Interesting Things

By Ray L. Bellande

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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.