Main Births etc
Pass Christian, Mississippi
—  City  —

Location of Pass Christian, Mississippi
Coordinates: 30°19′28″N 89°14′50″W / 30.32444, -89.24722Coordinates: 30°19′28″N 89°14′50″W / 30.32444, -89.24722
Country United States
State Mississippi
County Harrison
 • Total 15.3 sq mi (39.6 km2)
 • Land 8.4 sq mi (21.8 km2)
 • Water 6.9 sq mi (17.8 km2)
Elevation 13 ft (4 m)
Population (2013)
 • Total 5,128
 • Density 340/sq mi (130/km2)
Time zone Central (CST) (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP code 39571
Area code(s) 228
FIPS code 28-55400
GNIS feature ID 0675482

Pass Christian ( /ˌpæs krɪsˈtjæn/), nicknamed The Pass, is a city in Harrison County, Mississippi, United States, along the Gulf of Mexico. It is part of the GulfportBiloxi Metropolitan Statistical Area. The Population, as of 2013, has been estimated by The US Census at 5,128[1]


According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 15.3sqmi (39.62 km2), of which 8.4sqmi (21.75 km2) is land and 6.9sqmi(17.87km2) (44.97%) is water. The town is located 9 miles W of Gulfport, Mississippi (center to center) and is 55 miles NE of New Orleans, Louisiana. The town is 163.99 mi (263.92 km) from the state capitol at Jackson. Straight line or air distance: 142.97 miles (230.09 km).

Pass Christian, Mississippi (map center) is east of Bay St. Louis, along the Gulf of Mexico.

Geographically, the town of Pass Christian is situated on a peninsula, with water on three sides: the Mississippi Sound to the south, the Bay of St. Louis to the west and Bayou Portage to the north.


The Pass Christian School District operates the schools in the city, and in the inland, unincorporated areas around and to the north of DeLisle. The Pass Christian Middle School ,formerly the Pass Christian High School, on the corner of 2nd Street and Church Street was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina. A monument proclaiming that the school had withstood Hurricane Camille was left standing. The new Pass Christian High School, which opened in 2001, was flooded almost to the second level, but was renovated and re-opened in October 2006. The Pass Christian Elementary School, across the street from the high school, was also flooded and was torn down because of mold concerns. Delisle Elementary was the only school left standing, and became a temporary grounds for all of the students of the Pass Christian School District, housed either in temporary trailer classrooms or in the elementary school, sharing cafeteria and gymnasium facilities with the school.

A new educational complex housing Pass Christian Middle School and Pass Christian Elementary School is the $32 million Pass Christian Center of Excellence. It includes a day care center and an attached Boys & Girls Club,[2] on the north side of campus. It opened in 2010. As of 2011, Delisle Elementary School has been torn down and is under reconstruction.[3]

Pass Christian High School is a Blue Ribbon school.[4]

The parochial elementary and middle school of St. Paul's Roman Catholic church was destroyed by Katrina, and the school was merged with the neighboring Long Beach parochial school to form St. Vincent de Paul School. Coast Episcopal High School is a parochial high school in Pass Christian.


The exact date when Native Americans first arrived in the Gulf Coast area is not known, but artifacts have been found suggesting that humans have inhabited the area for at least 10,000 years.[5][6]

Due to migration and dislocation of tribes throughout the area, it is difficult to say, with any certainty, which tribes occupied Pass Christian at any given time. It is safe to say, however, that for thousands of years many nomadic tribes have stopped to take advantage of the areas oyster reefs, abundant wildlife, and fresh artesian waters. To The west of Pass Christian lived The Acolapissa, a small tribe living on the lower Pearl River in 1699. To the east of Pass Christian lived The Biloxi people who lived around the Gulf coast and Biloxi Bay in 1699, later moving to the west shore of Mobile Bay by 1702. In 1722 they were reported in the old Acolapissa village on the Pearl River, but drifted back to the Pascagoula River area by 1730. [7] To the west of Biloxi lived The Pensacola people,they lived around the present area of Pensacola in west Florida. They reported by Bienville in 1725 to be living on the Pearl River not far from the Biloxi. [7]

Indian mounds can be found throughout the Gulf coast region of southern Mississippi, but many have been destroyed by artifact hunters, farmers, developers, and flooding. Shells from middens were used as roadbed material throughout the town. A 1768 English map shows one large mound existed on the shore near to Market Street. Others existed at Bayou Portage and the Shelly Plantation on the shore north of the Bay of St. Louis near DeLisle.[8] The mounds and middens in the area containing arrowheads, pottery, and human skeletons were excavated by amateur archaeologists over the years and many items were recovered and are in private collections. At the border of Pass Christian and Long Beach near White Harbor Road meets Hwy. 90 there once existed an Indian village, whose inhabitants were referred to by locals as "The Pitcher Point Indians". The approximate location of the Indian Village is just a few hundred yards east of White Harbor Road. There are no ruins at this location but the beach in this area has produced many arrowheads and pottery shards over the years.

Spanish explorers[]

It is likely that Pitcher Point is the location where survivors of the 1528 Pánfilo de Narváez Expedition landed naked and starving among a people called the Carnones. This story was told to DeVaca by friendly Indians who stated that, “the natives had killed the Spanish who were so feeble that they could not defend themselves.” [9] [10] [11] [12]

Colonial era[]

Pass Christian was re-discovered by French-Canadian explorers in 1699, shortly after the first French colony was established in Biloxi. In June of 1699, while sounding the channel at the Pass Christian peninsula, the French named that channel Passe aux Huîtres for the many oysters they found there. Pass Christian was named for a nearby deepwater pass, which in turn was named for Nicholas Christian L'Adnier, who lived on nearby Cat Island beginning in 1746.[13]


In 1781 all of Pass Christian peninsula was owned by Julia de la Brosse (Widow Asmard) who owned and operated a dairy and cattle farm on the Pass Peninsula in the 1740s.[14] Upon her death in 1799, Widow Asmard deeded 800 arpents - the entire downtown Pass Christian to Charles Asmar, who upon his death left the property to his heirs. Pass Christian was officially chartered as a town in 1848.[15][16][17]

Battle of 1814[]

On the night of December 12, 1814, more than 1000 British troops and 42 barges en route to New Orleans moved through the pass between Ship and Cat Islands and sailed westward along the Mississippi coast, passing just offshore of Pass Christian. They were closely watched by Lt. Thomas ap Catesby Jones, commanding the seven American boats standing off Malheureux Island as the British proceeded to anchor off Henderson’s Point (western tip of Pass Christian) the night of the 13th of December. He dispatched the tender, Sea Horse, under the command of Sailing Master William Johnson into the Bay of Saint Louis to assist in the removal of the public stores lest they fall to the British. He then sent the ship, Alligator to Chalmette to warn General Andrew Jackson of the British approach.

Word of the British fleet’s arrival spread throughout the county and a large crowd gathered at sunrise on the 14th, along the bluff to watch the fleet passing. Three British boats were dispatched to capture the Sea Horse as it endeavored to load munitions below the bluff at Ulman Avenue. Among the crowd was an elderly lady on crutches, a Miss Claiborne, who was visiting from Natchez. About 2 p.m., on observing the impending attack, she is quoted as saying “Will no one fire a shot in defense of our country” whereupon it is said that she took Mayor Toulme’s cigar and lighted one of the cannon. The ball sailed past the Seahorse and landed close to the approaching British. Assuming that he had fire cover from shore, Capt. Johnson seized the initiative and attacked the British fleet. He had a 6-pounder (canon) on his deck and after half an hour of intense barrage the British retreated. Four more barges joined the first three and the seven renewed the attack. Although Capt. Johnson’s defense was gallant, superior numbers forced him to blow up the little schooner rather than surrender her.

The rest of the American fleet in the Mississippi Sound, consisting of four barges, was anchored in the westerly current between Malheureux Island and Point Clear. On the morning of the 15th, the British rowed their boats into the current until they were about two miles away where they anchored to take tea (breakfast) and rest before attacking. About 10:30 they closed on the brave little fleet under the command of Lt. Thomas ap Catesby Jones.

By 12:40 the battle was over. Six Americans were dead and 35 were wounded. The British suffered 17 dead and 77 wounded. The greater significance of this battle and the greater loss to the British was the passage of time allowing General Andrew Jackson to gather more troops and to complete fortifications for the defense at Chalmette where victory over the British was achieved on January 7.

The British were so certain of victory that they brought civil servants to assume governing the areas they expected to conquer with them, as well as wives and children who were waiting on the Mississippi Coast islands. However, the great victory for the Americans was rendered inconsequential because the peace treaty had already been signed and word had not reached the Coast.

Mississippi became a state in December, 1817 and the first act of the Mississippi legislature was to incorporate the city of Bay Saint Louis (directly across the bay from Pass Christian) to become the capital of the state. The incorporation was completed at the morning session but at the afternoon session, the representative from Rankin County changed his vote and Natchez was designated capital instead. It remained the capital for two years before the capital was moved to Jackson where it remains.


Pass Christian Light was one of the first lighthouses built in the state. The lighthouse and keeper's dwelling sat in the center of town on the main street on a half-acre (0.2 ha) plot First lit in 1831, it was deactivated in 1882 and later demolished.

Civil War[]

On Sept. 4, 1861, 69 men were mustered in Pass Christian to form the Dahlgren Guards Company.[18] In the early months of 1862, the women of the Pass created a flag that represented "their love for their men, devotion for their sovereign state, and dedication to the war effort."[19][20] The flag they createdThe Pass Christian Flag" was an adaptation of the official flag of the Sovereign Republic of Mississippi.[21] It became the flag of Company H (“Dahlgren Guards” from Harrison County). In early April 1862 following a pressed march with full packs from Pass Christian toward Handsboro, MS and upon reaching the Long Beach area (about 10 miles), the tired troops of the 3rd Regt MS Infantry were apprised of the Federal (Union) bombardment of the harbor at Pass Christian. Immediately, they reversed their march to return to protect Pass Christian. Comprising about 200 men, the three Confederate companies of the 3rd Regt were engaged by the "9th Regt Connecticut" numbering about 1,000 men supported by artillery fire. The 3rd Regt fought for more than an hour, but were forced to evacuate their positions. The 9th Regt burned the camp and part of the clothing and stores of the three companies and took the flag. The Pass Christian Flag was paraded through the streets and was misrepresented as a captured Confederate "Battle Flag. " By some accounts, it is still being erroneously reported that the 9th Regt became the first Union Soldiers to capture a Confederate Unit’s Flag. The recently elected Col Thomas Mellon of the 3rd Regt MS Infantry, in a meeting with the commanding Officer of the 9th Regt, insisted the “flag” had been stolen and not seized bravely in battle and therefore should be returned. ( Following the War, it was returned on Connecticut Day at the New Orleans Exposition on February 26, 1885. [19] [22]

SS Pass Christian[]

Ship was a troop transport that served with the United States Military Sea Transportation Service during the Korean War.The ship was originally laid down as SS Pass Christian by Ingalls Shipbuilding at Pascagoula, Mississippi, and completed in June 1943. She was transferred to the Army, and renamed USAT Fred C. Ainsworth.

Yacht Club[]

The PCYC is known as the birthplace of yachting in the South. The Southern Yacht Club, established in 1849, was the first yacht club in the South and the second in the United States, and was originally located in Pass Christian before moving to New Orleans in 1857.[23]


Pass Christian Harbor

The Municipal Harbor was formalized in 1956 with the creation of a Harbor Commission. In 1958, an 11-ft (106.68m) high, 350-ft (106.68m) long, concrete, breakwater wall was constructed in the sound by the T.L. James Company. There are only two such concrete harbor walls in the world, with the other in Japan. Almost 1000 linear ft (304.80m) of public fishing is permitted on the two breakwalls. The harbor consists of seven piers, four assigned for pleasure craft and three for commercial vessels. Before it was destroyed by waves from Hurricane Katrina there were 350 slips ranging in berth sizes from 31-ft (9.44m) to 84-ft (25.60m), in addition to a skiff-pier providing 20 tie-ups. Water, electricity, showers, restrooms, and a bait and fuel station and a vessel pump-out station were available, all overseen from the two-story Harbor Master office.[24] To obtain a slip in the harbor stop by or call the Harbor Master office located at the harbor on South Market St.[25]

The New Harbor Expansion[]

In 2014 The 33 million dollar harbor expansion project was completed after 3 years of construction. The new harbor provides 4 new boat ramps and 102 commercial boat slips up to 25x70ft (7.62m x 21.33m) and 62 recreational boat slips up to 24x40ft (7.31m x 12.19m). The average depth of the harbor is 10 ft (3.048m). The paved parking area provides 96 truck/trailer parking spaces and 215 automobile parking spaces. There is a 1087 linear foot (331.31m) East access structure for commerical seafood operations and another 1087 linear foot (331.31m) is accessible for public fishing. The harbor is ADA compliant and There are 2 public restrooms. Docks Meet clean marina criteria with sewer pumpout capability at every slip. [25]

Approaching from the water It is recommended that you approach on the east side due to shoaling on the west entrance. As of 10/2013, the western approach carried 5 feet in a narrow approach. the eastern approach carries 7.5 feet and is wider. Beware of new fishing reefs one mile south and 0.8 miles east of the harbor entrance. Broken concrete reefs are built on existing shoals and extend just above the high water mark. Also note there are many poles marking the oyster reefs south of the western approach to the harbor in eight-foot depths.[26]

Oyster Reefs[]

Before The BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill, Pass Christian possessed some of the finest oyster reefs in the world and have served as an anchor for Pass Christian’s economy since it's founding. The oyster reefs that lie just offshore are among the largest on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The Pass Christian group of Oyster Reefs have been documented on maps since Pierre Le Moyne d'Iberville and Jean-Baptiste Le Moyne, Sieur de Bienville chartered these waters in 1699.[27] Early French maps of the area refer to the reefs and batures as Passe aux Huîtres (Oyster Pass). There are nine reefs comprising an area of about twenty square miles. Further west are the Henderson Point and Calico reefs which are one to two miles south of Henderson Point. Harvests in the hundreds of thousands of sacks were quite common pior to Hurricane Katrina. But the storm, then the oil spill, then the intrusion of fresh water from the Bonnet Carré Spillway have taken a toll.[28] The reefs were briefly closed to commercial harvesting after heavy rains caused a drop in water quality in late February of 2013, and again in January of 2015.[29]

Oyster Reef Restoration project[]

An $11 million Oyster Reef Restoration project was initiated in April, 2013 which will enhance existing reefs within the footprint of the harvestable areas in the western Mississippi Sound by providing a hard substrate in which oyster larvae can attach and grow. This will help restore natural resources injured by exposure to oil, dispersant, and/or response actions following the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill. Of Mississippi’s existing 12,000 acres of oyster reef, this project will enhance 1,430 acres by placing cultch material (oyster shell and limestone) as needed. In the enhanced areas, Mississippians can expect to see harvestable oyster production within three to six years following placement of the clutch. During the fall of 2012, the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) placed 20,372 cubic yards of limestone gravel over approximately 200 acres located on the southeastern portion of the Pass Christian Reef.[30][31]

War Memorial Park[]

War Memorial Park, located on Scenic Drive is Pass Christian's central park which was organized in 1945 in memory of young men from the city who served in World War II. The park includes a monument dedicated to those who served in the armed forces, as well as pedestal plaques placed by the Bicentennial Committee of Pass Christian in 1976, dedicated to the Declaration of Independence, the Liberty Bell, the Flag, the Constitution and the Star-Spangled Banner. There are also monuments to those lost in hurricanes Camille and Katrina, as well as a monument dedicated to the volunteers who helped the city after Katrina.[32] The park also has playgrounds, a recreational walking and exercise track, a gazebo, and a number of unique tree sculptures created by artist Marlin Miller, including a soaring eagle dedicated to Tuskegee Airman Retired Air Force Col. Lawrence E. Roberts, one of the nation's first black military pilots and the father of ABC news anchor Robin Roberts[33]

Middlegate Japanese Gardens[]

Between 1923 and 1929 New Orleans residents Rudolf Hecht and Lynne Watkins Hecht developed Middlegate Japanese Gardens at their summer home[34] in Pass Christian, Mississippi.[35] The Hechts built Middlegate Japanese gardens to perpetuate their pleasant memories of their travels in Japan. The gardens are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Since 1923 when the Hechts established them, Middlegate Japanese Gardens have been private, residential gardens.[36]The garden is featured in The North American Japanese Garden Association (NAJGA) 2013 annual journal[37] and The Smithsonian Institution's 2013 Archives of American Gardens (AAG) 2010 annual report.[38] [39]

Sherman Castle[]

James M. Sherman,a horticulturist, agriculturist, and author of several books, at age 67, began construction of Sherman Castle. Designed and built of solid cement, the steel-reinforced castle located at 1012 West Beach, Highway 90 has withstood many hurricanes. At the time of his death, Sherman had completed most of the structure with walls that are nine inches thick. Much of the structure was first laid out in molds that were shaped and poured with concrete to erect the castle piece by piece. A plaque, hanging within, marked the theme of the Castle, "God is my Sculptor."This property is included in The Scenic Drive Historic District[40][41]

Hurricane Camille[]

Pass Christian was in the path of two of the most intense hurricanes ever to hit the United States--Hurricane Camille on August 17, 1969, and Hurricane Katrina on August 29, 2005. Each hurricane caused the near total destruction of the city.

Hurricane Camille, the 2nd strongest hurricane of the 20th century, was declared a hurricane (meaning it had sustained wind speeds of 74 m.p.h.) on Friday, August 15, 1969. By the time it smashed into the Mississippi Gulf Coast at Pass Christian, Mississippi 2 days later on Sunday, August 17, it had sustained winds of 190 m.p.h. with gusts in the 210 – 220 m.p.h. range. It also had the 2nd lowest barometric pressure ever recorded [909 millibars (26.85)]. Waves off the Gulf Coast crested between twenty-two and twenty-eight feet above normal tide range. Camille was only the 2nd hurricane on record to reach Category 5 at the time of landfall, as well as being the 2nd most intense hurricane at the time of landfall. The 1935 Florida Keys Hurricane was the first Category hurricane as well as the strongest hurricane to hit the United States coastline this century. The eye of the storm was about 12 miles in diameter and crossed almost directly over the town of Waveland at a forward speed of 15 mph. The great volume of water moving inland up the Jourdan River floodplain was typical of other estuary streams along the coast. The volume flowing inland at the tide crest was estimated to have been at least 90,000 cfs. This volume is more than three times the flood discharge expected on the Jourdan River on the average of once in 50 years.Pass Christian is widely considered to be ground-zero for the storm's damage.[42][43] The storm took the lives of more people from the "Pass" than any other coastal community,with 78 people having lost their lives.[44]

Hurricane Camille destroyed the Richelieu Apartments killing eight people who had chosen to ride the storm out. The Richelieu Apartments faced the Gulf of Mexico and was less than 250 feet away from the surf on the beach. Early Sunday, August 17, the storm was southeast of New Orleans by 200 miles. A Hurricane Warning was then announced for the entire Mississippi Coast. Evacuation was advised but some of the occupants of the Richelieu apartments ignored the warning. At 10:15 p.m. on August 17, 1969 the front wall of the storm came ashore. The Richelieu Apartments were totally destroyed; all that remained were the foundation and the shell of the in-ground swimming pool, the force of the water pounded the concrete block construction until it completely destroyed the building. The hurricane party depicted in "Hurricane", a 74 min TV Movie featuring some notable stars includes actual footage of hurricane "Camille".

Hurricane Katrina[]

On August 29, 2005, Pass Christian was almost completely destroyed by Hurricane Katrina. Of the approximately 8,000 homes in Pass Christian, all but 500 were damaged or destroyed. In spite of the fact that the beachfront Scenic Drive follows the crest of a small bluff, affording it some elevation, most of the historic mansions along the road were severely damaged, and many were completely destroyed, including the superbly restored Greek Revival mansion "Union Quarters" described in the National Register of Historic Places as having been built in 1855. A cast iron fence fronted the property enclosing a Magnolia Historical Marker which was dedicated in 1960. It read, "Union officers were temporarily quartered here during the invasion of Pass Christian."

Hurricane Katrina totally destroyed the local public library, which was rebuilt.[45] Thirteen members of the city's police department retreated to the library after the police station became unsafe and water from the Gulf of Mexico began to pour in.

The library was immediately north of City Hall across a small parking lot but was at a lower elevation. When the water crested the elevation of City Hall, the police cars in the parking lot began to float and were carried around the parking lot by the current. One car struck the south side doors, causing them to implode, and the Gulf of Mexico driven by Katrina's powerful winds rushed into the building. With no way to fight against the current they were trapped inside a concrete box that was rapidly filling with water. Knowing that they had to escape they attempted to shoot the glass out of the north side of the building. This was unsuccessful, as the bullets ricocheted off the glass. The laminated glass proved impervious to the .45 caliber rounds of the police-issue handguns. The force of the water entering the building after the southern wall was destroyed by the car was far too strong to swim against. The only way out was with the current. Police Chief John Dubbisson swam to the rear doors that had to be opened where he successfully touched the push bar. He then grabbed a railing before the storm surge could carry him off. All that were inside the library made it outside and rode out the rest of the storm on the roof.[46][47]

The storm surge from Hurricane Katrina that hit Pass Christian was estimated at 8.5 m (27.8 ft),[48] which is the US record high,[49] leveling Pass Christian up to half a mile inland from the shore; estimation of highest storm surges was complicated because high-water markers were also destroyed. Highway 90 along the beach was damaged, and the bridge over the Bay of St. Louis was thrown completely apart, not being reopened until a new bridge was partially completed in May 2007. (Connection was temporarily replaced by a ferry service.) Sewage contamination rendered the local water supply unusable, as some samples tested positive for more than 250 bacteria and parasites. By late September 2005, access was restricted south of the railroad tracks (about four blocks inland) without proper credentials, as crews continued to search for victims and clear debris. In early 2007, although rebuilding was underway in much of the city, a large portion of empty, deserted homes and other structures remain. Many residents were still living in FEMA trailers, and out-of-state volunteers were still needed for the rebuilding effort.

NMCB 1[]

Naval Construction Battalion Center Gulfport, Mississippi, deployed Seabees on Sept. 9 to neighboring communities throughout Harrison and Stone counties, including Pass Christian, to assist its citizens with disaster recovery in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. In a measure to improve health, sanitation and morale, the Seabees cleared approximately three miles of railroad track for a temporary sewer line, they set up a laundry unit and installed a nine-head shower unit for the firefighters and volunteers. They also built temporary housing to house 1,000 people rendered homeless by the impact of Hurricane Katrina. 250 Seabees from detachments across the United States gathered behind the city's War Memorial Park, where they constructed a temporary police department headquarters and other municipal offices. This was not the first time that Seabees have answered the call to duty in Pass Christian. The naval construction teams performed a similar feat after Hurricane Camille struck the town hard in 1969 by providing health and sanitation services, cleanup, and food distribution.


Pass Christian's government is a mayor–council government system. The current mayor, Leo "Chipper" McDermott, was elected in a special election in 2006, following the resignation of the previous mayor, and then re-elected for a full term in 2009.

Current Board of Aldermen [50]

  • WARD I Buddy Clark
  • WARD II Earl Washington
  • WARD III Anthony Hall
  • WARD IV Victor Pickich
  • ALDERMAN AT LARGE Kenny Torgeson



Gulf Coast Prestressed Concrete[]

Gulf Coast Prestress Inc is located at 494 North Market St. GCP is a Prestressed Concrete Manufacturer of specialized prestressed concrete products to include spun cast cylinder piling, AASHTO beams, Bulb T-Girders, and Florida I-Beams for use in bridge and highway construction,surge barriers, among other industrial uses.[51] Established in 1967 and incorporated in Mississippi, GCP has been an anchor of the Pass economy. Current estimates show this company has an annual revenue of $10 to 20 million and employs a staff of approximately 100 to 249.[52]

In 1999 GCP was awarded First Place in “Top Projects 1998-1999″ by The Gulf Coast Prestress Contractors Association(GSPCA) for their work on The Highway 90 Overpass at Henderson Point and In 2002 GCP was awarded 1st place in “Top Projects 2001-2002" for their work on The U.S. Hwy. 90 Bridge over The Pascagoula River in Pascagoula, MS[53]

DuPont Delisle[]

The DuPont DeLisle site is located off of Kiln Delisle Road on the north shore of the Bay of St. Louis. Since 1979 the site has grown to 570 DuPont employees and 400 contract employees. DuPont DeLisle one of the largest Titanium Dioxide (TiO2) plants in the world.DuPont Titanium Technologies is the world’s largest manufacturer of titanium dioxide products.[54][55] The town of Pass Christian is near the plant, directly across the Bay of St. Louis. Some community members also expressed concerns that chemical releases, as reported on EPA’s Toxic Release Inventory, from the DuPont plant could have contaminated the community’s water and air. DuPont DeLisle’s titanium dioxide plant reported the third highest amount of dioxin-like compounds in EPA’s Toxic Release Inventory (TRI).

Environmental Concerns following Hurricane Katrina

In 2005, the Hurricane Katrina storm surge flooded significant portions of the plant. The hazardous chemicals released during this event directly impacted the local environment by introducing toxins into the food-chain. Unlike other aquatic organisms, blue crabs don't have the ability to metabolize quickly certain dioxin-like compounds. Polychlorinated dibenzofurans that predominate in the coke and ore solids waste stream of the plant.

The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) has been working in the DeLisle, Mississippi area in response to community concerns about environmental contamination and health. In May 2006, ATSDR checked to see if soil and sediment tested after Hurricane Katrina, could cause a health risk to residents living near the DuPont DeLisle Titanium Plant in DeLisle. ATSDR determined that people living near the plant were not at risk for health problems due to soil and sediment contamination. An exposure investigation (EI) to determine if blue crabs from St. Louis Bay contained higher than usual levels of dioxins was also done, which determined That dioxins are slightly elevated in blue crabs from St. Louis Bay as compared to those from Heron Bay, Blue-crab meat from the St. Louis Bay is safe to eat in moderation, and that Eating meat from 4-6 crabs per day, on average, is unlikely to cause health problems.

The report contained a warning, however.Scientists and doctors are concerned about the possibility of reproductive and developmental defects in children whose mothers are exposed to dioxins during pregnancy. As a result, women are advised to avoid contact with dioxins by limiting the amount of animal fat that they eat. This includes the mustard of the blue crab, which is fatty tissue.[56]

Seafood processing[]

There are a number of Seafood Processors currently operating in Pass Christian which specialize in fresh Gulf seafood.[57]

History of Seafood Processing[]

Lewis Hine, an American sociologist and photographer for the National Child Labor Committee, photographed children employed as oyster shuckers at Pass Packing Company in 1911.[58]

The Pass Packing Company was formed on May 16, 1899, with George Brandt, F Andressen, Frank Sutter, TV Courtenay, JH Knost, and George H Taylor as its founding officers. This plant was bought out by the Dunbar and Dukate interests of Biloxi who also acquired the cannery at Bay St. Louis. The plant was located at the present site of the Pass Christian Yacht Club. Originally built in 1902, the building was destroyed by the 1947 hurricane. Workers arrived by truck or box car and were housed in special cottages owned by the factory. There was a large apartment building on Market Avenue which the locals called the "White Elephant", and was reported to house as many as 30 families. Additionally, there were the Row Houses consisting of rows of duplexes built one after the other.The "Green Row" on Dunbar Street had 16 duplexes, and the "Red Row" on Woodman Avenue had 19 duplexes.These houses were eventually abandoned when in 1956 mechanical oyster shuckers were installed, thereby eliminating the need for so many employees.

Besides seafood packer George Washington Dunbar, there was Ernest Hudson Merrick, who was one of the first importers of out of state labor for the seafood packing industry at Pass Christian. In 1908, he started visiting the Pass during summers to escape the heat of New Orleans. During his summers he became interested in the potential of fishing along the coast and proceeded to build a fleet of fishing schooners and a factory for processing, packing, and shipping oysters and shrimp,”said one of his sons, Bill Merrick. He was one of the first to ship fresh oysters and shrimp to the north packed in ice. The delicacy of the Gulf Coast oysters created a large demand in the Midwest.

Child Labor at oyster canneries[]

Lewis Hine,an American sociologist and photographer for the National Child Labor Committee photographed Young oyster shuckers Pass Christian on 2/24/1911. His photographs helped to bring about public awareness of illegal labor practices and was instrumental in changing the child labor laws in the United States.[59]

Economic Impacts of DHOS[]

Seafood production in the region has been severely impacted by large scale fish die-offs.[60] The The Deepwater Horizon oil spill, which occurred in the spring and summer of 2010—along with the presence of toxic sediments stirred up by Hurricane Katrina and record amounts of fresh water diverted into the Bonnet Carre Spillway in Louisiana—have brought seafood production to a standstill. Offshore oyster beds were hit especially hard. Field crews reported a 50 percent to 65 percent mortality rate in some areas. An even greater mortality rate of 90 percent to 95 percent was seen in other oyster beds. [61]Jobs Impacts of the Seafood Industry[62]Sales Impacts of the Seafood Industry[63]

Effects of DHOS on Marine Environment[]

In the five years before the BP oil spill, there were a total of 16 dead Kemp's Ridley sea turtles reported in Mississippi. In 2010, the year of the spill, that number exploded to 289 dead turtles washing ashore, many of them at pass Christian.[64] Marine biologists have found unusually high numbers of dead dolphins washing up on the Gulf Coast[65]

BP’s Vessels-of-Opportunity crewmen reported submerged oil around the Pass Christian oyster reefs in early August. A marine biologist working with the oyster industry stated that “On or before 11 August “a massive kill of pelagic and demersal fishes (and blue crabs) occurred in the same area.” "Black water” conditions were observed over the Pass Christian oyster reefs and fishermen found dispersed oil absorbent pads lowered in the water column. “Black water “absorbs more solar energy than normal Sound water and that will elevate the water temperature.” Anecdotal evidence suggests the deaths of fishes, crabs, and now oysters resulted from the hypoxic or low dissolved oxygen conditions in Mississippi Sound and the Pass Christian area during early August. In September of 2010 Mississippi Department of Marine Resources took oystermen out to the reefs off Pass Christian Harbor. They found enough empty oyster shells to cast doubt over the coming fall season. DMR dredged and pulled up catches with 80 to 90 percent dead.[66]

Notable people[]

  • Bidwell Adam, Gulfport lawyer and Democratic politician, Lieutenant Governor of Mississippi from 1928 to 1932; reared in Pass Christian and graduate of Pass Christian High School[67]
  • Phelan Beale, original owner of Grey Gardens
  • Dave Dennis, businessman and candidate for governor of Mississippi
  • Chris Epps, former Mississippi Department of Corrections commissioner, owned a condominium in Pass Christian[68]
  • Captain John Handy, jazz musician
  • Jimmy Johnson, cartoonist and creator of the syndicated newspaper comic strip Arlo and Janis
  • Margaret Loesch, television executive and producer, formerly founding CEO of Fox Kids Networks and the US Hallmark Channel, currently CEO of The Hub, a TV network
  • Robin Roberts, ABC News' Good Morning America anchor who returned home to provide emotional coverage of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina
  • Ben C. Toledano, lawyer and author, Pass Christian resident since 1991; politician in New Orleans prior to 1973[69]
  • Jesmyn Ward, novelist, winner of the 2011 National Book Award for Fiction; born in DeLisle

See also[]

  • J.W. Randolph School (Pass Christian, Mississippi)
  • Pass Christian Lighthouse


  1. ^ "Pass Christian (city) QuickFacts from the US Census Bureau". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  2. ^ Samuels, Christina A. "Region's Schools Turn Storm's Havoc Into Transformation." EducationWeek. August 25, 2010. Retrieved August 4, 2012.
  3. ^ "Delisle Elementary School to be torn down, rebuilt". 3 August 2009. Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  4. ^ Mississippi Assessment and Accountability Reporting System, Retrieved 2011-3-10.
  5. ^ "Archaeology and Prehistoric Mississippi". Retrieved 4 March 2015. 
  6. ^ "The Prehistory of the Texas Coastal Zone: 10,000 Years of Changing Environment and Culture". Retrieved 4 March 2015. 
  7. ^ a b "MS Archaeology Trails - Special Topics". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  8. ^ Dan Ellis. "Pine Hills Hotel". Retrieved 4 March 2015. 
  9. ^ Florida Center for Instructional Technology. "Floripedia: De Narvaez, Panfilo". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  11. ^ "Early Indians". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  12. ^ "History of Florida". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  13. ^ [1]
  14. ^
  15. ^ "Pass Time Line". Retrieved 4 March 2015. 
  16. ^
  17. ^
  18. ^
  19. ^ a b
  20. ^ "The Flag". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  21. ^ "Pass Christian, Mississippi (U.S.)". Retrieved 4 March 2015. 
  22. ^
  23. ^ "Southern Yacht Club". International Council of Yacht Clubs. Retrieved July 2014. 
  24. ^
  25. ^ a b "PC: Harbor". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  26. ^ Further. "Pass Christian Harbor in Mississippi, United States - Details & Reviews". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  27. ^
  28. ^ Steve Phillips (19 November 2013). "Pass Christian oyster reefs close temporarily". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  29. ^ Amber Jones. "Several oyster reefs closed due to rainfall". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  30. ^ "PROJECTS". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  31. ^
  32. ^
  33. ^ "Pass Christian War Memorial Park". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  34. ^!303783!0
  35. ^
  36. ^ Margaret Anne Legett, Middlegate Japanese Gardens: Preservation, Private Property, and Public Memory. Hattiesburg: University of Southern Mississippi, 1964.
  37. ^
  38. ^
  39. ^
  40. ^
  41. ^ "Sherman's Requiem". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  42. ^ Jonathan Brannan (17 August 2014). "Pass Christian remembers Camille 45 years later". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  43. ^
  44. ^ "Memorial -- Gulf Coast". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  45. ^ "Hurricane Katrina Related Damages to Public Libraries in Mississippi" (September 2005), Mississippi Library Commission, web:ALA-Katrina.
  46. ^ David Kithcart. "A Daring Escape from Katrina’s Flood Waters". The 700 Club. Christian Broadcasting Network. Retrieved October 23, 2014. 
  47. ^ Savidge, Martin (mdy 2005-11-03, [[{{{3}}}|{{{3}}}]]). "Shootout at Pass Christian". The Daily Nightly. MSNBC. Retrieved October 23, 2014. 
  48. ^ Knabb, Richard D; Rhome, Jamie R.; Brown, Daniel P (2005-12-20; updated 2006-08-10). "Tropical Cyclone Report: Hurricane Katrina: 23–30 August 2005" (PDF). National Hurricane Center. Retrieved 2008-10-11. 
  49. ^ "U.S. Storm Surge Records". 
  50. ^ "PC: Board of Alderman". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  51. ^ "GULF COAST PRE-STRESS, INC. » Products". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  52. ^
  53. ^ "Awards". gspcaonline. Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  54. ^ "DuPont Titanium Technologies". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  55. ^ "DTT Manufacturing Sites". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  56. ^
  57. ^
  58. ^ "Lewis Hine Photographs". Retrieved 4 March 2015. 
  59. ^ "The History Place - Child Labor in America: Investigative Photos of Lewis Hine". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  60. ^ "Economic Impacts; Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill; Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  61. ^ "Mississippi oyster harvest could be lost". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  62. ^ "Economic Impacts; Gulf of Mexico; Oil Spill; Deepwater Horizon". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  63. ^ "Economic Impacts; Gulf of Mexico; Oil Spill; Deepwater Horizon". Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  64. ^
  65. ^ "BP Oil Spill: How Bad Is Damage to Gulf One Year Later? - TIME". 19 April 2011.,8599,2066031,00.html. Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  66. ^ "FDA Lowers the Bar for Gulf Seafood Safety". Food Safety News. Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  67. ^ John H. Lang, History of Harrison County, Mississippi Dixie Press, 1935, p. 135
  68. ^ Mitchell, Jerry and Jimmie E. Gates. "Chris Epps, Cecil McCrory plead guilty to corruption" (Archive). The Clarion-Ledger. February 25, 2015. Retrieved on February 27, 2015.
  69. ^ "Toledano, Ben C.". Retrieved June 8, 2014. 

Further reading[]

External links[]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to:

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Pass Christian, Mississippi. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.