Antoine and Joseph Bellande is not yet known.  We believe Joseph was born in France in October, 1813.  Church records in Marseille indicate that Antoine's father, Jean Antoine Joseph Bellande, had three wives: Marguerite Grafassy, Marceline Vezian, and Marie Francoise Gorge.  His first child with Marguerite Grafassy was called Jacques Joseph Nestor (1815 or 1819).

From the information currently available, I conclude that Joseph H. Bellande and Antoine were half brothers.  Joseph may have been a bastard son of Jean Antoine Joseph whose birth was not recorded?  The strongest evidence for a relationship is the fact that they were both listed as heirs in the succession of Jean Antoine Joseph Bellande dated December 18, 1877, in Marseille.  As they were residing in the United States at this time and failed to appoint an attorney to represent them in Marseille, their inheritance was lost.  It appears from the legal instrument that their father left a house at No. 19 St. Barnabe Boulevard in Marseille.

Let us now enjoy the life of Joseph H. Bellande as told by Heidi B. Good...

Joseph H. Bellande (1813-1907)

Joseph Bellande was born in France, probably Marseille, in October 1813.  He arrived in this country in 1835, according to his statement on the census of 1900.  He is believed to have come first to New Orleans.  It is not known when or why he arrived in Ocean Springs, Mississippi where he lived out the rest of his life.  He married Rosaline LaFauce, daughter of Jacques LaFauce and Marie Eveline LaFontaine on May 26, 1842.

In 1846, as husband of one of the heirs of the "Widow" LaFontaine property, he received title to approximately 20 acres of land in the heart of present day Ocean Springs.  His tract was about 260 feet wide and 3300 feet in length running from the front beach on the Bay of Biloxi to County Road (now Government Street) in Claim Section 37, Township 7S-Range 8 West.  The present day City Hall, Public Library, Police Station, a portion of Little Children's Park, Bellande Avenue, Dewey Avenue, and the Bellande Cemetery are located on the Bellande Tract.  In 1859, he warranted a deed to Bishop William H. Elder measuring 192 x 100 feet for the site of St. Alphonsus Catholic Church on Porter Avenue for $100.  From 1883 to 1892, he sold much of his land, some to his children, some to local residents Gregoir Weider and George and E.S. Davis, and some to Albert G. Tedo of New Orleans.  As far as can be determined, none of the original holdings belong to any family members now.

He made his livelihood as a fisherman and sailor, and later was a captain of a trading schooner, The Three Brothers , according to census records.  During the storm of August 1901, The Three Brothers beat itself to pieces and sank at Schmidt's Wharf on the front beach the day of August 14th.  He was the father of eleven children.  They are Cherie Marcellus (b. 3 March, 1843), Odile Delphine (b. 2 July, 1844), Honnorais "Noah" (b. 29 November, 1846), Joseph (b. 13 December, 1848), Clement (b. 31 December, 1850), Antoine (b. 24 November, 1852), Rosalie "Azalie" (b. 22 October, 1854), John Nestor (b. 29 August, 1856), Laura Evelina (b. 15 January, 1859), Adolphe (b. 8 January, 1861), and Zoe Wilhemina (b. 6 June, 1863). 

Not much is yet known about the personal life of Joseph Bellande.  His family Bible, in French, was recently discovered in the home of one of his descendants, as well as some legal documents and personal papers in the form of a journal.  All of these were handwritten in French.  The legal documents would seem to indicate he was related to a later French immigrant seaman named Bellande - Antoine Bellande, "the Captain", who arrived in this country in 1851.  It appears they were brothers or half brothers, sons of Jean Joseph Marie Antoine Bellande of Marseille, a caulker in the shipbuilding business.

An aspect about Joseph's personal life that makes him a particularly intriguing figure was handed down through the family lore of one of his descendants, but has not yet been substantiated.  Geneva Eliska, the eldest daughter of Joseph's youngest child Zoe, knew her grandfather to be a former priest, excommunicated on the event of his marriage to Rosaline LaFauce.

She recalled that he had gotten into some political difficulties with the Church, and upon the advice of his friends who feared for his life, he fled France.  His writing would indicate that Joseph remained a deeply religious man, his journals consisting of many prayers for the hours of the day, the Stations of the Cross, and the like.  One can only speculate on the inner torment of this man, who despite his excommunication, raised his family in the Catholic Church, was denied admission to the funeral mass on the occasion of the death of his wife Rosalie of asthma in January of 1893.  He sat sobbing out-side St. Alphonsus Church on that Tuesday afternoon.  This was witnessed by his eleven year old granddaughter, Geneva Eliska.  He lived in his house on LaFontaine Avenue for another 13 years, outliving seven of his children.  He provided a home for his daughter Azalie Reus and her two children after she was deserted by her husband.  On June 16, 1907, he was on his deathbed.  Father Peter de Gruyter, the Belgian pastor of St. Alphonsus who was apparently disliked by the entire congregation, came to Joseph, presumably to administer the last rites and hear his confession.  According to Church records, the dying man cursed the priest out of his house.  Joseph is buried in the Bellande Cemetery, his grave marked by a cedar cross, now gone.

The history of Joseph and Rosaline's children can be deduced from census records, wills, and other legal documents, church records, newspaper obituaries, notes found in the Family Bibles, and remembrances of descendants that have thus far been located.

A document from the Jackson County Chancery Court, Cause No. 4636, dated 14 August, 1926, a case involving a land dispute between all the surviving heirs of Joseph, gives a good lead on the fates and whereabouts of his children.  It is not clear why this land on LaFontaine Avenue at Ocean Springs was contested, but the end result was that it was sold at auction to Josephine Friar for $1200.  The profits were divided up proportionately among the heirs, each one receiving an amount somewhere between $25 and $130.  The legal action will be referred to again in relation to each of the children.

Joseph and Rosalie's Children

 

 1.   Marcellus Bellande (1844-1905) Joseph's first-born child joined the Confederate Army at the age of 19.  According to the book, Louisiana Confederate Soldiers and Confederate Commands, compiled in 1920 by Andrew B. Booth, he was a Private with Company D, 4th Louisiana Infantry.  He enlisted on October 22, 1863, in Mobile, Alabama, when his youngest sister, Zoe, was just a few months old.  Nine months later, he was captured near Atlanta, Georgia on August 5, 1864.  He was sent to military prison in Camp Chase, Ohio, and remained there for nine months, being paroled May 2, 1865.  He was exchanged for a Union prisoner and moved to New Orleans.  He married Rosina Ludwig (1839-1925), a German immigrant and the widow of Jean-Marie Begue, in October 1885, and resided at 822 Ninth Street, New Orleans.  They had no children.  Marcellus Bellande expired at New Orleans on June 2, 1905.  His wife Rosina lived until 1925.(NOLA Marriage Record V. 11, p. 484 and NOLA Death Records Index V. 135, p. 541)

    

     2.   Delphine Bellande married a relative ten years her senior, John Ryan, son of Jerome Ryan and Euphrasia LaFontaine, on April 12, 1871, at St. Alphonsus Church in Ocean Springs.  Her sister, Rose Azalie, was one of the witnesses.  John was a house carpenter, and the family lived in the house next to Joseph's.  John died sometime between 1881 and 1900.  They had four children:  Anna (1872), Joseph (1875), George (1877), and Arthur (1881).  After her husband's death, she continued to live in Ocean Springs with her sons George and Arthur, both fisherman.  By 1910, she had moved to Biloxi and was living with her widowed daughter-in-law Alice, a dressmaker, who had married her oldest son Joseph, and her son George.  She must have died before 1926, as only her three surviving children, Anna, George, and Arthur are mentioned in the 1926 land dispute.  Anna married Arnold "Boy" Catchot (1869-1939) in 1895, and reared a large family. They resided in New Orleans (1918-1928) where "Boy" worked for the L&N Railroad.  The Catchot family returned to Ocean Springs where Anna died on October 30, 1930.  George also lived in New Orleans.  It is not yet known whether he had a family.  Arthur lived in Biloxi, and married Angelina from Italy and had a least two children, Juanita (1907) and Geneva (1909).

 

Honore Bellande

Honore Bellande (1845-1871) was the son of Joseph H. Bellande (1813-1907), a native of Marseille, France and Rosaline LaFauce (1821-1893) or LaForce, the daughter of Jacques LaFauce and Marie Eveline LaFontaine of Ocean Springs.  Her grandparents were the Widow LaFontaine, Catherine Bourgeois (1768-ca 1845), and Louis Auguste LaFontaine (1762-1824), the founders of modern day Ocean Springs.

Honore Bellande married Francine Ryan, daughter of Alfred Ryan and Dora Staffin of Biloxi, on December 1, 1869.  Their son Adolph Bellande was born August 26, 1870.  His Aunt Laura Ryan Bellande was one of the sponsors at his baptism.  Honore died a year later on September 19, 1871.  His widow, Francine, married HarroBellman (1849-1920), the son of Charles N. Bellman (1806-1860+) and Pauline Ryan (1815-1899), the daughter of Jacques Ryan (d. 1849) and Elizabeth Laforce, on August 10, 1876.  They had a daughter named Sue. 

Adolph Bellande bought property from his grandfather, Joseph, on Bellande Avenue in 1892.  For some time, he lived in Biloxi, and married Beulah Ellis Richards (1872-1952) on February 22, 1906, in her home at Ocean Springs.  Judge E.W. Illing performed at the ceremony.

Beulah Ellis was a native of Fontainbleau, a small community east of Ocean Springs and had married Reuben L. Richards (1864-1928) of Ocean Springs on December 26, 1889.  They were divorced in the Chancery Court at Jackson County in 1905.  According to Cause No. 1368, they had a son, Frank E. Richards.  Reuben L. Richards married Miss Lena Spradley in 1919.  They had a son, Lloyd Richards.  Richards worked many years for Mrs. Purrington as caretaker of her beach front estate. 

Adolph Bellande and Beulah Ellis had a son named Adam Eugene Bellande (1907-1977), commonly called Gene.  Adolph did not remain with Beulah very long.  He died on January 14, 1916 and is buried in the Bellande Cemetery in Ocean Springs.  He was a member of the Woodmens of the World (Satsuma # 703).  His son, Gene, went on to become a renowned fisherman, had many postcards of himself made as a young man.  He was known ubiquitously as the "Flounder King".  He and his mother, Beulah, were the defendants in the 1926 land dispute, and all the other Bellande heirs were the complainants.  Gene was married to Mary Josephine Walker (1913-1977) of Gulfport.  They had six children, some of whom still reside in the Biloxi-Ocean Springs area.  Gene Bellande died July 27, 1977 and is buried in the Evergreen Cemetery in Ocean Springs. 

His children are Ellen Louise B. Grant (1931-1996), Lee Jeanette Blanchard (1932-2003), William Eugene “Billy” Bellande (1935-2002), Martha Elizabeth B. Lashbrook (b. 4-16-1936), Billy Ray Bellande (b. 3-27-1938), and Betty Fay Denning (1938-2005).

 

Ellen Louise Bellande

            Ellen Louise Bellande Grant (1931-1996) was born on March 13, 1931, at Biloxi.  Ellen married Ebenezer M. Grant on April 28, 1950, in Harrison County, Mississippi.(HARCO, Ms. MRB 81, p. 615)

            She expired on January 21, 1996. 

 

Lee Jeanette Bellande

            Lee Jeanette Bellande Blanchard (1932-2003) was born at Biloxi, Mississippi on December 31, 1932. In Harrison County, Mississippi, she married Leroy F. Blanchard (1921-1954) on June 7, 1950.  He was the son of Lee J. Blanchard (1891-1960) and Amelia Robicheaux (1897-1983).  Jeanette made her livelihood as a nurse.  She was the mother of: Leroy F. Blanchard Jr., (1951-2008) m. Barbara Faircloth; David L. Blanchard Sr. (1954-1994); and Kevin Parker.  Mrs. Blanchard was a member of the Full Gospel Tabernacle Church.  She died at Biloxi on January 8, 2003.  Jeanette B. Blanchard’s corporal remains were interred in the Biloxi City Cemetery.(The Sun Herald, January 10, 2003, p. A5)

 

William E. Bellande

            William Eugene “Billy” Bellande (1935-2002) was born at Biloxi on January 31, 1935.   He made his livelihood on the sea.  He was the captain of the shrimp boat, Jeffrey Mac, and Blue Chip, an offshore supply boat.  Billy was the former Commander of VFW Post 2434, a member of the French Club, and American Legion. 

In April 1959, Billy Bellande married Eva Voncile Freeman (1938-1989), the daughter of William L. Freeman and Eva Jewel Furby of Grand bay, Alabama.  She was the mother of: William Eugene “Bubba” Bellande II (b. 1963) m. Mary Ann Hughes and Rhonda Jean Bellande Duffy.  They divorced in July 1981.  Eva expired at Jackson, Mississippi on December 4, 1989.  Her corporal remains were interred in the Adam E. Bellande family plot at the Evergreen Cemetery at Ocean Springs.(HARCO, Ms. Chancery Court Cause No. 9659 and The Daily Herald, December 6, 1989)

Billy Bellande married Louise Ross West (b. 1950) in December 1982.  She was the daughter of Louis R. Ross and Aldora Esma Arcement.  They divorced in November 1998. (HARCO, Ms. 2nd Judicial District MRB 25, p. 354 and HARCO, Ms. Chancery Court Cause No. 98-0927)

In October 2001, prior to his demise, several cancer benefits were held for Billy at Biloxi and D’Iberville.(The Bay Press, October 12, 2001, p. 6)

Billy Bellande passed on at Biloxi on January 22, 2002. He was of the Lutheran faith.  His corporal remain were interred in the Biloxi City Cemetery.(The Sun Herald, January 23, 2002, p. A-5)

 

Martha E. Bellande

            Martha Elizabeth Bellande (1936-2003+) was born April 16, 1936 at Biloxi.  She married Mr. Lashbrook.  No further information.

 

Betty Faye Bellande

             Betty Faye Bellande (1938-2005) was born at Biloxi on March 27, 1938. She expired at Danville, Alabama on July 20, 2005.  On August 4, 1956, Betty Faye had married Hasbur ‘Little Red’ Wendell Denning (1930-2007), the son of Hasbur J. Hasbur Denning and Jennifer Wedgeworth of Perkinston, Mississippi.(HARCO, Ms. MRB 106, p. 154)

            Betty Faye and Hasbur W. Denning were the parents of: Joseph H. Denning, Mary Denning Rogers, and Sandra Denning Kleas.  Betty Faye Denning expired at Danville, Alabama on July 19, 2005.  She was a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.  Her corporal remains were interred in the East Lawrence Memorial Gardens Cemetery.( The Sun Herald, July 22, 2005, p. A8)

            Hasbur W. Denning expired on October 16, 2007 at his home in Danville. Alabama.  He was born Dec. 8, 1930, in Biloxi, Miss. to the late Hasbur Joseph Denning and Jeniever Wedgeworth Denning. He was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. He retired from the U.S. Air Force as a master sergeant after 23 years, with service in Cambodia, Vietnam and North Korea. He was preceded in death by his wife, Betty Faye Bellande Denning, his parents, and two brothers, David Denning and Everett "Big Red" Denning.  A military graveside service for Hasbur W. "Little Red" Denning, was Friday, Oct. 19, at East Lawrence Memorial Gardens with Bishop Royce Alsup officiating and Hartselle Heritage Funeral Home directing.(The Hartselle Inquirer, October 16, 2007)

 

Billy Ray Bellande Sr.

            Billy Ray Bellande Sr. (1938-2009) was born at Biloxi on March 27, 1938.  He married Ida “Sue” Ashworth Watford Bell (1936-1997), a native of Royston, Georgia.  She was the daughter of Patrick Ashworth and Ila ? Ashworth Bennett.  Sue Bellande was the mother of: Billy Ray Bellande Jr. (b. 1964) m. Stephanie A. Munoz (b. 1969); Annette Bellande; Teresa Gayle Watford Jones; Bettye Sue Watford Scarbrough; Janice Park; Roy Alvin Watford; and William Dennis Watford (1959-2000).  Billy Ray Bellande died on July 8, 2009 at Mobile, Alabama.  He was a US Navy veteran of the Korean War and had worked as a Biloxi shrimper and boat captain.  Billy Ray Bellande was a member of the VFW and Fleur-de-Lis Society.  His corporal remains were interred in the Biloxi City Cemetery.(The Sun Herald, July 10, 2009, p. A4)

 

     4.   Joseph Bellande Jr.  The fate of this son is unclear.  A note was found among his father's papers saying Joseph died October 28, 1851.  No mention of his death is found in the Family Bible.

 

     5.   Clement Bellande (1850-1918) maintained residences in both New Orleans and Ocean Springs.  He lived near his father on Washington Avenue when he was in Ocean Springs.  He made his living as a bartender.  Clem Bellande was an excellent sailor and well known in racing circles along the Mississippi gulf coast.  At the 1901 Biloxi Regatta, he won the Third Class Fleet (16-19 foot boats) in his catboat, the Davis Brothers.  Bellande defeated the regional famous Royal Flush owned by Orey Young of Ocean Springs.  Orey Young once said:  "The Royal Flush, if loaded with the prize money she has won, would certainly sink".  The defeat of the Royal Flush by Bellande precipitated a match race on a triangular course set in Biloxi Bay off Ocean Springs.  The merchants of Ocean Springs offered a cash prize of $700, and the afternoon of the race was declared a general holiday in that town.  The Royal Flush won by two minutes and one second over the Davis Brothers and Josephine.  According to Walter F. Fountain, another match race resulted in which the Davis Brothers beat the Royal Flush by 12 seconds. 

Clem Bellande married twice, first to Lydia Miller (1844-1902).  They had a ward living with them in the 1900 census, eleven-year old Olpha M. Jackson.  The Daily Herald of July 20, 1916 reported the marriage of Offie Mae Bellande, the daughter of Captain and Mrs. Bellande, a well-known family of Ocean Springs, and Edgar Martin, an efficient employee of the L.N. Dantzler Lumber Company being now stationed at Indianola, Mississippi.  In 1885, Joseph sold Clement some land on Porter Avenue.  Much later, when widower Clement married a second time, to Lucille Vinot of New Orleans, he apparently spent most of his time there, living at 823 Royal Street.  There he was a grocery wagon driver.  They had no children.  He died May 19, 1918, and is buried in Ocean Springs.  His wife remained in New Orleans and died in 1949.  She received a settlement from the 1926 land settlement.

 

     6.   Antoine Bellande (1852-1881) lived in New Orleans on 224 Magazine Street.  Nothing further is known about him.  No heir of his is mentioned in the 1926 land settlement.  His death is recorded in the family Bible as May 4, 1881.

 

     7.   Roseale Azalie Bellande (1854-1923) had the misfortune of marrying as man who deserted her.  On January 29, 1880, at her father's house she married Michael Reus.  She had three children:  Joseph Michael Reus (Feb-April 1881), Bruno Reus (1882-19  ) and Marcellus Reus (1884-1905).  While she was pregnant with the last one, she went to her father's house for her confinement at her husband's request.  During her absence, Michael sold their house and possessions and left.  Azalie filed for divorce on grounds of desertion, and it was granted in August of 1890.  She lived at her parent's house until the time of her father's death, in 1907.  She inherited the house, but later moved to Mobile, Alabama, and lived there with her son, Bruno Reuss, and his family. 

Her son, Marcellus "Mike", was described by The Pascagoula Democrat-Star as a "wild lad" on November 11, 1897, when he was severely injured about the head and body at Ocean Springs when he fell off an L&N freight train.  Mike was attempting to steal a ride to New Orleans.  He married and had a son named Robert Reuss (b. 1904).  His wildness was corroborated in 1905, as Marcellus died, gunned down in a street fight at Ocean Springs on Friday, October 13.  His very young widow Lillian, a child bride, decided she was unable to raise their son alone, so Robert grew up with his cousins, the children of Bruno.  (She apparently did not remarry, for she received a settlement in the 1926 land dispute, and was referred to as Mrs. Lillian Reus, of Ocean Springs).  Bruno worked for the L&N Railroad on the New Orleans to Mobile run.  He had six children, who live in the Mobile area, (some still in the original house Bruno bought) and have possession of the Family Bible and other old documents.  Their names are Azalie Reus Kossow, Annie Carmelite Reuss, Euphemia Reuss, Carmelite Reuss, Celestine Reus Sawyer, and Charlie Reuss.  In the 1926 land settlement, Bruno Reuss, Lillian Reus, and Robert Reuss received their share.

 

     8.   Jean Nestor "John" Bellande (1852-1895) was apparently a wanderer.  His profession is unknown, as is his marital status.  His addresses were recorded in the Family Bible, without dates, as Prudhomme City in St. Landry Parish, Louisiana (this place no longer appears on current maps but was shown on a map from 1880), and 518 1/2 Carcroft (?) between St. Andrew and St. Mary Street in New Orleans.  He also lived in or visited Houston, Texas, where his youngest sister Zoe and her family lived.  Why either of them went there is unknown.  In any case, John died there on April 5, 1895, of consumption.  He was buried in Ocean Springs.  He had been a member of the Knights of Pythias.  No descendants were mentioned in the 1926 land settlement.

 

     9.   Laura Eveline Bellande lived in New Orleans in 145 Washington Avenue.  There she probably met and married Adam Bultman and had at least three children.  By the time of the 1926 land settlement she had died, and her heirs were given as Adam Bultman, Viola Bultman, and Mrs. Annie Bultman Kinchman all of 917 7th Street in New Orleans, and Adam Bultman, Jr. also of New Orleans, address unknown.

 

   10.   Adolph Bellande 1861-1897) lived in New Orleans on Constance Street, first at Number 36, then at Number 1126.  According to the obituary published in The Daily States of November 28, 1897, he had lived there for 20 years.  He was first employed by Messrs. A. Baldwin and Co. and then with the J & P Coats Thread Company.  He was a member of the Catholic Church and the Young Men's Mutual Benefit Society.  The obituary, which includes a line drawing of Adolph with a very large mustache states, among other things "Last Sunday night death claimed another victim which takes from New Orleans a valued citizen, from a prominent firm a trusted employee, from a wife a loving husband, and from his children a fond father, Adolph Bellande.has succumbed to those immutable laws which none may gainsay.  His illness was of short duration, for the end came quickly and was a sad blow to his wife and friends who were not prepared for the result, as Mr. Bellande possessed a strong constitution.  He began sinking rapidly, and half an hour past midnight on Sunday grim death had claimed its own."  His widow, Amelia Peters (1858-1917) had just grieved the loss of their ten year old son Adolph Jr. (1887-1897) four months before.  And sometime during this year, their last child Albert was born.  Their first child, Louisa Eveline (1885-1888) had only lived for three and one half years.  Two children did grow into adulthood: 1.  Eugene Henry (1890-1952) and 2.  Albert J. (1897-1951).  Both of them received a settlement in the 1926 land dispute.  Both of them married and raised families in the New Orleans area, and were involved with police work.

          1.   Eugene married Antoinette Cuccia (1912-1966) and had two children, Louise E. Singer and Joseph Albert.  He apparently worked for the sheriff's office, as did son Joseph who died in 1965.

          2.   Albert married Agnes Duffy (1899-1967) and had two children, Albert, Jr. and Adolph Morton.  He apparently worked for the State Registration Department.  Albert Jr. married and had at least two children, and was a policeman.  He currently lives in Picayune, Mississippi.  Adolph (1922-1967) married Geraldine Durin and had two children, Belinda Ann and Catherine Ann of New Orleans.  Like his great grandfather Joseph, his work involved the sea, he was probably employed with the Delta Steamship Company.

 

     11.  Zoe Bellande 1863-1897) married a fisherman, Maurice Adolphus Simmons (1862-1916), son of Joseph B. Simmons (1824-1886) and and Harriet H. Badon (1842-1920) on December 8, 1881.  The Simmons family moved to Ocean Springs circa 1872, probably from Covington, Louisiana.  Mr. Simmons was a carpenter while Harriet helped support the family working as a seamstress.

Zoe and Maurice Simmons lived in Ocean Springs for a while, at least until 1886, when they bought property from Joseph Bellande, near Porter and Bellande Avenue.  Their first child, Geneva Eliska, was born December 2, 1882.  She was followed by Harriet Rosalie on March 31, 1884, and George Curtis on February 18, 1886.  Sometime later, Maurice loaded his possessions, wife, and young children into a cart drawn by a mule and headed west.  They settled in Houston, Texas on 1815 South Street, which is now obliterated by Interstate 45 north of the downtown area.  While he was an accomplished carpenter, he made his living as a fisherman in Galveston Bay and even had a house on a small island there.  It was known as Simmons Island in his honor, located across from Seabrook.  Both the island and house no longer exist, having sunk sometime after 1915, the victim of a hurricane.

Wife, Zoe, had five more children in Houston: Elwood Raymond (b. September 23, 1890), Stella Edith (date unknown, stillborn?), Claude Elmer (b. 14 August, 1893);  Farrely Allen (b. 11 June, 1895) and Clara Zoe, (b. and d. October 1897).  Zoe died of "blood poisoning" several days later on the 27th of October.  She is buried in the Hollywood Cemetery in Houston.  Four of her children received a settlement from the 1926 land dispute:  1. Geneva Eliska, 2. Elwood, 3. Claude and 4. Farrely, all residing in the Houston areas.

 

     1.   Geneva Eliska (1882-1977) married Allen Thomas South (1869-1948), a railroad worker and nurseryman from Missouri.  They remained in Houston and had three children:

          1.   Warren Wren (1904-1950) who worked at the Warwick Hotel and married Mary Jennings Hessen (no children).

          2.   Allen Thomas Jr. (1907-1948), a telegraph operator, who married Emma Elizabeth Brenner (1910), and had two children John Russell (1938), an insurance adjuster, and Douglas (1941), an electrician.  Russell married Fern Yvonne Whitehead and they have three children:  Susan Carol (1961), married to Keith White (1958), with daughter Ashlie Kay (1987), Jerry Lynn (1963) married to Joel Allen Lee (1964), and John Russell, Jr.  Douglas married Maebeth Prichard in 1960 and their two children are Troy Douglas (1962) and Christina Beth (1968).  They are still in the greater Houston area.

          3.   Ora Clotile (1913) married Samuel Floyd Good, a Shell Oil Co. refinery engineer and had two children, Paul Allen (1947), a research engineer for Shell, and Carolyn Elaine (1949), an archaeologist for the Army Corps of Engineers.  Ora Clotile was a school teacher and taught high school biology for many years.  Paul married biologist Heidi Balje in 1972 and they have four children: Sebastian (1975), Adriane (1979), Marian (1982), and Elisabeth (1983).  They all live in the greater Houston area.

          2.   Harriet Rosalie (1884-?) married John Lewis Garney and had five sons, Develle, Woodson Maurice (1904-?), an oilfield salesman, John Palmer (1913-?), Claude Elwood (1915-?), an electrician, and Patrick Warren (1918).

          3.   Elwood Raymond "Son" (1890-?) married Thelma Alice Anderson in 1911.  They had two girls, Cecilian (1916) and Margaret (1919).  Margaret married Charles Merle Royal and has one son, Terry Lance (1939).

          4.   Claude Elmer married Bess Marie Hill-Owens in 1917 and they also had two children, Jr. (1918) and Ruth Marie (1923).

          5.   Farrely Allen married Annie Lydia Laue in 1928 and had a son named William Maurice born in 1932.

Antoine V. Bellande

Let us now return to the life of Antoine V. Bellande.  It is generally believed he settled in Ocean Springs about 1851.  In New Orleans, he purchased a Baltimore built schooner, John Randolph, and took it to Pascagoula where he embarked in the lumber business transporting south Mississippi timber to Galveston, Texas for export.  During the early years of the Civil War, Captain Bellande ran the Union blockade for the Confederacy making many trips to Cuba for cargoes of food, tobacco, paper, gin, and munitions.  It was a lucrative business.  He once had $20,000 worth of Cuban tobacco stored in Biloxi.  It was stolen from him, but he later caught the guilty party.  It has been reported that Bellande completed his last voyage with Southern contraband just three days before Farragut captured New Orleans in April 1862, eliminating it as a blockade running port.  His schooner was commandeered and he found himself transporting brick from New Orleans to Ship Island for the completion of Fort Massachusetts.  Work on the island fort had commenced in 1856 by the United States, and was interrupted by a hurricane in 1860.  A Confederate force seized the outpost in January 1861.  Union forces recaptured Ship Island in September 1861.

(l-r) Antoine V. Bellande (1829-1918), Mary Catchot Bellande (1860-1931), Eva Camba Chance (1880-1914), John M. Dunn (1853-1932), and Elizabeth Catchot Camba Dunn (1854-1927). Courtesy of Walter F. Camba Jr. (1912-1999)

The Civil War

In 1864, the Confederacy attempted to draft him, but Antoine Bellande didn't approve of the idea.  He was residing in Ocean Springs at the time.  The conscript officer was invited to have a drink with him at the Ocean Springs Hotel before they set out to join the Confederate Army.  He managed to get the officer drunk and slipped away.  He offered his services to Admiral Farragut as a ship pilot.  He had become acquainted with the great admiral at Pascagoula where Farragut would visit his sister Mrs. Gurley.

Although serving as a Union pilot in early 1864, Antoine Bellande at the age of thirty-five years officially entered the Union Navy as an acting ensign and pilot on December 16, 1864.  He served primarily on the US Steamer,Cowslip.  The Cowslip was a side-wheel steamer built in 1863 at Newburgh, New York as Meteor.  The steamer was 123 feet long and had a 7' draft.  It was armed with a 20 pound rifled cannon and two 24-pound smoothbore cannon.  Assigned to the West Gulf Blockading Squadron, Cowslip arrived at New Orleans in February 1864.  She carried officers and men as well as delivering mail, stores, guns, and munitions for her squadron.  Cowslip also delivered provisions for refugees.  The vessel was so versatile that it was used as, a tow, convoy steamer, rescue and salvage boat, and also served as a picket and patrol vessel. 

 

Mobile Bay

It was at the Battle of Mobile Bay in August 1864, that Captain Bellande experienced an exciting chapter in his long life.  He was assigned by Admiral David Farragut to pilot the Union barkentine rigged, screw sloop,Monongahela.  The Monongahela was built at the Philadelphia Navy Yard in 1862.  She had seen action at Port Hudson, Louisiana (March, May 1863), Donaldsonville, Louisiana (July, 1863), and participated in a number of Texas coastal actions before returning to blockade duty off Mobile in the summer of 1864.  Antoine joined the USS Monongahela off Mobile in July 1864.

 
 

During the fierce battle of August 5, 1864, he watched helplessly as the Monongahela valiantly rammed the well-armored Confederate ram, Tennessee.  A brief description of the Monongahela's activity in the battle is given by Shelby Foote (1916-2005) in The Civil War, A Narrative Red River To Appomattox, page 504.

 

Farragut's main reliance was on his wooden sloops, particularly the Monongahela and the Lackawanna, which were equipped with iron prows for ramming.  Their orders were to run the ram (Tennessee) down, while the others pitched in to do her whatever damage they could manage with their guns.  Accordingly when the Tennesseecame within range about 9.20, making hard for the flagship (Hartford), Monongahela moved ahead at full speed and struck her amidships, a heavy blow that had no effect at all on the rebel vessel but cost the sloop her iron beak, torn off along her cutwater.

 

According to Pilot Bellande, the Monongahela got the worst of the encounter with the Tennessee.  The sides of the rebel ram were protected by heavy armor and chains.  When they pulled free after ramming the Tennessee, the deck of his vessel was raked by a withering broadside which removed the head of their water boy from his shoulders.  He also saw the executive officer of the Monongahela fall with both legs shattered.  A shell which dropped into the engine room luckily failed to explode.  Buchanan, the Confederate commander of the Tennessee, must be lauded generously for his bravery and skill in facing seventeen Union ships, three of them possessing armor heavier than that of his vessel, mounting 157 guns, almost all of them larger than those of the Tennessee

After the battle was won, Antoine piloted the Cowslip on the following morning transporting the victorious Union officers to receive the formal surrender of Fort Morgan.  He concluded his memorable duties at Mobile Bay with the dragging of the harbor to remove any torpedoes or mines.  Captain Bellande's share of the prize money was $800 for his one day work during the battle.  He was discharged from the Union Navy on February 19, 1866.  For his excellent service, he was given a $450 bonus.

In a recently discovered business ledger of the Pierre Quave Store which operated at Back Bay (North Biloxi) from 1857-1862, Antoine Bellande's name appears in an account held in 1857.  His future father-in-law, Pierre Harvey, had accounts at the same store.



The In-Laws: Pierre Hervai (Harvey) & Celina Moran

 

Pierre Harvey (1810-1893) was born in France about 1810.  He is the patriarch of the Harvey family of the Mississippi Gulf Coast.  It is not known precisely when Pierre Harvey came to the United States or from which French city or department that he immigrated.  It is very likely that he arrived in the Back Bay (North Biloxi) community in the 1830s.  Here, the young French seaman met and married Celina Morin (1811-1883) on February 20, 1840.  The name Morin is now spelled Moran.  The marriage of Pierre Harvey and Celina Moran was recorded in the Book of Marriages, Volume 8 (1840-1842), Folio 103 of the Archives of the St. Louis Cathedral at New Orleans.

Pierre Harvey's first tracks in the Harrison County Court House were made in 1842, when he purchased 46 acres of land in irregular Section 17, T7S-R9W from Joseph Morin II (Moran). 

On March 2, 1846, Monsieur Harvey made the following statement in the Circuit Court of Harrison County:

 

This day being a day of the term of said court the second day of March A.D. 1846 personally came and appeared in open court, Pier (sic ), who being duly sworn, and solemnly acclaim that it was his bonafied intention to become a citizen of the United States of America and to renounce forever all allegiance to any foreign state, prince, or sovereignty whatsoever and particularly to Louis Phillip King of the French he has heretofore been a subject.(Minutes of the HARCO, Ms. Circuit Court-Book 1, p. 116)

 

Pierre Harvey became a citizen of the United States of America on March 6, 1848.  This act took place at the Harrison County Circuit Court at Mississippi City and was recorded in the Minutes of the HARCO, Ms. Circuit Court-Book 1, page 183.

Pierre and Celina Harvey and Celina lived on the Back Bay of Biloxi near her father, Joseph Moran II.  Here he made his livelihood as a seaman and fisherman.  Harvey probably toiled in the coastal schooner trade.  Naval stores, salt, lumber and charcoal were produced locally and shipped to New Orleans and Mobile.  The traders returned with food staples, tools, and cloth. 

Moran Family

 

The Morin (Moran) Family of the Mississippi Coast originated at St. Pierre-du-Sud, Quebec, Canada.  Here Joseph Morin, was born of Denis Morin and Madeleine Boulet.  He settle at Cat Island and married Louise Ladner, the daughter of Nicolas Ladner and Marie Anne Pacquet, in 1778.  All of their children were born and reared at Cat Island.

Joseph Morin II and his family lived at Old Chimneys (Long Beach) until about 1820, when they moved to North Biloxi near what would become the 1850s Kendall Brickyard on Back Bay.  It is here that the Moran children were reared.  They were: Joseph Moran III (1809), Celina (1811-1883), Claire Marguerite, Francois (1815-1887), Victoire (1817), Marie (1818), Virginia (1820-1891), and Sarah Ann?.

Pierre Harvey and Celina had settled on the 46 acres in Section 17, T7S-R9W he had bought from his father-in-law, Joseph Moran II in 1842.  He sold 37 acres to J.L. Lastinger reserving 9 acres which was probably the Harvey homestead.   As one can see from the topographic map of the area, it was well named as it was called "Harvey Hill". 

The union of Pierre and Celina Harvey produced five Franco-American children: Marie Harvey (1840-1894), Pierre Harvey Jr. (1841-1878), Casimir Harvey (1845-1904), Margaret Harvey (1847-1886), and Phillip Harvey (1851-1918).

Marie Harvey (1840-1894) married a French immigrant seaman, Antoine V. Bellande (1829-1918), at Biloxi on July 9, 1866.

Pierre Harvey died on September 30, 1893.  Celina Moran Harvey preceded him in death.  She expired on September 21, 1883.  Their remains were probably interred in the Moran Cemetery at D’Iberville, Mississippi.

While living at Back Bay, Antoine Bellande had become acquainted with Pierre Harvey.  Probably their French language and culture as well as their common bond as seamen brought them together.  Regardless, Antoine married Marie Harvey, the eldest daughter of Pierre and Zeline in July, 1866.  The ceremony took place at the Church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Biloxi.  The Reverend Henri Georget recorded the following concerning their nuptials in

Book 2, page 109, Act 838:

 

On July 9, 1866, with no impediments I interrogated Antoine Bellande, sailor, son of Joseph Bellande and Celina Vesianne, his lawful wife, born in France (Dept. des Bouches du Rhone) residing at Back Bay, and Marie Hervy daughter of Pierre Hervy and Celina Morin, his lawful wife, born and living at Back Bay.  Their consent being expressed, I oined them in Matrimony by words in presence of known witnesses:  Silvestre Fayard and Rosa Husley.

    

During the pre-Civil War period while living "across the Bay" on his 37.36 acres in Section 17, T7S-R9W purchased from J.L. Lastinger et ux in October 1870, I can only speculate that Antoine Bellande provided for his young family by running his schooner on the Mississippi Sound.  He may have taken contracts to unload larger vessels and carry coastwise freight.  Participation in the hunt for buried treasure left on these shores by Jean LaFitte and other sea rovers is a possibility. 

In 1879, four oldest children Joseph (age 11), Anthony (age 10), Peter (age 8), and Ida (age 5) were attending the Big Ridge School.  Leon Dieschbourg was the teacher.  The Bellande children had an excellent attendance record. 

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Move to Biloxi

 

The Morin (Moran) Family of the Mississippi Coast originated at St. Pierre-du-Sud, Quebec, Canada.  Here Joseph Morin, was born of Denis Morin and Madeleine Boulet.  He settle at Cat Island and married Louise Ladner, the daughter of Nicolas Ladner and Marie Anne Pacquet, in 1778.  All of their children were born and reared at Cat Island.

Joseph Morin II and his family lived at Old Chimneys (Long Beach) until about 1820, when they moved to North Biloxi near what would become the 1850s Kendall Brickyard on Back Bay.  It is here that the Moran children were reared.  They were: Joseph Moran III (1809), Celina (1811-1883), Claire Marguerite, Francois (1815-1887), Victoire (1817), Marie (1818), Virginia (1820-1891), and Sarah Ann?.

Pierre Harvey and Celina had settled on the 46 acres in Section 17, T7S-R9W he had bought from his father-in-law, Joseph Moran II in 1842.  He sold 37 acres to J.L. Lastinger reserving 9 acres which was probably the Harvey homestead.   As one can see from the topographic map of the area, it was well named as it was called "Harvey Hill". 

The union of Pierre and Celina Harvey produced five Franco-American children: Marie Harvey (1840-1894), Pierre Harvey Jr. (1841-1878), Casimir Harvey (1845-1904), Margaret Harvey (1847-1886), and Phillip Harvey (1851-1918).

Marie Harvey (1840-1894) married a French immigrant seaman, Antoine V. Bellande (1829-1918), at Biloxi on July 9, 1866.

Pierre Harvey died on September 30, 1893.  Celina Moran Harvey preceded him in death.  She expired on September 21, 1883.  Their remains were probably interred in the Moran Cemetery at D’Iberville, Mississippi.

While living at Back Bay, Antoine Bellande had become acquainted with Pierre Harvey.  Probably their French language and culture as well as their common bond as seamen brought them together.  Regardless, Antoine married Marie Harvey, the eldest daughter of Pierre and Zeline in July, 1866.  The ceremony took place at the Church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Biloxi.  The Reverend Henri Georget recorded the following concerning their nuptials in

Book 2, page 109, Act 838:

 

On July 9, 1866, with no impediments I interrogated Antoine Bellande, sailor, son of Joseph Bellande and Celina Vesianne, his lawful wife, born in France (Dept. des Bouches du Rhone) residing at Back Bay, and Marie Hervy daughter of Pierre Hervy and Celina Morin, his lawful wife, born and living at Back Bay.  Their consent being expressed, I oined them in Matrimony by words in presence of known witnesses:  Silvestre Fayard and Rosa Husley.

    

During the pre-Civil War period while living "across the Bay" on his 37.36 acres in Section 17, T7S-R9W purchased from J.L. Lastinger et ux in October 1870, I can only speculate that Antoine Bellande provided for his young family by running his schooner on the Mississippi Sound.  He may have taken contracts to unload larger vessels and carry coastwise freight.  Participation in the hunt for buried treasure left on these shores by Jean LaFitte and other sea rovers is a possibility. 

In 1879, four oldest children Joseph (age 11), Anthony (age 10), Peter (age 8), and Ida (age 5) were attending the Big Ridge School.  Leon Dieschbourg was the teacher.  The Bellande children had an excellent attendance record. 

Ship Island Incidents

 

On the 1st of April 1884, the Ship Island Pilot Commissioners met at Biloxi to settle controversies concerning the actions of their pilots.  Antoine V. Bellande was a party to these hearings.  In the first incident, Captain Harry C. James (1848-1923) spotted the British vessel, Superior, and immediately went to meet her in his schooner.  In his sail to the incoming ship, his skiff became adrift.  James put about to recover the small boat.  Captain Bellande’s boat was astern of H.C. James and when he observed that James had turned back to recover his skiff, he proceeded towards the British vessel south of Ship Island.  Bellande reached the Superior first, but according to her captain did not hail the vessel.  Pilot Bellande also failed to secure a line to board her.  Meanwhile Captain James came along side, hailed the English captain, as required, and inquired as to whether he needed a pilot.  When an affirmative came fourth, Captain H.C. James boarded the vessel, took command, and brought her into safe anchorage north of Ship Island.  The Ship Island Pilot Commissioners ruled for Antoine V. Bellande implying that the omission to hail was not truly relevant.  (The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, April 18, 1884, p. 1)

The other contested action involved Antoine V. Bellande and Pilot Fritz Abbley (1846-1905), who was his brother-in-law, the spouse of Margaret Harvey (1847-1886).  The rule in question was that which granted the pilot who brought a ship into port, the option of taking her out to sea.  The outbound vessel was required to fly the departure flag, twenty-four hours before weighing anchor, as notification to the pilot of its intent to sail.  If the pilot did not board the departing ship during the notification period, he lost his right to pilot the vessel.  Its leaving port was then open to any other certified Ship Island bar pilot.  In this particular episode, Captain Abbley failed his appointment to board a departing vessel, which he had berthed earlier.  Pilot Bellande took the ship safely across the Ship Island bar.  Fritz Abbley protested that the time had not expired for him to be in charge of the departure.  The Pilot Commissioners recused themselves stating that they had no jurisdiction in this matter.  Experts in attendance at this hearing, were critical of both decisions.(The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, April 18, 1884, p. 1)

  

The Depot Saloon

 

Interior of the Depot Saloon-SE/C Reynoir and Railroad Street

  (l-r) Auguste F. Bellande (1876-1953, Peter Bellande (1871-1933), ?, Joseph Bellande (1868-1961)(behind bar), ?, Antoine Bellande Jr. (1869-1924)(behind bar), ?, ?, ?

 

Marie Bellande seems to have been a woman of commerce.  In 1889, she leased the Reynoir Street corner to Joseph Charles DeLamare (1856-1931) for one year and $300.  On January 9, 1892, The Biloxi Herald announced that “the old Bellande Building near the depot has been torn down and the foundation is being laid for a two-story edifice”.

By mid-February 1892, the local journal related that Captain Bellande’s new building will improve the appearance of Biloxi.(The Biloxi Herald, February 13, 1892, p. 4)

In early April 1892, Joseph Bellande, their eldest son, opened a beer saloon in the new building.  On opening day, April 6th, he served an elegant cold lunch and free cold beer to the public.(The Biloxi Herald, April 9, 1892, p. 4)

From the plats on pages   ? and  ? which were traced from insurance maps prepared by the Sanborn-Perris Map Company of New York, you can determine how the physical configuration of the Bellande tract changed during the period 1893-1904.

The Death of Marie H. Bellande and Forced Heirship

 

The untimely death of Marie Harvey Bellande at the age of 54 years on March 17, 1894, was the catalyst for the migration of the family from the Reynoir Street homestead.  She was buried at the Old Biloxi Cemetery in the Bellande family plot.

Her only daughter, Maria Ida, called Ida had according to family lore, eloped with a St. Louis railroad man named Edward Emile Gossow.  According to Ruth Bellande Ragusin, Captain Bellande did not approve of Gossow, and was opposed to their marriage on December 7, 1893.  After the death of Madame Bellande, Antoine refused to share his wife's estate with the Gussows.  The defiant act was countered by a law suit, Harrison County Chancery Court Cause No. 710-Gossow vs. Bellande et al.

On February 8, 1895, the court rendered a decree.  I could not find the actual court record, but could deduce from the available documents that the court forced the sale of the Marie Bellande Estate.  This estate was composed primarily of the land on Reynoir Street.  On April 1, 1895, E.S. Hewes, a special commissioner, sold the land for $5954.  The proceeds were divided as follows:  Antoine V. Bellande-$2137.73, Ida B. Gossow, the complaintant, $637.73, the Bellande sons, $637.73 apiece, Ford & Ford, the attorneys, $500, and $127.57 went for taxes.

From April 1895, to September 1899, many land conveyances between the Bellande men, Bellande men and William P. Kennedy, and other grantees concerning the Reynoir Street property were recorded in the Harrison County Courthouse.  The net result of these transactions was that the Bellande interest in the property was transferred eventually to William P. Kennedy (1873-1951) and Annie Chiapella (d. 1937) by the beginning of the 20th Century.  Kennedy built a hotel on his property at the corner of Reynoir and West Railroad across the street from the L&N Depot about 1901.  In addition to the hotel, the building had offices, a bar, and a restaurant.  I remember the building as a teenager as Sue's Pharmacy was located there.  It is a disaster that this historic area of Biloxi was lost to urban renewal.  The L&N Depot, the lovely oak filled park south of the Depot, and the Old Hotel District (the Chiapella's also built a hotel) along Reynoir have vanished.  These wonderful sites have been replaced by parking lots and ugly contemporary buildings.  The Kennedy Hotel was removed in the early 1960s?

 

A New Bride For The Captain

On October 21, 1896, Captain Antoine Bellande married Mary Anne Catchot of Ocean Springs at Saint Alphonsus Roman Catholic Church in that city.  Mary Anne Catchot (1860-1931) was the daughter of Antonio Catchot (1828-1885) and Elizabeth Hoffen (1838-1916).  Antonio was a Spaniard emigrating from Menorca in the Balearic Islands.  Catchot arrived at Ocean Springs about 1850.  He was a pioneer in the oyster industry and may have started the first oyster house on the coast.  An oyster shop was a small building about 20 feet square situated on pilings and utilized as a place to open and sell oysters.  It might be considered a precursor to a seafood factory.  The Catchot oyster shop was located at the foot of Jackson Avenue in the vicinity of the present day Ocean Springs Seafood of the Earl Fayard family.

Antonio Catchot married Elizabeth Hoffen about 1854.  She was born in Bremen, Germany and had come to the United States about 1853.  Their children were: Elizabeth Catchot Camba Dunn (1854-1927), Joseph S. Catchot (1858-1919) called Joe Tony, Mary Catchot Bellande (1860-1931), and Antonio Catchot Jr., (1868-1952) who was known as Toy.

Mary Catchot's sister, Elizabeth, married Francis Henry Camba (1853-1885) of New Orleans at Jackson County, Mississippi on September 22, 1877.  He may have been the son of Frank Camba (pre-1869) and Rosalia Oser. She remarried Cornelius S. Cole at NOLA in January 1869.

F.H. Camba and Elizabeth Catchot had a son, Walter Frank Camba (1878-1960) born at Ocean Springs.  The Cambas lived at New Orleans where Frank made his livelihood as a paying teller in a local bank.  In May 1880, he ran off with Mary Anne Catchot abandoning Elizabeth and her baby.(The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, May 21, 1880, p. 3)

Mary Anne Catchot had a child born out of wedlock with Frank H. Camba, named Eva Louise Catchot (1880-1914).  Eva L. Catchot married Issac Clayton Chance of Rome, Georgia at Ocean Springs in March 1911.  In October of that year, a daughter, Mary Etheline Chance, was born.  The Chances later lived at Ashville, North Carolina.  Eva C. Chance died at her home located at No. 68 Church Street in Ashville on November 4, 1914.  Her remains were sent to Ocean Springs for burial in the Evergreen Cemetery on Fort Bayou.(The Ocean Springs News, November 14, 1914, p. 2)

After Frank H. Camba died in the insane asylum at Jackson, Louisiana in December 1885, Elizabeth Catchot Camba married John M. Dunn (1853-1932), a native of Bay St. Louis, at the St. Alphonsus Roman Catholic Church in Ocean Springs in October 1887.

Walter F. Camba grew up in New Orleans were he worked for the Illinois Central Railroad for forty-six years retiring in August 1940.  He had married Grace Hunt at Fort Philip, Louisiana on April 22, 1903.  Miss Eva Catchot was a bridesmaid in his wedding.  He later married Mary Ellen Glavin (1880-1957) of New Orleans.  The Cambas had at least three children: Mercedes C. Schmid (1909-1987), Walter Frank Cambe Jr. (1912-1999), and Mrs. Paul Schriber.  Most of the Cambas are entombed in the Metairie Cemetery (Glavin-Section 26).  John M. Dunn died July 29, 1932, and is buried with his wife, Elizabeth who predeceased him on June 13, 1927, in the Evergreen Cemetery at Ocean Springs.

Mary Catchot Bellande sold a lot at present day 525 Rayburn Avenue in Ocean Springs to Walter F. Camba as recorded in Book 76, pp. 431-432 of the Record of Deeds of Jackson County, Mississippi on June 11, 1924.  It is believed that he used the cottage here as it as a retreat from New Orleans.  Guy F. Walker II resides here today.

In 1900, Antoine Bellande and Mary were residents of Ocean Springs.  A son, Edward Antoine Bellande, had been born in 1897.  At the time of Edward's birth, Captain Bellande was 67 years of age, and his wife 37 years old.  Living with them on Jackson Avenue were Mary's daughter, Olivia Catchot; Walter F. Camba; her brother, Joseph Catchot; and her mother, Elizabeth Hoffen Catchot.(1900 Jackson Co., Ms. Federal Census)

            The Pascagoula Democrat-Star announced on September 24, 1897, that Captain A. Bellande was appointed the official fumigator for Ocean Springs.  The town was besieged by a yellow fever epidemic at this time, and Bellande's duties were to disinfect and fumigate places where yellow fever deaths had occurred.

On May 29, 1901, The Biloxi Daily Herald reported that Captain Bellande almost lost his life in the Mississippi Sound.  He was in command of the schooner, A. Gerdes and Brother, in route to Ocean Springs.  The seven-man crew was below preparing for bed.  The weather was rough and a green sailor was in charge of the watch.  His inexperience in boathandling allowed the A. Gerdes and Brother to capsize.  Bellande and the crew were found clinging to their stricken vessel by the steamer, Julius Elbert.  They were rescued having lost all of their possession to the sea.  Their derelict schooner had been built by Frank Taltavull (1851-1930).(The Biloxi Daily Herald, May 29, 1901, p. 1)

The Veronica Mutiny and Trial

In August 1902, while at Ship Island, a very special event occurred in the life of Antoine Bellande.  It concerned a ship mutiny.  Ernest Desporte Jr. told me this tale when I was a teenager. Ernest Desporte Jr. (1888-1977) was a native of Biloxi and lifelong resident.  He had a remarkable memory and enjoyed telling stories of Biloxi's early history.  He also was a writer of local history and genealogy sometimes using the nom de plume, Old Timer.  When I met Mr. Desporte about 1960, he was an elderly septuagenarian gentleman and of keen wit.  His father, Ernest Desporte Sr.(1853-1931), had been a bar pilot and harbor master at Ship Island at the turn of the Twentieth Century.  Captains Bellande and Desporte served together as fellow pilots guiding blue water barks, brigs, schooners, and steamers across the Ship Island Bar to safe anchorage at Ship Island Harbor.  After 1902, they would sail these large vessels seeking Mississippi longleaf pine for the world export market into the new harbor at Gulfport.

The result of my meeting with Ernest Desporte was new knowledge about the life of Antoine Bellande.  The most intriguing information was the reference to a mutiny. Desporte wrote the following for me:

 

When Gulfport became a port about 1898, Captain Bellande was one of the pilots, piloting vessels through the Gulfport Channel into the harbor at Gulfport.  On one occasion he piloted a vessel from Gulfport harbor to the open Gulf of Mexico.  This vessel was bound for England, but the crew mutinied on the high seas.  The crew was captured and tried in England.  As Captain Bellande was the last man to see the captain and crew, he was a witness in the trial of the crew in the Royal Court of England.

 

Without a date for the alleged mutiny, I was never able to corroborate the tale of Captain Desporte.  In the fall of 1989, I was in the history and genealogy section of the Biloxi Public Library waiting to talk to Murella Powell, archivist and historian.  She was on the telephone, and I heard her speak to someone of "the mutiny at Ship Island".  Immediately I thought of the account of Desporte.  When she became available, I related my story, and she shared her very interesting knowledge of the subject.  She had been contacted by a Canadian novelist, Bruce Wishart, who was writing a book about an episode in maritime history known as the Veronica Mutiny.  Since the event commenced at Ship Island, he needed background data on the Mississippi Gulf Coast to write his novel.  Murella was doing basic research for him especially concerning Ship Island. 

I contacted Bruce Wishart at his residence in Brandon, Manitoba.  From him I learned the details of the mutiny and with my knowledge of Captain Bellande incorporated these facts into my rendering of the story.  With this background knowledge, I now present the reader the Veronica Mutiny:

 

At a time when most men his age had long retired or passed on, Captain Antoine Bellande and Inspector Duckworth of Scotland Yard, England were boarding an L&N train on April 15, 1903, at Biloxi.  Their destination was Liverpool, England via New York where they would board the steamer, Irenia.  The catalyst for this adventure had been the three-masted barque, Veronica, out of St. John, New Brunswick.  The Veronica had sailed into Gulf waters south of Ship Island in August of 1902. 

Captain Bellande had come to Mississippi from Marseille, France in 1851, at the age of twenty-two years.  His family in France had been caulkers in a local shipyard, and the ways of the sea were natural to this young French immigrant.  He had learned well the waters of the Gulf of Mexico while navigating his trading schooner the, John Randolph, to Cuba for sugar and tobacco.  Occasionally, he would transport longleaf pine to Galveston and New Orleans.  His maritime lore was so widely acclaimed that during the Civil War, Admiral David Farragut utilized his services for the Union Navy.  His Civil War records indicate he was an acting ensign and pilot, one of only two in the entire Navy. 

Antoine Bellande served the Union well.  He was the pilot aboard the USS Monongahela at the Battle of Mobile Bay in August 1864, when it valiantly rammed the CSS Tennessee.  After the War, Bellande settled at Back Bay (D'Iberville), and began a family with Marie Harvey (1840-1894).  They moved to 254 Reynoir Street about 1882, the year he became a Ship Island bar pilot. 

Veronica Trial at Liverpool Assizes, Liverpool, England, May 12, 1903.
(l-r) Inspector Duckworth, Moses Thomas, ?, Antoine V. Bellande, and Sgt. Ford
 

As Captain Bellande rode the pilot boat out to meet the incoming Veronica south of the Ship Island bar that late summer day in 1902, I can only speculate on his state of mind.  In 1894, his wife had died at Biloxi.  He married an Ocean Springs lady, Mary Catchot (1860-1931), in 1896.   She was the daughter of Antonio Catchot (1826-1885), a Spanish immigrant, from the Balearic Island of Menorca, and Elizabeth Hoffen (1838-1916), a German immigrant from Bremen.  Antoine and Mary Catchot Bellande resided on Jackson Avenue in Ocean Springs across from the St. Alphonsus Church where a son, Edward Antoine (1897-1976), was born in 1897 to the newly weds.  He was sixty-seven years of age and she thirty-seven at the time of Edward's delivery.

When Captain Bellande boarded the Veronica, he met Captain Alexander Shaw, the master of the 1167 ton vessel which was loaded during September with Mississippi lumber for Montevideo, Uruguay.  The heavily laden vessel waited for a high tide and was towed across the Ship Island bar on October 11, 1902, into the waters of the Gulf of Mexico. 

While at sea, the four German crewmen of the Veronica became upset with their Anglo-Saxon shipmates.  While off the northeast coast of Brazil, they murdered Captain Shaw and the crew, and set the ship afire.  In December 1902, the mutineers landed on the small island of Tuotoia which forms a part of the bar at the mouth of the Rio Parnaiba in northeastern Brazil.  They were rescued by the SS Brunswick in mid-January 1903.

The German seamen made a fatal mistake by bringing the ship's cook Moses Thomas, a Negro, with them.  On the way to England, Thomas related the tale of horror aboard the Veronica to Captain Browne.  After the Brunswick reached Liverpool in late January, three of the alleged murderers were incarcerated until the trial which commenced on May 12, 1903, at the Liverpool Assizes.  The fourth seaman, a youth, was given mercy.

Since Antoine Bellande was the last person to see the crew of the Veronica alive at Ship Island, he was called to testify at the trial in Liverpool.  Before his departure for England with Inspector Duckworth who had been sent to Biloxi by Scotland Yard to investigate the local scene, an article of interest was printed in The Biloxi Daily Herald on April 15, 1903:

 

The sailor boys are very anxious concerning the visit of pilot, Antoine Bellande, to Liverpool, for they say he has never served time in the French army, and if the frog eaters in the Old  World hear of his being in Europe, they fear in some manner they will get possession of him and force him to mark time and carry a gun to the great loss of the sailor craft of these waters.  It is said that John Brasellman, of Dejean & Mitchell's, and John Lyons, boarding officer at Ship Island, will also be induced to go to England on the same errand.

 

The sworn testimony of Captain Antoine Bellande taken from The Trial of Gustav Rau, Otto Monsson, and Willem Smith: The "Veronica" Trial by Professor G.W. Keeton and John Cameron went as follows:

 

Antoine Bellande, sworn, examined by Mr. F.E. Smith.

I am a port pilot at Ship Island and Biloxi, and I live at Ocean Springs, four miles from Biloxi.  I believe the Veronica arrived at Ship Island in ballast last August.  Captain Alick Shaw was in command.  She lay in quarantine for something like 15 days.  I was on board during the quarantine, and was put in quarantine five days myself.  I do not exactly remember either the first or second mates' names.  I knew the men well, but not their names.

 

Tell me whether either or any or none of these men in the dock were on board then?  

The middle one (Monsson) was on board when I was in quarantine.  I don't know the others.  I noticed nothing in particular going on on board the vessel when I was there.  Captain Shaw could not hear very well; he was a little deaf.

 

Do you remember going on board the Veronica to take her out?  

Yes, that was in October.  At that time her crew consisted of twelve all told-there was Captain Shaw, the first mate and the second mate.  I cannot remember the names of the other members of the crew as there were so many vessels going about.  There was a man named Moses Thomas-he was the cook.

 

Will you look at that paper and tell us whether you saw any of those signatures made?  

Yes, Monsson.  I saw Thomas the cook signing.  The captain of the tugboat was with me and Captain Shaw.

 

On what sort of terms seemed the officers to be with the crew?  

They seemed to be all very well, all satisfied; I never heard anything.

 

Cross-examined by Mr. Maxwell for Rau.

 

Your only duty on board was to take the ship out to sea?  

Yes.

 

You had nothing to do with the crew yourself?  

No, only when I wanted to get underway.

 

Out of all those names you only saw Thomas the cook sign?  

He signed, yes.

 

Cross-examined by Mr. Aggs for Smith.  You brought the Veronica in when she came in ballast?  

Yes.

 

Do you remember this man Monsson on board?  

Yes.

 

Do you remember anybody else?  Do you remember Rau being on board?  

Yes.

 

When she came in who were chief officer and second officer?  

Mr. Shaw was the captain; the first mate was a young man.

 

What I want to know is, was the same first mate and second mate that went out in her as came in with her when she came in with ballast?  

Yes.

 

You cannot tell me the name of the first mate, but you say he was a young man.  What was his height-tall or short?  

He was a young man with a moustache, about the same height as me-rather short, I think.

 

Can you tell me anything about the course the Veronica would take in order to get to Monte Video leaving Ship Island-would she go due east?  

About E.S.E.

 

How far east would she go before she turned down south?  

She would have to go to the Strait of Florida.

 

Would she have to go farther east after she went through the Strait?  

She would go through the Strait and keep east.

 

Can you tell whereabouts that part of the ocean called the Doldrums is?  

No.

 

Can you tell whether vessels get into a part of the ocean where there are contrary winds and calms sometimes? 

It happens at sea that there are calms and so on.

 

Is there a part of the ocean in which they are more frequent than other parts?  

I do not know

 

What is the time of a voyage from Ship Island to Monte Video?  

Between 60 and 70 days.

 

Did you not say when you gave your evidence before that the length of the voyage for a sailing ship is from 43 to 80 days?  

From Monte Video, yes.  It is longer from Ship Island to Monte Video.

 

You would agree that it would not as a rule take more than 70 days?  

From 60 to 70 days, although with a fair wind it might be shorter.

 

You spoke also as to the provisions, which were taken on board this boat.  Do you know anything about that?

-Not very well.  They took provisions, but I cannot say how much.

 

Can you tell me, would a captain as a rule take about 60 or 70 days' provisions with him for this voyage?

-Generally it is a rule to take double the provisions to come back with.

 

Would he not be able to get fresh provisions at Monte Video?

-He would get meat and flour, but would buy nothing else because it is too dear.

 

 

Re-examined by Mr. F.E. Smith.

Did you notice while you were on board the vessel what the name of the firm was that was supplying the provisions for the Veronica?  

Yes, the DeJean & Mitchell Company.  They are a good firm.

 

Have you made the voyage from Ship Island to Monte Video?  If I gave you this chart (chart shown to witness) could you mark out the course in pencil a sailing vessel would take to go from Ship Island to Monte Video?  

No, I could not do it.

 

The Veronica Trial ended on May 14th, 1903.  Guilty was the verdict rendered by the jury against all three defendants.  Two were hanged at Walton Gaol outside of Liverpool while the third was given penal servitude for life.  Captain Bellande returned to America from Liverpool, England aboard the Campania and landed at New York City on May 23, 1903.  At Biloxi, he continued his service in the Ship Island and Gulfport Pilots Association. 

1906 dilemma

 

In December 1906, Antoine Bellande and J.H. Stilphin (1842-1920) were dropped from the lists of bar pilots by the board.  Captain Bellande was omitted because he lived in Jackson County.  Stilphen was dismissed from the active bar pilots roll because he had lost his foot. Captain Bellande  was reinstated by the pilot commissioner’s board when he moved into Harrison County.  It is not presently known where Captain and Mrs. Bellande relocated to, indeed if they did moved at all.  A compelling reason for their dismissal was the fact that the pilot commissioner’s had reduced the income of their twelve active bar pilots by lowering their fees from $4 per foot on foreign flag vessels to $3.50 and to $3 per foot on American ships from their previous $4 per foot fee.  With a reduction in the pilot staff to ten, the income of these men would be equivalent to their former wages, as they would have more work.(The Biloxi Herald, January 31, 1907, p. 1)

 

On March 11, 1911, Antoine Bellande was elected president of the Pilots Association.  An article in the The Pascagoula Star-Democrat of March 18, 1911, stated:

 

At a meeting of the Ship Island and Gulfport Pilots Association held yesterday at Ship Island aboard the pilot boat, Edward D. Barret, reorganization was effected and rules adopted for the ensuing four years.  Captain A. Bellande was elected president; M.A. Scarbrough, secretary and treasurer; F.D. Moran, manager.  Captain Bellande of Ocean Springs, who was named president, is 72 (sic) years of age and has been a pilot in Gulf Coast waters for the past 25 or 30 years.  He is one of the best known nautical men on the coast.  His health is splendid, he reads and writes without glasses and is active for his 82 (sic) years as any young man of 30.  He served as a pilot during the Civil War under Admiral Farragut.  Captain Bellande is very popular among his brother pilots and the honor of the presidency bestowed on him is richly deserved.

 

An example of Antoine Bellande's writing is given in this letter of December 21, 1908.  Faye Bellande Davidson had saved it through the years at her Church Street home in Biloxi and gave it to me following Hurricane Camille in 1969.

According to the 1910 Federal Census of Jackson County, Antoine Bellande and his family were residing on Washington Avenue in Ocean Springs.  Since Elizabeth Hoffen Catchot, Antoine's mother-in-law, had been living with them since 1900, I assume they may have been living in her house as she was a widow.  The only land transactions that I could locate in the Jackson County Courthouse show that Mrs. Antoine Bellande bought a lot from O.L. Bailey on February 15, 1909.

 She purchased Lot 5 of Block 34 of the N. Culmsieg Map (1853-1854) for $800.  The lot had a front of 100 feet on Jackson Avenue and was 260 feet deep.  On April 19, 1911, she bought Lot 6 in Block 34 from Michael and Pat Farley for $1000.  It was contiguous and south of Lot 5 also with 100 feet on Jackson.  The current address of these properties should be at or near 506 and 510 Jackson Avenue opposite the lands of the St. Alphonsus Catholic Church.

Charles E. Schmidt, George Arndt, and other older residents of Ocean Springs have told me that the Bellande residence was at present day 509 Jackson Avenue where a commercial

building is now located.  The Heath Family resided here

later and George Arndt tore the house down in the 1930s for scrap.  After Captain Bellande's death, Mary Bellande may have moved across the street next to the church.

At the time of his retirement in September 1915, Captain Bellande was the Captain of Pilots for Gulfport Harbor and of 86 years.  His last years in Ocean Springs were spent peacefully as he enjoyed working on his home and garden.  Captain Bellande must have been surprised in October 1917, when Robert A. Jones of Washington D.C. representing the U.S. Department of Horticulture stopped at Ocean Springs on his way to Colorado.  As The Jackson County Times of October 17, 1917, reported, Mr. Young was the son of Captain Young who served with Antoine Bellande during the Civil War.  Young's elderly father wanted him to meet Captain Bellande. Death came to Antoine Bellande in the guise of cancer.  He died on a Monday morning, June 10, 1918, at 10:00 o'clock at his home on Jackson Avenue.

Mary Catchot Bellande passed away on May 22, 1931 at Los Angeles, California.  She and Antoine lay at rest in the Catchot plot of the Evergreen Cemetery on Fort Bayou at Ocean Springs.

Let us now take a glimpse of the lives of the children of Antoine and Mary Harvey Bellande.  As you may recall, they were: Joseph A. (b. 1868), Antoine, Jr. (b. 1869), Pierre (b. 1871), Ida (b. 1874), and Auguste (b. 1876).

Joseph Arbeau Bellande (1868-1961)

 

     Joseph Arbeau Bellande was born March 16, 1868 in North Biloxi.  He was known as Joe and later Arbo.  Joseph ran a schooner on the Mississippi Sound before becoming a saloon operator.  He also dealt in cypress shingles.  In late July 1892, he received a shipment of 100,000, 1st and 2nd class shingles, which he was vending at bargain prices.(The Biloxi Herald, July 30, 1892, p. 4)

    An advertisement in The Biloxi Herald of April 1891, stated that Joseph Bellande was the proprietor of the L&N Exchange at the depot.  On April 6, 1892, Joseph Bellande opened a beer saloon in Biloxi.  The announcement was made in The Biloxi Herald of April 9, 1892.  His business was called the Depot Saloon and it was situated opposite the L&N Depot in a two-story building erected in January 1892, by Captain A.V. Bellande.(The Biloxi Herald, January 9, 1894, p. 4)

     In about 1895, a book was published by the L&N Railroad called Along The Gulf.  It features an article on Joseph Bellande.  I quote from the book:

     Another prominent saloon man in Biloxi is Mr. Joseph A. Bellande whose place of business is situated at the corner of Reynoir Street and Railroad Avenue, just across the street from the railroad station of the Louisville and Nashville.  Mr. Bellande carries a fine stock of barrel and case goods and does a first class business the year round.  This is partly owing to the fact that he keeps good goods and partly to the fact that he has a large, airy, well ventilated and well furnished bar room, and that he caters only to the better class of customers.  Mr. Bellande's place by the way is the only one in town which is illuminated with arch lights.  There has been a saloon on this corner for many years, but the present large building has only been erected for three years.  Previous to Mr. Bellande's time the name of the place was the "First and Last Chance", he however, has changed it to the "Railroad Saloon".  Mr. Bellande who built the present edifice, owing to the high license ran only a beer saloon for the first year he was there.  Since then he has had a first class saloon, finding that much more profitable than the simple handling of beer.  Previous to embarking in his present business Mr. Bellande was engaged in running a schooner on the Sound, taking contracts to unload larger vessels, and also in the freight carrying trade.

 

Baseball

(see The Biloxi Herald, The Biloxi Blues, June 18, 1892, p. 4)

 

     It appears that Joe Bellande sponsored a baseball team as The Biloxi Herald of November 5, 1892, p. 4, c. 3. related that:

The ball game last Sunday, between a team from New Orleans and the Bellande's, was another easy thing for the local players, they winning the game by a score of 13 to 7.  This is the third straight game the Biloxi team has won from the visitors.

 

Marriage and Divorce

     On July 11, 1888, Arbo married Rosa Armentine (Emma) Ramos (1875-1910+) in New Orleans.  She was a Biloxi native born of immigrant Spanish parents, Don Armond Ramos (1833-1913) and Virginia Ramos (1835-1899).  They were both born in Madrid, Spain and resided at 315 Bohn Street in Biloxi.  Arbo and Rosa had a child, Mary Alice Rose Bellande (1888-1967), who was born December 4, 1888, at Biloxi.  As the result of Harrison County Court Case No. 463, Joseph A. Bellande vs Rosa Bellande, heard on February 11, 1891, the marriage ended in divorce.  The following information was taken from the Minutes of the Harrison County Chancery Court A.D. 1891, p. 273:

This cause coming to be heard on bill, proof of publication and testimony taken in open court, and the Court being satisfied that the charge of adultery in said bill is sustained by the proof, it is ordered by the Court that the bonds of matrimony heretofore subsisting between complaintant and defendant be and they are hereby dissolved at to complaintant but not as to defendant.

 

     In August 1892, Rosa Bellande sued Arbo in the Harrison County Chancery Court.  The suit was quiet "messy" in that it involved Arbo's claim of adultery against Rosa, and the alleged pressure from her family to have him marry her.  She in the defense of her honor alleged Arbo had induced a witness to swear falsely against her.  Also Rosa never received her summons to appear in the first divorce case, Harrison County, Mississippi, Cause No. 463, as it was sent to the residence of Marcellus Bellande at No. 92 Ninth Street in New Orleans.  Coincidentally, his wife's name was Rosa Bellande also.  In a deposition filed on June 30, 1892, Marcellus Bellande stated:

     "I opened the letter and found it did not concern her (Rosa, his wife), it being about a divorce suit.  I mailed it to my father, Joseph Bellande, at Ocean Springs, Mississippi.  I don't know what became of it."

     Regardless, it was decreed by the Harrison County Chancery Court on August 5, 1892, that the decree entered on February 11, 1891, be reversed and the bonds of matrimony existing between Rosa Bellande and J.A. Bellande be dissolved and both parties freed from the obligations of marriage.  Rosa Bellande was awarded custody of the child, Mary Alice Rose Bellande.

     Rosa Ramos Bellande married Thomas P. Costello (1870-1910+) who was also known as Tom McGinty on May 8, 1900.  In 1910, they and Alice Bellande were residing with Armand Ramos on Main Street.  Mr. Costello worked as a street laborer while Mr. Ramos was a house painter.

Mary Rose Alice Bellande

            Mary Rose Alice Bellande was born on December 3 or December 4, 1888, to Joseph A. Bellande and Rosa A. Ramos and previously mentioned.  She was known as Alice Bellande.  She made her livelihood as a secretary.  Miss Bellande expired on August 20, 1967, at the St. Joseph Rest Home in the Crescent City.  Her listed survivors were two cousins, Marie Lloyd Watkins (1894-1980), the daughter of Dr. Charles Lloyd and Antoninette Ramos, and the wife of Norvell Edwin Watkins (1895-1961) of Hattiesburg, Mississippi, and Marion Ruth Watkins (1926-1971).  Alice Bellande’s corporal remains were interred in the Oaklawn Cemetery at Hattiesburg, Mississippi.  The Moore Funeral Home at Hattiesburg handled the funeral services, which were held at the Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church in Hattiesburg.(The Hattiesburg American, August 21, 1967, p. 14)

The Depot Saloon and General Merchandising

 

     With his matrimonial predicament in the past, Arbeau Bellande continued in his social life and successful saloon business near the depot.  Several articles appeared in The Biloxi Herald of 1892, 1893 and 1894 concerning his affairs:

    The old Bellande building near the depot has been torn down and the foundation is being laid for a new two-story edifice.

     At the second Grand King and Queen Ball at the Magnolia Hotel, Joseph Bellande and Miss Emma Johnson were participants.  Their reign ended with the dance.  His brother, Antoine, Jr., was chosen to serve at the next ball with his guest Miss Ollie Caldwell.(February 4, 1893, p. 10)

     Messrs. Jos. A. Bellande and Alex Redon, Ed G.Burklin and several others gave an elegant spread to a number of their friends last Saturday night at the Depot Saloon.  The supper was a most tempting one and was prepared by a strictly first-class cook and served in the best style.  The gentlemen were loud in expressing their opinion of the viands and will long remember the pleasant evening spent with their hospitable hosts.(April 21, 1894. p. 8)

     Our clever young friend Joe Bellande, proprietor of the Depot Saloon, this morning presented us with a package of the Grand Republic cigars, and we unhesitantly pronounce them equal, if not superior, to any five-cent cigar ever sold in Biloxi.  This brand of cigars can be obtained in Biloxi only at the Depot Saloon.(May 19, 1894. p. 8)

     By a card in the columns of The Herald, it will be noticed that Jos. Bellande, proprietor of the Depot Saloon, calls attention to the fact that he deals in foreign and domestic wines, liquors, and fine cigars.  He is also agent for the celebrated Maple Hollow Whiskey, a very fine brand.  Joe always suits his customers as well as transients.(May 26, 1894. p. 8)

     On August 22, 1894, Joseph Bellande married Marie Alexandrine Barthes (1876-1961) of Biloxi in the Nativity Church with Reverend Father Blanc officiating.  She was the daughter of French immigrant, Francis A. Barthes (1833-1898), and Margaret Alexandrine Binet (1839-1877), the daughter of Fredrick Alexandre Binet and Augustine (Zephirine? Guilby?) who resided on Main Street in Biloxi.  The ceremony was well attended, as they were well known and admired in their native Biloxi.  Alex Redon served Joseph A. Bellande as his best man, while brother, August F. Bellande, escorted Ophelia Barthes, the bride’s sister.  Others in the wedding party were: Felix Borries (1860-1937) and Olaf Thompson (1874-1944), ushers, and A. Reynoir, who escorted the bride.  The newly weds honeymooned in New Orleans.(The Biloxi Herald, September 1, 1894, p. 8)

     This union produced two sons, Joseph Emmett Bellande (1895-1974) and Louis Earle Bellande (1897-1989), who were born at Biloxi. 

Depot Saloon

     In the spring of 1895, Joseph Arbo Bellande made an application to the City of Biloxi to petition for a liquor license.  His request was to sell and retail in quantities less than one gallon, the following: vinous, malt, spirituous or intoxicating liquors at the Depot Saloon, situated on Reynoir Street on the south side of the L&N Railroad track.  Arbo’s petition was signed by a large contingent of Biloxi’s registered voters.  He advertised his business as:

DEPOT SALON

Biloxi, Miss.

JOS. A. BELLANDE, Proprietor

Dealer in

Imported and Domestic Wines, Liquors, Cigars, Etc.

Of the very finest quality.

Ice Cold Beer on Draught At all Hours.

Agent for the celebrated  Maple Hollow Whiskey

(The Biloxi Herald, April 13, 1895, p. 5)

 

          By mid-May 1895, Joseph Bellande had added a large, arc light in his barroom.  He also was painting things green in and around his place that made it appear "as fresh as a daisy kissed by the morning dew."(The Biloxi Herald, May 11, 1895, p. 8)

 

General merchandiser

   In the waning years of 1897, Joseph A. Bellande and his father-in-law, F.A. Barthes, commenced a general merchandise store in Biloxi on Howard Avenue and east of Main Street.  The business was called F.A. Barthes & Company.(The Biloxi Herald, January 8, 1898, p. 8)  

    After the death of Mr. Barthes in April 1898, Marie Barthes Bellande announced in The Biloxi Herald that she and Marie A. Binet DeVeaux (1846-1917), her aunt, would continue the mercantile business of her father.(The Biloxi Herald, June 4, 1898, p. 8)  Mrs. DeVeaux resided at 228 Main Street.  She was survived by two sisters, and a brother, C.A. Binet (1843-1923).  She had married O.P. White of Wisconsin in December 1904.(The Daily Herald, April 24, 1917, p. 3 and The Biloxi Daily Herald, December 22, 1904, p. 5)

     The young family of Joseph A. Bellande probably moved to New Orleans in late 1898 or early 1899, as this was the time period the Bellande's were dismantling their Reynoir Street properties.  The Federal Census of 1900 has them residing at 728 Julia Street in New Orleans.

     In January 1902, Joseph A. Bellande was the contracting agent for the Morgan line 'Sunset Route'.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, January 8, 1902, p. 8)

     At New Orleans, Joseph was employed as a baggage master and mail clerk with the L&N Railroad.  The following article appeared in The Biloxi Herald of October 27, 1902:

     Joseph Bellande of New Orleans, who for some time has been running "extra" baggage on the L&N Railroad, is in Biloxi for a few days, the guest of his brother-in-law, Mr. Jesse Smith*.  Within a few days, Mr. Bellande will receive his appointment for a permanent run. 

* Jesse Smith (1860-1934) married Ophelia Emily Barthes on February 2, 1897.

       In June 1911, Joseph Bellande came to Biloxi to assist E.S. Clemens and Frederick Lund in installing a telegraph station in Dukate’s Theater on Howard Avenue.  He returned to New Orleans after the installation.(The Daily Herald, July 1, 1911, p. 8)

     Joseph Bellande made a career with the L&N Railroad.  After retirement, he enjoyed himself by dressing well, entertaining lovely ladies, and dining out.  He liked good whiskey and the company of women, traits, which carried over from his youth in Biloxi.  His wife, Marie Barthes who was called "Steve", left New Orleans about 1915, after she divorced him.  "Steve" moved to Chicago where son, Earle, was in the Navy.  In later life, she settled at Homestead, Florida where she died in 1961, ironically the same year as Arbo.  Joseph "Arbo" Bellande died on January 17, 1961 at the age of ninety-three years.  He had resided at 4701 Marigny in Gentilly with his daughter-in-law, Odie, since 1939.  His body was sent to Biloxi for burial in the Bellande family plot in the Old Biloxi Cemetery on January 20th at 3 p.m.

Family

 

Joseph A. Bellande and family circa 1940 at NOLA?

[L-R: Odie Wooten Bellande (b. 1895); Signe Olsen Bellande (1910-1999); Earle Bellande (1897-1989); Arbo Bellande (1868-1961) and Emmet Bellande (1895-1974)

 

Joseph Emmett Bellande (1895-1974)

     Joseph A. Bellande's eldest son, Joseph Emmett Bellande (1895-1974), called Emmett, was born at Biloxi, Mississippi on June 24, 1895.  He later resided at New Orleans with his wife, Oda Wooten (b. 1895), who was born in rural Leake County, Mississippi to Robert F. Wooten (1864-1910+), a farmer, and Mary Hollis Wooten (1864-1910+).  During WW I, Emmett Bellande was employed at Detroit, Michigan as an auto mechanic with the Liberty Motor Company.  Emmett was a very successful insurance agent before the Great Depression, and like many of that decade lost his fortune doing those economically trying times. In 1930, Emmett and his small family were domiciled on Industry Street in the Crescent City. He worked for the city of New Orleans as a cemetery caretaker for many years.  A son, Joseph Emmett Junior, was born July 23, 1927.  After Emmett and Odie divorced, he married Mildred Burgdorf (1908-1990) who was active in local politics.  Joseph Emmett Bellande died of thyroid cancer in September 1974.

Joseph Emmett Bellande Junior (b. 1927)

     Joseph Emmett Bellande, called Emmett, is retired with his lovely wife, Marian (b. 1928) in Arabi, Louisiana.  He enjoyed a successful career as an electrical contractor and gunsmith.  Emmett enjoys his children, grandchildren, hunting, history, and sailing in his "old age”.  He and Marion have seven wonderful children and an evergrowing number of grandchildren.  Their children are: Bonnie Lynn Englande (b. 1947), J.E. Bellande, III (b. 1949), Peggy Jane Laborde (b. 1951), Kenneth Bellande (b. 1953), Susan Valee (b. 1955), Diane Davis (b. 1958), and Nancy Liberto Ciuvio (b. 1964).

 

Louis Earle Bellande (1897-1989)

     Joseph A. Bellande's second son, Louis Earle (1897-1989), was called Earle.  Earle Bellande, although born at Biloxi on the Mississippi coast, lived most of his adult life in Chicago, Illinois.  It is generally believed that he came north as the result of a hitch in the US Navy.  Circa 1924, Earle married a woman named Katharine Eischen (1889-1933), who was born on January 5, 1899 to Anton Eischen and Margaret Harre in Luxembourg.  Katharine expired from stomach cancer at Chicago on June 25, 1933.  Her corporal remains were interred at St. Henry's Cemetery.  At the tome of Katharine's demise, the Bellandes were domiciled at 1726 Thome Avenue at Chicago.(1930 Cook Co., Illinois Federal Census  R496, p. 30B, ED 1956 and Cook Co., Illinois Death Certificate No. 17097)

     Earle Bellande was gregarious and personable.  These traits suited him well as a salesman in the Chicago meat packing industry.  In 1937, he married Signe V. Olsen (1910-1999), a nurse of recent Scandinavian ancestry.  She was born on August 23, 1910 at Stambaugh, Michigan and expired at Batavia, Illinois on February 28, 1999.  They lived at 1528 Elmdale at Chicago.  Three children were born of this union: Signe Marie Bellande (b. 1939), called Bunny; L. Signe Bellande, a male who died March 8, 1941; and Louis Earle Bellande Junior (b. 1942).(The Naperville Sun, March 3, 1999)

     Earle and Signe Bellande often traveled South to visit relatives and friends.  In March 1938, they came to Biloxi and joined with his Uncle Jesse Smith (1860-1934) and Aunt Ophelia Barthes Smith for a 2000 mile round trip down the east Florida coast to Miami.  Marie Alexandrine Barthes (1876-1961), Earle's mother , owned an orange grove near Miami.  The party retuned to Biloxi via the west Florida coast road and visited Jacksonville, Daytona beach, Palm Beach, Miami Beach, and St. Petersburg.  Jesse Smith noted that there were 100,000 visitors in the Miami area, but they were beginning to return to their Northern homes on a daily basis.(The Daily Herald, March 31, 1938, p. 6)

Signe Marie Bellande (b. 1939)

     Signe Marie Bellande married Frederick (Fritz) Specht at Chicago, Illinois on September 10, 1960.  They resided in Chicago were Fritz was self-employed as an attorney and later relocated to Lawrenceville, Georgia.  Their children are: Suzanne Marie Specht Danielson (b. 1961), Lisa Marie Specht Clark (b. 1964), and Matthew Specht (b. 1967).

Louis Earle Bellande Jr. (b. 1942)

     Louis Earle Bellande Jr. married Linda Lee Carden (1942-1999), a native of Tennessee.  They exchanged wedding vows in Chicago on December 28, 1963.  This union has produced two children: Peter Bellande (b. 1976) and Rachel Bellande (b. 1979).  Louis has a successful law practice in Chicago and Linda was a very successful realtor in the west Chicago suburbs.  They reside at Wheaton, Illinois.  Linda C. Bellande expired on September 7, 2007.(The Chicago Tribune, September 8, 2007)

     Earle Bellande died on May 25, 1989 at the grand age of 92 years just one week after he and Signe had attended the wedding of his grandson, Matthew Specht, in Carbondale, Illinois.  After retiring from the hectic world of sales, he and Signe enjoyed many trips to the west coast of Florida, New Orleans, and his birthplace, Biloxi.  Signe Bellande expired on February 28, 1999 at Chicago.  She remained very active performing charitable works, visiting old friends, and enjoying her growing families and grandchildren.

Antoine Victor Bellande, Jr. (1869-1924)

 

     Antoine V. Bellande Jr. (1869-1924) was known as Newt.  He was born at Back Bay on Harvey Hill the 10th day of October 1869.  Newt Bellande was a bon vivant.  He appears to have led a carefree bachelor life.  His chosen occupation was bartender.  He probably learned this trade from his older brother, Arbo, at the Depot Saloon. 

 

(l-r) unknown, Antoine V. Bellande Jr. (1869-1924)

 

     A few anecdotes about Newt Bellande have been passed down through the years, but most pertain to his life in New York.  While researching other subjects in The Biloxi Herald, I found numerous articles in the time period 1892-1901 concerning his life.  From the journalistic works of this era, I will give you a picture of Newt's life as portrayed by them.

      In January 1892, Newt Bellande and A.O. Bourdon went hunting north of Biloxi Bay.  They shot quail, rabbits, and other small game.(The Biloxi Herald, January 30, 1892, p. 1)

    In December 1892, Newt Bellande left Biloxi for New Orleans where he took a position with George Hodgins.(The Biloxi Herald, December 10, 1892, p. 4)

      In August 1897, Newt Bellande acquired one of the finest bred pointers in Mississippi from George J. Williams of McComb.(The Biloxi Herald, August 14, 1897, p. 8)

      In September 1898, Newt left the Charm Saloon on the beach where he was the barkeeper to the same position at the Depot Saloon.(The Biloxi Herald, September 10, 1898, p. 8)

     In 1899, he was working at the Pelican Bar located at the corner of Pass Christian (now Howard Avenue) and Croesus Street.  The proprietor of the Pelican was M. Perez.  The following article appeared in The Biloxi Daily Heraldon October 6, 1899:  

Newt Bellande, one of the best mixologist in this section of the country has taken charge of the Pelican Bar and will be pleased to serve his friends with the choicest liquid refreshment.

An innuendo about the character of Newt Bellande appeared in The Biloxi Daily Herald of February 27, 1900: 

     Newt Bellande, the genial and handsome manager of "The Pelican", is enjoying carnival sights in New Orleans today and seeing the elephants generally.

 

     Newt must have been a gregarious and sporting fellow.  One of his friends was A.O. Bourdon, Jr. who was in the retail liquor business.  They would hunt quail and travel to New Orleans on occasions.  Newt Bellande was enamored with hunting dogs.  On one occasion he acquired a "catch dog", which was described as being a most valuable animal and he delighted in relating to friends and acquaintances of the canine's acute intelligence.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, October 30, 1900, p. 8)             

     Although he remained single, he must have enjoyed children as the following excerpt from The Biloxi Daily Herald would indicate: 

     Newt Bellande says he is particularly happy this week.  The circus is coming, and he is going to take two or three small boys there to give them an opportunity to see the sights, and he wants to see them enjoy themselves.  He doesn't care for circuses himself.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, October 31, 1900, p. 8)       

     Newt Bellande left the Pelican Bar as the local journal reported:  

     Our handsome young friend, Mr. Newt Bellande, who has for some time been managing the business of O.J. Brule, in this city, is now taking a well-earned vacation, at the expiration of which we understand he will go into business for himself at the corner of Delauney Street and Howard Avenue.  What ever he enters into he will make a success of, and his friends will all wish him a full measure of it.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, June 10, 1900, p. 8)

     The June 1900 Federal Census for Harrison County, Mississippi indicates that Newt Bellande, a bar tender, was living at No. 20 Front Street (now Beach Blvd.) with O.G. Baulie (1836-1900+)(sic O.J. Brule), a Norwegian native.(1900 Harrison County, Mississippi Federal Census T623 808, p. 1B, ED 30)

Opera Saloon

     Newt Bellande went into business with a man Biloxi merchant, Sam Levy (1864-1900+), in August 1900.  They opened a bar called the Opera Saloon "in the new and handsome building at the corner of Howard Avenue and  Delauney  Street ", (now G.E. Ohr Boulevard).  It was advertised as stocked with the "finest and purest imported and domestic wines, liquors, cigars, etc."  His partner, Sam Levy, was a traveling salesman who resided at 222 Magnolia Street.  The Opera Saloon was in spaced leased from Lopez & Dukate.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, November 7, 1900, p. 4 and Harrison County, Mississippi Chancery Court Cause No. 1359-February 1901)

     As demonstrated by the following reports from the March 27, 1901, The Biloxi Daily Herald, Newt must have been a pioneer in the marketing field:  

We are indebted to our genial friend, Newt Bellande, of the firm of Levy & Bellande, proprietors of the Opera Saloon, for one of the handsome glass penholders, with case, that are being distributed amongst the patrons of that establishment.  It is a very neat and clever advertising scheme, yet something worth having.

Messrs. Levy & Bellande have just added a most pleasing attraction to their Opera Saloon, in the shape of a magnificent electric piano, which plays many selections, including some of the very latest and most popular airs of the day, as well as others of a classical character.  It is a late invention, and under the manipulations of Newt Bellande.  We will predict in advance that it is going to be a drawing card.  Newt knows all about it, or if he doesn't he will make you believe so anyhow.  Go and hear it play.

        On July 13, 1901, the following petition appeared in The Biloxi Daily Herald 

     We Sam Levy and Antoine Bellande, Jr. white male persons over the age of 21 years and residents of said city, do hereby apply to your honorable body (Mayor and Aldermen of Biloxi) to grant us a license in our names to sell and retail in less quantities than one gallon vinous, malt, spirituous, alcoholic, and intoxicating liquors in the property known as the Opera Saloon. 

     The license was granted August 21, 1901, and was probably renewed annually. 

     Unfortunately, the business relationship between Newt and Sam Levy soured.  Mr. Levy filed litigation in 1901 in the Chancery Court of Harrison County, Mississippi alleging that Newt Bellande was failing to perform on his contractual obligations to him.  Their agreement called for Newt Bellande to make a monthly salary of $50 and receive 2% of the gross revenues of Levy's saloon business.  The first year's gross sales were $17,000, but had fallen to about $1000 per month.  Mr. Levy accuse Newt Bellande of hunting too much and not managing the saloon business.  He also claim that Mr. Bellande did not have an accurate accounting system and that he spurned all offers from Levy to withdraw from the enterprise.  In early February 1902, Sam Levy withdrew his action against Newt Bellande at his own expense.  In June 1905, William Baltar owned the Opera Saloon.(Harrison County, Mississippi Chancery Court Cause No. 1359-February 1901)

 

New Orleans

     It appears that as the direct result of his falling out of favor with Sam Levy, Newt Bellande left Biloxi for the Crescent City in the fall of 1902.  He was the night 'mixologist' at the Crescent Saloon dispensing "fire water."  Over the Thanksgiving Holiday in 1902, Newt Bellande visited at Biloxi with John Reynoir (1874-1931).(The Biloxi Daily News, November 12, 1902, p. 6 and November 17, 1902, p. 6)

New York City

     On February 3, 1903, the "City News" of The Biloxi Daily Herald, stated that Newt Bellande had departed the Mississippi coast for New York City.  Newt joined a fellow Biloxian and long time friend, A.O. Bourdin Jr (1868-1959).  Mr. Bourdin was the proprietor of the Charm Saloon at Biloxi and also operated a small bar at 1225 Broadway, in the Big Apple.  Newt Bellande was going to be Bourdin's bar tender in New York.  A.J. Bourdin (1873-1912) was managing his brother's Biloxi establishment during his tenure at New York City.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, February 3, 1903, p. 6)

     In the spring of 1908, Ulysses Desporte (1861-1927), a leading Biloxi seafood dealer, while on the East Coast seeking new markets met Newt Bellande in New York City and reported that he was managing a fine cafe and doing well.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, June 4, 1908, p. 1)

     In May 1911, Newt Bellande received attention for his 'mixology' skills in the Big Apple.  He was the bartender at Louis Martin's Hotel and began serving 'Southern drinks'.  Newt introduced New Yorkers to such regional favorites as: the New Orleans fizz; Sazerac cocktail; Ojean cocktail; New Orleans sour; and the mint julep.  Locally, Newt Bellande was remembered as: 

"a favorite 'mixologist' here for many years......one of the best natural chaps in the world and has a lot of friends and acquaintances here who are glad to hear of his success."(The Daily Herald, May 23, 1911, p. 1)

 

     Bellande family lore relates that Newt may have run a concession at a horse race track in New York City or Saratoga Springs.  David Bellande of Kirkland, Washington remembers a letter from Newt to his grandmother, Florence, requesting money for some of his ventures.  He told her that he "owned an interest in Madison Square Garden".  Ruth Bellande Ragusin remembers that upon his death in 1924, his body was sent to Biloxi by rail.  Newt's brothers had to pay for his burial in the Biloxi Cemetery. 

     Regardless of the anecdotal stories, Antoine V. Bellande expired at New York City on May 19, 1924.  His corporal remains were brought to Biloxi on the L&N Railroad Train No. 37 by Mr. and Mrs. H.F. Richardson.  George Wagatha remembers that Newt Bellande was so large that a special coffin was built to accommodate his body mass.  It is believed that he neither married, nor had any progeny.  At the L&N Depot, Newt’s corporal remains were met by members of the Biloxi Elks Lodge and relatives and escorted to the Ben O’Keefe Funeral Parlor.  Funeral services for Newt Bellande were held on May 22, 1924 at the Church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary by Reverend Keenan.  His corporal remains were entered in the Bellande plot in the Old Biloxi Cemetery.  He had been ill in New York for about six months and failed to respond to medical treatment.  Victor Ougatte came from Mobile to attend the funeral.(The Daily Herald, May 22, 1924, p. 2)

     Pallbearers for Antoine V. Bellande’s funeral were Adolph Abbley of Pass Christian; Louis Staehling; Hugh Latimer; George Purcell; John B. Reynoir; and J.R. Meunier.  A large contingent from the Elks Club were in attendance to honor the memory of their fallen brother.  The Richardsons expected to return to their home in New York on May 24, 1924.(The Daily Herald, May 23, 1924, p. 3)

Bubby Bellande*

 

     Bubby Bellande, a Negro, appeared before Justice of the Peace Z.T. Champlin under a charge of assault upon a Negress and was fined $2.50 and costs.  Bellande related that he gave the woman a whipping because she cursed him.(The Daily HeraldOctober 18, 1910, p. 8) 

            *One for future research!

Pierre Bellande (1871-1933)

Pierre Bellande was known as Peter.  He was born on April 4, 1871, at North Biloxi.  Peter married Alice Caillavet (1872-1955), a Biloxi girl, who was born April 7, 1872.  Her parents were Raymond J. Caillavet (1838-1898), a carpenter, and Celina Joucheray (1841-1903) of New Orleans.

Baseball and Fishing

In the spring of 1892, The Biloxi Herald, announced that the T.P. Dulion Baseball Club had organized and that Peter Bellande was their first baseman.  Peter must have passed his athletic ability to his sons, as several were excellent athletes.(The Biloxi Herald, April 9, 1892, p. 4)

By mid-June 1892, a new baseball club was organized called the “Biloxi Blues”.  As the officers of the club, W.K.M. Dukate (1852-1916), Lazaro Lopez (1850-1903), and Theodore P. Dulion, were among the most affluent Biloxians of this era, the choice of Peter Bellande and his brother, August, to the squad is most impressive.  Three of their cousins, Emile Harvey (b. 1870), Louis Harvey (1874-1913), and Francis Harvey (1874-1913) were also selected to play for Manager Ed Suter (1866-1943).  Older brother, Joseph A. Bellande (1868-1961), was elected an honorary member of the team.(The Biloxi Herald, June 18, 1892, p. 4)  

Another avocation of Peter, which was certainly in the family genes and passed to his sons was fishing.  This “Believe It or Not” fish tale was printed in the The Biloxi Herald of May 26, 1894:

"Fishing in the ponds on the L&N Railroad near the bridge has proven successful lately.  Peter Bellande and Joseph Clark caught nearly 600 green trout (bass) in 3 hours the other day."

 

     

Peter Bellande domicile [circa 1890]; detail l-r Alice C. Bellande holding Faye, Roy P. Bellande

837 Lameuse Street-survived Hurricane Katrina of August 2006

Below in January 1994

 

Marriage and family

Peter Bellande and Alice Caillavet exchanged wedding vows in Biloxi on August 19, 1894.  They settled at 837 Lameuse Street in Biloxi on land that Antoine Bellande had purchased in 1880, and conveyed to Marie Harvey Bellande in December 1885.  All of their children were born in this house which is extant and occupied by an Hebert family today.

Alice Caillavet Bellande (1872-1955)

 

Peter was a bartender and later a policeman.  As a member of the Biloxi police force he served as a patrolman, sanitary inspector, night clerk and desk sergeant.   In January 1917, Officer Bellande’s hours were changed from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. to 12 noon to 12 midnight by Richard M. Randolph, Chief of Police.  His bicycle was also stolen from Howard Avenue.(The Daily Herald, January 21, 1917, p. 1) 

Contraband alcohol continued to be smuggled and sold in Harrison County and the Popp’s Ferry area appears to be a preferred destination for these illicit activities.  In March 1917, Police Chief  Richard M. Randolph and Officer Peter Bellande (1871-1933) seized a wagon loaded with eight casks of Cook’s Beer and a gallon of wine and arrested Frances Barthes (1888-1942).  It was presumed by local law enforcement officials that a schooner had transported the liquor to Biloxi from New Orleans and that it was being transported to Popp’s Ferry for retail sale.  Judge F.W. Elmer Jr. fined Mr. Barthes $100 and court cost.(The Daily Herald, March 13, 1917, p. 3)

Mayor Edward Glennan (1854-1933) started his final year as Mayor of Biloxi with turmoil in the Police Department.  In January 1918, when it was time to reappoint patrolmen, Walter H. 'Skeet' Hunt (1887-1961), 1st Ward Alderman, opposed that Frank J. ‘Zudie’ Hightower (1890-1976), Peter Bellande (1871-1933), and John W. Mabry (1873-1940) continue with the force.  The Board of Aldermen appointed Joseph Mattina (1889-1969), a barber; Willie Ryan (1876-1958), Biloxi Yacht Club keeper; and Martin Green Jr. (1875-1951), a boat dealer, to replace the three men.  None of the City Council’s new policemen had any law enforcement experience and they had to be trained by Chief Randolph.(The Daily Herald, January 3, 1918)

When John J. Kennedy replaced Edward Glennan in January 1919 as Biloxi's new Mayor, he attempted to have Peter Bellande hired back on the Biloxi Police force.  He was opposed by Commissioners Walter H. Hunt and Marshall L. Michel and Officer Bellande was not rehired at this time.(The Daily Herald, January 8, 1919, p. 1)

By 1926, Peter Bellande was desk sergeant for the Biloxi force.  In November 1926, he took two weeks vacation and expected to log in some fishing time.  At this time, The Daily Herald related that 

"Mr. Bellande is a fisherman of skill and repute, and there is no greater recreative sport for the tired office man that a hook and line, bait and the pleasures of anticipation.  The police office may expect a new man when he returns."(The Daily Herald, January 21, 1917, p. 1 and November 19, 1926, p. 2.)

In June 1927, Peter Bellande decided to enter politics and ran for the Office of Constable, but lost.  His family felt that his defeat was the result of Peter's honesty.  In announcing his candidacy for the Constable's position, Peter was described as: respected and liked by a large number of friends in Biloxi and on the Coast who declare that he is as 'honest as the day is long'. (The Daily Herald, June 27, 1927, p. 1) 

This uprightness was noted in The Daily Herald of December 24, 1917, on page one titled, "Officer Bellande has no favorites".  Peter Bellande arrested his oldest son, Roy Bellande, for riding his bicycle without a light! 

Officer Bellande also arrested Arbeau Caillavet (1881-1946), his wife's first cousin, for possessing liquor at Caillavet's White Kitchen on Lameuse Street.  Mr. Caillavet was fined $100 by Judge Z.T. Champlin in the fall of 1916 for transporting the contraband liquor in a suitcase.  One of Peter's grandsons, Mickey J. Bellande (b. 1944), was elected a City Councilman in Biloxi in July 1989 and July 1993 representing Ward 7.(The Daily Herald, November 2, 1916, p. 3)

Peter and Alice reared a family of seven children on Lameuse Street.  They were: Roy P. Bellande (1895-1964), Louise Faith “Faye” B. Davidson (1898-1974), Aristide C. Bellande (1901-1976), Elliott A. Bellande (1904-1977), Ruth B. Ragusin (1906-1993), Marcel J. Bellande (1909-1982), and Alton L. Bellande (1912-1970). 

In the spring of 1933, Peter Bellande suffered a heart attack, and died 7 months later on December 8, 1933.  Alice Caillavet Bellande lived into very old age and passed on July 10, 1955, at Mobile, Alabama.  The day she was buried a violent thunderstorm struck Biloxi, and our neighbor on Lameuse Street, Mrs. Tom Williams, slipped on her porch and broke her leg.

The In-laws: Raymond and Celine Caillavet

Raymond Caillavet and Celina Joucheray

Raymond Caillavet (1838-1898) called "Medeaux" was born at Biloxi in 1838.  He was the eldest son ofFrancois Caillavet (1815-1883), a carpenter, and Euranie Fayard (1818-1895).  Raymond Caillavet was the grandson of Louis Arbeau Caillavet (1790-1860), a native of the Opelousas Post, Louisiana and Marguerite Fayard(1787-1863) of Biloxi.  Louis A. Caillavet was baptized on March 31, 1793, with Louis Carriere and Marie Despaux standing as his godparents.  L.A. Caillavet's father, Symphroen Caillavet (1746-1806), was born at Bordeaux, France.  His mother was Marie Rose Carriere (1766-c. 1855), a native of New Orleans.

The Caillavet family at Biloxi was well respected.  Louis A. Caillavet, the progenitor of the family here, had arrived in 1809, from Opelousas, Louisiana.  His mother, Rose Carriere and brother, Adolph Caillavet (c. 1803-1842) joined him at Biloxi later. 

L.A. Caillavet married Marguerite Fayard (1787-1863) circa 1811.  She was the daughter of Jean Baptist Fayard Jr. (1752-1816) and Angelique Ladner (1753-1830).  These families are among the oldest at Biloxi.

L.A. Caillavet was fluent in the French and English languages and acted as an agent-interpreter and representative to wealthy Creole families from New Orleans as well as his neighbors in land and legal matters.  He was often called as a witness in Probate (Chancery) Court matters and his depositions in several court cases reveal something about his life.  From Nap Cassibry's II excellent two volume series, Early Settlers and Land Grants at Biloxi, the following has been extracted concerning L.A. Caillavet:

 

1.  was in Biloxi in 1809 and no later than 1812.

2.  sometimes he was the only one in Biloxi who could write.

3.  served as an interpreter and notary in legal matters.

4.  he was blind by 1848.

 

L.A. Caillavet acquired much land on the Mississippi coast.  In February 1837, he received a U.S. Government land patent on 71.85 acres at Jackson County, Mississippi described as Lot 1 of Section 32 T7S-R8W.(1)  It comprised the NE/4 and SE/4 of the NE/4 of that section.  This land

is located on the beach front at east Ocean Springs west of Halstead Road.  Louis A. Caillavet was elected treasurer of the Harrison County Board of Police (Board of Supervisors) for the term 1841-1843.

 

The Civil War

As a young man, Raymond Caillavet took the call of the Confederate cause and joined Company E (Biloxi Rifles), 3rd Mississippi Infantry, C.S.A.  He served as a private.  The Biloxi Rifles were mustered into State service on May 21, 1861, at Jackson, and Confederate service at Shieldsboro (Bay St. Louis) on October 5, 1861.  They were originally expected to be sent to Virginia, but Governor Pettus thought they would be better utilized as a home guard protecting the Mississippi Coast from Union excursions.

 

Celina Joucheray

Young Caillavet must have left the Coast during the Civil War for New Orleans.  Here he met and marriedCelina Joucheray (1841-1903) circa 1864.  Celina Joucheray was born at New Orleans on November 24, 1841.  Her father was Pierre Joucheray (1809-1842) and mother, Louise Denis (ca 1812-ca 1849).  Pierre Joucheray was born at Chare sur Argos, Canton Conde, Department of Maine and Loire on March 16, 1809, while Louise Denis was a native of Sable, Department of Sarthe.  The Joucherays were married at Paris, France circa 1836. 

 

Joucheray, Celina

Be it remembered that on the day to wit: the fourteenth of November of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and forty two and the sixty seventh of the Independence of the United States before me, Alfred E. Farstall, duly commissioned and sworn Recorder of Births and Deaths in and for the Parish and City personally appeared. Mrs. Louise Denis, widow of the late Mr. Pierre Joucheray, a native of Sable, Department of the Sarth in France, about thirty years of age and residing on Royale Street No. 358 in the first Municipality of New Orleans who in the presence of undersigned witnesses , doth declare that she bore a female child Celina Joucheray, the legitimate child of the late Mr. Pierre Joucheray born at Chare sur Argoz Canton Conde , born at Chare sur Argos Canton Conde Department of Maine and Loire in France, on the sixteenth of March eighteen hundred and nine and since about six years ago married at Paris in France, in (illegible) Department.  The child was born on the twenty fourth of November eighteen and forty one at half past eleven o’clock A.M. in a house on Louise? Street between Marigny  and Mandeville Streets in the first Municipality of this city.(Louisiana Department of Archives, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Birth Records Volume 7, p. 189)

 

Joucheray, Pierre

Be it remembered that on the day to wit: the fourteenth of November of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and forty two and the sixty seventh of the Independence of the United States before me, Alfred E. Farstall, duly commissioned and sworn Recorder of Births and Deaths in and for the Parish and City personally appeared.  Mrs. Louise Denis, widow of the late Mr. Pierre Joucheray, a native of Sable, Department of the Sarthe in France, about thirty years of age and residing on Royale Street No. 358 in the first Municipality of New Orleans who in the presence of undersigned witnesses , doth declare that her lawful husband Mr. Pierre Joucheray, born at Chare sur Argos, Canton Conde, Department of Maine and Loire in France, on the sixteenth of March eighteen hundred and nine and since about six years ago married at Paris in France, departed this life on the twenty first of May last past at ten o’clock P.M. by falling accidentally into the Blind River Parish of St. Tammany in the state of Louisiana.(Louisiana Department of Archives, Baton Rouge, LouisianaDeath Records Volume 9, p. 383)

 

After Pierre Joucheray’s death in May 1841, Madame Joucheray and Celina disappear until the Orleans Parish Federal Census of 1850.  At this time, Celina is living in the household of Marcelin Effort (1828-1850+), a Louisiana born pilot, in the first ward of New Orleans.  It appears that her mother remarried or died before 1850. 

 

Coming Home

Raymond Caillavet and Celina’s first two children were born at New Orleans.  They had returned to Biloxi for birth of their third child in 1869.  On February 26, 1869, Raymond Caillavet bought a lot fronting on North Street at Biloxi from his father.  It was described in the land deed records as having a front of eighty-five feet on North Street and being two-hundred feet deep.  It was bounded on the north by North Street, east by Mrs. Lefaure, south by lands of Cook, and west by a street or road (Cuevas Street?).(2)  He paid $200 for the land.  Here Raymond Caillavet reared his family and made his livelihood as a carpenter.

In June 1869, young Raymond Caillavet for $100 acquired another lot from his father.  It had a width of sixty-five feet and was one-hundred twenty five feet in depth.  The lot was bounded on the north by John Latour Caillavet, east by Charles T. Couave (Cuevas), south by a street, and west by an alley.(3)  Caillavet conveyed this property to Phillip Lestrade (1832-1912) on January 5, 1876, as partial repayment for a debt owed Lestrade in a partnership that they had once participated.(4)

 

Butcher

In September 1876, Raymond Caillavet advertised his meat business in The Biloxi Mirror.  He  was situated at present day Main Street and Howard Avenue.

R. CAILLAVET
BUTCHER
Stall No. 1, Market House
Biloxi, Mississippi
Vessels, Hotels and Families
supplied with
BEEF*PORK*VEAL*MUTTON, ETC.,
At New Orleans Prices
 
The Biloxi Mirror, September 9, 1876, p. 3
 

 

Public Service

Mayor Raymond Caillavet

 

Raymond Caillavet also had a career in public service in Harrison County and as a city official at Biloxi.  He served as Justice of the Peace District 1 (1873-1875), Corner and Ranger (1875-1877), Mayor of Biloxi (1877-1882), Corner and Ranger (1889-1891), and City Councilman (1894-1895).  In the January 1879 mayoral election, Caillavet defeated J.R. Harkness receiving 151 of the 200 votes cast.

In October 1883, while serving as street commissioner of Biloxi, Raymond Caillavet was lauded in The Pascagoula Democrat-Star for his expertise in opening the beach road from Porter Avenue to a point near the Biloxi City Cemetery to connect with the shoreline thoroughfare from Mississippi City.  Mr. Caillavet removed trees and stumps, but when completed, the road had the appearance of a “long avenue shaded on both sides”.  It was said of Commissioner Caillavet that, 

“The city fathers could not have appointed a more efficient man for commissioner that the present incumbent.”(The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, October 5, 1883, p. 3)

Raymond Caillavet was elected as Secretary of the City of Biloxi in January 1885.  He defeated Thomas D. Bachino 147 votes to 72 votes.(The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, January 9, 1885, p. 2)

Mr. Cailavet lost to John Walker in the Biloxi mayoral election of 1888.(The Biloxi Herald, March, 1888)

 

Construction

Raymond Caillavet built a large storage house for the Biloxi Artesian Ice Manufacturing Company.(The Biloxi Herald, February 18, 1888, p. 8)

 

The Caillavet Family

Raymond and Celina Caillavet reared their family at New Orleans and Biloxi.  The Federal Census of 1900 indicated that Celina J. Caillavet had birthed nine children before 1900 and that seven were alive at this time.  The names of their known children are: Blanche Caillavet (1865-1940), John Caillavet (b. circa 1867-pre 1870), Aristide Caillavet (1868-1898), Emma Rose C. Murray (c. 1869-1955+), Alice C. Bellande (1872-1955), Edward Caillavet(1874-1923), Clarissa Rita Caillavet (1877-1885), William Caillavet (1879-1940), Lillian C. Holley (1883-1967), and Louise C. Morgan (1881-1965). 

Raymond Caillavet expired at Biloxi, Mississippi on February 16, 1898.  Mrs. Caillavet died on March 15, 1903.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, March 16, 1903, p. 6)

The corporal remains of both were interred in the Old Biloxi Cemetery.

Children

Roy Peter Bellande (1895-1964)

The eldest child of Peter and Alice Caillavet Bellande was a son, Roy Peter Bellande.  Roy was born at 837 Lameuse Street on September 25, 1895.  It is passed on by the family that he left school in the fifth grade to help his family survive the hardships of that time.  During WW I, Roy served in the U.S. Army as a lieutenant at Camp Pike, Arkansas, which had been established in 1917 as a training facility for the Army.  He was discharged in December 1919.(The Daily Herald, December 6, 1918, p. 3)

In Biloxi, he worked for a lumber company, but later moved to New Orleans.  In the Crescent City, he lived with his two aunts, Emma and Blanche Caillavet who lived in the French Quarter on Governor Nicholls Street.  Roy worked initially in a cigar factory, but later became a salesmanager for New South Cigar Company, a tobacco and cigar wholesaler.  On June 12, 1924, he married Thelma Giaruso (1904-2002), an attractive lady of Italian and German ancestry.  She was born at New Orleans on March 28, 1904, the daughter of Italian immigrant, James Giarruso and Anna Blumstein.  Her grandfather Blumstein was born in Alsace-Lorraine.  Thelma’s  brothers, Joseph and Clarence Giarruso, have been active in politics, law enforcement, and sports for decades in New Orleans.  Thelma and Roy lived in New Orleans approximately ten years before coming to Biloxi to seek their fortune. 

    

Thelma Giaruso Bellande (1904-2002) and Roy P. Bellande (1895-1964) and Roy, ?, and Faye Bellande.

[second photo water damaged by Hurricane Camille-1969]

 

Bellande Beverage Company

 

    

Bellande Beverage Company [circa 1939] and January 1994, 831 Lameuse Street

(The building survived Hurricane Katrina of August 29, 2005.  Young ladies are probably children of Harold and Faye Bellande Davidson.)

 

In 1934, after beer had become legal to sell again in Mississippi, Roy founded a company to vend malt beverages.  His first brand was probably Spearman Beer.  The business started at the corner of Reynoir and Howard Avenue.  It was located later south of the family home at 831 Lameuse Street (the tin building is extant), and moved to its permanent location on Bohn Street in the 1950s.  Younger brother, Marcel J. Bellande, joined the organization in 1938 after a brief career in professional baseball.  The Bellande Beverage Company was chartered in the State of Mississippi, on July 15, 1938, with $5000 capital and 50 shares of common stock.(The Daily Herald, August 19, 1938, p. 3)

In 1942, the Bellande Beverage Company was selling Chevy Ale and Hudepohl Beer, product brewed by the Hudepohl Brewing Company of Cincinnati, Ohio.  In time, national brands such as Falstaff, Schlitz, and Pabst were integrated into the business.  Roy and Mickey (as Marcel was called) together with their loyal wives built a very successful organization, which operated from Bay St. Louis to Moss Point and north almost to Wiggins in Stone County.  Their territory encompassed about 1300 square miles.(The Pascagoula Chronicle-Star, May 15, 1942 and June 5, 1942) 

By 1957, the Bellande Beverage Company had grown to twenty-eight employees and ten trucks.  In addition to their Biloxi facility on Bohn Street just south of the L&N Railroad, beer distribution warehouses were situated in Bay St. Louis and Pascagoula.  Mrs. Mona Hunt was secretary of the organization.(The Ocean Springs News, May 30, 1957, p. 8)

The Bellande Beverage Company was sold in May 1979, to the Afton Beverage Company of Chattanooga, Tennessee.  Afton marketed Pepsi-Cola and Seven-Up at Chattanooga.(The Daily Herald, May 10, 1979)

I was fortunate to work many summers while in college for Uncle Roy, and remember him as an individual who was quiet spoken, honest, and possessed a subtle wit.  He had great instincts in business and believed in the CIF method of doing business, i.e. Cash in Fist.  If you could obtain credit from him, you knew you were honest!  Roy Bellande enjoyed his friends at Sicurro's Lounge on Division Street, the Elks Club, and American Legion.  Although he liked to fish for perch and green trout, he had skin cancer and was limited to the extent of his outdoor activities in later life.

 

Organizations

During WWI, Roy P. Bellande served in the US Army as an infantryman.  He did not go to Europe to fight.  Among his memberships and offices held were: chairman of the board of trustees of the American Legion Lyman C. Bradford Post; a trustee of the Biloxi Elks; vice president of the Biloxi Fishing and Hunting Association; Mississippi Malt Beverage Association; National Beer Wholesalers; West End Volunteer Fire Company; Revelers carnival club; and the Chamber of Commerce of Biloxi, Gulfport, Pascagoula, and Ocean Springs.(The Daily Herald, January 30, 1964, p. 2)

In September 1953, he was Parade Marshall in the annual Fireman's Day Parade for the West End Fire Company.  Roy was also King of the Biloxi Mardi Gras in 1957 with Carolyn Bolton as his Queen.

Roy Peter Bellande died peacefully in his sleep on January 30, 1964, probably of heart failure.  His widow, Thelma, remained in their home at 449 Porter Avenue in Biloxi until her demise on August 2, 2002.  They had no children.  Thelma G. Bellande was ninety-eight years at the time of her passing.  She lived a full life until her late nineties when her health began to fail.  Thelma drove her motorcar until her ninety-sixth year.  Her corporal remains were interred in Southern Memorial Park Mausoleum with those of her spouse.(The Daily Herald, January 30, 1964, p. 2 and The Sun Herald, August 4, 2002, p. A-7 )

           

Louise Faith (Faye) Bellande (1898-1974)

Faye Bellande was born February 15, 1898, on Lameuse Street in Biloxi.  She worked for the telephone company, where she met Harold James Davidson (1894-1982).  Harold J. Davidson  was born at Biloxi, on December 28, 1894, the son of William Davidson and Margaret Ledden (1863-1925).  Mrs. Davidson was a native of New Orleans and the daughter of Jeremiah Ledden and Margaret O’Brien.  She had come to Biloxi circa 1885.  The William Davidson family resided at 514 Bohn Street.  When she expired on April 4, 1925, Mrs. Davidson was survived by four children: Alethia E. Davidson (1890-1965) married Alfred G. Brunet (1890-1948); William Sydney Davidson (1893-1941) married Viola Genevieve Comfort (1908-1999); Harold Davidson (1894-1982) m. Louise Faye Bellande (1898-1974); and Calvin Arnold “Skinny” Davidson (1901-1971) married Audrey Virginia Harrison (1912-2003).  A daughter, Olga Davidson Smith (1899-1920), had expired on January 20, 1920.      (The Daily Herald, April 6, 1925, p. 3) 

 

(l-r) Faye Bellande Davidson (1898-1974), Trilla Davidson,

Harold Davidson (1894-1982), Fern Davidson  (circa 1945)

 

Road Racing

As a young man Harold Davidson was an outstanding long distance runner.  An article in The Daily Herald of September 28, 1916, stated:

 

Harold Davidson, a local boy and well known amateur long distance runner, is training for a five mile race, the annual event of the Young Men's Gymnastic Club of New Orleans, to take place in that city on Thanksgiving Day.  Mr. Davidson has won two medals for his running and this time he is going in the race to try and lower the record for the south in the five-mile distance.  He captured a gold medal for coming in first in the race held by that club on Thanksgiving Day last and on March 4 of this year he received a silver medal for coming in a close second in a similar race.  Mr. Davidson stated that the present record is 28 1-8 for the five miles.  A number of excellent runners will take part in the race to be held this year and the Biloxian expects to give them a hard run for their money.  In the race run on last Thanksgiving Day he lead sixteen other entries and received a big ovation.  These events prove interesting to sportsmen in the Crescent City and are witnessed by large crowds of spectators.

 

Davidson also did well at New Orleans in the mid-November 1916 road race.  He placed a close second to southern champion, Willie Davis, a teammate, on the Young Men’s Gymnastics Club.  Davis covered the five- mile course in twenty-six minutes and fifteen seconds besting Harold by ten seconds.  Twenty-four other runners followed them across the finish line.  Davidson planned to run in the Thanksgiving Day Race also scheduled for New Orleans.(The Daily Herald, November 20, 1916, p. 3)

In January 1917, Harold Davidson was training for a two-mile race to be held at Mobile on Mardi Gras Day.  He was to represent the Young Men’s Gymnastic Club of New Orleans.  Professional road racers were expected in the Mobile event.(The Daily Herald, January 22, 1917, p. 3)

 Harold J. Davidson left Biloxi on February 25, 1918 for basic training in the U.S Army at Camp Pike, Arkansas, north of Little Rock.  It appears that most of his military service during WW I was in New Jersey.  Harold was probably discharged from the US Army in the spring of 1918.  In July 1918, he was elected vice president of the Biloxi Athletic Club replacing his brother, Arnold Davidson.(The Daily Herald, February 20, 1918 and July 14, 1920, p. 3)

In August 1919, Harold Davidson received an invitation from the Southern Amateur Athletic Union to attend to attend the Knights of Columbus track and field meet at Camp Dix, New Jersey, which was held on September 6th1919.  He was a member of the thirteen-man team from New Orleans, coached by Claude Simons.  Harold did not fair well in the New Jersey event, as his conditioning at the time was not at the level that he wanted.  He did get to visit the U.S. General Hospital No. 3 at Rahway, New Jersey where he was the chief electrician during WW I while serving in the US Army Quartermaster Corps.  Harold had won a 2.5 mile race while serving here.(The Daily Herald, August 28, 1919, p. 1, September 18, 1919, p. 3, and  January 1, 1960, p. 20)

            

Marriage

Faye Bellande and Harold J. Davidson married on July 18, 1927, at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in North Biloxi.  This union produced three daughters: Mildred Davidson (1928-1940), Fern Cecilia Davidson (b. 1933), and Trilla Davidson (b. 1935).(HARCO, Ms. MRB 39, p. 391) 

 

Davidson Girls

(l-r: Fern C.Davidson, Mildred L. Davidson,

and Trilla Davidson-circa 1939)

 

Mildred Louise Davidson (1928-1940)

Mildred Louise Davidson was born on July 29, 1928.  She attended school at St. John’s, a parochial facility, near her home.  Unfortunately, Mildred was robbed of a full life, as she died in her adolescents from pneumonia on February 25, 1940.  Her funeral was attended by her classmates and the Sisters of Mercy at St. John’s Catholic Church.(The Daily Herald, February 27, 1940, p. 3)

  

Fern Cecelia Davidson (b. 1933)

Fern Davisdon Dubaz O’Neal resides in D'Iberville, Mississippi.  She was widowed in February 1996, when her second husband, Felder Blake O'Neal (1931-1996), expired.  He was from McHenry, Stone County, Mississippi, and retired from the Baptist ministry.  Brother O’Neal had been pastor of the Tuxechena Baptist Church at Perkinston, Mississippi.(The Sun Herald, February 25, 1996, p. B-2)

Fern is divorced from George B. Dubaz (1931-1992).  George B. Dubaz was born March 15, 1931, in Biloxi.  He was the son of Luke Dubaz (1893-1985) and Inez Gable (1902-1994).  The Dubaz family, of Croatian heritage, were pioneers in the Biloxi seafood industry.  Their children were: George B. Dubaz Jr. (b. 1951), Stephen J. Dubaz (b. 1954), Brian J. Dubaz (b. 1957), Robert C. Dubaz (b. 1959), and Gary A. Dubaz (b. 1961). 

After divorcing Fern, George B. Dubaz, called Bunny, married Christine Mitchell (1937-2002), a native of Attapulgus, Georgia and widow of Jerry Britt.  He expired at Biloxi on May 5, 1992.  Buried Biloxi National Cemetery.  Christine died at Gulfport on January 21, 2002.(The Sun Herald, May 6, 1992, p.      and The Sun Herald, January 24, 2002, p. A-5)

 

Trilla Davidson (b. 1935)

Trilla Davidson Guthrie Ramirez Hansen lives in Larkspur, California.  She was born at Biloxi on 1935.  She was named for Trilla, Illinois, the birthplace of Alvah Clark Morgan who married Louise Caillavet, the sister of Trilla’s grandmother, Alice Caillavet Bellande.  Like her sister, Fern, she is a widow and has two fine husbands, Ray Ramirez, a retired city engineer, and Phil Hansen (1945-2009), a retired tax attorney.  Ray Ramirez expired in 1995 and Phil Hansen on August 5, 2009, while recovering from surgery at Oakland, California.  Trilla is divorced from Richard Guthrie of San Francisco.  He is the father of her children: Teresa Gaye (b. 1957), Sharon (b. 1959), Geraldine (b. 1961), and Richard Guthrie Jr. (b. 1962).

Faye B. Davidson had a bout with cancer in her early fifties and it eventually took her life on April 2, 1974.  I will always remember the kindness and concern she had towards me and my family.  We spent many days at 714 Church Street playing in the yard, visiting Grandma Alice C. Bellande, and listening to the armchair philosophy of Uncle Harold Davidson. 

Harold worked his entire career in the electrical field, commencing in 1915, with the Mississippi Coast Traction Company, the predecessor of the Mississippi Power Company.  Whole with the traction company Harold belonged to the Amalgamated Association of Street Railway and Electrical Workers of America.  He left the traction company and joined the Cumberland Telephone and Telegraph Company in January 1918.  Harold retired from the Mississippi Power Company on December 31, 1959, after a twenty-three year career primarily as a “trouble shooter”.(The Daily Herald, December 24, 1917, p. 1, January 14, 1918, p. 4 and January 1, 1960, p. 20)

After a long retirement from the Mississippi Power Company, Harold Davidson passed on in September 1982.  His and Faye’s corporal remains were interred in the Old Biloxi Cemetery.

 

Aristede Clarence Bellande (1901-1976)

Aristede C. Bellande was born September 12, 1901.  He left Biloxi about 1917, moving to New Orleans were he died on August 30, 1976.  Aristede was known as Buster, and was probably named for his uncle, Aristide Caillavet (b. 1867).  He began work as an apprentice machinist, but later went into the hotel business.

Buster Bellande began his fortune in the hotel field as a bell captain in 1920, at the old St. Charles Hotel when James 'Pat' O' Shaughnessy was the manager.  In 1933, he joined the staff of the Roosevelt Hotel as room clerk.  Buster was made assistant manager of the Roosevelt in 1937, and promoted to executive assistant manager in 1941.  In 1948, he was named resident manager and then manager in 1956.  His professional associations were:  Hotel Greeters of America, New Orleans Hotel Association, New Orleans Hotel Greeters, and the Chamber of Commerce.

 

  

Aristede "Buster" C. Bellande

(L-R: image made circa 1930, from La-Ms. Hotel Greeters of America, p. 22;

2nd image made 1938)

 

Buster Bellande married Mildred Lott (1904-1980) of German ancestry in New Orleans in 1926.  Mildred was the daughter of John Lott (1860-1942) and Theresa Hornung (1861-1936).  She was the youngest of eight children and reared on Laurel Street near Annunciation in the Crescent City.  Mildred's father worked faithfully for over thirty years with the New Orleans Fire Department. Mildred's mother expired at New Orleans on November 19, 1936.  Buster's mother, Alice C. Bellande, attended Mrs. Lott's funeral.(1910 Orleans Parish, Louisiana Federal Census T624_524, p. 4B, ED 207 and The Daily Herald, November 20, 1936, p. 2)

Mildred and Buster Bellande had a daughter, Joyce Mary Bellande (b. 1928).  Joyce Mary resides in River Ridge, a New Orleans suburb, and is divorced from Al Sherlock.  Their children are: Thomas Sherlock (b. 1947), Jerome Sherlock (b. 1951), Susan (b. 1955), Peggy (b. 1956), and Holly (b. 1961).

Buster retired from the Roosevelt Hotel in 1965, when it was sold to the Fairmont chain of hotels.  After a lengthy bout with cancer, he died in the Southern Baptist Hospital in New Orleans in August 1976.  Aristide Bellande loved Biloxi and always enjoyed an annual visit to relax, visit, and fish with his Coast family.  He is buried in Bellande family plot at the Old Biloxi Cemetery.  Mildred Lott Bellande expired March 1980, and her corporal remains were interred in New Orleans.

 

Elliott Anthony Bellande (1904-1977)

Elliott Anthony Bellande was born August 7, 1904. He was a merchant mariner out of New Orleans until 1927. In May 1925, he and Fred Haise left Biloxi for New Orleans to contract with a ship as crewman for an Atlantic crossing. The young Biloxi seamen had just returned from a voyage to Europe and were experienced able bodied seamen./(The Daily Herald, May 1, 1925, p. 3) 
 

On August 18, 1927, Elliott Bellande married Ernestine Balius (1907-2005) in the Nativity Church at Biloxi. Ernestine was born at Biloxi on April 23, 1907, the daughter of Ernest Balius (1873-1927) and Pauline Julia Lamrock Balius (1877-1934). Ernestine came from a large family of eight brothers and three sisters: Ernest Balius Jr. (1897-1969); Edward Balius; Albert George Balius (1899-1953); Henry Balius (1902-1977); Floyd A. Balius (1904-1994); Juliet B. Broughton (1909-1996); Freddie Balius (1912-1993); Paul Balius (1914-1994); Louis Balius; Lillie Mae B. Noble (1920-1992); and Melba Balius (1924-1941). Elliott was known as Peter Bellande Jr. and Pete Bellande. He worked as an auto mechanic for Ford, the WPA during the Great Depression, and the Harrison County Board of Supervisors. From 1940-46, he was with International Harvester at Flint, Michigan. Ernestine was employed by Southern Bell for thirty-five years retired in 1972 as Night Chief Operator. Pete and Ernestine were the parents of two daughters: Margaret V. Schneider (1928-1992), and Alice J. Dubaz (b. 1931)./(The Sun Herald, May 19, 2005, p. A10)
 

Pete Bellande was a good man. He is fondly remembered by the fishermen and boaters he served well from 1953-1970, when he was Harbor Master at the Biloxi Small Craft Harbor. He was retired at the time of his death from congestive heart failure resulting from cardiovascular problems on January 12, 1977. 
 


Margaret V. Bellande (1928-1992)
Margaret Bellande married Edward Schneider, a retired Navy chief petty officer who resides at Milton, Florida. They have an adopted son, Joseph E. Schneider (b.1960). Margaret V. Schneider was a licensed practical nurse and had retired from the Biloxi Veterans Administration. She died at a Mobile hospital on August 7, 1992, from leukemia. Her remains were interred in the Biloxi City cemetery. 

 


Alice J. Bellande
Alice J. Bellande married John B. “J.B” Dubaz (1930-2006), the son of John Dubaz and Cecile Dubaz J.B. made his livelihood as a diesel mechanic in the Civil Service at KAFB. He was a U.S. Navy veteran and founde member of Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Church at Biloxi and long time volunteer. They had no children.(The Sun Herald, April 1, 2006, p. A10

 

Ruth Cecelia Bellande (1906-1993)

Ruth Cecelia Bellande was born on September 25, 1906.  She married Albert J. Ragusin (1904-1991) at the old St. John's Catholic Church on Bayview Avenue and Main Street in early November 1939. Father J.P. McGlade officiated in the presence of their attendants, Mildred Izard and Philip Capuana.(The Daily Herald, November 6, 1939, p. 8)

The Ragusins lived for many years at 607 Santini Street in Biloxi where Albert had a plumbing business.  As a youth, he had left school to sell newspapers to help support his family.  Albert's father, Antonio S. Ragusin (1866-1911), a Croatian immigrant, died in June 1911, at Biloxi from blood poisoning resulting from a sting ray wound. 

In 1916, Albert Ragusin, was residing with his family at 756 Reynoir Street.  He and his older brother, Tony Ragusin (1902-1997), were newsboys at the time.  Albert wrote an article about “Biloxi” that was published in December issue of The Lone Scout, a magazine for boys with a national circulation of about 150,000 readers.(The Daily Herald, January 5, 1917, p. 2)

 

Albert J. Ragusin (1904-1991) and Ruth Bellande Ragusin (1906-1993)

(circa 1950 at 607 Santini)

 

Albert J. Ragusin learned to plumb at the Biloxi Plumbing & Heating Company owned by Henry L. Schwan and Charles Coquet, Sr. He commenced work for $7.50 per week.  As a journeyman plumber, he worked on the Edgewater Hotel.  Ragusin then went to Kansas City for advanced training.  He passed the Kansas City plumbing examination board.  Returning to Biloxi, Albert and Fred Demourelle Sr. commenced their own business, Demourelle & Ragusin.  Prior to the stock market crash of October 1929, Mr. Ragusin went to Chicago and Flint, Michigan.  At Flint, he worked on a large construction project.  In July 1941, he joined the Civil Service at KAFB as the chief foreman plumber for a salary of $2600 per year.  His first job was to supervise the laying of water lines to the tents.  Ragusin retired from the Civil Service circa 1973.  At this time, he held the title of Superintendent of pavements and grounds in the Civil Engineering department of the military base.(The Daily Herald, May 24, 1929, p. 9, November 6, 1939, p. 8 and  June 12, 1971, p. C-3)

In his retirement years, Albert J. Ragusin was active in yard work, wood turning, and Senior Citizens activities.  He was chosen to the Mississippi Joint State Legislative Commission and served at least two terms.  This commission represented the legislative interest of about 5000 members of AARP and the National Retired Teachers Association in Jackson, Harrison, Hancock, Stone, Pear River, George, and Greene Counties of south Mississippi.(The Ocean Springs record, November 11, 1976, p. 3)

In 1956, the Ragusins built a lovely domicile at 104 St. Charles Street on the north shore of Back Bay.  The bay front home was legated to Fern Davidson Dubaz O' Neal after the demise of Ruth Bellande Ragusin in 1993.  The Raguain-O'Neal place was heavily damaged by Hurricane Katrina in late August 2005 and demolished in the fall of 2005.

In their younger days, they traveled extensively throughout North America by automobile.  They enjoyed many visits to the Riley family in Denver, Colorado.  In recent years, the couple has made trips to Europe.  Albert fulfilled a life long ambition by visiting the Dalmatian Coast of Croatia, the birthplace of his parents.

In 1989, the Ragusins celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary at their residence with a family reunion party.  Although Ruth and Albert were childless, they have been very supportive of their close relatives through the years.  Albert J. Ragusin died October 1, 1991.  Ruth Bellande Ragusin passed on September 28, 1993.  Both are interred at the Old Biloxi Cemetery on the beach front.

 

Marcel Joseph Bellande (1909-1982)

Marcel Joseph Bellande was born September 24, 1909.  Mickey, as Marcel was called, succeeded in athletics and business.  At Biloxi High School in the late 1920s, he excelled in football, basketball, track, and baseball.  In mid-December 1932, Mickey graduated from Spring Hill College at Mobile with a degree in Commerce.  At Spring Hill, he had an outstanding football and baseball career.  Mickey signed to play football at Spring Hill with Earl Mattina, Burnett Mabry, and Granville 'Stag' Foster, all players from the 1926 Biloxi State Championship squad.  

This football team was crowned State gridiron champions, having tied the undefeated Sunflower County Agricultural High School from Moorehead at Greenville, Mississippi on December 6, 1926, by a score of 7-7.  The game went five quarters, although the Indians were outweighed 24-pounds per man.(The Daily Herald, December 7, 1926 and December 7, 1929, p. 2)

In June 1931, Mickey Bellande signed a professional baseball contract with the Cleveland Indian organization.  His professional baseball sojourn, primarily as a shortstop, included stints in the Three I, Middle-Atlantic, and New York-Pennsylvania Leagues.

Marcel Bellande's greater success and fame in athletics would come in the golf world.  He set a mark in Mississippi golf annals, which may never be duplicated by being the only man to win all three Mississippi amateur golf titles, i.e. State Open, State Amateur, and State Seniors.  Mickey captured seven State Senior crowns between 1964-1974, five National Four Ball Senior titles of the seven years he competed at Pinehurst, North Carolina, and claimed numerous club championships along the Mississippi Gulf Coast and New Orleans.  He was awarded numerous honors in the sporting world.  Among these honors are: induction into the Sports Hall of Fame of Spring Hill College in 1974, induction into the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame in 1975, and also the Gulf Coast Chapter of the National Football Foundation and Hall of Fame in 1979.  Mickey Bellande was named Man of the Year in 1963 by the Biloxi Jaycees.(The Sun Herald, March 5, 1982 and The Daily Times News, January 31, 1964, p. 1)

 

(l-r) Marcel "Mickey" Bellande (1909-1982) and Kate Fickes Bellande (1911-2006).  Circa 1944.

Marriage

On December 7, 1932, in the rectory of the St. John’s Catholic Church at Biloxi, Mickey married his high school sweetheart, Katherine Ruth Ann Fickes (1911-2006), the eldest daughter of Roscoe Logan Fickes (1886-1979) and Emma Christine Hinricks (1888-1971), both Illinois natives.  Like her father, Kate was born at Matoon, Illinois, while Mrs. Fickes hailed from Tuscola, Illinois.  The Fickes Family had come to Mississippi in 1926, the result of Mr. Fickes transfer with the Southwestern Gas and Electric Company [United Gas Company-Entex-Center Point].  He began his career in the natural gas industry in 1912.  The Fickes family left Biloxi in June 1929 for Fayetteville, Arkansas, but returned in September 1930.  Kate Fickes was a 1927 graduate of Biloxi High School and attended M.S.C.W., and Arkansas State College.  The young couple started life in the Bills Apartments on Reynoir Street.  Mickey planned to resume his professional baseball career in March 1933, by reporting to spring training with the New Orleans Pelicans of the Southern League.(The Daily Herald, December 8, 1932, p. 2 and December 31, 1979, p. A2.)

 

Military

Mickey J. Bellande enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps on October 24, 1942 at Camp Shelby, Mississippi.  He served in England during WW II.

 

Daughter

A daughter, Kay Ruth Bellande, was born at Biloxi on August 5, 1946.  Kay married James "Jim" Ray Foster Jr. (b. 1946) at the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary Roman Catholic Church at Biloxi on December 21, 1974.  He is the son of Dr. J. Ray Foster (1917-2002) and Jane Allen Strickland.  Kay and Jim lived in Michigan and Florida were Jim made his livelihood in hospital administration.  They are the parents of twin sons, Brad Foster (b. 1980) and J. Brian Foster (b. 1980).  The Fosters returned to Biloxi in 2003. 

Margaret Fickes Foster (1919-2009), Jim's stepmother and Kay's aunt, passed on March 31, 2009 at Biloxi.(The Sun Herald, April 2, 2009, p. A4)

 

l-r: Dr. J. Brian Foster and Brad Foster

In May 2005, J. Brian Foster, a University of Florida alumnus, received his medical degree from the Emory University School of Medicine at Atlanta, Georgia.  He planned to pursue a residency in ophthalmology at the Wake Forest University School of Medicine at Winston-Salem, North Carolina.(The Sun Herald, May 29, 2006, p. A11)

 

Residences

In December 1937, Mickey and Kaye moved into a new house on the southwest corner of Hopkins and Division Street at Biloxi.  It was a five-room bungalow situated on a lot 60 feet by 100 feet.  The Division Street property was purchased from the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company through local realtors, Perkins & Fayard.(The Daily Herald, December 4, 1937, p. 6)

In August 1959, Mickey and Kate Bellande acquired for $9,000 cash, the vacation home of Urban B. Koen and Patricia Koen at 226 Kensington Drive, east of KAFB, on the Back Bay at Biloxi.  The Koens were residents of New Orleans.  Their residence was situated on a .35 acre parcel designated as Lot 11-Square 1 of the Oak Park Subdivision.(HARCO, Ms. Land Deed Bk. 453, p. 35) 

 

Livelihood

In 1938, Mickey Bellande joined his brother, Roy, in the beer distributing business in Biloxi.  He retired upon its sale in 1979.  Mickey was always in top physical condition as he led an active athletic life style.  He was capable of hooking a large game fish or shooting sub par golf at the occasion of his untimely death from brain cancer on March 5, 1982.  His corporal remains were interred at the Southern Memorial Park cemetery in Biloxi.  Kate Bellande expired at Biloxi on October 6, 2006.  Her corporal remains rest eternally next to Marcel's at the Southern Memorial Park cemetery.(The Sun Herald, March 5, 1982 and October 9, 2006, p. A4)

 

Alton Louis Bellande (1912-1970)

Alton Louis Bellande was born January 22, 1912.  He was a salesman for his entire business career.  It was while traveling in Louisiana for Wrigley that he met Hazel Bonnette (b. 1912) in a Shreveport drugstore.  She was born at Charenton, Louisiana on October 2, 1912.  Her parents were Filbert Bonnette (1890-1967) of Plaucheville, Louisiana and Marie Mathilde Champagne (1888-1971), a native of Youngsville, Louisiana.  They were married in 1942.  Alton served in the United States Coast Guard from August 1942 to September 1945.  Most of his active duty military time was spent in Algiers, Louisiana loading munitions ships during World War II. 

 

  

Alton L. Bellande (1912-1970) and Hazel Mary Bonnette Bellande (1912-2002)

 

Alton and Hazel had five children: Ray Louis Bellande (b. 1943), Mickey John Bellande (b. 1944), Betty Ann Bellande (b. 1946), Bruce James Bellande (b. 1947), and Roy Anthony Bellande (b. 1949).  Ray is divorced from Elizabeth Wynne of Lafayette, Louisiana, and has no children.  Mickey resides in Biloxi and is divorced from Sonia Carol Wilkes Hodges (b. 1947), a native of Hattiesburg, Mississippi.  They have a son, M. J. Bellande Jr. (b. 1980).  On September 28, 2002, Sonia married James Alred Sheffield (b. 1931), a retired physician.  In August 1969, Betty married Judge Larry Wilson of of Winona, Mississippi.  She lives in Biloxi with her husband William Toland, and they are childless.  Bruce is domiciled in Carmel, Indiana and has two children: Mary Elizabeth 'Betsy' Bellande (b. 1982) m. Austin Blake Edwards on March 7, 2009 at Little Rock, Arkansas; and Christopher Bruce Bellande (b. 1985).  His wife, Mary Elizabeth Bryant (b. 1949) is a native of Oxford, Mississippi.  Roy is divorced from Daisy Dianne Davis (b. 1953), who is now married to Kenneth Riley Wells (b. 1940).  Roy is now married to Nancy Elizabeth Arthur and resides at Silva, Missouri.  His children are Alton Jason Bellande (b. 1974) and Hazel Marie Bellande (b. 1978) divorced from Richard V. Savage and Mr. Parker.  Hazel Marie has Corbin Zane Bellande (b. 1997), a son, with Rinichiro Larry Burdick, the son of Mr. Burdick and Tomiko Ohi Burdick (1937-2010) of Gulfport, Mississippi.

After World War II, Alton joined the Fuller Brush Company as a door-to-door salesman.  He is described in an article titled "Fuller Brush Man" in the May 8, 1948, issue of The Saturday Evening Post as "a thirty-six-year-old Mississippian with a persistent foot, a ready smile and a way with the ladies.  The foot, a figurative door opener, leads Bellande into approximately 100 Biloxi homes each week.  The smile, artfully guileless, establishes a mood of neighborly confidence between Al and his housewife prospect while he opens his sample case.  Bellande's way with the ladies is a compound of his own brand of small-town, deep-South chatter and a simple commercial formula known to some 7150 Fuller Brush dealers the country over as The Big Five".

About 1952, he joined his brothers, Roy P. Bellande and Mickey J. Bellande, as the advertising manager of the Bellande Beverage Company.  Alton was an outdoorsman of the first magnitude.  He thoroughly enjoyed golf, hunting, and fishing.  During the dove season, his home at 1051 Lameuse Street (now 415 Lameuse Street) was the head quarters for his many hunting companions. 

In May 1954, Al played some outstanding golf in losing in the finals of the inaugural Sunkist Country Club championship.  Giles H. Peresich won 3 and 2 in the 36-hole, two-day event.  Bellande shot a 76 and a 73, while Peresich had scores of  73-74.  Alton was selected to be the marshal for the Back Bay Fire Company in the September 1957 Firemen's Day Parade.(The Daily Herald, May 18, 1954, p. 14 and August 20, 1957, p. 10)

Alton Bellande died suddenly of a heart attack at his home on May 8, 1970, at the age of 58 years.

Family News

 

  

Christopher Bruce Bellande

Son of Bruce J. Bellande and Mary Betsy Bryant, formerly of Vestavia Hills, Alabama and now Carmel, Indiana, was awarded the Founder’s Medal for the School of Engineering.  He graduated with a triple major; a bachelor of science in computer science, a bachelor of arts in mathematics and a bachelor of arts in Spanish. Bellande is an Academic Achievement Honor scholar and a member of the Phi Beta Kappa honor society, the Tau Beta Pi engineering honor society and the Sigma Delta Pi Spanish honor society. Bellande served as president of the Vanderbilt math club for four years and organized the first Vanderbilt high school mathematics competition. He used his skills as a teaching assistant for the math department and volunteered as a language mentor to Hispanic immigrants new to Nashville. Bellande also co-chaired the Student Government Association’s athletics affairs committee and was a tour guide for the Office of Admissions.  Christopher completed the master’s program in computer science at Vanderbilt in December 2008 and became employed as a software engineer with Blackbaud, Inc. on Daniel Island in Burkeley County, S.C.

Roy A. Bellande

Continues erecting his home and workshop at Silva, Wayne County, Missouri.

 

Roy A. Bellande Missouri house

Image by Ray L. Bellande, July 2009

 

MARIA IDA BELLANDE (1874-1948)

Maria Ida Bellande was born February 26, 1874, at North Biloxi.  She was known as Ida.  At the wedding of her cousin, Marie Erma Harvey, to Victor Ougatte of New Orleans on April 20, 1892, in Biloxi, she was described byThe Biloxi Herald reporter as "one of Biloxi's favorite belles, who was also exquisitely robed, as became the first brides-maid of so charming a bride".

Young Ida Bellande appears to have been quite a social person.  In the spring of 1893, she was honored at the home of Captain E. Castanera in Pascagoula with a dance party.  Her mother attended her to this function.(The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, April 2, 1893)

Ida Bellande married Edward Emile Gassow or Gossow of St. Louis on December 5, 1893, in the Roman Catholic Church of the Nativity BVM at Biloxi.  Father Blanc was their priest.  Mr. Gossow was a well-known druggist from St. Louis, Missouri and the newly weds left after the wedding ceremony by train for St. Louis.  Ida was residing in St. Louis when her mother, Marie Harvey Bellande, died in 1894.  As previously discussed, the Gossows initiated forced heirship litigation against her father, Captain Antoine V. Bellande, and her brothers for her share of her mother's estate.  Ida and Edward Gossow divorced probably after three years of marriage.(HARCO, Ms. MRB 10, p. 145, Lepre, 1991, p. 21, and The Biloxi Herald, December 9, 1893, p. 8)

In October 1898, Ida B. Gossow departed her native Biloxi for New Orleans.  She aspired to be a nurse and planned to enter the Touro Infirmary to achieve this vocation.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, October 4, 1898, p. 8) 

It appears that Ida B. Gassow returned to Biloxi by the summer of 1899, as she was the proprietor of the Bay View Cottage, a hostelry on the beach road at Biloxi.  The Bay View Cottage was a two-story edifice on the northeast corner of Delauney Street, now G.E. Ohr, and Beach Boulevard.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, July 22, 1899, p. 5)

Bay View Hotel

on the Beach ~ Biloxi, Miss.

               MRS. IDA B. GASSOW, Prop.              

Regular or Transient Guests Furnished with First Class

Accommodations at Moderate rates

Open Summer and Winter

(The Biloxi Daily Herald, July 22, 1899, p. 5)

 

At New Orleans, she met native New Orleanian, Clarence A. Galle Sr. (1879-1931), the son of Louis Joseph Galle (b. 1845) and Martha M. Mueller.  Although they are kin, the Galle family of New Orleans and Ocean Springs pronounce their name as “guy-ull”, not the “gal-lay” as that of the Biloxi clan.(Larry Galle, July 26, 2001) 

On October 10, 1901, Ida Bellande Gossow married Clarence Galle Sr. in the Crescent City.  In November 1912, the Galles, who had once lived in Biloxi, were relocating from New Orleans to Montgomery, Alabama, where Dorothy was born in 1913.  In his later life, the Mr. Galle had worked for the Veterans Bureau, and resided at Alexandria, Louisiana.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, October 11, 1901, p. 8 and The Daily Herald, November 25, 1912, p. 8 and May 4, 1931, p. 2)

Ida and Clarence A. Galle were the parents of: Clarence A. Galle II (1904-1944); Lillian Galle (1905-1948+) m. Lyle Smedley (1907-1988), a native of Traverse City, Michigan; Evelyn Galle (1908-1948+); Loretta Galle (1912-1948+) m. Arthur Mauret; and Dorothy Galle (1913-1991) m. Carlo Lucia (1912-1930+).  In 1920, the family was domiciled on St. Roch Street in the Crescent City.(1920 Orleans Parish, Louisiana T 625_621, p. 2B, ED 134)

According to Ivy Lizana Fowler (1921-2000), Ida Bellande Galle would come to Biloxi to visit Ivy's grandmother, Maggie McCabe, at 427 Lameuse Street.  Ivy describes Ida as "about five feet five inches tall, weighed about 180 pounds, and love to eat, especially sweets".  Her father, Louie Lizana, put some grasshoppers in a brown bag and told Ida it was candy.  When she opened the bag the 'hoppers jumped out and shook her up a bit!(Ivy L. Fowler, November 1996)

Ida Bellande Galle’s obituary in The Times Picayune of August 26, 1948, read as follows: At New Orleans, she met native New Orleanian, Clarence A. Galle Sr. (1879-1931), the son of Louis Joseph Galle (b. 1845) and Martha M. Mueller.  Although they are kin, the Galle family of New Orleans and Ocean Springs pronounce their name as “guy-ull”, not the “gal-lay” as that of the Biloxi clan.(Larry Galle, July 26, 2001) 

On October 10, 1901, Ida Bellande Gossow married Clarence Galle Sr. in the Crescent City.  In November 1912, the Galles, who had once lived in Biloxi, were relocating from New Orleans to Montgomery, Alabama, where Dorothy was born in 1913.  In his later life, the Mr. Galle had worked for the Veterans Bureau, and resided at Alexandria, Louisiana.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, October 11, 1901, p. 8 and The Daily Herald, November 25, 1912, p. 8 and May 4, 1931, p. 2)

Ida and Clarence A. Galle were the parents of: Clarence A. Galle II (1904-1944); Lillian Galle (1905-1948+) m. Lyle Smedley (1907-1988), a native of Traverse City, Michigan; Evelyn Galle (1908-1948+); Loretta Galle (1912-1948+) m. Arthur Mauret; and Dorothy Galle (1913-1991) m. Carlo Lucia (1912-1930+).  In 1920, the family was domiciled on St. Roch Street in the Crescent City.(1920 Orleans Parish, Louisiana T 625_621, p. 2B, ED 134)

According to Ivy Lizana Fowler (1921-2000), Ida Bellande Galle would come to Biloxi to visit Ivy's grandmother, Maggie McCabe, at 427 Lameuse Street. Ivy describes Ida as "about five feet five inches tall, weighed about 180 pounds, and love to eat, especially sweets".  Her father, Louie Lizana, put some grasshoppers in a brown bag and told Ida it was candy.  When she opened the bag the 'hoppers jumped out and shook her up a bit!(Ivy L. Fowler, November 1996)

Ida Bellande Galle’s obituary in The Times Picayune of August 26, 1948, read as follows:

Galle

At the residence 2351 North Roman St. on Tuesday, August 24, 1948 at 3:45 o'clock a.m., Ida Mary Bellande, wife of Clarence A. Galle Sr., beloved mother of Mrs. Arthur Mauret, Mrs. Lyle Smedley, Mrs. Cario (sic)Lucia and the late Clarence Galle Jr. and Evelyn Galle, sister of August and Joseph Bellande and the late Anthony (Newt) and Peter Bellande.  Also survived by nine grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.  A native of Biloxi, Mississippi, and resident of this city for the past 50 years.  Funeral took place at Lumano-Panno-Fallo Funeral Home Wednesday, August 25. Services at Our Lady of the Stars and the Sea Church, Roch and Prieuir Streets, burial in the St. Roch Cemetery.

 

AUGUSTE FRANK BELLANDE (1876-1953)

Auguste Frank Bellande was born January 3, 1876, on Harvey Hill in North Biloxi.  He was known as Gus, Man, and Judge Bellande.  He is known to have left Biloxi for St. Louis, Missouri in 1895.  It would appear that “Man” went to St. Louis, as his sister, Ida B. Gossow, was a resident there at this time.  He returned to Biloxi for a visit in late July 1897.(The Biloxi Herald, July 31, 1897, p. 8)

In the US Census of 1900, Auguste F. Bellande is listed as a boarder with his brother, Joseph, at 714 Julia Street in New Orleans.  At New Orleans, Auguste worked for the L&N Railroad as a switchman.  It is known that he lost two fingers on one hand as the result of a timber handling accident or other event while with the railroad.  While a resident of New Orleans, he may have worked as a policeman for a brief period of time.

In New Orleans, Auguste F. Bellande married Estella Amelia Hernandez on September 18, 1900.  She was the daughter of Louis Hernandez and Philappina Hernandez (1852-1923).  Philapina had immigrated to the United States in 1852, from the Rhine Province of Germany.(1920 Federal Census-Harrison County, Mississippi)  Estella was the mother of Auguste’s natural children: August F. Bellande, Jr (1902-1952), Louis Bellande (1904-1977), and Harold Bellande (1905-1983).  Estella became ill with the flu or some other malady and had to be kept in a sanitarium.  She died about 1914.

Politician

Auguste Bellande and his young family returned to the Mississippi coast settling in the Gulfport area in 1906.  Here he worked for the Gulf & Ship Island Railroad as engine foreman until about 1916.  Gus Bellande was a politician and is known to have sought the office of Constable in Beat 2, Harrison County, Mississippi as early as 1911 and  again in 1915.  He served as a Justice of the Peace in Beat 2 for a number of years prior to 1923, and through this position acquired the title, Judge Bellande.(The Gulfport Advocate, February 27, 1915, and The Daily Herald, April 22, 1919, p. 2)

1915 Campaign

            Gus Bellande announced his candidacy for Constable of Beat 2 in February 1915.  He was defeated in this race by D.H. King.(The Gulfport Advocate, February 27, 1915 and The Daily Herald, April 22, 1919, p. 2)

1919 Election

            In the spring of 1919, August F. Bellande began his campaign for the office of Justice of the Peace for Harrison County, Mississippi.  He placed second in the Democratic Primary held on August 5, 1919, polling 356 votes to S.P. Moorman’s 412.  Mr. Moorman was the winner in the second primary held on August 26, 1919.(The Daily Herald, April 22, 1919, p. 2 and August 28, 1919, p. 4)

1926 Campaign

            In 1926, Major G.R. Kemp expired in his Beat No. 2 Justice of the Peace office.  Judge Bellande made a run for this position basing his candidacy on his prior four years experience as the local JP.(The Daily Herald, September 1, 1926, p. 1)

1928 Campaign

In January 1928, he ran a political announcement in The Daily Herald, which gave some insight into his character: In announcing his candidacy again for the place, Mr. Bellande stated that he felt that the knowledge and experience of his former term qualified him.  The record he made while holding the justiceship speaks for itself, said Mr. Bellande, and is open for the public inspection.  If he is chosen by the electorate of the district to again sit as their justice of the peace he will endeavor to see no one persecuted, but believed in the prosecution of all who were charged with the violation of the law.  Friend and enemy would be treated alike in his court and he would know no favoritism, he declared. (January 27, 1928)

On December 30, 1914, Auguste F. Bellande married Mary Ellen Christovich Wagatha (1875-1946) of Mississippi City at St. John’s Catholic Church in Gulfport.(HARCO, Ms. MRB 27, p. 224)  She was the daughter of Nicholas Christovich, a Slavic immigrant from Dubrovnik, Croatia.  Her mother was Mary Ann Nicholson (1833-19  ).  Mary Ellen Christovich was the widow of George O. Wagatha (1878-1902), whom she had married in Harrison County, Mississippi on November 22, 1899.  They had a son, George Wagatha (1900-1991).  George resided in Metairie, Louisiana and was in good health and spirits, when I visited him in 1989.  He remained close to his step-son, Dr. Dan Lehon, of New Orleans. 

In the 1927 Coast Cities Directory, Auguste F. Bellande was listed as a realtor residing at 1911 19th Avenue in Gulfport with wife, Mary Ellen.  Residents of this address also were his sons:  August Jr., a salesman for Swift & Co.; Harold, a salesman for his father; and Louis, a sailor.  He later founded the City Paper Company (1935?), and was involved in the grocery and motor oil businesses as well. 

Auguste F. Bellande attempted a political comeback in 1943, when he ran for Justice of the Peace in District No. 2.  In a political announcement, the following was related: While he was Justice of the Peace a number of years ago, he was instrumental in cleaning out the slot machines, closing gambling houses, suppressing prostitution, and getting working girls shorter hours.  At that time, they worked 16 to 18 hours per day; succeeded in getting it reduced to 60 hours per week of 7 days.  He has previously conducted a clean, square administration with a square deal to all parties without regard to who they are, and he has guaranteed that no shake down will be permitted so far as he is able, to prevent, by anybody.(The Daily Herald, July 31, 1943, p. 8)

Obviously, the voters of Harrison County Beat No. 2 were displease with Judge Bellande’s prior term in office, as in the ten-man race for JP in 1943, he ran eighth.  He garnered only 328 votes of the 7873 ballots cast or       %.  Does his rejection by the electorate give credence that it is difficult for an honest man to succeed in politics?(The Daily Herald, August 5, 1943, p. 1)

The life of Auguste Frank Bellande ended instantly as the result of an automobile accident on Highway 90 at Texas Street in Mississippi City on November 18, 1953.  Judge Bellande was east bound on US 90 when his two-door Austin sedan turned north into the path of a 1953 Oldsmobile driven by Paul Skrmetti of Biloxi.  Mrs. Skremetti suffered a fractured knee.(The Daily Herald, November   , 1953, p. 1)

Auguste F. Bellande is interred next to his wife, Mary Ellen Christovich, who passed on September 28, 1946.  They rest peacefully for eternity in the St. James Cemetery at Handsboro, Mississippi.(The Daily Herald, November 18, 1953)

August Frank Bellande Jr. (1902-1952)

August F. Bellande Jr.was born at New Orleans on July 23, 1902.  He may have worked for Wells Fargo and possibly was drafted for World War I.  August was known as Little Gus and later as Gus.  He attended Perkinston Junior College and worked for a time as a meat salesman for Swift & Company.  Gus joined his father at the City Paper Company and eventually bought the company.  They were engaged in wholesaling paper products from about 1935 to 1948, when the business was sold.  Gus owned and operated a tavern for a short time on the corner of Pass Road and Court House Street in Handsboro (now Gulfport).

At Gulfport, on July 14, 1926, Gus Bellande married Ellen Laney (1896-1973) from Birmingham, Alabama.  She was born November 23, 1896, the daughter of Dr. Marcus W. Laney and Mollie Blair.  Ellen Laney received her nursing training at King Daughter's Hospital in Shreveport, Louisiana.  She was employed at the Veterans Hospital in Gulfport when she met and married Gus Bellande.  The Bellande's resided at 1910 19th Avenue in Gulfport near his father.  From this marriage two children: William Laney Bellande (1929-2002?) and Mary Blair Bellande (b. 1932), were born.(HARCO, Ms. Circuit Court MRB 38, p. 284)  

August F. Bellande Jr. and Ellen Laney Bellande divorced at Gulfport, in November 1947.    Ellen moved to Birmingham, Alabama.  She died there on February 21, 1973.(HARCO Ms., Chancery Court Cause No. 25,415)  

Betty Travis Bellande

In 1950, August F. Bellande Jr. married Mrs. Betty Travis Nobles Pare (1920-1973).  Mrs. Pare was the daughter of John E. Travis (1894-1985) and Pearl Baucum (1892-1973) of Hattiesburg, Mississippi.(HARCO, Ms. Circuit Court MRB 83, p. 491) 

After the demise of Gus Bellande, Betty married Louis Weekly in December 1952. (HARCO, Ms. Circuit Court MRB 92, p. 88). 

At the time of her demise in July 1973, Betty Travis was married to Robert C. Suber (1903-1977).  She had two daughters, Frances Nobles Recore Curet Anderson (1937-2002+) and Janie Taylor.  Mrs. Suber’s corporal remains were interred in the Glendale Cemetery at Hattiesburg, Mississippi. (The Daily Herald, July 15, 1973, p. A-2)

William L. Bellande (1929-2002)

    William L. Bellande called, Billye, was born at Gulfport, Mississippi on October 2, 1927.  He graduated from the high school division of Perkinston Junior College and joined the Navy.  Upon leaving the military, he went to Perkinston Junior College where he was a classmate of J.E. Bellande, Junior of Arabi.  Billye graduated from the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa and later the University of Alabama Dental School in Birmingham (1954).  He and his wife, Effie, reside in Birmingham where he has a successful dental practice.  They have four children: Lynn Bellande (b. 1959), Leigh Ann Bellande (b. 1961), William Bellande Jr. (b. 1964), and Sharon Blair Bellande (b. 1977).

Dr. W.L. Bellande expired at Birmingham, Alabama on August 18, 2002.

Mary Blair Bellande (b. 1932)

            Mary Balir also graduated from the high school division of Perkinston Junior College.  She them matriculated to Bob Jones University at Greenville, South Carolina.  Mary Blair has graduate credits at the University of Alabama, Cal State Fullerton, and Pepperdine University at Malibu where she was awarded the certificate to teach on the secondary level in California.  As a teacher, she has worked with students in the fields of speech, drama, and English.  Her summertime travels abroad have allowed her to teach also in Japan, Venezuela, and Guatemala (1987-88) where she worked in a missionary school.  In 1960, Mary Blair met and married Hank Kleyn in the State of Washington.  A daughter, Rebecca Blair, was born in 1963.  The Kleyns transferred to Southern California with the insurance industry.  Hank Kleyn died of a heart attack in 1977.  Since her early retirement from teaching, Mary Blair enjoys world traveling (Holy Land and Kenya in 1990) and watching her grandson, Breman David Buchan, develop.  Rebecca Blair, her daughter, is married to David Buchan, a native of Scotland, who practices dentistry in San Clemente, California.  Rebecca graduated cum laude from Pepperdine and worked as a media planner and account executive until the birth of Breman on March 27, 1990.  She is now a homemaker and is active in church and social activities in the community.    

Louis Bellande (1904-1977)

            Louis Bellande was born January 23, 1904, in New Orleans.  It is believed he enlisted in the Navy after WW I (circa 1920) when he was only about 16 years old.  He later became a Marine and was sent to China to guard mail ship-ments to that country.  His Marine unit served in Nicaragua in the late 1920s, and it is believed he fought against rebels led by General Sandino.  The present day Sandinista Party of Nicaragua derives its name from this early Central American patriot.

Louis returned to New Orleans and married Florence "Flossie" Bourg (1913-1992) from Bourg, Louisiana at New Orleans on November 5, 1929. They honeymooned at Biloxi staying at the Alvarez Hotel.  Their first child, Thomas Louis, was born in New Orleans in 1931.  At this time, Louis worked as a police officer, owned a restaurant, and drove a taxi.  From 1934-1944, he and Flossie moved often as he was employed in the steel construction business.  Daughter, Stella, was born at Lake Charles, Louisiana in 1935.  The Bellandes also resided in Baton Rouge and Joliet, Illinois before settling in Richland, Washington in 1944.  At Richland, Ralph, a son, was born in 1945.  Louis was employed at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation as a construction superintendent.  After retirement, he moved to Yakima, Washington where he died in January 1977, of a heart attack.  His wife, Florence Bellande, passed at Yakima in May 1992.

Thomas Louis Bellande (1931-1995)

Thomas Louis Bellande was born March 25, 1931.  He went to Central Washington University in Ellensburg to study psychology, but got involved in the office supply business.  He sold the business in 1982, and resided in Seattle with his wife, Elizabeth Ann, where in semi-retirement they managed an apartment complex.  Their children are: David Thomas Bellande (b. 1959), Stephan Paul (b. 1960), Michael William (b. 1961), Catherine Ann (b. 1962), Susan Elizabeth (b. 1964), and Jean Marie (b. 1965).  Thomas L. Bellande died at Morriston, Florida on February 1, 1995.

Estelle Bellande, (b. 1935)

Estelle Bellande, called Stella, resides in Stanwood, Washington with her husband, George Browning.  They were married about 1952, and have three children: Vicky (b. 1953), George (b. 1958), and Lynda (b. 1961).

Ralph Harold Bellande (b. 1945)

Ralph H. Bellande is a real estate developer whose business operates on a national scale.  He specializes in developing senior living centers.  Ralph and his wife, Katherine, reside in Gig Harbor with their children, Amber (b. 1976), Tyler (b. 1978), and Brooke (b. 1980).  Relocated to Prospect, Kentucky in 199?

    Amber Bellande residing at Lexington, Kentucky in 2001.  Teaching PE at the Woodford County Middle School, Versailles, Kentucky.  She is also the coach of the volleyball team.

Harold Louis Bellande (1905-1983)

Harold Louis Bellande was born in New Orleans on December 23, 1905.  In 1920, he was living in Biloxi, Mississippi on Copp Street, with his widowed grandmother, Philippina Hernandez (1852-1923), an 1852 Germany immigrant.  Harold was a delivery boy in a grocery store at the time.  Later he worked for his father, Auguste F. Bellande, as a real estate salesman. 

Harold lived in New Orleans most of his life and was an engineer in the merchant marine service.  He was married to May Breckenridge until her death in April 1962.  Harold Bellande died in Gulfport at 405 Texas Avenue on April 15, 1983.  He is buried in the Southern Memorial Park Cemetery at Biloxi, Mississippi. 

At the time of his death, Harold L. Bellande was married to Phyllis Frances Smith Markopoulos (1915-1985) who died at Gulfport, Mississippi, on December 1, 1985.  She was born at New Orleans on September 28, 1915.  Her parents were Frederick Smith and Frances Ann Hardy.  She had a son, William Markopoulos.  Phyllis is also interred in the Southern Memorial Park Cemetery next to Harold.  Her estate was probated as HARCO Ms. Chancery Court Cause No. P-1162.

Harold L. Bellande had no children with either wife.

 

EDWARD ANTOINE BELLANDE (1897-1976)

Edward Antoine Bellande was born on Jackson Avenue in Ocean Springs, Mississippi on December 19, 1897.  He was the sole child of Captain Antoine Victor Bellande (1829-1918) and Mary Catchot (1860-1931).  Captain Bellande was 68 years of age at the time of Edward's birth.  At the time, he was very active as a bar pilot at Ship Island and Biloxi.  The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, announced his nativity as, “On December 19th, a fine bouncing baby boy arrived at the home of Mr. and Mrs. A. Bellande.”(The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, January 7, 1898, p. 3)

Edward was known to all as Eddie.  He was a sickly child, and in a letter dated December 21, 1908, his father wrote, "he (Eddie) is always sick.  He cannot go to school like any other boy".  Eddie suffered from asthma in his youth.  By age forty, Eddie had grown to a height of five-feet six inches and weighed close to one hundred and eight pounds.  He began balding as a young man and was totally bald by middle age.

As a lad, he developed a strong interest in the new field of aviation.  Ruth Bellande Ragusin and Emmett Bellande, Jr. have both commented on the many model airplanes that Eddie built and exhibited in the Bellande home on Jackson Avenue in Ocean Springs. 

In 1915, after completing his high school education at Ocean Springs, Eddie went to Buffalo, New York and spent three months at the Curtiss Exhibition Company where he began the course in aviation.  It was owned by Glenn H. Curtiss (1878-1930), the famous aircraft manufacturer, who built the popular JN-4 or Jenny.  Young Bellande then went to the Atlantic Coast Aeroplane Station at Newport News, Virginia.  He was the youngest member of the graduating class and received his license (No. 639) from the Aero Club of America, which was affiliated with the French Federation Aeronatique Internationale, when he was eighteen years old.(The Jackson County Times, September 21, 1918)

  Eddie Bellande returned to Ocean Springs in late December of 1916.  His picture appeared on the front page ofThe New Orleans Times Picayune of December 2, 1916.

Biloxi visit

In early July 1917, Eddie Bellande took the L&N from Ocean Springs for a day visit at Biloxi.  He was interviewed or went by the office of The Daily Herald, as they related that, Mr. Bellande has been flying for eight months and qualified for a commission at 19 years.  He says that he could be flying for the government service but his age prevents him.  He is anxious to go across to Europe.  Mr. Bellande has an altitude of 2000 feet and has traveled at the rate of 125 miles an hour.  He use a Curtis (sic) military machine during his flights.”(The Daily Herald, July 7, 1917, p. 5)

Flight Instructor

In September 1917, he left Ocean Springs and went to Georgia School of Technology at Atlanta where he was an instructor in motors and planes at the government ground aviation school.   

Later during the First World War, he served in the United States Marine Corps as a naval reserves aviator from August 18, 1918 until February 24, 1919.  His initial assignment was at the Naval Training Center in Charleston, South Carolina.  Later he was a naval flight instructor at the Pensacola Naval Air Station.  It is known that he attended his father's funeral in Ocean Springs in June 1918, and was awaiting orders to report for flying duty in regards World War I.(The Jackson County Times, August 24, 1918 and September 21, 1918)

After the Great War, in May 1920, Eddie Bellande was employed with Curtiss Aircraft at Buffalo, New York in the motor department.  On weekends he flew passengers over Niagara Falls.  Robert E. Morris (1902-1970) of Ocean Springs joined the company in June 1920.(The Jackson County Times, May 29, 1920, p. 5)

In October 1920, Eddie relocated to Cleveland, Ohio where he worked for the Logan Aviation Company.(The Jackson County Times, October 2, 1920, p. 3)

In May 1921, Eddie Bellande as a member of the Aero Club performed aerials stunts at the 1921 opening of the aviation season at Curtiss Field in Buffalo, New York.  He was accompanied in the air by E.M. Ronne and Roland Rohlfs.(The Jackson County Times, May 28, 1921, p. 3)

 

(l-r) unknown, Edward A. Bellande (1897-1978), Charles Lindbergh (1902-1974), unknown)

(photo from E.A. Bellande)

Southern California

In early June 1921, Bellande returned to Ocean Springs from Buffalo to visit with his mother.  He departed Ocean Springs in early July 1921, for Southern California where he expected to be employed by one of the large movie companies as an aviator.

 He flew as a test pilot for Lockheed in 1926, piloting the first Lockheed Vega.  He checked out Wiley Post in the famed "Winnie Mae", and co-piloted Charles Lindberg on the first TWA transcontinental run in 1929.  His career in aviation nearly equaled the history of the industry as it is known today.  He was a Navy pilot (World War I), barnstormer, skywriter, crop duster, movie stunt artist, and an airline pilot.  While working in the fledgling Hollywood movie industry, he flew for movie moguls, Jack L. Warner and Darryl F. Zanuck.  Old family photographs show Eddie with Al Jolson and Rin Tin Tin, the movie dog.

 

(l-r) Rin Tin Tin and Edward A. Bellande (1897-1978) on movie set-Los Angeles, circa 1925.

(photo from E.A. Bellande)

Rin Tin Tin

Rin Tin Tin (often billed as Rin-Tin-Tin in the 1920s and 1930s) was the name given to several German Shepherds of film and television.  The first of the line (c. September 51918 – August 101932) was a shell-shocked pup found by American serviceman Lee Duncan in a bombed-out dog kennel in LorraineFrance less than two months before the end of World War I. Named for a puppet called Rintintin that French children gave to the American soldiers for good luck, at war's end Duncan took the dog back to his home in Los AngelesCalifornia.  Nicknamed "Rinty" by his owner, the dog was taught tricks and could leap more than 13 feet. He was seen performing at a dog show by film producer Darryl F. Zanuck, who paid Lee Duncan to film him. Duncan became convinced that Rin Tin Tin could become the next Strongheart. The dog's big break came when he stepped in for a recalcitrant wolf in The Man From Hell's River (1922). Rin Tin Tin would be cast as a wolf or wolf-hybrid many times in his career, despite looking little to nothing like one. His first starring role, 1923's Where the North Begins, was a huge success often credited with saving Warner Brothers from bankruptcy. It was followed by Shadows of the North (1923),Clash of the Wolves (1925), A Dog of the Regiment (1927), Tiger Rose (1929), and The Lightning Warrior (1931). The dog also had his own radio show in 1930 called The Wonder Dog, on which he did his own sound effects.  True to his French birthright, to the sounds of classical music being played, the dog dined each day on a choice cut of tenderloin steak specially prepared by a private chef.  Following Rin Tin Tin's death in 1932 in Los AngelesCalifornia, (in the arms of actress Jean Harlow, according to Hollywood legend) his owner arranged to have the dog returned to his country of birth for burial in the Cimetière des Chiens, the renowned pet cemetery in the Parisian suburb of Asnières-sur-Seine.

Mothers visit

As early as May 1930, Mrs. Bellande was living with Eddie in Los Angeles.  She came home in May 1930 to visit with Mrs. A.J. Catchot.(The Daily Herald, May 31, 1930, p. 5)

Mary Catchot Bellande (1860-1931) expired at California on May 26, 1931.  Her remains were interred in the Evergreen Cemetery at Ocean Springs, Mississippi.(The Daily Herald, May 28, 1931, p. 2)      

Air Mail Medal of Honor

Among his many honors as a pilot is the Congressional Air Mail Medal of Honor presented to him by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1935.  It was awarded to Eddie Bellande for an act of heroism following his only crash at Bakersfield, California.  He safely landed a Transcontinental and Western Air trimotor aircraft, which was in flames and helped all of his passengers to reach safety before the plane was totally destroyed by the fire.(see The Los Angeles Times, ?)

As one of the pioneers of the aerospace industry, Eddie Bellande was one of the original organizers and board members of the Northrop Aircraft Company.  He served as vice-president and director of the Houston Company and H.W. Houston Company.  Eddie helped organize Maddux Air Lines, which later evolved into TWA.

At the time of his retirement from TWA in January 1943, he was the Number 2 pilot in seniority.  Eddie had logged more than 23,000 flying hours and flew 3,100,000 miles without injury to passengers or mail cargo.  He joined the Garrett Corporation in 1943, as an assistant to the President, was elected to the Board in 1948, and named Chairman of the Board in July 1963.  His first challenge as leader of Garrett was to fight a takeover attempt by Curtiss-Wright, which was seeking to buy 47% of Garrett's stock.  During his tenure at Garrett, the pressurization of production aircraft developed (the B-29 Superfortress), and after World War II, the corporation turned its talents to high-flying civilian transports and spacecraft.  In December 1965, he retired, but served as a consultant with Garrett.

Edward Bellande belonged to approximately 30 civic and fraternal organizations including humanistic groups as well as aerospace-oriented ones.  In the field of aviation, they include:  International Club of Washington; Sky Club, New York; Wings Club, New York; Aviation Hall of Fame, Dayton; National Defense Transportation Association; OX5 Club; Quiet Birdmen; Early Birds of Aviation, and honorary fellow of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots.  He served as general chairman of the Hope Chest Campaign in 1964, was a member of the President's Council of Loyola University in Los Angeles, and was on the board of the Bates Foundation in support of Harvey Mudd College.

Mary Bellande went to Los Angeles in January 1925, and considered living there with Eddie.           

Pacific fleet photos 1924

In September 1924, Eddie flew from Roger’s Airport at Los Angeles in strong headwinds and heavy fog to Crissy Field in San Francisco.  His plane had been chartered by Cornelius Vanderbilt Jr., proprietor of The Illustrated Daily Herald to fly Gus Thornrose, his staff photographer, to photograph the U.S. Navy’s Pacific fleet as it was arriving in San Francisco.(The Jackson County Times, September 20, 1924, p. 1)  

Aviation record

In 1925, Eddie Bellande flew more than 50,000 miles in 797 hours, which was considered a record for its time.  Most of his flight were to bring breaking news events to California newspapers readers.  Bellande flew images of the Santa Barbara temblor to Los Angeles and San Francisco soon after the natural disaster.  He took aerial photographs of the large Tia Juana, Mexico conflagration from his aircraft early in the morning as the fire raced through the resort border community.(The Daily Herald, January 20, 1926, p. 1)           

Mae West and the 1935 Kansas City article

In 1935, a newspaper article appeared in a Kansas City journal titled “A Mistake When He Moved Next Door To Mae West”.  Because of its human interest and biographical nature as pertaining to Eddie Bellande, I will submit it as copied from The Jackson County Times of March 2, 1935.  Virginia T. Lee reprinted it in her column, appropriately named “The Column”.  “It’s the little personal touch that counts!” commented the man as he accepted a loan from a friend.  So, if such things count for anything, permit the application of a personal touch or two of the chunky form of Eddie Bellande, who has been flying airplanes since 1915; part of whose airline flying now is carried on a Kansas City, and who, in his more than 10,000 hours of aviating, ha made one great mistake.  Bellande’s mistake was when he moved into a Hollywood apartment house and found he was living next to Mae West!  This is why it was a mistake. 

A 10,000-Hour MAN

His own individuality, which once was adequate, not to say copious, now has been lost. Because today he is referred to, not as one of air transport’s few 10,000-hour men, but invariably and simply as “the guy who lives next door to Mae West.”  No matter how long and honorable his flying record, and it is plenty of each, it all is submerged beneath the sea of whatever it is that causes him to be referred to thus: “Oh, yes! Eddie Bellande; I’ve heard of him!  He’s the guy who lives next door to Mae West!”  Only a few days ago at the Kansas City Airport, a stranger stopped the veteran airline pilot as he was leaving the restaurant.  “Excuse me!” the stranger apologized.  “Will you let me have your autograph?”  “What for?”  “Well, I understand you’re the pilot who lives next door--.”  “Aw, nerts!” was Bellande’s interrupting comment as he walked away.  Now if you ask him about that incident he probably would deny it.  He’s that retiring.  Many persons are like that, regardless of whom they live next door to.  For instance, there was the fellow who lived next door to poverty.  He never admitted he had so much as a dime!

This story was corroborated by Marion Illing Moran (1901-1993) of Ocean Springs who remembered Eddie Bellande as a young man in Ocean Springs.  They were good friends at school, and she visited him in Los Angeles circa 1937.  She told me that at that time Eddie lived on the second floor of an apartment house a few doors down from Mae West, the great movie star.(Marion Illing Moran, October 1991)

Marriage

On March 31, 1937, Eddie married Margerie Edith 'Molly' Lamont (1911-2000) at Santa Barbara, California.(The Daily Herald, March 30, 1937, p. 3 and Petition for Naturalization US District Court-Los Angeles, Ca. No. 62125)

Eddie and Molly Bellande resided at 361 Fordyce Road in the affluent Los Angeles suburb of Bel Air.  He could boast of having Joan Fontaine, the actress, as his neighbor.  Eddie was a bachelor for more than half of his life.  Bellande was a senior pilot flying for Transcontinental-Western at the time.

"Molly Lamont, the movie actress, took her first airplane ride with newlywed hubby, Eddie Bellande, senior Transcontinental-Western airline pilot.  Eddie was making his regular flight and Molly took the ride rather than be parted from him soon after their wedding.  Photo shows Eddie making his bride comfortable."(The Times Picayune, April 3, 1937)

1939

Flights and Flyers - (documentary; Blackhawk Films, 30m) Three newsreel shorts about Jimmy Walker, Corrigan, Costa & Bellande, Earhart, Hughes, the Mollisons, Post & Gatty, Rickenbacker, et al.

1940-testimony of Eugene Gerow, TWA pilot

As a 1940 graduate of TWA’s first officer school, Eugene Gerow (1907-2000) flew right seat with Eddie in DC-3 aircraft and claimed to be Bellande’s last copilot at TWA. The following excerpt from Gerow’s memoir, The Umpteenth Voyage: A San Joaquin Valley Farm Boy’s Struggle to Become an Air Line Pilot, provides an interesting personal look at Eddie Bellande the man, and insight into what it was like flying with him. As the story opens, circa 1941, Gene is a young co-pilot relaxing in the lobby of the Hilton Hotel in Albuquerque, NM, a TWA crew-change stop:

      “…After Dick (Colburn, TWA instructor at Kansas City) left I sat alone in the lobby and pondered my dilemma: I certainly wanted to check out as captain but I certainly didn’t want to face that exacting involvement with as little actual flying time as I had accumulated at the controls of the DC-3 under the random flight crew paring principle which the company now followed. Just then I observed a senior Burbank captain approaching.  “The captain was quite solemn as he stopped in front of me and looked me right in the eye. I began to wonder if I had done something to offend him but he started talking, rather jokingly I thought, about what a poor crop of copilots they were sending out for replacements these days. He went on to say that he thought I might do and asked, ‘Do you want to fly regularly with me?’ I was so astounded I stammered ‘Y…y…yes—uh, Sir!’  “Abruptly he started to turn away, saying, ‘okay, then: tell Corron I said you are to be paired with me from now on.’

     “The captain who told me to have myself scheduled with him was Eddie Bellande. He was one of the ‘Old Ones,’ to borrow a phrase from the Navajo, but old as applied here meant in experience, not chronological age: he was also one of the great ones.  “I remembered him even then. Years before, we used to fly across to Rosamond Dry Lake and watch him and other famous pilots of that era testing new airplane designs. We saw him fly the first Lockheed twin there. His name was a household word in flying communities up our way. I had already learned what his reputation was among copilots on TWA: he had left a trail of well-trained copilots with whom he had been paired—Buddy Hagins, Grant Nichols and others before me were forever grateful for what he had done for them and they had said so.  “Burbank Dispatch followed Eddie Bellande’s directive to have me fly with him, but it wasn’t all ‘peaches and cream’: Eddie apparently had something on his mind to which I will refer later, and during this early period of our flying together he just sat there in the left seat, trip after trip, and flew the airplane both ways. It wasn’t much different from the random scheduling I had been experiencing previously.

     “I was becoming quite discouraged and decided one day as we were shuttled over to the TWA hangar at Lockheed Air Terminal to taxi our airplane to the airline passenger ramp that I was determined to say something about it if he sat in the left seat again without offering me some ‘stick’ time. He did sit down in the left seat but suddenly jumped up laughing and told me to sit there. After I had taxied the DC-3 across the field he asked me why I hadn’t protested my non-pilotage status and I explained to him just how close we had come to my ‘telling him off’ about it.

“Eddie laughed uproariously at my ill-concealed discomfort but what he then told me rang true: naturally he wanted me to fly ‘his’ airplane ‘his’ way and thought the easiest way to put this across was to fly a few trips by way of demonstration rather than talking about it—this gave him more time to think (and as I said previously, more about that later).

“What a switch: for many weeks I flew the airplane from the left seat day and night, fair weather or foul. After it became apparent that my handling of the DC-3 had improved Eddie handed me the log-sheet clip-board one day and said, ‘Here: you can do it all now.’

     “I had never experienced so much flying joy in my whole life, but then as weeks passed and my glow began to subside, I noticed that Eddie was awfully quiet, just sitting there and staring out of the right front cockpit window for hours on end, saying little or nothing during this time interval. I began to really worry now, because I had come to think a great deal of him and I would have been horror-stricken to find that I had offended him somehow.  “One day, I abruptly asked Eddie what was wrong. He came out of it with a smile and said: ‘Can you keep a secret? If you can, I’ll tell you something that is very important to my future, but I don’t want anyone on the airline to know about it right now.’ I promised and then he asked, ‘You know who Jack Northrop is?’ I nodded and he went on to say that Jack had been in some financial straits in his airplane design business and thought he might have to give it up. Eddie added: ‘Jack is probably my best friend and I told myself that I couldn’t just let him go down the drain.’

     “Eddie related how he went to night clubs where many big time people hung out and by staying cold sober himself but buying expensive drinks for these people and talking to them as they waxed affluent under the mellowing influence of a good drink, he had accumulated a promising list of potential backers for Jack Northrop’s brilliant undertakings. The only problem for him was that these people wanted him to take over and run the company he had organized. ‘It may be too good to pass up’ said Eddie.

“It was a fascinating story as Eddie had detailed it to me and subsequent events proved that every word he had spoken was true. It was some time before Eddie finally made up his mind to make the change, he loved to fly so very much. But in the meantime, his last TWA copilot was having a ball flying the DC-3 from the left seat.

“Eddie Bellande was quite busy during his last days on TWA trying to make sure before he announced his voluntary retirement that his contemplated move wasn’t going to be a bad one. As I had previously stated, he had schooled me thoroughly on his idea of how a flight should be conducted and then turned the whole thing over to me. One of my non-standard copilot duties became a trip into the terminal building at intermediate stops to pick up the new weather. The captain was supposed to sign for the weather sheet, and I had learned how to render what I thought was a fair imitation of Eddie’s signature.

     “Quite often people who were involved financially in an airline and airplane industry dealings would ride along on the jump-seat with us and at stopping-points along the route Eddie would stay on board to discuss important items with these individuals. My most vivid memory of this phase was of leaving Eddie and LaMott Cohu in the cockpit after a night landing at Winslow, where I went in to get the weather. Cohu was destined to be a president of TWA and was quite interested in all facets of the airline operation.

     “When I came back up to the cockpit I advised Eddie that we had been re-cleared with a second alternate for ABQ, handing him the new release form. Cohu asked, ‘Doesn’t a new release have to be signed for by the captain?’  “Eddie laughed and said, ‘It’s been signed by the captain alright.’

     “The financial wizard took the release from him and looked at the signature, remarking, ‘By Gosh! It looks more like Eddie’s signature than if he had signed it himself!’  “Years later when TWA Captain Bill Harrison and I signed in at the Garrett Corporation executive suite at Los Angeles International Airport to visit Eddie, we had to write down the name of the person we wanted to see, and I wrote the name of the Chairman of the Board, E.A. Bellande. The secretary gasped when she looked at the hand-written name and said: ‘You must have known him quite well: it looks exactly like his signature and very few people seem to have known that his middle initial is A—they always write down Eddie.’”    

Note: Eugene Gerow (1907-2000) retired in 1972 as a senior TWA captain with 32 years service and 27,000 hours flying time. If he ever flew into Davis-Monthan during his long aviation career, he failed to sign the register. However, early in his professional career, he flew copilot with at least one other D-M signer, Walter L. “Si” Seiler, Chief Pilot of Wilmington-Catalina Airline, Ltd. Gene was a younger brother of Russell T. Gerow, whose photograph and document collection may be accessed here. Another anecdote from this book can be found at pilot Al Gilhousen.

1942-retirement from TWA

Capt. Edward A. Bellande, veteran TWA pilot who is well known in Albuquerque and is credited by the airline with having flown 3,100,000 miles without injury to passengers or mail cargo, retired Tuesday in Los Angeles, the Associated • Press reported.  For more years than TWA employees here could recall, Captain Bellande, who was taught: to fly by Glenn Curtis in 1915, has been piloting passengers and mail over the western division. As Albuquerque is a crew-change point.  Capt. Bellande frequently stopped overnight here.  In command of a "stratoliner" since TWA put the big four-motored Boeings into service, the veteran pilot's last flight through here was several weeks ago. He then left on a vacation, at the end of which he retired. Captain Bellande will become vice-president of a  company manufacturing p h o t o g r a p h i c equipment for the U. S. Army Air-Corps.  The Associated Press said he served as a Navy instructor at Pensacola, Fla., during the First World War.(The Albuquerque Journal,  January 28, 1942, p. 10)

Biloxi visit

During Mardi Gras of 1950, Eddie and Molly came to Biloxi from Los Angeles and visited with Esther Catchot Chamblee who resided at 438 Delauney Street.  He was with Air Research Aviation at the time.  They flew to Biloxi.(The Daily Herald, February 20, 1950, p. 8)

Molly Lamont

     Margerie Edith 'Molly' Lamont (1911-2000) was born at Boksburg, Natal, South Africa, on May 22, 1911.  In 1930, she was a dance teacher in Natal and won the Outspan Film Candidate Competition.  The prize was a holiday in England and a screen test with the Elstree Studios.  It launched her into an international movie career in which she made more than fifty films.(The Sunday Times, June 21, 1998)  They and the character that she played follow: “The Wife’s Family” (1931)"-Sally; “What a Night!”-Nora Livingstone (1931); “Uneasy Virtue” (1931)-Ada;“Shadows”(1931)- Jill Dexter; “The House Opposite” (1931)- Doris; “Strictly Business” (1932)-Maureen; “The Strangler”-Frances Marsden-(1932); “Old Soldiers Never Die” (1932)-Ada; “Lucky Girl” (1932)-Lady Moira-(1932); “Lord Camber’s Ladies” (1932)-Actress; “The Last Coupon” (1932)-Betty Carter; “Josser on the River”(1932)-Julia Kaye; “His Wife’s Mother” (1932)-Cynthia; “Brothr Alfred” (1932)-Stella; “Paris Plane” (1933);“Letting in the Sunshine” (1933)- Lady Anne; “Leave It to Me” (1933)-Eve Halliday; “Norah O'Neale" (1934)-Nurse Otway, “White Ensign” (1934)-Consul’s Daughter; “The Third Clue” (1934)-Helen Arnold; “No Escape”(1934)-Helen Arnold; Murder at Monte Carlo” (1934)-Margaret Becker; “Another Face aka Two Faces” (1935)-Mary McCall; “Rolling Home” (1935)-Ann; Oh, What a Night” (1935)-Pat; "Jalna" (1935)-Pheasant, “Handle With Care” (1935)-Patricia; “Alibi Inn” (1935)-Mary Talbot; "Muss 'Em Up" (1936)-Nancy Harding; "Mary of Scotland" (1936)-Mary Livingstone; "The Jungle Princess" (1936)-Ava; “A Woman Rebels” (1936)-Young Girl;"Doctor's Diary" (1937)-Mrs. Fielding; “Fury and the Woman” (1937)-June McCrae; "The Awful Truth" (1937)-Barbara Vance; “Somewhere I’ll Find You” (1942)-Nurse Winifred; "The Moon and Sixpence" (1942)-Mrs. Amy Strickland; “A Gentle Gangster” (1943)-Ann Hallit; “Thumbs Up” (1943)-Welfare Supervisor; “Follow the Boys aka Three Cheers for the Boys” (1944)- Miss Hartford, secretary; “White Cliffs of Dover” (1944)-Helen; "Mr. Skeffington" (1944)-Miss Morris, a secretary; “The Suspect” (1944)-Edith Simmons; "Minstrel Man" (1944)-Caroline (mother), "Devil Bat’s Daughter” (1946)-Ellen; , "So Goes My Love" (1946)-Cousin Garnet, "The Dark Corner" (1946)-Lucy Wilding; “Scared to Death” (1947)-Laura Van Ee; "Christmas Eve aka Sinners Holiday"(1947)-Harriett, "Ivy" (1947)-Bella Crail;  "South Sea Sinner aka East of Java" (1949)-Kay Williams; and "The First Legion" (1951)-Mrs. Gilmartin.  Many of these films can be seen on television and VHS tape.

Molly left Southampton, England for America and arrived at NYC on March 12, 1935 aboard Olympic.  She arrived at Los Angeles on March 17, 1935.

Eddie and Molly had no children.

The Bellande's enjoyed many visits to Ocean Springs and the Mississippi Gulf Coast to visit Eddie's mother who lived until 1931.  She sold her residence on Jackson Avenue to Frederick C. Gay in December 1924, and moved in with her relatives at Biloxi.  Mrs. Bellande expected to relocate to Los Angeles to reside with Eddie Bellande.  Mary Catchot Bellande expired in California on May 22, 1931.  Her corporal remains were interred in the Catchot family area of the Evergreen Cemetery on Old Fort Bayou at Ocean Springs.(The Jackson County Times, December 11, 1924, p. 5 and May 28, 1931, p. 2)

Eddie Bellande died in the Century City Hospital on November 17, 1976, at the age of 78 years.  He had a remarkable life and contributed greatly in the development of American aviation and aerospace technology.  It is notable that the lives of Edward and Captain Antoine Bellande, his father, spanned 147 years of time of which much was filled with adventure and discovery.

Molly Lamont expired at Los Angeles on July 7, 2001.        

 

More Eddie Bellande from General Aviation News, December 4, 2009.

Edward Bellande: Pioneering pilot

Posted by Dennis Parks · November 24, 2009

Bellande in 1916

“Air speed record to Los Angeles broken” was a headline in the Oakland (California) Tribune on Jan. 28, 1932. The story reported that a new coastal speed record for tri-motored planes was made on the Oakland-Los Angeles airway when a Transcontinental and Western airplane made the 360-mile hop in 1 hour and 52 minutes.

The craft, a Ford Tri-Motor, piloted by Eddie Bellande and Erwin Lewis, left the Bay Airdrome in Alameda at 10 a.m. and arrived at the Grand Central Air Terminal in Glendale at 11:52 am. Nine passengers were carried on the record-setting flight.

That was just one of the many highlights of Edward A. (Eddie) Bellande’s career in aviation, which spanned nearly 60 years. His career was as diversified and active as the industry itself during those years.

He participated, with other contemporary pilots like Charles Lindbergh, in some of the benchmark flights and activities of this dynamic era. He flew as a test pilot for Lockheed, piloting the first Lockheed Vega. He checked out Wiley Post in the famed “Winnie Mae” and co-piloted Charles Lindbergh on the first TWA transcontinental run in 1929. In addition, he either organized or directed some of the aviation industry’s largest business organizations.

Bellande was born Dec 19, 1897, in Ocean Springs, Miss. In 1915, after completing high school, he went to Buffalo, N.Y., where he spent three months taking flying lessons at the Curtiss Company. He was the youngest member of the graduating class when he received his license (No. 639) from the Aero Club of America.

He then went to the Atlantic Coast Aeroplane Station at Newport News, Va. During World War I, he was at the Georgia School of Technology at Atlanta where he was an instructor in motors and planes at the government ground aviation school. He also served in the United States Marine Corps as a naval reserves aviator from Aug. 18, 1918, until Feb. 24, 1919, ending his service as a flight instructor at the Pensacola Naval Air Station.

Early in 1921, he left for Southern California to work for one of the large movie companies as an aviator. While working in Hollywood, he flew for movie studios headed by Jack L. Warner and Darryl F. Zanuck. Besides being a movie stunt pilot, he kept busy as a flight instructor and barnstormer.

Shortly after arriving in Los Angeles he flew for DeMille’s Mercury Aviation Co. at its Wilshire Boulevard Airport. From 1922 to 1927 he was a freelance pilot flying for motion pictures, skywriting, crop dusting and barnstorming.

 

Bellande in the cockpit of an Avion with

its designer Jack Northrop on the left.

 

During 1927-1929 he was in great demand as test pilot by airplane manufacturers. He made the test flights on most of the Lockheed airplanes, including the first “Vega” and the “Golden Eagle.” He also did all test flights on Northrop’s first flying wing. Later Bellande would join Northrop as a sales pilot and corporate director.

During this same time, he joined Maddux Airlines flying Ford Tri-Motors. He continued flying for the fledgling airline through the mergers of Maddux and Transcontinental Air Transport (TAT) and the later Transcontinental and Western Air merger (which would eventually become Trans World Airlines or TWA).

By mid-year 1929 TAT commenced a 48-hour combination rail and air service across the United States between New York and Los Angeles. The first west-to-east flight was made July 8, 1929, aboard the Ford Tri-Motor, “City of Los Angeles,” piloted by Lindbergh and Bellande. The first east-bound leg was from Glendale, Calif., to Clovis, N. M. The next day Bellande and Lindbergh picked up passengers for the last leg of the transcontinental trip to Los Angeles. Among the passengers on this trip was Amelia Earhart, who had been hired by TAT to help market the service.

Preparing for the first east-bound TAT Air-Rail
coast-to-coast service is pilot Charles Lindbergh
(second from right) and co-pilot Eddie Bellande
(on Lindbergh’s right)

 

The advent of this service so captured the public imagination that six weeks before the service commenced, TAT reported receiving more than 1,000 applications for tickets for the first trip.

One of the most remarkable events in Bellande’s career was the result of an in-flight fire. On Feb. 10, 1933, on a night flight in a TWA Ford Tri-Motor from San Francisco to Los Angeles via Fresno and Bakersfield, the airplane caught fire about 10 miles out from Bakersfield. Apparently the floor heater, which operated from an exhaust stack on the nose engine, caught fire. Bellande managed to make it to the airport, land and safely evacuate the passengers. The fuselage of the plane was completely burned through. A close call, used by some to tout the benefits of “all-metal” construction.

Because of his heroic actions during the emergency, Bellande was one of seven mail pilots who earned the Air Mail Flyers Medal of Honor from President Roosevelt.

Bellande flew for TWA another 10 years. At the time of his retirement in January 1943, he was the Number 2 pilot in seniority. He had logged more than 23,000 hours and flew an impressive 3.1 million miles without injury to passengers or mail cargo.

He joined the Garrett Corp. in 1943 as an assistant to the president. He was elected to the board of directors in 1948, and named chairman of the board in July 1963.

The early days of aviation in California were rich in flying excitement against a background of aircraft and airline development. Edward Bellande was an integral part of many of these developments.

Dennis Parks is Curator Emeritus of Seattle’s Museum of Flight. He can be reached at dennis@generalaviationnews.com.

 

Antoine Victoire Bellande References

 


REFERENCES:

Charles L. Dyer, Along The Gulf, (Women of the Trinity Episcopal Church:  Pass Christian-1971.  Originally published 1895.

Jerome Lepre, Catholic Church Records Diocese of Biloxi, Mississippi, Volume I, (Catholic Dioceses of Biloxi: Biloxi, Mississippi-1991).

 

Chancery Court Cases

Harrison County, Mississippi Chancery Court Cause No. 1359, "Sam Levy v. Antoine Bellande Jr."-February 1901.

 

Magazines

Hotel Greeters of America, Louisiana-Mississippi Chapter No. 32.

 

Movies

Flights and Flyers - (documentary; Blackhawk Films, 30m) Three newsreel shorts about Jimmy Walker, Corrigan,Costa & Bellande, Earhart, Hughes, the Mollisons, Post & Gatty, Rickenbacker, et al.

 

Journals

The Albuquerque Journal, "Pilot Retires  Flew 3 Million Miles Without a Mishap", January 28, 1942, p. 10.

The Bay Press, “Cancer benefit, dance to honor Billy Bellande”, October 12, 2001, p. 6.

The Biloxi Herald, “City Paragraphs”, February 18, 1888.

The Biloxi Herald, “City Paragraphs”, March 1888.

The Biloxi Herald, “Local Happenings”, January 9, 1892.

The Biloxi Herald, “Back Bay”, January 30, 1892.

The Biloxi Herald, “Local Happenings”, December 9, 1893.

The Biloxi Herald, “Bellande-Barthes”, September 1, 1894.

The Biloxi Herald, “Petition For Liquor License”, April 13, 1895.

The Biloxi Herald, “Latest City News”, July 31, 1897.

The Biloxi Herald, “Latest City News”, August 14, 1897.

The Biloxi Herald, Latest City News”, January 8, 1898.

The Biloxi Herald, “Public Notice”, June 4, 1898.

The Biloxi Herald, “Local Happenings”, February 13, 1892.

The Biloxi Herald, “Local Happenings”, April 9, 1892.

The Biloxi Herald, “Biloxi Blues”, June 18, 1892.

The Biloxi Herald “Local Happenings”, December 10, 1892.

The Biloxi Herald “Local Happenings”, May 11, 1895.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “Local and Personal", September 10, 1898.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “Local and Personal”, October 4, 1898.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “Bay View Cottage [advertisement], July 22, 1899.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “City News", June 10, 1900.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “City News", October 30, 1900.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “City News", October 31, 1900.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “Opera Saloon", November 7, 1900.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “Thrilling Accident”, May 29, 1901.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “City News”, October 11, 1901.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “City News", January 8, 1902.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “City News", November 12, 1902.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “Personal", November 17, 1902.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “City News", March 16, 1903.

The Biloxi Mirror, “R. Caillavet”, September 9, 1876.

The Chicago Tribune, "Linda Bellande", September 8, 2007.

The Daily Herald, “Pilots Have Been Reinstated”, January 31, 1907.

The Daily Herald, “U. Desporte returned from East", June 4, 1908.

The Daily Herald, “Southern drinks for New York”, May 23, 1911.

The Daily Herald, “Lund Will Have Charge of Wireless Station”, July 1, 1911.

The Daily Herald, “Biloxi Society and Personal Items”, November 25, 1912.

The Daily Herald, “Policeman on vacation", January 13, 1914.

The Daily Herald, “Garbage gathered”, July 18, 1914.

The Daily Herald, “$100 fine given liquor dealers", July 17, 1916.

The Daily Herald, “Biloxi Runner (Harold Davidson)To Compete In Race”, September 28, 1916.

The Daily Herald, “Fine of $100 for liquor holdings”, November 2, 1916.

The Daily Herald, “Davidson Wins Loving Cup”, November 20, 1916.

The Daily Herald, “Biloxi Newsboy (Albert Ragusin) Magazine Writer”, January 5, 1917.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande’s (Peter) Hours Undergo A Change”, January 21, 1917.

The Daily Herald, “Harold Davidson Will Run in Mobile”, January 22, 1917.

The Daily Herald, “Steals Police (Pete Bellande) Bicycle”, January 22, 1917.

The Daily Herald, “Wagon load beer taken in charge, March 13, 1917.

The Daily Herald, “Mrs. DeVeaux Dies”, April 24, 1917.

The Daily Herald, “Aviator Bellande Visits Biloxi”, July 7, 1917.

The Daily Herald, “Restraining order is granted to prevent service interference', December 24, 1917.

The Daily Herald, “Too much friction cause of cops downfall asserts Mayor Glennan, January 3, 1918.

The Daily Herald, “Notice to Public", January 14, 1918.

The Daily Herald, “Fifty men entrain [Harold J. Davidson] for Camp Pike Sunday Feb. 25", February 20, 1918.

The Daily Herald, “Returns home [Harold J. Davidson], March 2, 1918.

The Daily Herald, "Biloxi Boy [Roy P. Bellande] to come home", December 6, 1918.

The Daily Herald, “Mayor and Commissioners meet and transact important business", January 8, 1919.

The Daily Herald, [Harold J. Davidson] Returns after visit", January 30, 1919.

The Daily Herald, “Gus Bellande For Justice Of Peace”, April 22, 1919.

The Daily Herald, “Harold Davidson in Track Meet”, August 28, 1919.

The Daily Herald, “Harold Davidson Returns”, September 18, 1919.

The Daily Herald, “Biloxi News Paragraphs", July 14, 1920.

The Daily Herald, “Bellanda (sic) Body To Arrive Tommorow”, May 21, 1924.

The Daily Herald, “Anthony Belland (sic) Buried Today”, May 22, 1924.

The Daily Herald, “Pallbearers For Bellande Funeral”, May 23, 1924.

The Daily Herald, “Death of Mrs. Davidson”, April 6, 1925.  

The Daily Herald, “To Sail Across”, May 1, 1925.

The Daily Herald, “Gaddy Coach Biloxi High”, June 20, 1925.

The Daily Herald, “Coast Aviator Makes Record”, January 20, 1926.

The Daily Herald, “August Bellande to Make Race for Justice of Peace", September 1, 1926.

The Daily Herald, “Biloxi Police Desk Sargeant [sic] on vacation", November 19, 1926.

The Daily Herald, “New Plumbing Business”, February 11, 1927.

The Daily Herald, “Peter Bellande in Constable's race”, June 27, 1927.

The Daily Herald, “Judge Bellande Is Candidate For Justice of Peace”, January 27, 1928.

The Daily Herald, “High Schoolers Play Hard But Lose to Finny Tribe”, April 9, 1928.

The Daily Herald, “Albert Ragusin Leaves”, May 24, 1929.

The Daily Herald, “Ocean Springs News”, May 31, 1930.

The Daily Herald, “Fickes Family Return”, September 1, 1930.

The Daily Herald, “Clarence Galle, Sr. Dies”, May 4, 1931.

The Daily Herald, “Mrs. Bellande Buried”, May 28, 1931.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande Leaves For Tryout With Cleveland Club”, June 1, 1931.

The Daily Herald, “Covering the Coast”, June 26, 1931.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande-Fickes”, December 8, 1932.

The Daily Herald, “Biloxi Boy In Lineup”, March 15, 1933.

The Daily Herald, “Atlanta Looks Like Team To Beat In Southern Loop”, March 18, 1933.

he Daily Herald, “Bellande sold to Minneapolis club", February 4, 1935.

The Daily Herald, “Attend Lott funeral", November 20, 1936.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande-Lamont”, March 30, 1937.

The Daily Herald, “Bellandes In New Home”, December 4, 1937.

The Daily Herald, "Make 2000-Mile Trip", March 31, 1938.

The Daily Herald, “Charter of Incorporation of Bellande Beverage Company, Inc.”, August 19, 1938.

The Daily Herald, “Ragusin-Bellande”, November 6, 1939.

The Daily Herald, “Mildred Davidson Funeral”, February 21, 1940.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande Winner of Biloxi Golf Tourney”, January 13, 1941.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande Sets New Amateur Mark at Biloxi Golf Club”, January 27, 1941.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande Pace Setter; In Stag Golf Tournament”, March 10, 1941.

The Daily Herald, “Vote For A. Bellande”, July 31, 1943.

The Daily Herald, “Election Results”, August 5, 1943.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande Subject Of Post Article”, May 5, 1948.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande Visit”, February 20, 1950.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande Rites Set”, April 30, 1952. 

The Daily Herald, Judge A. Bellande Fatally Injured In Traffic Crash”, November  , 1953.

The Daily Herald, “Giles Peresich New Champion of Sunkist Golf Club”, May 18, 1954.

The Daily Herald, “[Mickey] Bellande is medalist for 3rd Annual Sunkist Club Championship golf event", August 7, 1956, p. 15.

The Daily Herald, “Alton Bellande names Back Bay Fire Marshal, September 20, 1957.

The Daily Herald, “One Time Marathon Runner Ends Career As Electric Serviceman”, January 1, 1960.

The Daily Herald, “Joseph Bellande”, January 20, 1961.

The Daily Herald, “Know Your State”-The Pilot Who Was Farragut’s Pilot In The Battle of Mobile Bay, June 8, 1961, p. 4,

The Daily Herald, “Roy Bellande Head Beverage Firm Expires”, January 30, 1964.

The Daily Herald, “Ragusin Holds Civilian Record”, June 12, 1971.

The Daily Herald, “Betty Travis”, July 15, 1973.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande Beverage Company sold to Tennessee firm”, May 10, 1979.

The Daily Herald, "R.L. Fickes dead at 93", December 31, 1979.

The Daily Herald, "Four Biloxians were valuable cogs in Spring Hill machine", December 7, 1929.

The Daily Herald,

The Daily Herald,

The Daily Herald,

The Daily Review [Hayward, California], “TWA founder dead at 78”, November 18, 1976, p. 36.

The Daily Times News [Ocean Springs]"Man of the Year-[Marcel] Bellande", January 31, 1964.

The Gulfport Advocate, "Gus Bellande", February 27, 1915.

The Hartselle Inquirer [Alabama]"Hasbur W. Denning"October 16, 2007.

The Hattiesburg American, “Services today for Miss Alice Bellande”, August 21, 1967.

The Jackson County Times, “Local News Items”, August 24, 1918.

The Jackson County Times, “Edward Bellande Instructing Aviators”, September 21, 1918.

The Jackson County Times, “Local News Items”, May 29, 1920.

The Jackson County Times, “Local News Items, June 12, 1920.

The Jackson County Times, “Local News Items”, October 2, 1920.

The Jackson County Times, “Aviator Bellande Does Stunts”, May 28, 1921.

The Jackson County Times, “Edward A. Bellande Daring Aviator”, September 20, 1924.

The Jackson County Times, “Vanderbilt Plane Scoops World On S.F. Fleet Photos”, September 20, 1924.

The Jackson County Times, “Local and Personal”, December 11, 1924.

The Jackson County Times, “The Column”, March 2, 1935.

The Jackson County Times

The Los Angeles Times, “Burning Plane Pilots Given High Praise”, ?

The Naperville Sun, "Signe V. Bellande", March 3, 1999.

The Ocean Springs News, “Bellande Beverage Co. Is Largest Firm Of Its Kind On The Coast Operates Fleet Of Ten Trucks”, May 30, 1957.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Ocean Springs flyer [Eddie Bellande] now firms consultant", July 4, 1968, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Ragusin renamed to legislative commission", November 11, 1976.

The Pascagoula Chronicle-Star, “Bellande Beverage Company” (advertisement), May 15, 1942.

The Pascagoula Chronicle-Star, “Bellande Beverage Company” (advertisement), June 5, 1942.

The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, “Local Paragraphs”, May 21, 1880.

The Pascagoula Democrat-Star

The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, “Biloxi Gleanings”, October 5, 1883.

The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, “Marine Matters”, April 18, 1884.

The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, “Biloxi City Elections”, January 9, 1885.

The Pascagoula Democrat-Star

The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, “Ocean Springs Locals”, January 7, 1898.

The Sun Herald, “Prominent Biloxian, Bellande, Dead at 72”, March 5, 1982.

The Sun Herald,  “George B. ‘Bunny’ Dubaz”, May 6, 1992.

The Sun Herald, “Felder B. O’Neal”, February 25, 1996.

The Sun Herald, "Ida 'Sue' Bellande", March 2, 1997.

The Sun Herald, “William E. Bellande Sr.”, January 23, 2002.

The Sun Herald, “Christine Dubaz”, January 24, 2002.

The Sun Herald, “Thelma Bellande”, August 4, 2002.

The Sun Herald, "Jeanette Blanchard", January 10, 2003.

The Sun Herald, "William E. Bellande Sr."

The Sun Herald, "Betty Faye Bellande Denning", July 22, 2005.

The Sun Herald, “Ernestine Balius Bellande”, May 19, 2005.

The Sun Herald, "Mr. John "J.B." Dubaz", April 1, 2006.

The Sun Herald, "Family, bologna made life sweet for Dubaz", April 4, 2006, p. A4.

The Sun Herald, "Foster gets medical degree", May 29, 2006, p. A11.

The Sun Herald, "Mrs. Katherine "Kate" Bellande", October 9, 2006, p. A4.

The Sun Herald, "Miss Mary Elizabeth Bellande weds Mr. Austin Blake Smith", March 8, 2009, p. F1.

The Sun Herald, "Margaret Fickes Foster", April 2, 2009, p. A4.

The Sun Herald, "Billy Ray Bellande Sr.", July 10, 2009, p. A4.

The Sun Herald, "Tomiko Ohi Burdick", February 1, 2010, p. A6.

The Sunday Times, “Queens After The Reign”June 21, 1998.

The Times Picayune, “Bellande on Al-Star ‘9’”, November 15, 1934.

The Times Picayune, "Molly Lamont", April 3, 1937.