GULFPORT FELT BOOM IN 1960S

The Sun Herald (Sunday) - - Front Page - BY MURELLA POW­ELL

In an ef­fort to in­crease aware­ness of the ben­e­fit of Gulfport pro­mo­tional cam­paigns were held dur­ing the 1960s.

In an ef­fort to in­crease the pub­lic’s aware­ness of the eco­nomic ben­e­fits and the im­por­tance of the port of Gulfport sev­eral pro­mo­tional cam­paigns were held dur­ing the 1960s, in­clud­ing the mak­ing of this early 1965 post­card. The leg­end on the back of the card ex­plains the pic­ture: “Sav­ings to ship own­ers, ship users, and ship­pers us­ing the state port of Gulfport, Miss., are dra­ma­tized in this stack of $490,000 in cash on the docks un­der the pro­tec­tion of two armed guards. The sum, port of­fi­cials said, rep­re­sents the sav­ings ef­fected by 245 ves­sels us­ing the port in 1964 as com­pared to other ports along the Gulfport. Two Gulfport banks fur­nished the money.”

In an­other cam­paign, port of­fi­cials spon­sored a statewide high school es­say con­test in April 1964. Thou­sands of stu- dents sub­mit­ted their views on the im­por­tance of the port of Gulfport. One of the two grand prize win­ners en­joyed a 60-day trip to West Africa, and the other won a 45-day trip to Europe.

Dur­ing the 1960s, the port did not stop at in­state pro­mo­tion, it ad­ver­tised it­self to the world, and it worked. A his­tory of the port of Gulfport com­piled by Jim Miller, ed­i­tor of The Man­i­fest, the port mag­a­zine, re­ports that “by 1968 ton­nage fig­ures had more than dou­bled, reach­ing a record high of 802,127 tons han­dled off 307 ships.”

Murella H. Pow­ell, a lo­cal his­to­rian, writes the weekly Flash­back col­umn. Do you have a lo­cal pho­to­graph to sub­mit? It can be of any sub­ject or event in the Coast’s dis­tant or re­cent past. Please send a de­scrip­tion with your name, ad­dress and phone num­ber to Flash­back, Sun Her­ald, 205 DeBuys Road, Gulfport, MS 39507.

Cour­tesy of Paul Jermyn

The port of Gulfport thrived dur­ing the 1960s due to such pro­mo­tions as this post­card.

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