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What's New in Jackson County

Monday, April 16, 2012

Nicole Grundel

County officially kicks off Bicentennial Celebration

Eleven graphic historical panels illustrating a timeline of Jackson County’s history were unveiled on Apr. 16 in the new Jackson County Services Complex as the county’s Bicentennial Celebration officially gets underway.

The Apr. 16 unveiling was held on the second floor walkway in the new services complex located in downtown Pascagoula. Eight panels feature the development of the county by each quarter of the century since 1812. Two additional panels educate the public on the much earlier history preceding the Bicentennial and the text of the resolution of the Mississippi State Legislature declaring Jackson County’s creation on Dec. 18, 1812.

Elected officials from the county’s four cities and others were invited to participate in the unveiling ceremony. District 5 Supervisor John McKay unveiled the first two panels followed by District 1 Supervisor Barry Cumbest, District 4 Supervisor Troy Ross, District 2 Supervisor Melton Harris, Bicentennial Committee Representative George Sholl, Moss Point Mayor Aneice Lidell, Pascagoula Mayor Robbie Maxwell, Gautier Mayor Tommy Fortenberry, and District 3 Supervisor Mike Mangum, who each unveiled a banner featuring 25 years of Jackson County history.

Members of the Jackson County Homemakers Club, established in 1935 as the Jackson County Tomato Club, served as hostesses.


A more detailed timeline of the county’s history is posted on the county’s Bicentennial website, www.JacksonCounty200.com. The site was created to provide the public with Bicentennial schedules, updates, histories, photographs, places to visit, and background on a multitude of categories, including railroads, cities and communities. For those who would like to become involved in the Bicentennial, how-to ideas are also available on this website.

John McKay, president of the Jackson County Board of Supervisors, said the county is producing promotional materials, sponsoring a County Fair fireworks exhibit and other activities. "We welcome the partnership of clubs, organizations, businesses and corporations in helping us offer a fuller schedule of events to not only celebrate our 200th birthday but to provide educational opportunities for those who want to know more about our place in history," he said.

Some bicentennial events have already taken place, like the third annual Fête La Pointe gala featuring a tableau with actors playing characters from 1812, and a presentation on the Civil War history of Jackson County’s Twiggs Rifles Company at Pascagoula Public Library, both in March.

Event planners Nicole Grundel and Monica Cooper of the Jackson County Public Relations Department have several projects in the works to involve the county’s young people and those of all ages. They are assisted by Bicentennial Committee members Lois Castigliola, George Sholl, Joe Parisi, Michael Graham, Liz Ford and Joanne Anderson.

“We are getting considerable interest and cooperation from various festival planners who are incorporating the Bicentennial into their events,“ says Grundel. “It would also be great to see a Bicentennial 5K run, bike ride, kayak race, or team sport tournament, if someone would like to sponsor one of those.”

A “passport” with 19 sites of historical interest, will be made available for the county’s eight high schools. Students who visit the stops outlined in the brochure may do a rubbing on engraved plates at each site to document their visits and qualify for a certificate of completion. “We are encouraging all teachers and students, especially those in history classes, to participate,” Grundel said. “This is a creative and interesting way to increase awareness of our county’s place in history.”

The passports will also be available on the bicentennial website for anyone to download.

An essay contest is planned for grades 10-12. Details will be announced. Scholarships will be awarded to winners. Sponsors so far include the Duchess de Chaumont chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, Pascagoula Men’s Club and the Jackson County Historical and Genealogical Society. Additional sponsors of prizes are encouraged to participate.

Historical informational kiosks prepared by the JCHGS will be installed later in the year marking significant local events, people and sites. These include: Camp Jefferson Davis, an encampment built on Greenwood Island during the War of 1848 to accommodate soldiers who were going and coming from Mexico, the old L&N Railroad Depot in Pascagoula, and a Civil War battle that saw a black Union Regiment attack the Pascagoula shore. The kiosks will be conveniently placed for public viewing, some along the bike trail of the Pascagoula Parks and Recreation Commission, a partner in the project. Part of the 12 kiosks will be erected during this Bicentennial Year.

The May 27 Sounds by the Sea concert will note the Bicentennial both graphically and musically.

The commissioning of the nuclear submarine USS Mississippi in June comes at a fortuitous time for the county’s birthday year.  Top local, state and national figures are scheduled to participate in this notable event.

On Oct. 6 during the annual Zonta Arts and Crafts Festival, a theatrical presentation noting the county’s 200 years will be presented under the direction of Renee Hague, local historian at Pascagoula Public Library. The specific time and location will be announced.

The Jackson County Fair will feature a special Bicentennial fireworks display with time and location to be announced. It is a first for the fair.

The Nov. 1 annual Krebs Cemetery Tour will feature actors portraying historical figures who helped build our county since 1812. This event is held at the cemetery adjacent to the LaPointe Krebs House (formerly the Old Spanish Fort) in Pascagoula.

Bicentennial banners will be displayed at venues like the Peter Anderson Arts Festival in Ocean Springs on Nov. 3-4, and Downtown for the Holidays in Pascagoula on Dec. 7.

"Plans are still in the process for the County’s official birthday celebration in December," Grundel said. "We are hoping to have a Bicentennial band and choir, ROTC Honor Guard, re-enactments, refreshments, installation of a Bicentennial commemorativeplaque, and a time capsule.”

For updates on the Bicentennial, refer to the website, www.JacksonCounty200.com. To participate, add an event or display a Bicentennial banner in various venues, please contact Nicole Grundel who will coordinate and publicize the schedule. She may be reached at 228-769-3260 or by e-mail: 200@co.jackson.ms.us.

Any person or entity wishing to help contribute to Bicentennial Celebration costs with cash or in-kind donations should contact Grundel. Checks may be made to the Jackson County Historical and Genealogical Society, earmarked "Bicentennial," and mailed to Jackson County Bicentennial Celebration, P.O. Box 998, Pascagoula, MS 39568.


Posted on Monday, April 16, 2012 by Nicole Grundel

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Road Advisories in Jackson County

Jackson County closes Indian Lane

The Jackson County Road Department will be closing Indian Lane in the Vancleave community from September 22, 2014 through October 30, 2014 to replace the existing bridge with a new concrete pre-cast bridge.  All residents in the area will need to detour north on Indian Lane to Campground Road to Wire Road.

Posted on Wednesday, September 24, 2014
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