LONG BEACH, MS
A City on the Go
Long Beach is a typical small town with the exception of having been graced on the Gulf Coast. It has the same rich history as the other Coastal communities but with the added enchantment of being a residential college town.
Both Long Beach and Pass Christian share Cat Island as a barrier island along with its shared historical significance. Cat Island was discovered by D'Iberville in February of 1699 and was named the Isle aux Chats. Nicholas Christian Ladner married Marianne and had twelve children. These parents were the name sake of the two channels called Pass Christian and Pass Marianne and also for which the City of Pass Christian was named. Following the death of her husband, Widow Ladner moved to the mainland with one of her sons, Claude Ladner. They settled at Bear Point and built a home with the customary chimneys at each end of the home. With the passing of time and hurricane damages, only the chimneys remained to be used as location markers by fishermen.
The small village then picked up the name of The Chimneys. The present Chappey's Restaurant is ensconced near the former Ladner estate as also was Chimney's Restaurant, now of Gulfport.
Long Beach has a colorful history, even enriched by pirates past. An old English pirate, Captain Cleytus Pitcher, roamed the coastal shores and buried his captured treasures at what today is called Pitcher's Point near the boundary to Pass Christian. Some say that the pirate's curse still exists as a result of a drunken fracas, during which his men burned down his tree house with Pitcher in it.
The Town was later named Rosalie and then Scott's Station, for George Scott who donated the land to build a railroad stop when the tracks were laid from Gulfport. Later, in the 1880s, the Thomas brothers, besides operating fruit orchards, laid out the open lands in platted lots and changed the community's name to Long Beach. In 1905 the City was incorporated. Long Beach was known as the Radish Capital of the World signifying it as a truck farming center for the Gulf Coast.
The Friendship Oak is located at the University of Southern Mississippi's Gulf Park on Highway 90. The Live Oak is dated to 1487 and its branches reach out over 100 feet. A raised platform known as a Shoo Fly surrounds the ancient live oak. Other coast-prominent Shoo Flies can be found at Bay St. Louis next to its old Ciry Hall; and another at the Biloxi Green on Highway 90, between Main and Lameuse streets.
Long Beach is well known for its successful school system and for its athletic programs as well as its manicured small craft harbor. Like Pass Christian, Long Beach has no Casino action in their corporate limits due to citizen objections. These two cities seek other ecnomic strategies in keeping prosperity alive while maintaining community accord.
by Dan Ellis, Copyright Document 1994