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Pascagoula Mississippi

Immortalized in the Ray Stevens comic song "The Day the Squirrel went Beserk in the Church in the Sleepy Little Town of Pascagoula," this town has awakened and become a dominant economic factor in the Mississippi Gulf region, employing thousands in shipbuilding, refining, fishing and other saltwater activities and pursuits.

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On quiet summer evenings, a mysterious yet beautiful haunting sound can be heard. Closer listening tells you it comes from the Pascagoula River, hence the name "Singing River." From the time of the first visitors of French and Spanish explorers, the sound has been an enigma, with many theories being put forth to explain the origin of the sound.

The legend attributed to the mysterious sound tells a sad but beautiful story of the extinction of the tribe of Pascagoula Indians. The Pascagoulas, a peaceful tribe had lost many of their braves to the aggressive Biloxi tribe to their West. Fearing death or enslavement at the hands of the fierce Biloxi, The Pascagoulsa resolved themselves to death rather than face such a fate.

All the braves and maidens, some clasping papooses, and the children of the Pascagoula tribe joined hands and waded into the gentle flowing serene Pascagoula River chanting their tribal death song, perishing beneath the waves as they were taken by the outgoing tide into the deeper waters of the Gulf of Mexico. This is the legend of a couragous tribe and their mournful death song, and it is allegedly the source of the sounds we hear unto this day.

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Pascagoula has slowly emerged as a port of call for many ships, sea-going and shore-huggers, foreign and domestic, for export and import of raw materials and finished goods.

By the late fifties, the area known as Bayou Casotte (pronounced Bikersot by locals) was dredged to accept sea-going vessels, and the harbor was opened for business. Public facilities include two public terminal warehouses with four deepwater berths.

Private corporations with industrial facilities, also located in the harbor area, include Chevron Pascagoula Refinery, Mississippi Phosphates Corp., First Chemical Corp., VT Halter Marine and Signal International. Located in the Pascagoula River harbor are Northrop Grumman Ship Systems (formerly Ingalls Shipyard) Signal International, NOAA, Naval Station Pascagoula, The US Coast Guard Base (active during prohibition to intercept rum runner ships trafficking between Canada and New Orleans). The sinking of the Canadian ship, I'm Alone, created an International incident.) The harbor also includes public warehouses and facilities.


 
 
 
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