Nestled at the heart of the beautiful Mississippi Gulf Coast, lined with white beaches, shaded by majestic live oak trees, and caressed by gentle sea breezes, Ocean Springs has grown over the last century from a small fishing and agricultural village into a lively arts community. With rich historical roots beginning with the establishment of a French beachhead in 1699, Ocean Springs was incorporated in 1892 with fewer than 600 residents and has grown to a population of 17,442 as of 2010.
Ocean Springs is a modern cosmopolitan mix of creative arts, fine dining, light industry, and seashore recreation. A visit to Ocean Springs is a pleasant mix of old and new, with quiet tree-lined streets, busy galleries and museums, restful parks, and treasured memories of the past.
Highlights of Ocean Springs:
• Fort Maurepas
• Medicinal springs
• Oysters, oranges, optics and other businesses
• Downtown under the oaks
• Beaches, boats and bridges
• Fort Bayou
• Gulf Hills Resort and Community
• Gulf Coast Research Laboratory
• Public buildings and schools
Author Joyce M. Shaw lives and works in Ocean Springs; in fact, her family’s roots in the area begin with her grandfather, Hobart Doane Shaw, who settled on the Mississippi Gulf Coast in the early 1900s and designed the seawall that protects Harrison County. Joyce is the head of the Gunter Library at the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory (GCRL).
Author Betty Hancock Shaw is a native and lifelong resident of Gulfport, Mississippi. She became intensely interested in historical preservation after Hurricane Katrina’s devastation. She is a founding member and president of the Historical Society of Gulfport, and her preservation efforts have been recognized by the Mississippi Department of Archives and History.
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