World War II Navajo Code Talker dies at 92 | Fox News

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. A Navajo Code Talker who used his native language to confound the Japanese in World War II has died.

The Navajo Nation says Roy Hawthorne Sr. died Saturday. He was 92.

Hawthorne enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps at 17 and became part of a famed group of Navajos who transmitted hundreds of messages in their language without error.

The code was never broken.

Hawthorne was one of the most visible survivors of the group. He appeared at public events and served as vice president of a group representing the men.

He never considered himself a hero.

Hawthorne later served with the U.S. Army.

He’s survived by five children and more than a dozen grandchildren.

A funeral service is scheduled Friday.

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George Zimmerman Trial & Trayvon Martin Case – CBS News

Obama: “Trayvon Martin could’ve been me 35 years ago”

In an unannounced appearance in the White House briefing room, President Obama delivered a personal response to the verdict in the George Zimmerman murder trial. He did not question the verdict but spoke about Trayvon Martin, race relations and providing more support for young African-American males. Bill Plante reports.

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Trayvon Martin’s parents bring heartbreaking new docuseries …

Trayvon Martin’s parents Tracy Martin, left, and Sybrina Fulton pose with Tribeca Film Festival co-founder Robert De Niro, center, on Friday.(Photo: Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)

NEW YORK No star power was necessary at the Tribeca Film Festival Friday night.

Although Jay-Z was expected to speak at a panel for Paramount Network’s new Rest in Power: The Trayvon Martin Story, which he executive produced, the rapper was a no-show. But the premiere audience didn’t seem to mind, giving a standing ovation to the late teen’s parents,Sybrina FultonandTracy Martin, who spoke at a post-screening Q&A.

Rest in Power is an upcoming six-episode docuseries that details the controversial events surrounding the death of 17-year-old Martin, who was shotin Florida in 2012 by George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer. Using a mix of news clips, family photos, 911 calls and interviews, the first episode recounts the life and dreams of Martin who aspired to be a pilot and travel the world and walks through the night he was killed in harrowing detail.

The series also explores the impact of his death, becoming the face of the Black Lives Matter movement after Zimmerman was found not guilty in 2013.

An undated family photo of Travon Martin, taken about 3 months prior to his 17th birthday.(Photo: AP)

Reliving the incident through Power has been “very difficult, but it’s a tragedy worth telling,” Fulton told moderator Joy Reid. “We want to make sure that people not only remember Trayvon, but all the young men and women that he represents. We have to be mindful that gun culture needs to change, mental illness needs to change, and also the hatred that goes on in this country needs to change. We want to make sure that we are part of that change, so if it meant us opening our lives up and it’s not easy. It’s important for people to realize that it took courage to do this, it took strength to do this. This is nothing that we would have volunteered ourselves for. This is nothing that I would have sacrificed my son for.”

Later in the series, co-directors Julia Willoughby NasonandJenner Furst examine the relevance of Martin’s death in 2018, following the white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va.,last August and the mass shooting in Parkland, Fla., earlier this year.

When it comes to the push for more sensible gun laws, “I see a change now, and I say now, because of the incident that happened in Parkland,” Tracy Martin said. “We’ve been talking about getting these laws changed since 2012, but the difference is that the Parkland incident hit the heart of America. Trayvon Martin wasn’t the heart of America; Trayvon Martin iscategorized as the ghetto. And so when this took action outside the ghetto, now America is awake and everybody wants to do something about it. We’ve been trying to get America to do something for years.”


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Trayvon Martins parents distressed by continued gun violence

Trayvon Martins parents believe their sons story remains relevant as ever due to the rampant gun violence that continues to plague America.

Tracy Martin and Sybrina Fulton, whose 17-year-old son was gunned down by a neighborhood watch captain in 2012, are eager for systemic change, and they believe the fight against gun violence is now becoming more universal.

“It’s very relevant because it does continue to happen today,” Fulton told the Daily News of her son’s story. “When you have the students in the Parkland (Fla.) area that went to school and never made it home, it’s apparent that we have an issue with gun violence, a terrible issue with gun violence.

“It’s not just happening to African-Americans. This (is) happening to everybody. In Las Vegas they were at a concert,” she said, referring to the October mass shooting at the Route 91 Harvest festival. “Now you’re afraid to go to (the) movies, you’re afraid to go to the mall, you’re afraid to go to a concert, you’re afraid to go to school, you’re afraid to walk to the store.”

JAY-Z finally responds to George Zimmermans alligator threat

Trayvon’s parents hope to push change into motion through a new documentary series about their son, “Rest in Power: The Trayvon Martin Story,” which they executive produced alongside hip hop mogul JAY-Z and Paramount Network.

The powerful six-part series, which premiered Friday at the Tribeca Film Festival, chronicles the night their unarmed son was fatally shot by George Zimmerman in Sanford, Fla., as he walked back from a convenient store after buying Skittles and an Arizona watermelon fruit juice cocktail.

The docuseries also covers the fallout from that night. Outrage over Trayvon’s death as well as the acquittal of Zimmerman, who claimed self-defense helped spark the Black Lives Matter movement and opened a discussion about gun rights in America.

Trayvon Martin’s death sparks national outrage

“When you look back to 2012, you see that we were talking about how gun violence was impacting African-American communities,” Tracy told The News. “It was kind of just like brushed to the side. Now, in 2018, you have the Parkland incident, and so now the lightbulb just went off, and everybody’s talking about it, and everybody wants to do something about gun violence, and everybody wants to decide who has the right to bear arms.

JAY-Z praises Trayvon Martin as beacon of light at peace rally

“Now everybody (can) see that this is not just happening in the ghetto, this is happening in rural America, and it’s happening back-to-back-to-back,” he said.

Trayvon’s parents are eager for their documentary series which premieres to the public on July 30 on Paramount Network to increase awareness about the violence and injustice in America, which they hope gets more people involved with the fight for change.

They also hope viewers will get to know their son on a personal level through interviews with Trayvon’s relatives and others close to him.

Fulton says the documentary is “very intense” and “very real” about what transpired on the night of her son’s death.

Beyonc takes on Coachella after year-long absence from festival

“It’s not just about Trayvon,” Fulton said. “It’s about all the Trayvons across not only this country but this world who have been unjustly shot and killed and nobody is being held accountable. The justice system did not work in our case. It was not fair. It was not just, and so it’s really reminding people of what happened with Trayvon and what continues to happen in this world.”

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Parents of Trayvon Martin honor him with doc at Tribeca

Parents of Trayvon Martin honor him with doc at Tribeca

Honoring their son with his likeness on their shirts, the parents of Trayvon Martin attended the world premiere of the documentary series, “Rest in Power: The Trayvon Martin Story” at the Tribeca Film Festival. (April 21)

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Its time to admit that Israel is an apartheid state …

One of the facts about Israel that is often disputed is its status as an apartheid state. There are, obviously, some differences between the Israeli regime occupying Palestine and the former white supremacist regime in South Africa. On that basis, apologists for Israel reject the label of apartheid. Worse still, Israels propagandists around the world even sometimes claim cynically that it is anti-Semitic to apply the term.

There are differences and there are similarities between apartheid Israel and apartheid South Africa. The white supremacist regime that once ruled South Africa, for example, did not tend to bomb into submission with fighter jets and attack helicopters the puppet Bantustan homeland enclaves that it controlled.

Israel, however, regularly bombs the civilian population in the Gaza ghetto, using the pretext of self-defence against terrorist groups. Its for this reason, and others, that some South African anti-apartheid struggle veterans have said that the Israeli regime is actually a worse form of apartheid than the late, unlamented regime in South Africa. The main point to remember, though, is that this entire debate is a red herring.

According to international law, Israel can unequivocally be defined as an apartheid state. A 1976 United Nations document, the International Convention on the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheid, defines the term unambiguously, and Israels occupation regime in Palestine very much falls into the A-word category.

READ:Apartheid land theft is an explosive issue in South Africa and Palestine

Israels treatment of Palestinians Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

The UN document points out that, although the word apartheid is of Afrikaans origin, the wider practice is a more general one of systemic racism which applies to regimes beyond South Africa. For a start, other white supremacist regimes in Africa had extremely similar practices, such as Rhodesia, as Zimbabwe was once called.

The definition of apartheid under the convention makes it clear that Israels occupation regime in the West Bank is an apartheid model. One example of the definition that fits the Israeli occupation is the arbitrary arrest and illegal imprisonment of the members of a racial group. Israels military justice system in the West Bank has a conviction rate of 99.7 per cent, and is targeted at Palestinian Arabs only. The Jewish settlers illegally colonising the same territory have recourse to Israels civilian courts system, from which Palestinians from the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem are barred.

While it has become more accepted in recent years, at least among many on the left, that Israels is an apartheid occupation regime, some still reject the term. They point to the supposedly democratic nature of Israel within its pre-1967 borders, an inaccurate term, since Israel has never once defined its own borders and the so-called Green Line of 1949 is more accurately described as the Armistice Line, not a border.

The recent news from an Israeli town in the Galilee region is a very good illustration that the whole of Israel is in fact an apartheid regime designed deliberately to discriminate racially against Palestinian Arabs, who are both historically and (once again) presently the majority population between the River Jordan and the Mediterranean Sea. Last month, the Israeli authorities in Kfar Vradim which was founded in 1984 on land annexed from the nearby Palestinian village of Tarshiha halted the sale of building plots in the town after they learned that half of the buyers were Arabs. These are the Palestinian citizens of Israel who supposedly have equal rights under Israeli law; one-fifth of all Israelis are Palestinian Arabs.

READ:Palestinians file complaint to UN over Israel violation of anti-racism convention

The leader of the local council, Sivan Yehiel, explained to Tel Aviv newspaper Haaretz that because he is entrusted to preserve what he called the Zionist-Jewish-secular character of the town, he decided to cancel the sales to Arabs in order to create solutions that will enable the preservation of demographic balances. The term demographic balances is a racist euphemism. Clearly, what Yehiel meant was that the sales would mean too many Palestinian babies being born in the town that is supposed to be a part of the self-declared Jewish state.

Demographic balances (or demographic threats as Israeli officials often put it) is a euphemism very much akin to apartheid, a word which means separateness in Afrikaans. The idea behind South Africas apartheid government propaganda was that the Black population would benefit from separate development. This, of course, was a lie, and the Black population was exploited and repressed most brutally.

While the UN convention makes it clear that the decision of the Israeli council leader in Kfar Vradim falls very obviously under the crime of apartheid, Yehiels action was anything but unique. Israels Palestinian citizens face discrimination on many levels simply because they are not Jews.

The convention states that the term the crime of apartheid applies to acts including measures calculated to prevent a racial group or groups from participation in the political, social, economic and cultural life of the country including [by violating] the right to freedom of movement and residence.

Its time for people in the West to wake up to these facts and admit that Israel is, root and branch, an apartheid state.

The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.

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Binyamin Gibli, Lavon Affair figure, dies at 89 – Israel …

binyamin gibli 224.88.(photo credit: Courtesy)

Former IDF Military Intelligence chief and co-architect of the Lavon Affair Binyamin Gibli died in Tel Aviv on Wednesday at the age of 89.In 1954, Col. Gibli was thought by some to set into motion Operation Suzannah, which used nine Egyptian-Jewish undercover agents, members of Unit 131, to bomb British and American targets in Egypt in an effort to reverse Britain’s decision to withdraw from the Suez Canal. It was hoped that the attacks would turn the United States and Britain against Egyptian revolutionary leader (and future president) Gamal Abdul Nasser and wreck his decision to nationalize the Suez canal.In July 1954, post offices in Egypt were bombed, as were an American library, a British-owned cinema and a train station.The operation ended in failure when Egyptian security forces uncovered the unit – some believe it was betrayed by an informer – and arrested the members of Unit 131. One operative was killed in prison, two more were hanged, and others received lengthy prison service.In the political firestorm which followed, Gilbi accused Defense Minister Pinchas Lavon of ordering the bombings, a charge denied by Lavon, who blamed Shimon Peres, then director-general of the Defense Ministry. Prime minister Moshe Sharrett, who is not believed to have known about the operation, ordered a commission of inquiry made up of a Supreme Court justice and the IDF’s first chief of General Staff, Yaakov Dori, which produced inconclusive results.Lavon wound up resigning from office, but the scandal continued to rage, tearing apart the ruling Mapai Party, the predecessor of today’s Labor Party. David Ben-Gurion, who returned to the Prime Minister’s Office after Sharrett’s resignation in 1955, ordered a new committee of inquiry that found that Lavon did not approve Operation Suzannah. Ben-Gurion, who believed Lavon was responsible, quit his post as defense minister in protest. The Lavon-Ben Gurion split divided Mapai, with the party’s Left siding with Lavon, and the rightist stream backing Ben-Gurion and Peres.Col. Avraham Dar, an Israeli intelligence officer who had immigrated to Israel from Britain, traveled to Egypt to recruit members for Unit 131 before its activation. Speaking to The Jerusalem Post on Wednesday, Dar described Gibli as a “wonderful and talented” man, and expressed regret over the Lavon-Gibli feud, which he said had never been properly resolved.”I set this up,” Dar said, referring to Unit 131, but added that he did not wish to speak about the specifics of the unit’s activities. “I wasn’t completely involved,” he said. “I met Gibli in 1948, and in 1951 I came under his command. He had much talent, and was very impressive… He could have headed the army, and that is a tragedy.”Dar said many of Gibli’s friends abandoned him following the fallout from the Lavon Affair.”Two people at the top blamed each other, and it was settled politically, which isn’t right,” Dar said. “No proper commission of inquiry was set up, and that’s the worst aspect of this.”He added that the Lavon Affair formed a blemish on the face of a young State of Israel, but instead of healing it, the feud was left unresolved. “This was something ugly, and it must be understood in the context of the political feud in Mapai in the 1960s,” Dar said.

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History of Vancleave | Ocean Springs Archives



Vancleave, located in west-central Jackson County, Mississippi, is a small community which developed in the early to mid-19thCentury, on Bluff Creek, a small tributary of the Pascagoula River, several miles north of the Mexican Gulf. It was known originally as Bluff Creek, until the postmaster in 1870, named itVancleavein honor of a former merchant,Robert A.Van Cleave(1840-1908). Ocean Springs family historian, Vertalee Bradford Van Cleave (1916-1999), related that the progenitor of the Van Cleave family in America was Jan Van Cleef, a 1653 Dutchmigrto New York. It is interesting to note that there is a town called Kleve in extreme western Germany less than twenty miles from its present border with Holland. Could the first American Van Cleave been Jan van Kleve, i.e. John from Kleve? (The History of Jackson County, Mississippi, 1989, p. 376 and National Geographic Atlas Of The World, 1981, p. 152)

The first European settlement in the Vancleave area occurred in 1721, when French colonists settled the short-lived Chaumont Concession. With the creation of the Mississippi Territory in 1798, and the West Florida Rebellion of 1810, the United States rested Spanish West Florida from its Iberian masters. Jackson County was created and united with the Territory of Orleans in 1812, and joined the Union in 1817, with the State of Mississippi.

Even before Mississippis statehood, restless Americans in the Carolinas and Georgia began settling the southwestern frontier, which included the Vancleave region. They were subsistence farmers and hunter-gatherers who brought their Protestant religion to this predominantly Roman Catholic coastal section.

Charcoal wagon en route to the L&N Railroad at Fontainebleau?

By 1850, the virgin forests, predominantly pine, of the region along the tributaries of the lower Pascagoula River, began to be exploited for timber, charcoal, and naval stores. These activities created a commerce, which resulted in small trading posts being built on Johns Bayou and lower Bluff Creek. Shallow draft schooners loaded with charcoal, agricultural products, and naval stores sailed the “lake” waters of the Mississippi Sound to New Orleans and returned with tools, food staples, and mercantile goods to these riverine outposts.Black slaves, primarily from North Carolina, were brought to work the turpentine orchards. After the Civil War, they were emancipated and remained in the region to provide the primary labor force for the naval stores industry. Black families owned the high land northwest of Moungers Creek, which became the primary Vancleave settlement, after they sold out to white families and merchants in the late 19thCentury. Black communities developed further north and west at Greenhead Creek.

Another group of people, locally called “Creoles”, but probably indigenous, descendants of Muskogean speaking, Native Americans inhabit the Vancleave region. They made their livelihoods primarily as subsistence farmers and charcoal burners. When public education in the region commenced in the late 19thCentury, Creole and Blacks were educated together, but by 1917, they were segregated and a separate school created, called Live Oak Pond, north of Vancleave. This aberration was unique in that it created three separate schools for White, Black and Creole children. The Creole people have slowly been assimilated into the local community through interracial marriages.

The early settlers brought sheep to the pine savannas and allowed them to forage on the open range. Soon Vancleave, with Woolmarket in Harrison County, became important exporters of wool. World War I enhanced the demand for wool and prices and production rose dramatically during the conflict.

At the turn of the 20thCentury, the Dantzler Lumber Company began to exploit virgin timber stands away from the rivers. They utilized tram railways to penetrate deep into the woods to reach virgin timber passed over because of its remoteness from water borne transportation routes. This venture brought a population increase, which encouraged the erection of new schools, churches, a hotel, boarding houses, and dwellings. The timber boom and sheep-wool activities subsided dramatically by the1930s. The virgin timber was depleting rapidly and stock laws, which curtailed open range foraging, and foreign competition had a deleterious effect on commercial wool production.

Pecan orchards, tung nut trees, and some citrus were grown in the Vancleave vicinity before the Great Depression of the 1930s. Orchard men from the Midwest developed nut crops initially south of Vancleave on the Ocean Springs Road and to the southwest and west along Seaman and Jim Ramsay Roads.

The Great Depression furthered exacerbated the economic situation at Vancleave. The people of the area responded to this dour situation by erecting a canning plant for fruit and vegetables, a sewing factory, and a shuttle mill. Naval stores and a dying charcoal industry continued weakly, until WW II revived the national economy. Shipbuilding at Pascagoula and Mobile created many wartime employment opportunities. Pulp wood for paper manufacturing became important after the war.

In the mid-1950s, the Bluff Creek Canning Company was organized. It produced a fish-based cat food and was sold to the John Morrell & Company of Chicago. A short-lived attempt to can yellow fin tuna caught in the Gulf of Mexico was also commenced at a Bluff Creek site south of Vancleave in the 1950s. The continued growth of the chemical and petrochemical industries along Bayou Cassotte near Pascagoula, has provided stable, regional, employment opportunities through several decades. Pulp wood harvesting for the Moss Point paper mill has continued in the area.

The population and status quo in the Vancleave region remained fairly constant until the late 1980s and early 1990s. At this time, a steady and continuous migration of people from the lower coastal urban areas, seeking cheaper land, relief from high taxes, crime and industrial pollution, began to move into the Vancleave area. The expansion of the US Naval presence, conversion of deep-water oil and gas exploration drilling rigs, and continued shipbuilding at Pascagoula and environs, with the exponential growth of dock side casino gaming in nearby Harrison County, has continued to fuel the migration into Vancleave.

Currently, new commercial ventures and subdivisions blossom each day. A new elementary school and medical center are now under construction. Are incorporation and local government awaiting Vancleave in the New Millennium??

A Vancleave History

Vancleave, originally calledBluff Creek, as late as 1869, when Andrew W. Ramsay (1830-1916) was postmaster of this small village, is the geographic name of a community, which has existed in T6S-R7W of Jackson County, Mississippi for well over a century. The name Vancleave comes from the merchant, Robert Adrian Van Cleave (1840-1908), who established a trading post on Paige Bayou in the 1870s. In June 1870, when the US Post Office established a station in the SE/4 of Section 27, T6S-R7W, it was called Vancleaves. R.A.Van Cleave, a Civil War veteran from Hinds County, later settled at Ocean Springs where he was a successful merchant, post master, and first provisional mayor of that town. (The Mississippi Press, July 18, 1988)

In June 1880, when a weekly mail route was established between Ocean Springs and Vancleave, Robert Adrian Van Cleave (1840-1908) was postmaster at Ocean Springs who was described as, “clever and good-humored”. William Seymour carried the mail to the store of George W. Davis at Vancleave. The post office was named after R.A. Van Cleave. (The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, June 18, 1880, p. 3)

Today, Vancleave is the general geographic term used for that region of west central Jackson County within T6S-R7W and T5S-R7W. This is an area of approximately seventy-two square miles. Specifically, Vancleave is a rapidly developing unincorporated village in Sections 9 and 16 of T6S-R7W, flanked by Highway 57. Historically within the “Vancleave area”, there have been many smaller settlements around public schools and churches, such as: Mount Pleasant, Greenhead, Ebenezer, Evergreen, Live Oak Pond, Dead Lake, and Fort Bayou.


Colonial Days 1699-1811

The Amerinds

Assuredly, Native Americans hunted the forests and fished the streams in the Vancleave region, centuries before the first Europeans arrived. Their past presence is indicated on the Pascagoula River by several French cartographic sketches and charts of the period. The closest village to present day Vancleave was that of the Capinians, probably also called Moctobi. Its location appears to be about one mile south of the Wade Bridge. (Carte de la Louisiane by DAnville-1732)

Jay Higginbotham, noted French Colonial historian and Archivist for the City of Mobile, relates that he has seen several “curios mounds” north and south of the Wade Bridge. He was unable to determine if they were constructed by the Amerinds. (Higginbotham, 1967, p. 15)

Jean-Baptiste Baudrau-First permanent settler in western Jackson County

Jean-Baptiste Baudrau (1671- ca 1762), dit Graveline, was born at Montreal in New France (Canada). In 1700, he landed with Pierre Le Moyne, dIberville (1761-1706) at Fort Maurepas in present day Ocean Springs. Iberville was a military commander sent by King Louis XIV (1638-1715) of France to establish and protect La Louisiane, the 1682 French claim of Rene Robert Cavalier de La Salle (1643-1687). French Louisiana was defined by La Salle as the watershed of the Mississippi River and its tributaries.

In 1702, Jean-Baptiste Baudreau abandoned Biloxy, the region around Fort Maurepas. With his French cohorts, led by Jean-Baptiste Le Moyne, de Bienville (1684-1778), Baudrau relocated to Old Mobile. Circa 1718, Baudreau left Dauphin Island to return permanently to what is now Jackson County, Mississippi. He and his family resided on the west side of the Pascagoula River. (Adkinson, et al, 1991, pp. 95-98)

Initially Graveline managed a farm in the present day Martins Bluff section. He raised livestock, primarily horned cattle. Graveline utilized Negro and Indian slave labor to work the plantation and tend livestock. (Conrad, 1970, p. 2 and p. 50)

Baudrau descendants

The descendant of Jean-Baptise Baudrau are numbered in the tens of thousands. From this French Canadian adventurer, some of the first families of the Mississippi Coast, which still exist today, Ladner, Bosarge, Fayard, Moran, Grelot (Gollott), Fournier, Ryan, Bang, and Seymour, can trace some of their lineage.

Jean Baptiste Baudrau dit Graveline had married an Indian woman who brought forth two children, Magdeleine Baudrau and Jean-Baptiste Baudrau II (d. 1757). Magdelaine married Pierre Paquet Jr. Circa 1758, their daughter, Marie Anne Pacquet (b. 1742) wedded Nicholas Ladner (b. ca 1736-1799) dit Christian. Of further interest in this line, Marie Angelique Baudreau (1776-1853), the daughter of Jean-Batiste Baudrau III (b. ca 1735) and Marie Louise Fayard (b. 1746), married Nicholas Ladner II (1759-ca 1793), son of Nicholas Ladner dit Christian and Marie Anne Pacquet. She married Jacob Bingle (Bang) after the demise of Nicholas Ladner II. (Cassibry II, 1988, pp. 700-704)

The brother of Nicholas Ladner II, Pierre Ladner (1764-1809+), settled on the Pascagoula River in 1809, on Claim No. 133, which was one of actual settlers who had no claim from either the French, British, or Spanish Governments. Pierre Ladners homestead was in Section 39, T6S-R6W about 1.5 miles east of the Evergreen community.(The American State Papers, 1994, p. 38)

Jean-Baptise Baudreau II (d. 1757) married Marie Catherine Vinconnau. Their daughter Catherine Louise Baudreau (1742-1806) married Joseph Bosarge (1733-1794) of Poitiers, France in June 1762. They are the progenitors of the large Bosarge family of coastal Alabama and Mississippi. (Atkinson, 1991, p. 23)

Another daughter of Baudrau II, Genevieve Baudrau, married Charles Leblanc in 1783. Their son, Joseph, born in 1788, became known as St. Cyr Seymour (1788-1845). His issue with Marie-Joseph Ryan (1786-1876) commenced the large Seymour family of our region. (Lepre, 1995 , pp. 54-61 )

The Seymour family has its roots on the north shore of Graveline Lake in Section 5, T8S-R7W. Here the children of St. Cyr and Marie-Joseph made their livelihoods as subsistence farmers and stockmen in the same manner as their great great grandfather, Jean-Baptiste Baudrau dit Graveline. They left their family homestead to settle at Biloxi Latimer, Fort Bayou, Ocean Springs, and North Biloxi. (The Ocean Springs Record, January 15, 1998)

The Chaumont Plantation

With the French beachhead at Fort Maurepas in 1699, and the subsequent founding of military posts at Mobile (1709), Nachitoches (1714), Natchez (1716), New Orleans (1718), and Nouveau Biloxy (1720) colonists of French and German origins began the settlement of French Louisiana. In late 1719, a 16,000-acre concession on the Pascagoula River, located about 40 miles up stream from the Gulf of Mexico, was granted by John Law s Company of the West to a wealthy Parisian, Antoine Chaumont, honorary secretary to King Louis XV, and his wife, Marie-Catherine Barre, Madame de Chaumont.

Chaumont Plantation Locator Map

In 1721, French settlers with slave labor established the Chaumont Plantation, the first European settlement in the Vancleave region. It was probably located on the west side of the Pascagoula River, about one mile seaward of the Wade Bridge, probably in Section 19, T5S-R6W. Monsieur Revillion, the plantation manager, was able to produce one good wheat crop before departing the Pascagoula River farm for Paris in 1722. He had received no money or supplies from the Chaumonts and went to France to bring litigation against them. By 1732, the Chaumont Plantation had been entirely abandoned. (Higginbotham, 1974, pp. 353-362)

The French Mills and the Lewis Claim

In 1811, Edwin Lewis (1782-1830), a Virginia born lawyer, married Margaret Baudreau (1791-1865), the great granddaughter of Jean-Baptiste Baudrau dit Graveline. Her parents were J.B. Baudrau III (b. ca 1735) and Marie Louise Fayard (b. 1746). He immediately began to assert the claim that Gravelines heirs were the rightful owners of the 40,000-acre Chaumont concession granted by the Company of the West. The land commissioner denied his request, but affirmed the Baudrau heirs claim of 1280 acres at Belle Fontaine. In a letter dated October 20, 1829, Edwin Lewis wrote:

..the original claim filed by me for the heirs of Jean Bte. Baudreau de Graveline for 40,000 acres on the west side of the Pascagoula River at and including the old French mills, the former home of our ancestorsour claim is for 40,000 acres granted by the French Government to the Count Chaumont and the long residence of our ancestors never abandoned by the family but was evacuated only from the trouble of Indians against whom the Spanish Government afforded no protection and which land was never re-granted by the English or Spanish government or permits given to settle on itI married the daughter of J.B. Baudreau directly after the Baton Rouge convention in 1811. The next day after which her father who was heir to half the land informed me that he gave my wife his half and that I might take possession of it when I pleased. I visited the place. I found two pretty extensive mill dams and part of the frame remaining. I found the place vacant but a log house was standing at a small distance from the mills and where our ancestors had resided before they were obliged to leave it by ? of Indians. I inquired who built the house. My father-in-law informed me one Durand, a Spaniard, from Pensacola who had a permit to settle on vacant land had built the log cabin to stay until he could select a place and that he had offered to purchase the land from him but he would not sell it as he had children to give it toI moved my family between this cabin and the mills and had nearly finished building one of the mills when (Jonathan) Sulcer came there who had also made several offers to Baudro for the lands and brought a forcible entry and detainer against me which was dropped before Old Judge Toulmin who turned me and my family out of doors(from the files of the Mobile Genealogical Library-Mobile, Alabama)

The location of the French mills from the above missive of Edwin Lewis is on the west side of the Pascagoula River in Section 24, T5S-R7W, east of the Magnolia Baptist Church on River Road. It known with a high degree of certitude that Jonathan Sulcer was here in December 1808, and that the original settler of this tract was Alexander Durant. This land is referred to, as Claim No. 170, in the list of actual settlers in the district east of the Pearl River, who have no claims derived from the French, British, or Spanish Governments. (The American State Papers, 1994, p. 38)

Interestingly and corroborating the above information, the description of French mills tract by Edwin Lewis is west of the indicated position of the 1721 Chaumont Plantation in Section 19, T5S-R6W. It appears that wheat grown on the plantation was ground into flour by the water-powered grist mills. The topographic nature of the high bluff on the west side of the Pascagoula River in Section 24, T5S-R7W is conducive for the construction of mill dams as there are several streams dissecting the bluff creating small but deep canyons here. (USGS Topographic Map, “Vancleave”, 1982)

Alfred E. Lewis (1812-1885), the son of Edwin Lewis, settled on former Baudrau lands situated on the Mississippi Sound west of the Pascagoula River mouth. Here in 1845, he erected Lewis-Sha, a plantation home, which is extant at Gautier today and is known as Oldfields. (The History of Jackson County, Mississippi, 1989, pp. 46-47)


Enter the Americans 1811-1861

The early years of the 19thCentury were tumultuous for the old American Southwest, which included the Vancleave area. After the Mississippi Territory was created in 1798, American settlers, chiefly white, Anglo-Saxon Protestants, began a steady migration from the Carolinas and Georgia into the new frontier. Soon, these pioneers began crossing south of the 31stparallel into the longleaf pine belt of coastal Mississippi. As there were still Indian and Spanish claims in this region, these Americans were sensed as trespassers by the Spanish who possessed the area, including what would later become Vancleave, as a part of Spanish West Florida.

Before 1810, trails and primitive roads were penetrating the primeval forest of the longleaf pine belt in the Bluff Creek region. The pioneers who came here made their livelihoods by herding cattle and swine, hunting-gathering, and subsistence farming. They were independent, freedom loving and had a dislike for the Indians and the Spanish. At this time it was reported that there were eighteen families on the lower Pascagoula River and more upstream.

The 1810 West Florida Rebellion and the 1811 annexation of the of that portion of Spanish West Florida from the Mississippi River to the Perdido River into the Orleans Territory by Governor William Charles Cole Claiborne (1775-1817), brought the American settlers of this region into the United States. Jackson County of the Mississippi Territory was created in 1812, and it entered the Union with the State of Mississippi on March 1, 1817. (The History of Jackson County, Mississippi, 1989, p. 1)

On January 13, 1811, Dr. Flood of New Orleans, the representative of Governor W.C.C. Claiborne, landed at Pascagoula and raised the American flag. He appointed Captain George Farragut (1755-1817) as Justice of the Peace for Pascagoula Parish of the Territory of Orleans. Dr. Flood wrote the following to Claiborne on January 25, 1811:

Finding no one able to read or write in the Pascagoula settlement, and the inhabitants expressing great confidence in and attachment for Capt. George Farragut, sailing master in the Navy, on this station, I prevailed on him to accept the commission for the parish. Benjamin Goodin, the other magistrate, resides on the river twenty miles up..The population of the Pascagoula Parish is about three hundred and fifty. (Claiborne, 1978, p. 307)

It is interesting to note that George Farragut, a native of Minorca, one of the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean Sea, was the father of Union Admiral David Farragut (1801-1870). During the Civil War, Admiral Farraguts fleet captured New Orleans (1862) and won the Battle of Mobile Bay (1864). He commissioned two local immigrant seaman, Martin Freeman (1814-1894) of Pascagoula and Antoine V. Bellande (1829-1918) of Back Bay, now DIberville, Mississippi as acting ensigns and pilots in the Union Navy. At Mobile Bay in August 1864, Freeman piloted the USS Hartford, Farraguts flagship, while Bellande was aboard theUSS Monongahela, which rammed theCSA Tennessee.

Land Offices and the Jackson County Courthouse

Soon after Spanish West Florida became a part of the United States, two districts to process and ascertain land claims was established. The Vancleave region was placed in the land district East of the Pearl River, which was managed from St. Stephens on the Tombigbee River in present day Alabama. In 1819, a land office for Jackson County was created at “Jackson Courthouse” which was probably at the residence of Surveyor, Thomas Bilbo. In 1822, the Jackson County land office was move to Augusta in Perry County. (Cain, 1983, Vol. I, pp.168-169)

The first courthouse at Jackson County was located in present day George County, near Benndale. By 1823, the seat of county government had relocated to Brewers Bluff, northeast of Vancleave, and then in 1826 to Americus, on the east side of the Pascagoula River, where it would remain until 1871, when what appears to be the permanent government base, was founded at Scranton (Pascagoula). The location of the county seat in the northern portion of Jackson County until 1871, reflects that this was indeed the focus of early American settlement. (The History of Jackson County, Mississippi 1989, pp. 10-12)

As previously noted, the coastline was the focus of early European settlement. These early colonists brought the French language and Roman Catholic faith. After nearly three hundred years, some cultural differences still exist between the descendants of the early Americans and those of European heritage.

Vancleave Region Pioneers

A study of the land claims, which existed in the District East of the Pearl River in the early 19thCentury, reveals that the earliest settlers in the Vancleave region, homesteaded northeast and east of the future village. These pioneers chose the high bluff on the west side of the Pascagoula River as their place of settlement. Among the first of these homesteaders and their lands were:

Settler Date Settlement Original Settler

John Havens*1802? Poticaw Bayou areaJames Ware 1803 Section 12, T7S-R7W J.B. Baudrau

Benjamin Lanier 1807 Sec. 41, T5S-R7W and Sec. 22, T5S-R6W

Pierre Ladner 1809 Section 39, T6S-R6W John Haven

Laird Graham 1809 Section 38, T5S-R7WJoseph Graham 1810 Section 37, T5S-R7WAlexis Nicholas (Ladner) 1810 Section 38, T6S-R7WJonathan Selser 1810 Sec. 24, T5R7W Alexander Durant

George Farragutt 1811 Section 37, T7S-R7WJohn Brewer 1812 Section 1, T5S-R7WJohn Brewer Jr. 1812? Section 2, T5S-R7WWilliam Cates 1812 Sec. 38, T6S-R6W, Sec. 42,T5S-7W, Sec. 37, T6S-R7W

Joshua Cates 1812 Section 42, T5S-R7Wand Section 40, T5S-R6W

John Haven 1812 Section 11, T5S-R7W James Haven


History of Vancleave | Ocean Springs Archives


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