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Collection Title: Hurricanes of the Mississippi Gulf Coast Research Collection

Collection Number: M282

Dates: ca. 1715 - 1985

Volume: 3.60 cu. ft.

Provenance: Donated by Charles L. Sullivan in November 1989.

Copyright: This collection may be protected from unauthorized copying by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code).

Biographical/Historical Sketch:

From 1715 to 1985, approximately forty hurricanes struck the Gulf Coast region stretching from Texas to the Florida Keys. Though differing in size, strength and intensity, those hurricanes greatly affected the inhabitants on the Gulf of Mexico. Destruction caused by the hurricanes resulted in millions of dollars in property damage and hundreds of deaths. Among the most severe hurricanes were the Galveston Hurricane of 1900, the 1935 hurricane that destroyed the Florida Keys, and most recently, Hurricane Camille, which devastated the Mississippi coast in 1969.

Hurricanes of the Mississippi Gulf Coast (1986) by Charles Sullivan chronicles the hurricanes that made land fall on the Mississippi Coast from 1717 to 1985. Divided into four chapters, the first section covers the colonial hurricanes dating from 1717 to 1812. The second section discusses antebellum hurricanes occurring from 1819 through 1860, while the third section covers the period between 1893 and 1916 and is entitled "The Storms Between the Calms." The last chapter details the hurricanes dating between 1947 and 1985 and elaborates on the most recent storms. In addition to a substantial amount of textual information, black and white as well as color photographs provide graphic evidence of the enormous amount of destruction caused by the hurricanes.

Charles L. Sullivan received his B.A. and M.A. degrees in history from the University of Southern Mississippi and completed the course work for his Ph.D. at the University of Mississippi. He grew up in Natchez, Mississippi, and has taught at the Perkinston Campus of Mississippi Gulf Coast Junior College for more than twenty-five years where he is currently the chairman of the Social Studies Department. Mr. Sullivan has published articles for New Orleans Magazine, Mississippi Magazine, and The Journal of Mississippi History. His books include: Hurricanes of the Mississippi Gulf Coast (1986) and The Mississippi Gulf Coast: Portrait of a People (1985). In addition, he created and edited a series of books and videocassettes entitled "Mississippi: A View of the Magnolia State."

Mr. Sullivan and his family live in Perkinston, Mississippi, where he is a member of the Gulf Coast Historical and Genealogical Society. In his spare time Mr. Sullivan avidly participates in Civil War re-enactments.

Scope and Content:

This collection consists primarily of research materials assembled by Mr. Charles L. Sullivan in preparation for his 1986 book entitled Hurricanes of the Mississippi Gulf Coast. These materials are arranged in the order imposed on them by Mr. Sullivan as he researched and wrote the book. They provide information concerning Gulf Coast hurricanes occurring between 1715 and 1985. Also in the collection are articles commemorating the twentieth anniversary of Hurricane Camille (1969), which was one of the most destructive storms ever to hit the area.

The first part of the collection (boxes 1 & 2) consists of a copy of Sullivan's book, photocopies of photographs, general information concerning hurricanes, and photocopies of several books about hurricanes. Some of these books include Storms, Floods and Sunshine (1945), Hurricane (1958), Atlantic Hurricanes (1964), Living With the Alabama - Mississippi Shore (n.d.), Early American Hurricanes 1492 - 1870 (1963) and a chapter on Hurricane Camille from Historical Catastrophes: Floods (n.d.). Most of these works have been photocopied in their entirety, and portions of other storm-related books can also be found throughout the collection.

Most of the materials in boxes 3 and 4 relate to Hurricane Camille. Oral histories, an abundance of newspaper clippings, and official government documents by the Army Corps of Engineers comprise the majority of this part of the collection. The only documents unrelated to Camille are two technical manuals concerning characteristics of hurricanes.

Boxes 5 and 6 contain a wide assortment of information, including extensive government documents and additional photocopies of newspaper articles. These articles discuss hurricanes Bob (1979), Frederick (1979), Kate (1985) and Elena (1985). Numerous hurricane maps and charts showing the paths of various hurricanes, and photocopies of articles relating to hurricanes are found in this section of the collection.

While the remainder of the collection contains a few additional government documents by the Army Corps of Engineers, boxes 7 and 8 focus primarily upon a chronological listing of the hurricanes that struck the Gulf Coast from 1715 to 1965. These folders contain newspaper clippings, photocopies of photographs, maps, and excerpts from various secondary sources. Information concerning the earliest hurricanes is limited.

This collection would be of value to any researcher seeking information about the hurricanes that struck the Gulf Coast between 1715 and 1985.


Copies of works by Charles L. Sullivan are available in the Cook, McCain, and Cox Libraries:

The Mississippi Gulf Coast: Portrait of a People, an Illustrated History (Northridge, Calif.: Windsor Publications, 1985), call number F347.G9 S84 1985 (Cook, McCain, Cox).

Hurricanes of the Mississippi Gulf Coast (Biloxi, Miss.: Gulf Publishing, 1986), call number QC959.G84 S94x 1986 (Cook, McCain, Cox).

Henry Jetton Tudury: Mississippi's Most Decorated Doughboy [videocassette] (Perkinston, MS: The College, 1988), call number D570.85.M71 B3 1988 (Cook).

In Memory of McRaven: The Haunting (Vicksburg, Miss.: McRaven Trust Foundation, 1989), call number F349.V6 S94x (McCain).

Gathering at the River: South Mississippi's Methodist Camp Meetings (Perkinston, MS: The Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College Press, 1990), call number BX8475 .S8x 1990 (Cook, McCain).

Beauvoir: Memorial to the Lost Cause [videorecording] (Gautier, Miss.: Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, 1991), call number F349.B5 B43 1991 (Cook).

Valor Remembered: War Dead of the State of Mississippi: Lists by County of Mississippians Who Died in the Service of the Nation in the Major Wars of the 20th C entury, World War I, World War II, Korea, Vietnam by Charles L. Sullivan and Bourbon Hughes (Perkinston: Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College Press, 1996), call number F340 .S85 1996 (McCain).

Related Collections:

Hubbard (Bob) Hurricane Camille Photographs, M 259

Hurricane Camille Photograph Collection, M 315

Mississippi Oral History Program: Hurricane Camille Survivors, call number of transcripts F341.5 .M57x, Vols. 178, 201, 222, 223, 224, 225, 228, 229, 230, 231, 232, 240.

Box and Folder List:

Box 1  
Folder 1 Book: Hurricanes of the Mississippi Gulf Coast (1986), by Charles Sullivan.
Folder 2 Hurricane photos (photocopies).
Folder 3 Hurricane chart and severe Louisiana hurricanes.
Folder 4 Hurricanes - General information.
Folder 5 Statistical information about hurricanes and general information.
Folder 6 Photos in book (photocopies).
Folder 7 Hurricane articles and general information.
Folder 8 Partial draft of Hurricanes of the Mississippi Gulf Coast.
Folder 9 Miscellaneous.
Box 2  
Folder 1 Photocopy of Storms, Floods and Sunshine (1945), by Isaac Cline.
Folder 2 Photocopy of Hurricane (1958), by Marjory Stoneman Douglas.
Folder 3 Book: Hurricane (1958), by Marjory Stoneman Douglas.
Folder 4 Photocopy Atlantic Hurricanes (1964), by Dunn & Miller.
Folder 5 Photocopy of Hurricanes (1956), by Tannehill.
Folder 6 Photocopy of U.S. Department of Commerce information on hurricanes.
Folder 7 Perspectives on Hurricane Preparedness, published by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Folder 8 Photocopy of Living with the Alabama-Mississippi Shore.
Folder 9 Notes on books.
Box 3  
Folder 1 Photocopy of Technical Paper No. 48 - Characteristics of the Hurricane Storm Surge
Folder 2 NOAA Technical Memorandum NWS NHC 24 - Hurricane Experience Levels of Coastal County Populations Texas to Maine.
Folder 3 20th Anniversary of Hurricane Camille - articles.
Folder 4 Audio cassette of eye witness accounts and one typewritten account of hurricane Camille.
Folder 5 Camille - Corps of Engineers - Preliminary Report.
Folder 6 Camille - Corps of Engineers - Hurricane Camille part 1.
Folder 7 Camille - Corps of Engineers - Hurricane Camille part 2.
Folder 8 Oral history with Wade Guice, Director of Civil Defense, Harrison County, Mississippi.
Folder 9 Articles on Wade Guice.
Folder 10 Oral history interview with Olin Clark, resident of Pass Christian Mississippi - Hurricane Camille.
Folder 11 Oral history interview with Mary Ann Gerlach - Hurricane Camille.
Box 4  
Folder 1 Photocopies of articles and photos relating to hurricane Camille.
Folder 2 The Housing Authority of the City of Biloxi, Mississippi, Report on the Aftermath of Hurricane Camille.
Folder 3 Photocopy of "The Story of Hurricane Camille."
Folder 4 Photocopies of articles & photos relating to urricane Camille.
Folder 5 Photocopy of "Camille" - A Hurricane.
Folder 6 Photocopies of articles on Hurricane Camille.
Folder 7 Photocopies of articles on Hurricane Camille.
Folder 8 Photocopies of articles on Hurricane Camille.
Folder 9 Photocopies of articles on Hurricane Camille.
Folder 10 Photocopies of articles on Hurricane Camille.
Box 5  
Folder 1 Tropical Cyclones of the North Atlantic Ocean. Contains various maps.
Folder 2 Hurricane Critical Exposure Zone Maps
Folder 3 National Weather Service Hurricane Problem Program.
Folder 4 Photocopies of Articles relating to hurricanes.
Folder 5 Photocopy of "The Federal Response to Hurricane Camille."
Folder 6 "On the Beautiful Mississippi Gulf Coast."
Folder 7 Photocopies of newspapers articles on Hurricane Frederick.
Folder 8 Photocopies of newspaper articles on Hurricane Bob.
Folder 9 Photocopies of newspaper articles relating to Hurricane Elena.
Box 6  
Folder 1 Photocopy of "The Coast of Mississippi - Its Past and Progress."
Folder 2 Photocopies of newspaper articles relating to Hurricane Elena.
Folder 3 Photocopy of "Hurricane Elena."
Folder 4 Information on Hurricane Kate.
Folder 5 "The Historical Journal of the Establishment of the French Louisiana."
Folder 6 "Journal of D' Artaguiette."
Folder 7 "Hurricanes & Tornadoes in Alabama" (1976).
Folder 8 Early American Hurricanes 1492 - 1870. Part 1.
Folder 9 Early American Hurricanes 1492 - 1870. Part 2.
Box 7  
Folder 1 After Action Report - Hurricane Camille - U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
Folder 2 After Action Report "Operation Camille" Mississippi National Guard - U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
Folder 3 Hurricane Camille - Background information.
Folder 4 Operator's manual for Lighter, Amphibious (Larc V) Self-propelled Diesel.
Folder 5 U.S. Army Marine & Terminal Service Equipment & Selected Articles.
Folder 6 Historical Catastrophes: Floods (Chapter 7 - Camille).
Folder 7 Dauphin Island Hurricane of 1715 and maps prior to 1970s.
Folder 8 Great Louisiana Hurricane - 1722.
Folder 9 Twin Mobile Hurricanes - 1740.
Folder 10 Hurricane - 1746.
Folder 11 Bernard Romans Hurricane - 1772.
Folder 12 October Hurricane - 1778.
Folder 13 Dunbar's Hurricane - 1779.
Folder 14 Louisiana Hurricane - 1780.
Folder 15 Hurricane - 1794.
Folder 16 Hurricane - 1812.
Folder 17 Hurricane - 1819.
Folder 18 Hurricane - 1821.
Folder 19 Hurricane - 1831.
Folder 20 Hurricane - 1852.
Folder 21 Hurricane - 1855.
Folder 22 Hurricane - 1856.
Folder 23 Hurricane - 1859.
Folder 24 Hurricane - 1860.
Box 8  
Folder 1 Hurricanes - 1865 & 1866.
Folder 2 Tornado - 1867.
Folder 3 Hurricanes - 1868 & 1869.
Folder 4 Hurricane - 1888.
Folder 5 Hurricane - 1893.
Folder 6 Galveston hurricane - 1900.
Folder 7 Hurricane - 1901.
Folder 8 Hurricane - 1906.
Folder 9 Hurricane (Waterspout) - 1909.
Folder 10 Hurricane - 1915.
Folder 11 Hurricane - 1916.
Folder 12 Hurricane - 1926.
Folder 13 Hurricanes - 1930s.
Folder 14 Hurricanes - Double eye hurricane - 1947.
Folder 15 Hurricane Ethel - 1960.
Folder 16 Hurricane Betsy - 1965.
Oversize Items: Mapcase 1/Drawer 7
Item 1 Commemorative newspaper inserts on Hurricane Camille. (1979 & 1989)
Item 2 Hurricane Critical Exposure Zone Maps for Mississippi coastal counties. (1971)


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