Pierre Bellande (1871-1933)

Pierre Bellande was known as Peter.  He was born on April 4, 1871, at North Biloxi.  Peter married Alice Caillavet (1872-1955), a Biloxi girl, who was born April 7, 1872.  Her parents were Raymond J. Caillavet (1838-1898), a carpenter, and Celina Joucheray (1841-1903) of New Orleans.

Baseball and Fishing

In the spring of 1892, The Biloxi Herald, announced that the T.P. Dulion Baseball Club had organized and that Peter Bellande was their first baseman.  Peter must have passed his athletic ability to his sons, as several were excellent athletes.(The Biloxi Herald, April 9, 1892, p. 4)

By mid-June 1892, a new baseball club was organized called the “Biloxi Blues”.  As the officers of the club, W.K.M. Dukate (1852-1916), Lazaro Lopez (1850-1903), and Theodore P. Dulion, were among the most affluent Biloxians of this era, the choice of Peter Bellande and his brother, August, to the squad is most impressive.  Three of their cousins, Emile Harvey (b. 1870), Louis Harvey (1874-1913), and Francis Harvey (1874-1913) were also selected to play for Manager Ed Suter (1866-1943).  Older brother, Joseph A. Bellande (1868-1961), was elected an honorary member of the team.(The Biloxi Herald, June 18, 1892, p. 4)  

Another avocation of Peter, which was certainly in the family genes and passed to his sons was fishing.  This “Believe It or Not” fish tale was printed in the The Biloxi Herald of May 26, 1894:

"Fishing in the ponds on the L&N Railroad near the bridge has proven successful lately.  Peter Bellande and Joseph Clark caught nearly 600 green trout (bass) in 3 hours the other day."

 

     

Peter Bellande domicile [circa 1890]; detail l-r Alice C. Bellande holding Faye, Roy P. Bellande

837 Lameuse Street-survived Hurricane Katrina of August 2006

Below in January 1994

 

Marriage and family

Peter Bellande and Alice Caillavet exchanged wedding vows in Biloxi on August 19, 1894.  They settled at 837 Lameuse Street in Biloxi on land that Antoine Bellande had purchased in 1880, and conveyed to Marie Harvey Bellande in December 1885.  All of their children were born in this house which is extant and occupied by an Hebert family today.

Alice Caillavet Bellande (1872-1955)

 

Peter was a bartender and later a policeman.  As a member of the Biloxi police force he served as a patrolman, sanitary inspector, night clerk and desk sergeant.   In January 1917, Officer Bellande’s hours were changed from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. to 12 noon to 12 midnight by Richard M. Randolph, Chief of Police.  His bicycle was also stolen from Howard Avenue.(The Daily Herald, January 21, 1917, p. 1) 

Contraband alcohol continued to be smuggled and sold in Harrison County and the Popp’s Ferry area appears to be a preferred destination for these illicit activities.  In March 1917, Police Chief  Richard M. Randolph and Officer Peter Bellande (1871-1933) seized a wagon loaded with eight casks of Cook’s Beer and a gallon of wine and arrested Frances Barthes (1888-1942).  It was presumed by local law enforcement officials that a schooner had transported the liquor to Biloxi from New Orleans and that it was being transported to Popp’s Ferry for retail sale.  Judge F.W. Elmer Jr. fined Mr. Barthes $100 and court cost.(The Daily Herald, March 13, 1917, p. 3)

Mayor Edward Glennan (1854-1933) started his final year as Mayor of Biloxi with turmoil in the Police Department.  In January 1918, when it was time to reappoint patrolmen, Walter H. 'Skeet' Hunt (1887-1961), 1st Ward Alderman, opposed that Frank J. ‘Zudie’ Hightower (1890-1976), Peter Bellande (1871-1933), and John W. Mabry (1873-1940) continue with the force.  The Board of Aldermen appointed Joseph Mattina (1889-1969), a barber; Willie Ryan (1876-1958), Biloxi Yacht Club keeper; and Martin Green Jr. (1875-1951), a boat dealer, to replace the three men.  None of the City Council’s new policemen had any law enforcement experience and they had to be trained by Chief Randolph.(The Daily Herald, January 3, 1918)

When John J. Kennedy replaced Edward Glennan in January 1919 as Biloxi's new Mayor, he attempted to have Peter Bellande hired back on the Biloxi Police force.  He was opposed by Commissioners Walter H. Hunt and Marshall L. Michel and Officer Bellande was not rehired at this time.(The Daily Herald, January 8, 1919, p. 1)

By 1926, Peter Bellande was desk sergeant for the Biloxi force.  In November 1926, he took two weeks vacation and expected to log in some fishing time.  At this time, The Daily Herald related that 

"Mr. Bellande is a fisherman of skill and repute, and there is no greater recreative sport for the tired office man that a hook and line, bait and the pleasures of anticipation.  The police office may expect a new man when he returns."(The Daily Herald, January 21, 1917, p. 1 and November 19, 1926, p. 2.)

In June 1927, Peter Bellande decided to enter politics and ran for the Office of Constable, but lost.  His family felt that his defeat was the result of Peter's honesty.  In announcing his candidacy for the Constable's position, Peter was described as: respected and liked by a large number of friends in Biloxi and on the Coast who declare that he is as 'honest as the day is long'. (The Daily Herald, June 27, 1927, p. 1) 

This uprightness was noted in The Daily Herald of December 24, 1917, on page one titled, "Officer Bellande has no favorites".  Peter Bellande arrested his oldest son, Roy Bellande, for riding his bicycle without a light! 

Officer Bellande also arrested Arbeau Caillavet (1881-1946), his wife's first cousin, for possessing liquor at Caillavet's White Kitchen on Lameuse Street.  Mr. Caillavet was fined $100 by Judge Z.T. Champlin in the fall of 1916 for transporting the contraband liquor in a suitcase.  One of Peter's grandsons, Mickey J. Bellande (b. 1944), was elected a City Councilman in Biloxi in July 1989 and July 1993 representing Ward 7.(The Daily Herald, November 2, 1916, p. 3)

Peter and Alice reared a family of seven children on Lameuse Street.  They were: Roy P. Bellande (1895-1964), Louise Faith “Faye” B. Davidson (1898-1974), Aristide C. Bellande (1901-1976), Elliott A. Bellande (1904-1977), Ruth B. Ragusin (1906-1993), Marcel J. Bellande (1909-1982), and Alton L. Bellande (1912-1970). 

In the spring of 1933, Peter Bellande suffered a heart attack, and died 7 months later on December 8, 1933.  Alice Caillavet Bellande lived into very old age and passed on July 10, 1955, at Mobile, Alabama.  The day she was buried a violent thunderstorm struck Biloxi, and our neighbor on Lameuse Street, Mrs. Tom Williams, slipped on her porch and broke her leg.

The In-laws: Raymond and Celine Caillavet

Raymond Caillavet and Celina Joucheray

Raymond Caillavet (1838-1898) called "Medeaux" was born at Biloxi in 1838.  He was the eldest son ofFrancois Caillavet (1815-1883), a carpenter, and Euranie Fayard (1818-1895).  Raymond Caillavet was the grandson of Louis Arbeau Caillavet (1790-1860), a native of the Opelousas Post, Louisiana and Marguerite Fayard(1787-1863) of Biloxi.  Louis A. Caillavet was baptized on March 31, 1793, with Louis Carriere and Marie Despaux standing as his godparents.  L.A. Caillavet's father, Symphroen Caillavet (1746-1806), was born at Bordeaux, France.  His mother was Marie Rose Carriere (1766-c. 1855), a native of New Orleans.

The Caillavet family at Biloxi was well respected.  Louis A. Caillavet, the progenitor of the family here, had arrived in 1809, from Opelousas, Louisiana.  His mother, Rose Carriere and brother, Adolph Caillavet (c. 1803-1842) joined him at Biloxi later. 

L.A. Caillavet married Marguerite Fayard (1787-1863) circa 1811.  She was the daughter of Jean Baptist Fayard Jr. (1752-1816) and Angelique Ladner (1753-1830).  These families are among the oldest at Biloxi.

L.A. Caillavet was fluent in the French and English languages and acted as an agent-interpreter and representative to wealthy Creole families from New Orleans as well as his neighbors in land and legal matters.  He was often called as a witness in Probate (Chancery) Court matters and his depositions in several court cases reveal something about his life.  From Nap Cassibry's II excellent two volume series, Early Settlers and Land Grants at Biloxi, the following has been extracted concerning L.A. Caillavet:

 

1.  was in Biloxi in 1809 and no later than 1812.

2.  sometimes he was the only one in Biloxi who could write.

3.  served as an interpreter and notary in legal matters.

4.  he was blind by 1848.

 

L.A. Caillavet acquired much land on the Mississippi coast.  In February 1837, he received a U.S. Government land patent on 71.85 acres at Jackson County, Mississippi described as Lot 1 of Section 32 T7S-R8W.(1)  It comprised the NE/4 and SE/4 of the NE/4 of that section.  This land

is located on the beach front at east Ocean Springs west of Halstead Road.  Louis A. Caillavet was elected treasurer of the Harrison County Board of Police (Board of Supervisors) for the term 1841-1843.

 

The Civil War

As a young man, Raymond Caillavet took the call of the Confederate cause and joined Company E (Biloxi Rifles), 3rd Mississippi Infantry, C.S.A.  He served as a private.  The Biloxi Rifles were mustered into State service on May 21, 1861, at Jackson, and Confederate service at Shieldsboro (Bay St. Louis) on October 5, 1861.  They were originally expected to be sent to Virginia, but Governor Pettus thought they would be better utilized as a home guard protecting the Mississippi Coast from Union excursions.

 

Celina Joucheray

Young Caillavet must have left the Coast during the Civil War for New Orleans.  Here he met and marriedCelina Joucheray (1841-1903) circa 1864.  Celina Joucheray was born at New Orleans on November 24, 1841.  Her father was Pierre Joucheray (1809-1842) and mother, Louise Denis (ca 1812-ca 1849).  Pierre Joucheray was born at Chare sur Argos, Canton Conde, Department of Maine and Loire on March 16, 1809, while Louise Denis was a native of Sable, Department of Sarthe.  The Joucherays were married at Paris, France circa 1836. 

 

Joucheray, Celina

Be it remembered that on the day to wit: the fourteenth of November of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and forty two and the sixty seventh of the Independence of the United States before me, Alfred E. Farstall, duly commissioned and sworn Recorder of Births and Deaths in and for the Parish and City personally appeared. Mrs. Louise Denis, widow of the late Mr. Pierre Joucheray, a native of Sable, Department of the Sarth in France, about thirty years of age and residing on Royale Street No. 358 in the first Municipality of New Orleans who in the presence of undersigned witnesses , doth declare that she bore a female child Celina Joucheray, the legitimate child of the late Mr. Pierre Joucheray born at Chare sur Argoz Canton Conde , born at Chare sur Argos Canton Conde Department of Maine and Loire in France, on the sixteenth of March eighteen hundred and nine and since about six years ago married at Paris in France, in (illegible) Department.  The child was born on the twenty fourth of November eighteen and forty one at half past eleven o’clock A.M. in a house on Louise? Street between Marigny  and Mandeville Streets in the first Municipality of this city.(Louisiana Department of Archives, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Birth Records Volume 7, p. 189)

 

Joucheray, Pierre

Be it remembered that on the day to wit: the fourteenth of November of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and forty two and the sixty seventh of the Independence of the United States before me, Alfred E. Farstall, duly commissioned and sworn Recorder of Births and Deaths in and for the Parish and City personally appeared.  Mrs. Louise Denis, widow of the late Mr. Pierre Joucheray, a native of Sable, Department of the Sarthe in France, about thirty years of age and residing on Royale Street No. 358 in the first Municipality of New Orleans who in the presence of undersigned witnesses , doth declare that her lawful husband Mr. Pierre Joucheray, born at Chare sur Argos, Canton Conde, Department of Maine and Loire in France, on the sixteenth of March eighteen hundred and nine and since about six years ago married at Paris in France, departed this life on the twenty first of May last past at ten o’clock P.M. by falling accidentally into the Blind River Parish of St. Tammany in the state of Louisiana.(Louisiana Department of Archives, Baton Rouge, LouisianaDeath Records Volume 9, p. 383)

 

After Pierre Joucheray’s death in May 1841, Madame Joucheray and Celina disappear until the Orleans Parish Federal Census of 1850.  At this time, Celina is living in the household of Marcelin Effort (1828-1850+), a Louisiana born pilot, in the first ward of New Orleans.  It appears that her mother remarried or died before 1850. 

 

Coming Home

Raymond Caillavet and Celina’s first two children were born at New Orleans.  They had returned to Biloxi for birth of their third child in 1869.  On February 26, 1869, Raymond Caillavet bought a lot fronting on North Street at Biloxi from his father.  It was described in the land deed records as having a front of eighty-five feet on North Street and being two-hundred feet deep.  It was bounded on the north by North Street, east by Mrs. Lefaure, south by lands of Cook, and west by a street or road (Cuevas Street?).(2)  He paid $200 for the land.  Here Raymond Caillavet reared his family and made his livelihood as a carpenter.

In June 1869, young Raymond Caillavet for $100 acquired another lot from his father.  It had a width of sixty-five feet and was one-hundred twenty five feet in depth.  The lot was bounded on the north by John Latour Caillavet, east by Charles T. Couave (Cuevas), south by a street, and west by an alley.(3)  Caillavet conveyed this property to Phillip Lestrade (1832-1912) on January 5, 1876, as partial repayment for a debt owed Lestrade in a partnership that they had once participated.(4)

 

Butcher

In September 1876, Raymond Caillavet advertised his meat business in The Biloxi Mirror.  He  was situated at present day Main Street and Howard Avenue.

R. CAILLAVET
BUTCHER
Stall No. 1, Market House
Biloxi, Mississippi
Vessels, Hotels and Families
supplied with
BEEF*PORK*VEAL*MUTTON, ETC.,
At New Orleans Prices
 
The Biloxi Mirror, September 9, 1876, p. 3
 

 

Public Service

Mayor Raymond Caillavet

 

Raymond Caillavet also had a career in public service in Harrison County and as a city official at Biloxi.  He served as Justice of the Peace District 1 (1873-1875), Corner and Ranger (1875-1877), Mayor of Biloxi (1877-1882), Corner and Ranger (1889-1891), and City Councilman (1894-1895).  In the January 1879 mayoral election, Caillavet defeated J.R. Harkness receiving 151 of the 200 votes cast.

In October 1883, while serving as street commissioner of Biloxi, Raymond Caillavet was lauded in The Pascagoula Democrat-Star for his expertise in opening the beach road from Porter Avenue to a point near the Biloxi City Cemetery to connect with the shoreline thoroughfare from Mississippi City.  Mr. Caillavet removed trees and stumps, but when completed, the road had the appearance of a “long avenue shaded on both sides”.  It was said of Commissioner Caillavet that, 

“The city fathers could not have appointed a more efficient man for commissioner that the present incumbent.”(The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, October 5, 1883, p. 3)

Raymond Caillavet was elected as Secretary of the City of Biloxi in January 1885.  He defeated Thomas D. Bachino 147 votes to 72 votes.(The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, January 9, 1885, p. 2)

Mr. Cailavet lost to John Walker in the Biloxi mayoral election of 1888.(The Biloxi Herald, March, 1888)

 

Construction

Raymond Caillavet built a large storage house for the Biloxi Artesian Ice Manufacturing Company.(The Biloxi Herald, February 18, 1888, p. 8)

 

The Caillavet Family

Raymond and Celina Caillavet reared their family at New Orleans and Biloxi.  The Federal Census of 1900 indicated that Celina J. Caillavet had birthed nine children before 1900 and that seven were alive at this time.  The names of their known children are: Blanche Caillavet (1865-1940), John Caillavet (b. circa 1867-pre 1870), Aristide Caillavet (1868-1898), Emma Rose C. Murray (c. 1869-1955+), Alice C. Bellande (1872-1955), Edward Caillavet(1874-1923), Clarissa Rita Caillavet (1877-1885), William Caillavet (1879-1940), Lillian C. Holley (1883-1967), and Louise C. Morgan (1881-1965). 

Raymond Caillavet expired at Biloxi, Mississippi on February 16, 1898.  Mrs. Caillavet died on March 15, 1903.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, March 16, 1903, p. 6)

The corporal remains of both were interred in the Old Biloxi Cemetery.

Children

Roy Peter Bellande (1895-1964)

The eldest child of Peter and Alice Caillavet Bellande was a son, Roy Peter Bellande.  Roy was born at 837 Lameuse Street on September 25, 1895.  It is passed on by the family that he left school in the fifth grade to help his family survive the hardships of that time.  During WW I, Roy served in the U.S. Army as a lieutenant at Camp Pike, Arkansas, which had been established in 1917 as a training facility for the Army.  He was discharged in December 1919.(The Daily Herald, December 6, 1918, p. 3)

In Biloxi, he worked for a lumber company, but later moved to New Orleans.  In the Crescent City, he lived with his two aunts, Emma and Blanche Caillavet who lived in the French Quarter on Governor Nicholls Street.  Roy worked initially in a cigar factory, but later became a salesmanager for New South Cigar Company, a tobacco and cigar wholesaler.  On June 12, 1924, he married Thelma Giaruso (1904-2002), an attractive lady of Italian and German ancestry.  She was born at New Orleans on March 28, 1904, the daughter of Italian immigrant, James Giarruso and Anna Blumstein.  Her grandfather Blumstein was born in Alsace-Lorraine.  Thelma’s  brothers, Joseph and Clarence Giarruso, have been active in politics, law enforcement, and sports for decades in New Orleans.  Thelma and Roy lived in New Orleans approximately ten years before coming to Biloxi to seek their fortune. 

    

Thelma Giaruso Bellande (1904-2002) and Roy P. Bellande (1895-1964) and Roy, ?, and Faye Bellande.

[second photo water damaged by Hurricane Camille-1969]

 

Bellande Beverage Company

 

    

Bellande Beverage Company [circa 1939] and January 1994, 831 Lameuse Street

(The building survived Hurricane Katrina of August 29, 2005.  Young ladies are probably children of Harold and Faye Bellande Davidson.)

 

In 1934, after beer had become legal to sell again in Mississippi, Roy founded a company to vend malt beverages.  His first brand was probably Spearman Beer.  The business started at the corner of Reynoir and Howard Avenue.  It was located later south of the family home at 831 Lameuse Street (the tin building is extant), and moved to its permanent location on Bohn Street in the 1950s.  Younger brother, Marcel J. Bellande, joined the organization in 1938 after a brief career in professional baseball.  The Bellande Beverage Company was chartered in the State of Mississippi, on July 15, 1938, with $5000 capital and 50 shares of common stock.(The Daily Herald, August 19, 1938, p. 3)

In 1942, the Bellande Beverage Company was selling Chevy Ale and Hudepohl Beer, product brewed by the Hudepohl Brewing Company of Cincinnati, Ohio.  In time, national brands such as Falstaff, Schlitz, and Pabst were integrated into the business.  Roy and Mickey (as Marcel was called) together with their loyal wives built a very successful organization, which operated from Bay St. Louis to Moss Point and north almost to Wiggins in Stone County.  Their territory encompassed about 1300 square miles.(The Pascagoula Chronicle-Star, May 15, 1942 and June 5, 1942) 

By 1957, the Bellande Beverage Company had grown to twenty-eight employees and ten trucks.  In addition to their Biloxi facility on Bohn Street just south of the L&N Railroad, beer distribution warehouses were situated in Bay St. Louis and Pascagoula.  Mrs. Mona Hunt was secretary of the organization.(The Ocean Springs News, May 30, 1957, p. 8)

The Bellande Beverage Company was sold in May 1979, to the Afton Beverage Company of Chattanooga, Tennessee.  Afton marketed Pepsi-Cola and Seven-Up at Chattanooga.(The Daily Herald, May 10, 1979)

I was fortunate to work many summers while in college for Uncle Roy, and remember him as an individual who was quiet spoken, honest, and possessed a subtle wit.  He had great instincts in business and believed in the CIF method of doing business, i.e. Cash in Fist.  If you could obtain credit from him, you knew you were honest!  Roy Bellande enjoyed his friends at Sicurro's Lounge on Division Street, the Elks Club, and American Legion.  Although he liked to fish for perch and green trout, he had skin cancer and was limited to the extent of his outdoor activities in later life.

 

Organizations

During WWI, Roy P. Bellande served in the US Army as an infantryman.  He did not go to Europe to fight.  Among his memberships and offices held were: chairman of the board of trustees of the American Legion Lyman C. Bradford Post; a trustee of the Biloxi Elks; vice president of the Biloxi Fishing and Hunting Association; Mississippi Malt Beverage Association; National Beer Wholesalers; West End Volunteer Fire Company; Revelers carnival club; and the Chamber of Commerce of Biloxi, Gulfport, Pascagoula, and Ocean Springs.(The Daily Herald, January 30, 1964, p. 2)

In September 1953, he was Parade Marshall in the annual Fireman's Day Parade for the West End Fire Company.  Roy was also King of the Biloxi Mardi Gras in 1957 with Carolyn Bolton as his Queen.

Roy Peter Bellande died peacefully in his sleep on January 30, 1964, probably of heart failure.  His widow, Thelma, remained in their home at 449 Porter Avenue in Biloxi until her demise on August 2, 2002.  They had no children.  Thelma G. Bellande was ninety-eight years at the time of her passing.  She lived a full life until her late nineties when her health began to fail.  Thelma drove her motorcar until her ninety-sixth year.  Her corporal remains were interred in Southern Memorial Park Mausoleum with those of her spouse.(The Daily Herald, January 30, 1964, p. 2 and The Sun Herald, August 4, 2002, p. A-7 )

           

Louise Faith (Faye) Bellande (1898-1974)

Faye Bellande was born February 15, 1898, on Lameuse Street in Biloxi.  She worked for the telephone company, where she met Harold James Davidson (1894-1982).  Harold J. Davidson  was born at Biloxi, on December 28, 1894, the son of William Davidson and Margaret Ledden (1863-1925).  Mrs. Davidson was a native of New Orleans and the daughter of Jeremiah Ledden and Margaret O’Brien.  She had come to Biloxi circa 1885.  The William Davidson family resided at 514 Bohn Street.  When she expired on April 4, 1925, Mrs. Davidson was survived by four children: Alethia E. Davidson (1890-1965) married Alfred G. Brunet (1890-1948); William Sydney Davidson (1893-1941) married Viola Genevieve Comfort (1908-1999); Harold Davidson (1894-1982) m. Louise Faye Bellande (1898-1974); and Calvin Arnold “Skinny” Davidson (1901-1971) married Audrey Virginia Harrison (1912-2003).  A daughter, Olga Davidson Smith (1899-1920), had expired on January 20, 1920.      (The Daily Herald, April 6, 1925, p. 3) 

 

(l-r) Faye Bellande Davidson (1898-1974), Trilla Davidson,

Harold Davidson (1894-1982), Fern Davidson  (circa 1945)

 

Road Racing

As a young man Harold Davidson was an outstanding long distance runner.  An article in The Daily Herald of September 28, 1916, stated:

 

Harold Davidson, a local boy and well known amateur long distance runner, is training for a five mile race, the annual event of the Young Men's Gymnastic Club of New Orleans, to take place in that city on Thanksgiving Day.  Mr. Davidson has won two medals for his running and this time he is going in the race to try and lower the record for the south in the five-mile distance.  He captured a gold medal for coming in first in the race held by that club on Thanksgiving Day last and on March 4 of this year he received a silver medal for coming in a close second in a similar race.  Mr. Davidson stated that the present record is 28 1-8 for the five miles.  A number of excellent runners will take part in the race to be held this year and the Biloxian expects to give them a hard run for their money.  In the race run on last Thanksgiving Day he lead sixteen other entries and received a big ovation.  These events prove interesting to sportsmen in the Crescent City and are witnessed by large crowds of spectators.

 

Davidson also did well at New Orleans in the mid-November 1916 road race.  He placed a close second to southern champion, Willie Davis, a teammate, on the Young Men’s Gymnastics Club.  Davis covered the five- mile course in twenty-six minutes and fifteen seconds besting Harold by ten seconds.  Twenty-four other runners followed them across the finish line.  Davidson planned to run in the Thanksgiving Day Race also scheduled for New Orleans.(The Daily Herald, November 20, 1916, p. 3)

In January 1917, Harold Davidson was training for a two-mile race to be held at Mobile on Mardi Gras Day.  He was to represent the Young Men’s Gymnastic Club of New Orleans.  Professional road racers were expected in the Mobile event.(The Daily Herald, January 22, 1917, p. 3)

 Harold J. Davidson left Biloxi on February 25, 1918 for basic training in the U.S Army at Camp Pike, Arkansas, north of Little Rock.  It appears that most of his military service during WW I was in New Jersey.  Harold was probably discharged from the US Army in the spring of 1918.  In July 1918, he was elected vice president of the Biloxi Athletic Club replacing his brother, Arnold Davidson.(The Daily Herald, February 20, 1918 and July 14, 1920, p. 3)

In August 1919, Harold Davidson received an invitation from the Southern Amateur Athletic Union to attend to attend the Knights of Columbus track and field meet at Camp Dix, New Jersey, which was held on September 6th1919.  He was a member of the thirteen-man team from New Orleans, coached by Claude Simons.  Harold did not fair well in the New Jersey event, as his conditioning at the time was not at the level that he wanted.  He did get to visit the U.S. General Hospital No. 3 at Rahway, New Jersey where he was the chief electrician during WW I while serving in the US Army Quartermaster Corps.  Harold had won a 2.5 mile race while serving here.(The Daily Herald, August 28, 1919, p. 1, September 18, 1919, p. 3, and  January 1, 1960, p. 20)

            

Marriage

Faye Bellande and Harold J. Davidson married on July 18, 1927, at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in North Biloxi.  This union produced three daughters: Mildred Davidson (1928-1940), Fern Cecilia Davidson (b. 1933), and Trilla Davidson (b. 1935).(HARCO, Ms. MRB 39, p. 391) 

 

Davidson Girls

(l-r: Fern C.Davidson, Mildred L. Davidson,

and Trilla Davidson-circa 1939)

 

Mildred Louise Davidson (1928-1940)

Mildred Louise Davidson was born on July 29, 1928.  She attended school at St. John’s, a parochial facility, near her home.  Unfortunately, Mildred was robbed of a full life, as she died in her adolescents from pneumonia on February 25, 1940.  Her funeral was attended by her classmates and the Sisters of Mercy at St. John’s Catholic Church.(The Daily Herald, February 27, 1940, p. 3)

  

Fern Cecelia Davidson (b. 1933)

Fern Davisdon Dubaz O’Neal resides in D'Iberville, Mississippi.  She was widowed in February 1996, when her second husband, Felder Blake O'Neal (1931-1996), expired.  He was from McHenry, Stone County, Mississippi, and retired from the Baptist ministry.  Brother O’Neal had been pastor of the Tuxechena Baptist Church at Perkinston, Mississippi.(The Sun Herald, February 25, 1996, p. B-2)

Fern is divorced from George B. Dubaz (1931-1992).  George B. Dubaz was born March 15, 1931, in Biloxi.  He was the son of Luke Dubaz (1893-1985) and Inez Gable (1902-1994).  The Dubaz family, of Croatian heritage, were pioneers in the Biloxi seafood industry.  Their children were: George B. Dubaz Jr. (b. 1951), Stephen J. Dubaz (b. 1954), Brian J. Dubaz (b. 1957), Robert C. Dubaz (b. 1959), and Gary A. Dubaz (b. 1961). 

After divorcing Fern, George B. Dubaz, called Bunny, married Christine Mitchell (1937-2002), a native of Attapulgus, Georgia and widow of Jerry Britt.  He expired at Biloxi on May 5, 1992.  Buried Biloxi National Cemetery.  Christine died at Gulfport on January 21, 2002.(The Sun Herald, May 6, 1992, p.      and The Sun Herald, January 24, 2002, p. A-5)

 

Trilla Davidson (b. 1935)

Trilla Davidson Guthrie Ramirez Hansen lives in Larkspur, California.  She was born at Biloxi on 1935.  She was named for Trilla, Illinois, the birthplace of Alvah Clark Morgan who married Louise Caillavet, the sister of Trilla’s grandmother, Alice Caillavet Bellande.  Like her sister, Fern, she is a widow and has two fine husbands, Ray Ramirez, a retired city engineer, and Phil Hansen (1945-2009), a retired tax attorney.  Ray Ramirez expired in 1995 and Phil Hansen on August 5, 2009, while recovering from surgery at Oakland, California.  Trilla is divorced from Richard Guthrie of San Francisco.  He is the father of her children: Teresa Gaye (b. 1957), Sharon (b. 1959), Geraldine (b. 1961), and Richard Guthrie Jr. (b. 1962).

Faye B. Davidson had a bout with cancer in her early fifties and it eventually took her life on April 2, 1974.  I will always remember the kindness and concern she had towards me and my family.  We spent many days at 714 Church Street playing in the yard, visiting Grandma Alice C. Bellande, and listening to the armchair philosophy of Uncle Harold Davidson. 

Harold worked his entire career in the electrical field, commencing in 1915, with the Mississippi Coast Traction Company, the predecessor of the Mississippi Power Company.  Whole with the traction company Harold belonged to the Amalgamated Association of Street Railway and Electrical Workers of America.  He left the traction company and joined the Cumberland Telephone and Telegraph Company in January 1918.  Harold retired from the Mississippi Power Company on December 31, 1959, after a twenty-three year career primarily as a “trouble shooter”.(The Daily Herald, December 24, 1917, p. 1, January 14, 1918, p. 4 and January 1, 1960, p. 20)

After a long retirement from the Mississippi Power Company, Harold Davidson passed on in September 1982.  His and Faye’s corporal remains were interred in the Old Biloxi Cemetery.

 

Aristede Clarence Bellande (1901-1976)

Aristede C. Bellande was born September 12, 1901.  He left Biloxi about 1917, moving to New Orleans were he died on August 30, 1976.  Aristede was known as Buster, and was probably named for his uncle, Aristide Caillavet (b. 1867).  He began work as an apprentice machinist, but later went into the hotel business.

Buster Bellande began his fortune in the hotel field as a bell captain in 1920, at the old St. Charles Hotel when James 'Pat' O' Shaughnessy was the manager.  In 1933, he joined the staff of the Roosevelt Hotel as room clerk.  Buster was made assistant manager of the Roosevelt in 1937, and promoted to executive assistant manager in 1941.  In 1948, he was named resident manager and then manager in 1956.  His professional associations were:  Hotel Greeters of America, New Orleans Hotel Association, New Orleans Hotel Greeters, and the Chamber of Commerce.

 

  

Aristede "Buster" C. Bellande

(L-R: image made circa 1930, from La-Ms. Hotel Greeters of America, p. 22;

2nd image made 1938)

 

Buster Bellande married Mildred Lott (1904-1980) of German ancestry in New Orleans in 1926.  Mildred was the daughter of John Lott (1860-1942) and Theresa Hornung (1861-1936).  She was the youngest of eight children and reared on Laurel Street near Annunciation in the Crescent City.  Mildred's father worked faithfully for over thirty years with the New Orleans Fire Department. Mildred's mother expired at New Orleans on November 19, 1936.  Buster's mother, Alice C. Bellande, attended Mrs. Lott's funeral.(1910 Orleans Parish, Louisiana Federal Census T624_524, p. 4B, ED 207 and The Daily Herald, November 20, 1936, p. 2)

Mildred and Buster Bellande had a daughter, Joyce Mary Bellande (b. 1928).  Joyce Mary resides in River Ridge, a New Orleans suburb, and is divorced from Al Sherlock.  Their children are: Thomas Sherlock (b. 1947), Jerome Sherlock (b. 1951), Susan (b. 1955), Peggy (b. 1956), and Holly (b. 1961).

Buster retired from the Roosevelt Hotel in 1965, when it was sold to the Fairmont chain of hotels.  After a lengthy bout with cancer, he died in the Southern Baptist Hospital in New Orleans in August 1976.  Aristide Bellande loved Biloxi and always enjoyed an annual visit to relax, visit, and fish with his Coast family.  He is buried in Bellande family plot at the Old Biloxi Cemetery.  Mildred Lott Bellande expired March 1980, and her corporal remains were interred in New Orleans.

 

Elliott Anthony Bellande (1904-1977)

Elliott Anthony Bellande was born August 7, 1904. He was a merchant mariner out of New Orleans until 1927. In May 1925, he and Fred Haise left Biloxi for New Orleans to contract with a ship as crewman for an Atlantic crossing. The young Biloxi seamen had just returned from a voyage to Europe and were experienced able bodied seamen./(The Daily Herald, May 1, 1925, p. 3) 
 

On August 18, 1927, Elliott Bellande married Ernestine Balius (1907-2005) in the Nativity Church at Biloxi. Ernestine was born at Biloxi on April 23, 1907, the daughter of Ernest Balius (1873-1927) and Pauline Julia Lamrock Balius (1877-1934). Ernestine came from a large family of eight brothers and three sisters: Ernest Balius Jr. (1897-1969); Edward Balius; Albert George Balius (1899-1953); Henry Balius (1902-1977); Floyd A. Balius (1904-1994); Juliet B. Broughton (1909-1996); Freddie Balius (1912-1993); Paul Balius (1914-1994); Louis Balius; Lillie Mae B. Noble (1920-1992); and Melba Balius (1924-1941). Elliott was known as Peter Bellande Jr. and Pete Bellande. He worked as an auto mechanic for Ford, the WPA during the Great Depression, and the Harrison County Board of Supervisors. From 1940-46, he was with International Harvester at Flint, Michigan. Ernestine was employed by Southern Bell for thirty-five years retired in 1972 as Night Chief Operator. Pete and Ernestine were the parents of two daughters: Margaret V. Schneider (1928-1992), and Alice J. Dubaz (b. 1931)./(The Sun Herald, May 19, 2005, p. A10)
 

Pete Bellande was a good man. He is fondly remembered by the fishermen and boaters he served well from 1953-1970, when he was Harbor Master at the Biloxi Small Craft Harbor. He was retired at the time of his death from congestive heart failure resulting from cardiovascular problems on January 12, 1977. 
 


Margaret V. Bellande (1928-1992)
Margaret Bellande married Edward Schneider, a retired Navy chief petty officer who resides at Milton, Florida. They have an adopted son, Joseph E. Schneider (b.1960). Margaret V. Schneider was a licensed practical nurse and had retired from the Biloxi Veterans Administration. She died at a Mobile hospital on August 7, 1992, from leukemia. Her remains were interred in the Biloxi City cemetery. 

 


Alice J. Bellande
Alice J. Bellande married John B. “J.B” Dubaz (1930-2006), the son of John Dubaz and Cecile Dubaz J.B. made his livelihood as a diesel mechanic in the Civil Service at KAFB. He was a U.S. Navy veteran and founde member of Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Church at Biloxi and long time volunteer. They had no children.(The Sun Herald, April 1, 2006, p. A10

 

Ruth Cecelia Bellande (1906-1993)

Ruth Cecelia Bellande was born on September 25, 1906.  She married Albert J. Ragusin (1904-1991) at the old St. John's Catholic Church on Bayview Avenue and Main Street in early November 1939. Father J.P. McGlade officiated in the presence of their attendants, Mildred Izard and Philip Capuana.(The Daily Herald, November 6, 1939, p. 8)

The Ragusins lived for many years at 607 Santini Street in Biloxi where Albert had a plumbing business.  As a youth, he had left school to sell newspapers to help support his family.  Albert's father, Antonio S. Ragusin (1866-1911), a Croatian immigrant, died in June 1911, at Biloxi from blood poisoning resulting from a sting ray wound. 

In 1916, Albert Ragusin, was residing with his family at 756 Reynoir Street.  He and his older brother, Tony Ragusin (1902-1997), were newsboys at the time.  Albert wrote an article about “Biloxi” that was published in December issue of The Lone Scout, a magazine for boys with a national circulation of about 150,000 readers.(The Daily Herald, January 5, 1917, p. 2)

 

Albert J. Ragusin (1904-1991) and Ruth Bellande Ragusin (1906-1993)

(circa 1950 at 607 Santini)

 

Albert J. Ragusin learned to plumb at the Biloxi Plumbing & Heating Company owned by Henry L. Schwan and Charles Coquet, Sr. He commenced work for $7.50 per week.  As a journeyman plumber, he worked on the Edgewater Hotel.  Ragusin then went to Kansas City for advanced training.  He passed the Kansas City plumbing examination board.  Returning to Biloxi, Albert and Fred Demourelle Sr. commenced their own business, Demourelle & Ragusin.  Prior to the stock market crash of October 1929, Mr. Ragusin went to Chicago and Flint, Michigan.  At Flint, he worked on a large construction project.  In July 1941, he joined the Civil Service at KAFB as the chief foreman plumber for a salary of $2600 per year.  His first job was to supervise the laying of water lines to the tents.  Ragusin retired from the Civil Service circa 1973.  At this time, he held the title of Superintendent of pavements and grounds in the Civil Engineering department of the military base.(The Daily Herald, May 24, 1929, p. 9, November 6, 1939, p. 8 and  June 12, 1971, p. C-3)

In his retirement years, Albert J. Ragusin was active in yard work, wood turning, and Senior Citizens activities.  He was chosen to the Mississippi Joint State Legislative Commission and served at least two terms.  This commission represented the legislative interest of about 5000 members of AARP and the National Retired Teachers Association in Jackson, Harrison, Hancock, Stone, Pear River, George, and Greene Counties of south Mississippi.(The Ocean Springs record, November 11, 1976, p. 3)

In 1956, the Ragusins built a lovely domicile at 104 St. Charles Street on the north shore of Back Bay.  The bay front home was legated to Fern Davidson Dubaz O' Neal after the demise of Ruth Bellande Ragusin in 1993.  The Raguain-O'Neal place was heavily damaged by Hurricane Katrina in late August 2005 and demolished in the fall of 2005.

In their younger days, they traveled extensively throughout North America by automobile.  They enjoyed many visits to the Riley family in Denver, Colorado.  In recent years, the couple has made trips to Europe.  Albert fulfilled a life long ambition by visiting the Dalmatian Coast of Croatia, the birthplace of his parents.

In 1989, the Ragusins celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary at their residence with a family reunion party.  Although Ruth and Albert were childless, they have been very supportive of their close relatives through the years.  Albert J. Ragusin died October 1, 1991.  Ruth Bellande Ragusin passed on September 28, 1993.  Both are interred at the Old Biloxi Cemetery on the beach front.

 

Marcel Joseph Bellande (1909-1982)

Marcel Joseph Bellande was born September 24, 1909.  Mickey, as Marcel was called, succeeded in athletics and business.  At Biloxi High School in the late 1920s, he excelled in football, basketball, track, and baseball.  In mid-December 1932, Mickey graduated from Spring Hill College at Mobile with a degree in Commerce.  At Spring Hill, he had an outstanding football and baseball career.  Mickey signed to play football at Spring Hill with Earl Mattina, Burnett Mabry, and Granville 'Stag' Foster, all players from the 1926 Biloxi State Championship squad.  

This football team was crowned State gridiron champions, having tied the undefeated Sunflower County Agricultural High School from Moorehead at Greenville, Mississippi on December 6, 1926, by a score of 7-7.  The game went five quarters, although the Indians were outweighed 24-pounds per man.(The Daily Herald, December 7, 1926 and December 7, 1929, p. 2)

In June 1931, Mickey Bellande signed a professional baseball contract with the Cleveland Indian organization.  His professional baseball sojourn, primarily as a shortstop, included stints in the Three I, Middle-Atlantic, and New York-Pennsylvania Leagues.

Marcel Bellande's greater success and fame in athletics would come in the golf world.  He set a mark in Mississippi golf annals, which may never be duplicated by being the only man to win all three Mississippi amateur golf titles, i.e. State Open, State Amateur, and State Seniors.  Mickey captured seven State Senior crowns between 1964-1974, five National Four Ball Senior titles of the seven years he competed at Pinehurst, North Carolina, and claimed numerous club championships along the Mississippi Gulf Coast and New Orleans.  He was awarded numerous honors in the sporting world.  Among these honors are: induction into the Sports Hall of Fame of Spring Hill College in 1974, induction into the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame in 1975, and also the Gulf Coast Chapter of the National Football Foundation and Hall of Fame in 1979.  Mickey Bellande was named Man of the Year in 1963 by the Biloxi Jaycees.(The Sun Herald, March 5, 1982 and The Daily Times News, January 31, 1964, p. 1)

 

(l-r) Marcel "Mickey" Bellande (1909-1982) and Kate Fickes Bellande (1911-2006).  Circa 1944.

Marriage

On December 7, 1932, in the rectory of the St. John’s Catholic Church at Biloxi, Mickey married his high school sweetheart, Katherine Ruth Ann Fickes (1911-2006), the eldest daughter of Roscoe Logan Fickes (1886-1979) and Emma Christine Hinricks (1888-1971), both Illinois natives.  Like her father, Kate was born at Matoon, Illinois, while Mrs. Fickes hailed from Tuscola, Illinois.  The Fickes Family had come to Mississippi in 1926, the result of Mr. Fickes transfer with the Southwestern Gas and Electric Company [United Gas Company-Entex-Center Point].  He began his career in the natural gas industry in 1912.  The Fickes family left Biloxi in June 1929 for Fayetteville, Arkansas, but returned in September 1930.  Kate Fickes was a 1927 graduate of Biloxi High School and attended M.S.C.W., and Arkansas State College.  The young couple started life in the Bills Apartments on Reynoir Street.  Mickey planned to resume his professional baseball career in March 1933, by reporting to spring training with the New Orleans Pelicans of the Southern League.(The Daily Herald, December 8, 1932, p. 2 and December 31, 1979, p. A2.)

 

Military

Mickey J. Bellande enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps on October 24, 1942 at Camp Shelby, Mississippi.  He served in England during WW II.

 

Daughter

A daughter, Kay Ruth Bellande, was born at Biloxi on August 5, 1946.  Kay married James "Jim" Ray Foster Jr. (b. 1946) at the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary Roman Catholic Church at Biloxi on December 21, 1974.  He is the son of Dr. J. Ray Foster (1917-2002) and Jane Allen Strickland.  Kay and Jim lived in Michigan and Florida were Jim made his livelihood in hospital administration.  They are the parents of twin sons, Brad Foster (b. 1980) and J. Brian Foster (b. 1980).  The Fosters returned to Biloxi in 2003. 

Margaret Fickes Foster (1919-2009), Jim's stepmother and Kay's aunt, passed on March 31, 2009 at Biloxi.(The Sun Herald, April 2, 2009, p. A4)

 

l-r: Dr. J. Brian Foster and Brad Foster

In May 2005, J. Brian Foster, a University of Florida alumnus, received his medical degree from the Emory University School of Medicine at Atlanta, Georgia.  He planned to pursue a residency in ophthalmology at the Wake Forest University School of Medicine at Winston-Salem, North Carolina.(The Sun Herald, May 29, 2006, p. A11)

 

Residences

In December 1937, Mickey and Kaye moved into a new house on the southwest corner of Hopkins and Division Street at Biloxi.  It was a five-room bungalow situated on a lot 60 feet by 100 feet.  The Division Street property was purchased from the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company through local realtors, Perkins & Fayard.(The Daily Herald, December 4, 1937, p. 6)

In August 1959, Mickey and Kate Bellande acquired for $9,000 cash, the vacation home of Urban B. Koen and Patricia Koen at 226 Kensington Drive, east of KAFB, on the Back Bay at Biloxi.  The Koens were residents of New Orleans.  Their residence was situated on a .35 acre parcel designated as Lot 11-Square 1 of the Oak Park Subdivision.(HARCO, Ms. Land Deed Bk. 453, p. 35) 

 

Livelihood

In 1938, Mickey Bellande joined his brother, Roy, in the beer distributing business in Biloxi.  He retired upon its sale in 1979.  Mickey was always in top physical condition as he led an active athletic life style.  He was capable of hooking a large game fish or shooting sub par golf at the occasion of his untimely death from brain cancer on March 5, 1982.  His corporal remains were interred at the Southern Memorial Park cemetery in Biloxi.  Kate Bellande expired at Biloxi on October 6, 2006.  Her corporal remains rest eternally next to Marcel's at the Southern Memorial Park cemetery.(The Sun Herald, March 5, 1982 and October 9, 2006, p. A4)

 

Alton Louis Bellande (1912-1970)

Alton Louis Bellande was born January 22, 1912.  He was a salesman for his entire business career.  It was while traveling in Louisiana for Wrigley that he met Hazel Bonnette (b. 1912) in a Shreveport drugstore.  She was born at Charenton, Louisiana on October 2, 1912.  Her parents were Filbert Bonnette (1890-1967) of Plaucheville, Louisiana and Marie Mathilde Champagne (1888-1971), a native of Youngsville, Louisiana.  They were married in 1942.  Alton served in the United States Coast Guard from August 1942 to September 1945.  Most of his active duty military time was spent in Algiers, Louisiana loading munitions ships during World War II. 

 

  

Alton L. Bellande (1912-1970) and Hazel Mary Bonnette Bellande (1912-2002)

 

Alton and Hazel had five children: Ray Louis Bellande (b. 1943), Mickey John Bellande (b. 1944), Betty Ann Bellande (b. 1946), Bruce James Bellande (b. 1947), and Roy Anthony Bellande (b. 1949).  Ray is divorced from Elizabeth Wynne of Lafayette, Louisiana, and has no children.  Mickey resides in Biloxi and is divorced from Sonia Carol Wilkes Hodges (b. 1947), a native of Hattiesburg, Mississippi.  They have a son, M. J. Bellande Jr. (b. 1980).  On September 28, 2002, Sonia married James Alred Sheffield (b. 1931), a retired physician.  In August 1969, Betty married Judge Larry Wilson of of Winona, Mississippi.  She lives in Biloxi with her husband William Toland, and they are childless.  Bruce is domiciled in Carmel, Indiana and has two children: Mary Elizabeth 'Betsy' Bellande (b. 1982) m. Austin Blake Edwards on March 7, 2009 at Little Rock, Arkansas; and Christopher Bruce Bellande (b. 1985).  His wife, Mary Elizabeth Bryant (b. 1949) is a native of Oxford, Mississippi.  Roy is divorced from Daisy Dianne Davis (b. 1953), who is now married to Kenneth Riley Wells (b. 1940).  Roy is now married to Nancy Elizabeth Arthur and resides at Silva, Missouri.  His children are Alton Jason Bellande (b. 1974) and Hazel Marie Bellande (b. 1978) divorced from Richard V. Savage and Mr. Parker.  Hazel Marie has Corbin Zane Bellande (b. 1997), a son, with Rinichiro Larry Burdick, the son of Mr. Burdick and Tomiko Ohi Burdick (1937-2010) of Gulfport, Mississippi.

After World War II, Alton joined the Fuller Brush Company as a door-to-door salesman.  He is described in an article titled "Fuller Brush Man" in the May 8, 1948, issue of The Saturday Evening Post as "a thirty-six-year-old Mississippian with a persistent foot, a ready smile and a way with the ladies.  The foot, a figurative door opener, leads Bellande into approximately 100 Biloxi homes each week.  The smile, artfully guileless, establishes a mood of neighborly confidence between Al and his housewife prospect while he opens his sample case.  Bellande's way with the ladies is a compound of his own brand of small-town, deep-South chatter and a simple commercial formula known to some 7150 Fuller Brush dealers the country over as The Big Five".

About 1952, he joined his brothers, Roy P. Bellande and Mickey J. Bellande, as the advertising manager of the Bellande Beverage Company.  Alton was an outdoorsman of the first magnitude.  He thoroughly enjoyed golf, hunting, and fishing.  During the dove season, his home at 1051 Lameuse Street (now 415 Lameuse Street) was the head quarters for his many hunting companions. 

In May 1954, Al played some outstanding golf in losing in the finals of the inaugural Sunkist Country Club championship.  Giles H. Peresich won 3 and 2 in the 36-hole, two-day event.  Bellande shot a 76 and a 73, while Peresich had scores of  73-74.  Alton was selected to be the marshal for the Back Bay Fire Company in the September 1957 Firemen's Day Parade.(The Daily Herald, May 18, 1954, p. 14 and August 20, 1957, p. 10)

Alton Bellande died suddenly of a heart attack at his home on May 8, 1970, at the age of 58 years.

Family News

 

  

Christopher Bruce Bellande

Son of Bruce J. Bellande and Mary Betsy Bryant, formerly of Vestavia Hills, Alabama and now Carmel, Indiana, was awarded the Founder’s Medal for the School of Engineering.  He graduated with a triple major; a bachelor of science in computer science, a bachelor of arts in mathematics and a bachelor of arts in Spanish. Bellande is an Academic Achievement Honor scholar and a member of the Phi Beta Kappa honor society, the Tau Beta Pi engineering honor society and the Sigma Delta Pi Spanish honor society. Bellande served as president of the Vanderbilt math club for four years and organized the first Vanderbilt high school mathematics competition. He used his skills as a teaching assistant for the math department and volunteered as a language mentor to Hispanic immigrants new to Nashville. Bellande also co-chaired the Student Government Association’s athletics affairs committee and was a tour guide for the Office of Admissions.  Christopher completed the master’s program in computer science at Vanderbilt in December 2008 and became employed as a software engineer with Blackbaud, Inc. on Daniel Island in Burkeley County, S.C.

Roy A. Bellande

Continues erecting his home and workshop at Silva, Wayne County, Missouri.

 

Roy A. Bellande Missouri house

Image by Ray L. Bellande, July 2009

 

MARIA IDA BELLANDE (1874-1948)

Maria Ida Bellande was born February 26, 1874, at North Biloxi.  She was known as Ida.  At the wedding of her cousin, Marie Erma Harvey, to Victor Ougatte of New Orleans on April 20, 1892, in Biloxi, she was described byThe Biloxi Herald reporter as "one of Biloxi's favorite belles, who was also exquisitely robed, as became the first brides-maid of so charming a bride".

Young Ida Bellande appears to have been quite a social person.  In the spring of 1893, she was honored at the home of Captain E. Castanera in Pascagoula with a dance party.  Her mother attended her to this function.(The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, April 2, 1893)

Ida Bellande married Edward Emile Gassow or Gossow of St. Louis on December 5, 1893, in the Roman Catholic Church of the Nativity BVM at Biloxi.  Father Blanc was their priest.  Mr. Gossow was a well-known druggist from St. Louis, Missouri and the newly weds left after the wedding ceremony by train for St. Louis.  Ida was residing in St. Louis when her mother, Marie Harvey Bellande, died in 1894.  As previously discussed, the Gossows initiated forced heirship litigation against her father, Captain Antoine V. Bellande, and her brothers for her share of her mother's estate.  Ida and Edward Gossow divorced probably after three years of marriage.(HARCO, Ms. MRB 10, p. 145, Lepre, 1991, p. 21, and The Biloxi Herald, December 9, 1893, p. 8)

In October 1898, Ida B. Gossow departed her native Biloxi for New Orleans.  She aspired to be a nurse and planned to enter the Touro Infirmary to achieve this vocation.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, October 4, 1898, p. 8) 

It appears that Ida B. Gassow returned to Biloxi by the summer of 1899, as she was the proprietor of the Bay View Cottage, a hostelry on the beach road at Biloxi.  The Bay View Cottage was a two-story edifice on the northeast corner of Delauney Street, now G.E. Ohr, and Beach Boulevard.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, July 22, 1899, p. 5)

Bay View Hotel

on the Beach ~ Biloxi, Miss.

               MRS. IDA B. GASSOW, Prop.              

Regular or Transient Guests Furnished with First Class

Accommodations at Moderate rates

Open Summer and Winter

(The Biloxi Daily Herald, July 22, 1899, p. 5)

 

At New Orleans, she met native New Orleanian, Clarence A. Galle Sr. (1879-1931), the son of Louis Joseph Galle (b. 1845) and Martha M. Mueller.  Although they are kin, the Galle family of New Orleans and Ocean Springs pronounce their name as “guy-ull”, not the “gal-lay” as that of the Biloxi clan.(Larry Galle, July 26, 2001) 

On October 10, 1901, Ida Bellande Gossow married Clarence Galle Sr. in the Crescent City.  In November 1912, the Galles, who had once lived in Biloxi, were relocating from New Orleans to Montgomery, Alabama, where Dorothy was born in 1913.  In his later life, the Mr. Galle had worked for the Veterans Bureau, and resided at Alexandria, Louisiana.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, October 11, 1901, p. 8 and The Daily Herald, November 25, 1912, p. 8 and May 4, 1931, p. 2)

Ida and Clarence A. Galle were the parents of: Clarence A. Galle II (1904-1944); Lillian Galle (1905-1948+) m. Lyle Smedley (1907-1988), a native of Traverse City, Michigan; Evelyn Galle (1908-1948+); Loretta Galle (1912-1948+) m. Arthur Mauret; and Dorothy Galle (1913-1991) m. Carlo Lucia (1912-1930+).  In 1920, the family was domiciled on St. Roch Street in the Crescent City.(1920 Orleans Parish, Louisiana T 625_621, p. 2B, ED 134)

According to Ivy Lizana Fowler (1921-2000), Ida Bellande Galle would come to Biloxi to visit Ivy's grandmother, Maggie McCabe, at 427 Lameuse Street.  Ivy describes Ida as "about five feet five inches tall, weighed about 180 pounds, and love to eat, especially sweets".  Her father, Louie Lizana, put some grasshoppers in a brown bag and told Ida it was candy.  When she opened the bag the 'hoppers jumped out and shook her up a bit!(Ivy L. Fowler, November 1996)

Ida Bellande Galle’s obituary in The Times Picayune of August 26, 1948, read as follows: At New Orleans, she met native New Orleanian, Clarence A. Galle Sr. (1879-1931), the son of Louis Joseph Galle (b. 1845) and Martha M. Mueller.  Although they are kin, the Galle family of New Orleans and Ocean Springs pronounce their name as “guy-ull”, not the “gal-lay” as that of the Biloxi clan.(Larry Galle, July 26, 2001) 

On October 10, 1901, Ida Bellande Gossow married Clarence Galle Sr. in the Crescent City.  In November 1912, the Galles, who had once lived in Biloxi, were relocating from New Orleans to Montgomery, Alabama, where Dorothy was born in 1913.  In his later life, the Mr. Galle had worked for the Veterans Bureau, and resided at Alexandria, Louisiana.(The Biloxi Daily Herald, October 11, 1901, p. 8 and The Daily Herald, November 25, 1912, p. 8 and May 4, 1931, p. 2)

Ida and Clarence A. Galle were the parents of: Clarence A. Galle II (1904-1944); Lillian Galle (1905-1948+) m. Lyle Smedley (1907-1988), a native of Traverse City, Michigan; Evelyn Galle (1908-1948+); Loretta Galle (1912-1948+) m. Arthur Mauret; and Dorothy Galle (1913-1991) m. Carlo Lucia (1912-1930+).  In 1920, the family was domiciled on St. Roch Street in the Crescent City.(1920 Orleans Parish, Louisiana T 625_621, p. 2B, ED 134)

According to Ivy Lizana Fowler (1921-2000), Ida Bellande Galle would come to Biloxi to visit Ivy's grandmother, Maggie McCabe, at 427 Lameuse Street. Ivy describes Ida as "about five feet five inches tall, weighed about 180 pounds, and love to eat, especially sweets".  Her father, Louie Lizana, put some grasshoppers in a brown bag and told Ida it was candy.  When she opened the bag the 'hoppers jumped out and shook her up a bit!(Ivy L. Fowler, November 1996)

Ida Bellande Galle’s obituary in The Times Picayune of August 26, 1948, read as follows:

Galle

At the residence 2351 North Roman St. on Tuesday, August 24, 1948 at 3:45 o'clock a.m., Ida Mary Bellande, wife of Clarence A. Galle Sr., beloved mother of Mrs. Arthur Mauret, Mrs. Lyle Smedley, Mrs. Cario (sic)Lucia and the late Clarence Galle Jr. and Evelyn Galle, sister of August and Joseph Bellande and the late Anthony (Newt) and Peter Bellande.  Also survived by nine grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.  A native of Biloxi, Mississippi, and resident of this city for the past 50 years.  Funeral took place at Lumano-Panno-Fallo Funeral Home Wednesday, August 25. Services at Our Lady of the Stars and the Sea Church, Roch and Prieuir Streets, burial in the St. Roch Cemetery.

 

AUGUSTE FRANK BELLANDE (1876-1953)

Auguste Frank Bellande was born January 3, 1876, on Harvey Hill in North Biloxi.  He was known as Gus, Man, and Judge Bellande.  He is known to have left Biloxi for St. Louis, Missouri in 1895.  It would appear that “Man” went to St. Louis, as his sister, Ida B. Gossow, was a resident there at this time.  He returned to Biloxi for a visit in late July 1897.(The Biloxi Herald, July 31, 1897, p. 8)

In the US Census of 1900, Auguste F. Bellande is listed as a boarder with his brother, Joseph, at 714 Julia Street in New Orleans.  At New Orleans, Auguste worked for the L&N Railroad as a switchman.  It is known that he lost two fingers on one hand as the result of a timber handling accident or other event while with the railroad.  While a resident of New Orleans, he may have worked as a policeman for a brief period of time.

In New Orleans, Auguste F. Bellande married Estella Amelia Hernandez on September 18, 1900.  She was the daughter of Louis Hernandez and Philappina Hernandez (1852-1923).  Philapina had immigrated to the United States in 1852, from the Rhine Province of Germany.(1920 Federal Census-Harrison County, Mississippi)  Estella was the mother of Auguste’s natural children: August F. Bellande, Jr (1902-1952), Louis Bellande (1904-1977), and Harold Bellande (1905-1983).  Estella became ill with the flu or some other malady and had to be kept in a sanitarium.  She died about 1914.

Politician

Auguste Bellande and his young family returned to the Mississippi coast settling in the Gulfport area in 1906.  Here he worked for the Gulf & Ship Island Railroad as engine foreman until about 1916.  Gus Bellande was a politician and is known to have sought the office of Constable in Beat 2, Harrison County, Mississippi as early as 1911 and  again in 1915.  He served as a Justice of the Peace in Beat 2 for a number of years prior to 1923, and through this position acquired the title, Judge Bellande.(The Gulfport Advocate, February 27, 1915, and The Daily Herald, April 22, 1919, p. 2)

1915 Campaign

            Gus Bellande announced his candidacy for Constable of Beat 2 in February 1915.  He was defeated in this race by D.H. King.(The Gulfport Advocate, February 27, 1915 and The Daily Herald, April 22, 1919, p. 2)

1919 Election

            In the spring of 1919, August F. Bellande began his campaign for the office of Justice of the Peace for Harrison County, Mississippi.  He placed second in the Democratic Primary held on August 5, 1919, polling 356 votes to S.P. Moorman’s 412.  Mr. Moorman was the winner in the second primary held on August 26, 1919.(The Daily Herald, April 22, 1919, p. 2 and August 28, 1919, p. 4)

1926 Campaign

            In 1926, Major G.R. Kemp expired in his Beat No. 2 Justice of the Peace office.  Judge Bellande made a run for this position basing his candidacy on his prior four years experience as the local JP.(The Daily Herald, September 1, 1926, p. 1)

1928 Campaign

In January 1928, he ran a political announcement in The Daily Herald, which gave some insight into his character: In announcing his candidacy again for the place, Mr. Bellande stated that he felt that the knowledge and experience of his former term qualified him.  The record he made while holding the justiceship speaks for itself, said Mr. Bellande, and is open for the public inspection.  If he is chosen by the electorate of the district to again sit as their justice of the peace he will endeavor to see no one persecuted, but believed in the prosecution of all who were charged with the violation of the law.  Friend and enemy would be treated alike in his court and he would know no favoritism, he declared. (January 27, 1928)

On December 30, 1914, Auguste F. Bellande married Mary Ellen Christovich Wagatha (1875-1946) of Mississippi City at St. John’s Catholic Church in Gulfport.(HARCO, Ms. MRB 27, p. 224)  She was the daughter of Nicholas Christovich, a Slavic immigrant from Dubrovnik, Croatia.  Her mother was Mary Ann Nicholson (1833-19  ).  Mary Ellen Christovich was the widow of George O. Wagatha (1878-1902), whom she had married in Harrison County, Mississippi on November 22, 1899.  They had a son, George Wagatha (1900-1991).  George resided in Metairie, Louisiana and was in good health and spirits, when I visited him in 1989.  He remained close to his step-son, Dr. Dan Lehon, of New Orleans. 

In the 1927 Coast Cities Directory, Auguste F. Bellande was listed as a realtor residing at 1911 19th Avenue in Gulfport with wife, Mary Ellen.  Residents of this address also were his sons:  August Jr., a salesman for Swift & Co.; Harold, a salesman for his father; and Louis, a sailor.  He later founded the City Paper Company (1935?), and was involved in the grocery and motor oil businesses as well. 

Auguste F. Bellande attempted a political comeback in 1943, when he ran for Justice of the Peace in District No. 2.  In a political announcement, the following was related: While he was Justice of the Peace a number of years ago, he was instrumental in cleaning out the slot machines, closing gambling houses, suppressing prostitution, and getting working girls shorter hours.  At that time, they worked 16 to 18 hours per day; succeeded in getting it reduced to 60 hours per week of 7 days.  He has previously conducted a clean, square administration with a square deal to all parties without regard to who they are, and he has guaranteed that no shake down will be permitted so far as he is able, to prevent, by anybody.(The Daily Herald, July 31, 1943, p. 8)

Obviously, the voters of Harrison County Beat No. 2 were displease with Judge Bellande’s prior term in office, as in the ten-man race for JP in 1943, he ran eighth.  He garnered only 328 votes of the 7873 ballots cast or       %.  Does his rejection by the electorate give credence that it is difficult for an honest man to succeed in politics?(The Daily Herald, August 5, 1943, p. 1)

The life of Auguste Frank Bellande ended instantly as the result of an automobile accident on Highway 90 at Texas Street in Mississippi City on November 18, 1953.  Judge Bellande was east bound on US 90 when his two-door Austin sedan turned north into the path of a 1953 Oldsmobile driven by Paul Skrmetti of Biloxi.  Mrs. Skremetti suffered a fractured knee.(The Daily Herald, November   , 1953, p. 1)

Auguste F. Bellande is interred next to his wife, Mary Ellen Christovich, who passed on September 28, 1946.  They rest peacefully for eternity in the St. James Cemetery at Handsboro, Mississippi.(The Daily Herald, November 18, 1953)

August Frank Bellande Jr. (1902-1952)

August F. Bellande Jr.was born at New Orleans on July 23, 1902.  He may have worked for Wells Fargo and possibly was drafted for World War I.  August was known as Little Gus and later as Gus.  He attended Perkinston Junior College and worked for a time as a meat salesman for Swift & Company.  Gus joined his father at the City Paper Company and eventually bought the company.  They were engaged in wholesaling paper products from about 1935 to 1948, when the business was sold.  Gus owned and operated a tavern for a short time on the corner of Pass Road and Court House Street in Handsboro (now Gulfport).

At Gulfport, on July 14, 1926, Gus Bellande married Ellen Laney (1896-1973) from Birmingham, Alabama.  She was born November 23, 1896, the daughter of Dr. Marcus W. Laney and Mollie Blair.  Ellen Laney received her nursing training at King Daughter's Hospital in Shreveport, Louisiana.  She was employed at the Veterans Hospital in Gulfport when she met and married Gus Bellande.  The Bellande's resided at 1910 19th Avenue in Gulfport near his father.  From this marriage two children: William Laney Bellande (1929-2002?) and Mary Blair Bellande (b. 1932), were born.(HARCO, Ms. Circuit Court MRB 38, p. 284)  

August F. Bellande Jr. and Ellen Laney Bellande divorced at Gulfport, in November 1947.    Ellen moved to Birmingham, Alabama.  She died there on February 21, 1973.(HARCO Ms., Chancery Court Cause No. 25,415)  

Betty Travis Bellande

In 1950, August F. Bellande Jr. married Mrs. Betty Travis Nobles Pare (1920-1973).  Mrs. Pare was the daughter of John E. Travis (1894-1985) and Pearl Baucum (1892-1973) of Hattiesburg, Mississippi.(HARCO, Ms. Circuit Court MRB 83, p. 491) 

After the demise of Gus Bellande, Betty married Louis Weekly in December 1952. (HARCO, Ms. Circuit Court MRB 92, p. 88). 

At the time of her demise in July 1973, Betty Travis was married to Robert C. Suber (1903-1977).  She had two daughters, Frances Nobles Recore Curet Anderson (1937-2002+) and Janie Taylor.  Mrs. Suber’s corporal remains were interred in the Glendale Cemetery at Hattiesburg, Mississippi. (The Daily Herald, July 15, 1973, p. A-2)

William L. Bellande (1929-2002)

    William L. Bellande called, Billye, was born at Gulfport, Mississippi on October 2, 1927.  He graduated from the high school division of Perkinston Junior College and joined the Navy.  Upon leaving the military, he went to Perkinston Junior College where he was a classmate of J.E. Bellande, Junior of Arabi.  Billye graduated from the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa and later the University of Alabama Dental School in Birmingham (1954).  He and his wife, Effie, reside in Birmingham where he has a successful dental practice.  They have four children: Lynn Bellande (b. 1959), Leigh Ann Bellande (b. 1961), William Bellande Jr. (b. 1964), and Sharon Blair Bellande (b. 1977).

Dr. W.L. Bellande expired at Birmingham, Alabama on August 18, 2002.

Mary Blair Bellande (b. 1932)

            Mary Balir also graduated from the high school division of Perkinston Junior College.  She them matriculated to Bob Jones University at Greenville, South Carolina.  Mary Blair has graduate credits at the University of Alabama, Cal State Fullerton, and Pepperdine University at Malibu where she was awarded the certificate to teach on the secondary level in California.  As a teacher, she has worked with students in the fields of speech, drama, and English.  Her summertime travels abroad have allowed her to teach also in Japan, Venezuela, and Guatemala (1987-88) where she worked in a missionary school.  In 1960, Mary Blair met and married Hank Kleyn in the State of Washington.  A daughter, Rebecca Blair, was born in 1963.  The Kleyns transferred to Southern California with the insurance industry.  Hank Kleyn died of a heart attack in 1977.  Since her early retirement from teaching, Mary Blair enjoys world traveling (Holy Land and Kenya in 1990) and watching her grandson, Breman David Buchan, develop.  Rebecca Blair, her daughter, is married to David Buchan, a native of Scotland, who practices dentistry in San Clemente, California.  Rebecca graduated cum laude from Pepperdine and worked as a media planner and account executive until the birth of Breman on March 27, 1990.  She is now a homemaker and is active in church and social activities in the community.    

Louis Bellande (1904-1977)

            Louis Bellande was born January 23, 1904, in New Orleans.  It is believed he enlisted in the Navy after WW I (circa 1920) when he was only about 16 years old.  He later became a Marine and was sent to China to guard mail ship-ments to that country.  His Marine unit served in Nicaragua in the late 1920s, and it is believed he fought against rebels led by General Sandino.  The present day Sandinista Party of Nicaragua derives its name from this early Central American patriot.

Louis returned to New Orleans and married Florence "Flossie" Bourg (1913-1992) from Bourg, Louisiana at New Orleans on November 5, 1929. They honeymooned at Biloxi staying at the Alvarez Hotel.  Their first child, Thomas Louis, was born in New Orleans in 1931.  At this time, Louis worked as a police officer, owned a restaurant, and drove a taxi.  From 1934-1944, he and Flossie moved often as he was employed in the steel construction business.  Daughter, Stella, was born at Lake Charles, Louisiana in 1935.  The Bellandes also resided in Baton Rouge and Joliet, Illinois before settling in Richland, Washington in 1944.  At Richland, Ralph, a son, was born in 1945.  Louis was employed at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation as a construction superintendent.  After retirement, he moved to Yakima, Washington where he died in January 1977, of a heart attack.  His wife, Florence Bellande, passed at Yakima in May 1992.

Thomas Louis Bellande (1931-1995)

Thomas Louis Bellande was born March 25, 1931.  He went to Central Washington University in Ellensburg to study psychology, but got involved in the office supply business.  He sold the business in 1982, and resided in Seattle with his wife, Elizabeth Ann, where in semi-retirement they managed an apartment complex.  Their children are: David Thomas Bellande (b. 1959), Stephan Paul (b. 1960), Michael William (b. 1961), Catherine Ann (b. 1962), Susan Elizabeth (b. 1964), and Jean Marie (b. 1965).  Thomas L. Bellande died at Morriston, Florida on February 1, 1995.

Estelle Bellande, (b. 1935)

Estelle Bellande, called Stella, resides in Stanwood, Washington with her husband, George Browning.  They were married about 1952, and have three children: Vicky (b. 1953), George (b. 1958), and Lynda (b. 1961).

Ralph Harold Bellande (b. 1945)

Ralph H. Bellande is a real estate developer whose business operates on a national scale.  He specializes in developing senior living centers.  Ralph and his wife, Katherine, reside in Gig Harbor with their children, Amber (b. 1976), Tyler (b. 1978), and Brooke (b. 1980).  Relocated to Prospect, Kentucky in 199?

    Amber Bellande residing at Lexington, Kentucky in 2001.  Teaching PE at the Woodford County Middle School, Versailles, Kentucky.  She is also the coach of the volleyball team.

Harold Louis Bellande (1905-1983)

Harold Louis Bellande was born in New Orleans on December 23, 1905.  In 1920, he was living in Biloxi, Mississippi on Copp Street, with his widowed grandmother, Philippina Hernandez (1852-1923), an 1852 Germany immigrant.  Harold was a delivery boy in a grocery store at the time.  Later he worked for his father, Auguste F. Bellande, as a real estate salesman. 

Harold lived in New Orleans most of his life and was an engineer in the merchant marine service.  He was married to May Breckenridge until her death in April 1962.  Harold Bellande died in Gulfport at 405 Texas Avenue on April 15, 1983.  He is buried in the Southern Memorial Park Cemetery at Biloxi, Mississippi. 

At the time of his death, Harold L. Bellande was married to Phyllis Frances Smith Markopoulos (1915-1985) who died at Gulfport, Mississippi, on December 1, 1985.  She was born at New Orleans on September 28, 1915.  Her parents were Frederick Smith and Frances Ann Hardy.  She had a son, William Markopoulos.  Phyllis is also interred in the Southern Memorial Park Cemetery next to Harold.  Her estate was probated as HARCO Ms. Chancery Court Cause No. P-1162.

Harold L. Bellande had no children with either wife.

 

EDWARD ANTOINE BELLANDE (1897-1976)

Edward Antoine Bellande was born on Jackson Avenue in Ocean Springs, Mississippi on December 19, 1897.  He was the sole child of Captain Antoine Victor Bellande (1829-1918) and Mary Catchot (1860-1931).  Captain Bellande was 68 years of age at the time of Edward's birth.  At the time, he was very active as a bar pilot at Ship Island and Biloxi.  The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, announced his nativity as, “On December 19th, a fine bouncing baby boy arrived at the home of Mr. and Mrs. A. Bellande.”(The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, January 7, 1898, p. 3)

Edward was known to all as Eddie.  He was a sickly child, and in a letter dated December 21, 1908, his father wrote, "he (Eddie) is always sick.  He cannot go to school like any other boy".  Eddie suffered from asthma in his youth.  By age forty, Eddie had grown to a height of five-feet six inches and weighed close to one hundred and eight pounds.  He began balding as a young man and was totally bald by middle age.

As a lad, he developed a strong interest in the new field of aviation.  Ruth Bellande Ragusin and Emmett Bellande, Jr. have both commented on the many model airplanes that Eddie built and exhibited in the Bellande home on Jackson Avenue in Ocean Springs. 

In 1915, after completing his high school education at Ocean Springs, Eddie went to Buffalo, New York and spent three months at the Curtiss Exhibition Company where he began the course in aviation.  It was owned by Glenn H. Curtiss (1878-1930), the famous aircraft manufacturer, who built the popular JN-4 or Jenny.  Young Bellande then went to the Atlantic Coast Aeroplane Station at Newport News, Virginia.  He was the youngest member of the graduating class and received his license (No. 639) from the Aero Club of America, which was affiliated with the French Federation Aeronatique Internationale, when he was eighteen years old.(The Jackson County Times, September 21, 1918)

  Eddie Bellande returned to Ocean Springs in late December of 1916.  His picture appeared on the front page ofThe New Orleans Times Picayune of December 2, 1916.

Biloxi visit

In early July 1917, Eddie Bellande took the L&N from Ocean Springs for a day visit at Biloxi.  He was interviewed or went by the office of The Daily Herald, as they related that, Mr. Bellande has been flying for eight months and qualified for a commission at 19 years.  He says that he could be flying for the government service but his age prevents him.  He is anxious to go across to Europe.  Mr. Bellande has an altitude of 2000 feet and has traveled at the rate of 125 miles an hour.  He use a Curtis (sic) military machine during his flights.”(The Daily Herald, July 7, 1917, p. 5)

Flight Instructor

In September 1917, he left Ocean Springs and went to Georgia School of Technology at Atlanta where he was an instructor in motors and planes at the government ground aviation school.   

Later during the First World War, he served in the United States Marine Corps as a naval reserves aviator from August 18, 1918 until February 24, 1919.  His initial assignment was at the Naval Training Center in Charleston, South Carolina.  Later he was a naval flight instructor at the Pensacola Naval Air Station.  It is known that he attended his father's funeral in Ocean Springs in June 1918, and was awaiting orders to report for flying duty in regards World War I.(The Jackson County Times, August 24, 1918 and September 21, 1918)

After the Great War, in May 1920, Eddie Bellande was employed with Curtiss Aircraft at Buffalo, New York in the motor department.  On weekends he flew passengers over Niagara Falls.  Robert E. Morris (1902-1970) of Ocean Springs joined the company in June 1920.(The Jackson County Times, May 29, 1920, p. 5)

In October 1920, Eddie relocated to Cleveland, Ohio where he worked for the Logan Aviation Company.(The Jackson County Times, October 2, 1920, p. 3)

In May 1921, Eddie Bellande as a member of the Aero Club performed aerials stunts at the 1921 opening of the aviation season at Curtiss Field in Buffalo, New York.  He was accompanied in the air by E.M. Ronne and Roland Rohlfs.(The Jackson County Times, May 28, 1921, p. 3)

 

(l-r) unknown, Edward A. Bellande (1897-1978), Charles Lindbergh (1902-1974), unknown)

(photo from E.A. Bellande)

Southern California

In early June 1921, Bellande returned to Ocean Springs from Buffalo to visit with his mother.  He departed Ocean Springs in early July 1921, for Southern California where he expected to be employed by one of the large movie companies as an aviator.

 He flew as a test pilot for Lockheed in 1926, piloting the first Lockheed Vega.  He checked out Wiley Post in the famed "Winnie Mae", and co-piloted Charles Lindberg on the first TWA transcontinental run in 1929.  His career in aviation nearly equaled the history of the industry as it is known today.  He was a Navy pilot (World War I), barnstormer, skywriter, crop duster, movie stunt artist, and an airline pilot.  While working in the fledgling Hollywood movie industry, he flew for movie moguls, Jack L. Warner and Darryl F. Zanuck.  Old family photographs show Eddie with Al Jolson and Rin Tin Tin, the movie dog.

 

(l-r) Rin Tin Tin and Edward A. Bellande (1897-1978) on movie set-Los Angeles, circa 1925.

(photo from E.A. Bellande)

Rin Tin Tin

Rin Tin Tin (often billed as Rin-Tin-Tin in the 1920s and 1930s) was the name given to several German Shepherds of film and television.  The first of the line (c. September 51918 – August 101932) was a shell-shocked pup found by American serviceman Lee Duncan in a bombed-out dog kennel in LorraineFrance less than two months before the end of World War I. Named for a puppet called Rintintin that French children gave to the American soldiers for good luck, at war's end Duncan took the dog back to his home in Los AngelesCalifornia.  Nicknamed "Rinty" by his owner, the dog was taught tricks and could leap more than 13 feet. He was seen performing at a dog show by film producer Darryl F. Zanuck, who paid Lee Duncan to film him. Duncan became convinced that Rin Tin Tin could become the next Strongheart. The dog's big break came when he stepped in for a recalcitrant wolf in The Man From Hell's River (1922). Rin Tin Tin would be cast as a wolf or wolf-hybrid many times in his career, despite looking little to nothing like one. His first starring role, 1923's Where the North Begins, was a huge success often credited with saving Warner Brothers from bankruptcy. It was followed by Shadows of the North (1923),Clash of the Wolves (1925), A Dog of the Regiment (1927), Tiger Rose (1929), and The Lightning Warrior (1931). The dog also had his own radio show in 1930 called The Wonder Dog, on which he did his own sound effects.  True to his French birthright, to the sounds of classical music being played, the dog dined each day on a choice cut of tenderloin steak specially prepared by a private chef.  Following Rin Tin Tin's death in 1932 in Los AngelesCalifornia, (in the arms of actress Jean Harlow, according to Hollywood legend) his owner arranged to have the dog returned to his country of birth for burial in the Cimetière des Chiens, the renowned pet cemetery in the Parisian suburb of Asnières-sur-Seine.

Mothers visit

As early as May 1930, Mrs. Bellande was living with Eddie in Los Angeles.  She came home in May 1930 to visit with Mrs. A.J. Catchot.(The Daily Herald, May 31, 1930, p. 5)

Mary Catchot Bellande (1860-1931) expired at California on May 26, 1931.  Her remains were interred in the Evergreen Cemetery at Ocean Springs, Mississippi.(The Daily Herald, May 28, 1931, p. 2)      

Air Mail Medal of Honor

Among his many honors as a pilot is the Congressional Air Mail Medal of Honor presented to him by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1935.  It was awarded to Eddie Bellande for an act of heroism following his only crash at Bakersfield, California.  He safely landed a Transcontinental and Western Air trimotor aircraft, which was in flames and helped all of his passengers to reach safety before the plane was totally destroyed by the fire.(see The Los Angeles Times, ?)

As one of the pioneers of the aerospace industry, Eddie Bellande was one of the original organizers and board members of the Northrop Aircraft Company.  He served as vice-president and director of the Houston Company and H.W. Houston Company.  Eddie helped organize Maddux Air Lines, which later evolved into TWA.

At the time of his retirement from TWA in January 1943, he was the Number 2 pilot in seniority.  Eddie had logged more than 23,000 flying hours and flew 3,100,000 miles without injury to passengers or mail cargo.  He joined the Garrett Corporation in 1943, as an assistant to the President, was elected to the Board in 1948, and named Chairman of the Board in July 1963.  His first challenge as leader of Garrett was to fight a takeover attempt by Curtiss-Wright, which was seeking to buy 47% of Garrett's stock.  During his tenure at Garrett, the pressurization of production aircraft developed (the B-29 Superfortress), and after World War II, the corporation turned its talents to high-flying civilian transports and spacecraft.  In December 1965, he retired, but served as a consultant with Garrett.

Edward Bellande belonged to approximately 30 civic and fraternal organizations including humanistic groups as well as aerospace-oriented ones.  In the field of aviation, they include:  International Club of Washington; Sky Club, New York; Wings Club, New York; Aviation Hall of Fame, Dayton; National Defense Transportation Association; OX5 Club; Quiet Birdmen; Early Birds of Aviation, and honorary fellow of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots.  He served as general chairman of the Hope Chest Campaign in 1964, was a member of the President's Council of Loyola University in Los Angeles, and was on the board of the Bates Foundation in support of Harvey Mudd College.

Mary Bellande went to Los Angeles in January 1925, and considered living there with Eddie.           

Pacific fleet photos 1924

In September 1924, Eddie flew from Roger’s Airport at Los Angeles in strong headwinds and heavy fog to Crissy Field in San Francisco.  His plane had been chartered by Cornelius Vanderbilt Jr., proprietor of The Illustrated Daily Herald to fly Gus Thornrose, his staff photographer, to photograph the U.S. Navy’s Pacific fleet as it was arriving in San Francisco.(The Jackson County Times, September 20, 1924, p. 1)  

Aviation record

In 1925, Eddie Bellande flew more than 50,000 miles in 797 hours, which was considered a record for its time.  Most of his flight were to bring breaking news events to California newspapers readers.  Bellande flew images of the Santa Barbara temblor to Los Angeles and San Francisco soon after the natural disaster.  He took aerial photographs of the large Tia Juana, Mexico conflagration from his aircraft early in the morning as the fire raced through the resort border community.(The Daily Herald, January 20, 1926, p. 1)           

Mae West and the 1935 Kansas City article

In 1935, a newspaper article appeared in a Kansas City journal titled “A Mistake When He Moved Next Door To Mae West”.  Because of its human interest and biographical nature as pertaining to Eddie Bellande, I will submit it as copied from The Jackson County Times of March 2, 1935.  Virginia T. Lee reprinted it in her column, appropriately named “The Column”.  “It’s the little personal touch that counts!” commented the man as he accepted a loan from a friend.  So, if such things count for anything, permit the application of a personal touch or two of the chunky form of Eddie Bellande, who has been flying airplanes since 1915; part of whose airline flying now is carried on a Kansas City, and who, in his more than 10,000 hours of aviating, ha made one great mistake.  Bellande’s mistake was when he moved into a Hollywood apartment house and found he was living next to Mae West!  This is why it was a mistake. 

A 10,000-Hour MAN

His own individuality, which once was adequate, not to say copious, now has been lost. Because today he is referred to, not as one of air transport’s few 10,000-hour men, but invariably and simply as “the guy who lives next door to Mae West.”  No matter how long and honorable his flying record, and it is plenty of each, it all is submerged beneath the sea of whatever it is that causes him to be referred to thus: “Oh, yes! Eddie Bellande; I’ve heard of him!  He’s the guy who lives next door to Mae West!”  Only a few days ago at the Kansas City Airport, a stranger stopped the veteran airline pilot as he was leaving the restaurant.  “Excuse me!” the stranger apologized.  “Will you let me have your autograph?”  “What for?”  “Well, I understand you’re the pilot who lives next door--.”  “Aw, nerts!” was Bellande’s interrupting comment as he walked away.  Now if you ask him about that incident he probably would deny it.  He’s that retiring.  Many persons are like that, regardless of whom they live next door to.  For instance, there was the fellow who lived next door to poverty.  He never admitted he had so much as a dime!

This story was corroborated by Marion Illing Moran (1901-1993) of Ocean Springs who remembered Eddie Bellande as a young man in Ocean Springs.  They were good friends at school, and she visited him in Los Angeles circa 1937.  She told me that at that time Eddie lived on the second floor of an apartment house a few doors down from Mae West, the great movie star.(Marion Illing Moran, October 1991)

Marriage

On March 31, 1937, Eddie married Margerie Edith 'Molly' Lamont (1911-2000) at Santa Barbara, California.(The Daily Herald, March 30, 1937, p. 3 and Petition for Naturalization US District Court-Los Angeles, Ca. No. 62125)

Eddie and Molly Bellande resided at 361 Fordyce Road in the affluent Los Angeles suburb of Bel Air.  He could boast of having Joan Fontaine, the actress, as his neighbor.  Eddie was a bachelor for more than half of his life.  Bellande was a senior pilot flying for Transcontinental-Western at the time.

"Molly Lamont, the movie actress, took her first airplane ride with newlywed hubby, Eddie Bellande, senior Transcontinental-Western airline pilot.  Eddie was making his regular flight and Molly took the ride rather than be parted from him soon after their wedding.  Photo shows Eddie making his bride comfortable."(The Times Picayune, April 3, 1937)

1939

Flights and Flyers - (documentary; Blackhawk Films, 30m) Three newsreel shorts about Jimmy Walker, Corrigan, Costa & Bellande, Earhart, Hughes, the Mollisons, Post & Gatty, Rickenbacker, et al.

1940-testimony of Eugene Gerow, TWA pilot

As a 1940 graduate of TWA’s first officer school, Eugene Gerow (1907-2000) flew right seat with Eddie in DC-3 aircraft and claimed to be Bellande’s last copilot at TWA. The following excerpt from Gerow’s memoir, The Umpteenth Voyage: A San Joaquin Valley Farm Boy’s Struggle to Become an Air Line Pilot, provides an interesting personal look at Eddie Bellande the man, and insight into what it was like flying with him. As the story opens, circa 1941, Gene is a young co-pilot relaxing in the lobby of the Hilton Hotel in Albuquerque, NM, a TWA crew-change stop:

      “…After Dick (Colburn, TWA instructor at Kansas City) left I sat alone in the lobby and pondered my dilemma: I certainly wanted to check out as captain but I certainly didn’t want to face that exacting involvement with as little actual flying time as I had accumulated at the controls of the DC-3 under the random flight crew paring principle which the company now followed. Just then I observed a senior Burbank captain approaching.  “The captain was quite solemn as he stopped in front of me and looked me right in the eye. I began to wonder if I had done something to offend him but he started talking, rather jokingly I thought, about what a poor crop of copilots they were sending out for replacements these days. He went on to say that he thought I might do and asked, ‘Do you want to fly regularly with me?’ I was so astounded I stammered ‘Y…y…yes—uh, Sir!’  “Abruptly he started to turn away, saying, ‘okay, then: tell Corron I said you are to be paired with me from now on.’

     “The captain who told me to have myself scheduled with him was Eddie Bellande. He was one of the ‘Old Ones,’ to borrow a phrase from the Navajo, but old as applied here meant in experience, not chronological age: he was also one of the great ones.  “I remembered him even then. Years before, we used to fly across to Rosamond Dry Lake and watch him and other famous pilots of that era testing new airplane designs. We saw him fly the first Lockheed twin there. His name was a household word in flying communities up our way. I had already learned what his reputation was among copilots on TWA: he had left a trail of well-trained copilots with whom he had been paired—Buddy Hagins, Grant Nichols and others before me were forever grateful for what he had done for them and they had said so.  “Burbank Dispatch followed Eddie Bellande’s directive to have me fly with him, but it wasn’t all ‘peaches and cream’: Eddie apparently had something on his mind to which I will refer later, and during this early period of our flying together he just sat there in the left seat, trip after trip, and flew the airplane both ways. It wasn’t much different from the random scheduling I had been experiencing previously.

     “I was becoming quite discouraged and decided one day as we were shuttled over to the TWA hangar at Lockheed Air Terminal to taxi our airplane to the airline passenger ramp that I was determined to say something about it if he sat in the left seat again without offering me some ‘stick’ time. He did sit down in the left seat but suddenly jumped up laughing and told me to sit there. After I had taxied the DC-3 across the field he asked me why I hadn’t protested my non-pilotage status and I explained to him just how close we had come to my ‘telling him off’ about it.

“Eddie laughed uproariously at my ill-concealed discomfort but what he then told me rang true: naturally he wanted me to fly ‘his’ airplane ‘his’ way and thought the easiest way to put this across was to fly a few trips by way of demonstration rather than talking about it—this gave him more time to think (and as I said previously, more about that later).

“What a switch: for many weeks I flew the airplane from the left seat day and night, fair weather or foul. After it became apparent that my handling of the DC-3 had improved Eddie handed me the log-sheet clip-board one day and said, ‘Here: you can do it all now.’

     “I had never experienced so much flying joy in my whole life, but then as weeks passed and my glow began to subside, I noticed that Eddie was awfully quiet, just sitting there and staring out of the right front cockpit window for hours on end, saying little or nothing during this time interval. I began to really worry now, because I had come to think a great deal of him and I would have been horror-stricken to find that I had offended him somehow.  “One day, I abruptly asked Eddie what was wrong. He came out of it with a smile and said: ‘Can you keep a secret? If you can, I’ll tell you something that is very important to my future, but I don’t want anyone on the airline to know about it right now.’ I promised and then he asked, ‘You know who Jack Northrop is?’ I nodded and he went on to say that Jack had been in some financial straits in his airplane design business and thought he might have to give it up. Eddie added: ‘Jack is probably my best friend and I told myself that I couldn’t just let him go down the drain.’

     “Eddie related how he went to night clubs where many big time people hung out and by staying cold sober himself but buying expensive drinks for these people and talking to them as they waxed affluent under the mellowing influence of a good drink, he had accumulated a promising list of potential backers for Jack Northrop’s brilliant undertakings. The only problem for him was that these people wanted him to take over and run the company he had organized. ‘It may be too good to pass up’ said Eddie.

“It was a fascinating story as Eddie had detailed it to me and subsequent events proved that every word he had spoken was true. It was some time before Eddie finally made up his mind to make the change, he loved to fly so very much. But in the meantime, his last TWA copilot was having a ball flying the DC-3 from the left seat.

“Eddie Bellande was quite busy during his last days on TWA trying to make sure before he announced his voluntary retirement that his contemplated move wasn’t going to be a bad one. As I had previously stated, he had schooled me thoroughly on his idea of how a flight should be conducted and then turned the whole thing over to me. One of my non-standard copilot duties became a trip into the terminal building at intermediate stops to pick up the new weather. The captain was supposed to sign for the weather sheet, and I had learned how to render what I thought was a fair imitation of Eddie’s signature.

     “Quite often people who were involved financially in an airline and airplane industry dealings would ride along on the jump-seat with us and at stopping-points along the route Eddie would stay on board to discuss important items with these individuals. My most vivid memory of this phase was of leaving Eddie and LaMott Cohu in the cockpit after a night landing at Winslow, where I went in to get the weather. Cohu was destined to be a president of TWA and was quite interested in all facets of the airline operation.

     “When I came back up to the cockpit I advised Eddie that we had been re-cleared with a second alternate for ABQ, handing him the new release form. Cohu asked, ‘Doesn’t a new release have to be signed for by the captain?’  “Eddie laughed and said, ‘It’s been signed by the captain alright.’

     “The financial wizard took the release from him and looked at the signature, remarking, ‘By Gosh! It looks more like Eddie’s signature than if he had signed it himself!’  “Years later when TWA Captain Bill Harrison and I signed in at the Garrett Corporation executive suite at Los Angeles International Airport to visit Eddie, we had to write down the name of the person we wanted to see, and I wrote the name of the Chairman of the Board, E.A. Bellande. The secretary gasped when she looked at the hand-written name and said: ‘You must have known him quite well: it looks exactly like his signature and very few people seem to have known that his middle initial is A—they always write down Eddie.’”    

Note: Eugene Gerow (1907-2000) retired in 1972 as a senior TWA captain with 32 years service and 27,000 hours flying time. If he ever flew into Davis-Monthan during his long aviation career, he failed to sign the register. However, early in his professional career, he flew copilot with at least one other D-M signer, Walter L. “Si” Seiler, Chief Pilot of Wilmington-Catalina Airline, Ltd. Gene was a younger brother of Russell T. Gerow, whose photograph and document collection may be accessed here. Another anecdote from this book can be found at pilot Al Gilhousen.

1942-retirement from TWA

Capt. Edward A. Bellande, veteran TWA pilot who is well known in Albuquerque and is credited by the airline with having flown 3,100,000 miles without injury to passengers or mail cargo, retired Tuesday in Los Angeles, the Associated • Press reported.  For more years than TWA employees here could recall, Captain Bellande, who was taught: to fly by Glenn Curtis in 1915, has been piloting passengers and mail over the western division. As Albuquerque is a crew-change point.  Capt. Bellande frequently stopped overnight here.  In command of a "stratoliner" since TWA put the big four-motored Boeings into service, the veteran pilot's last flight through here was several weeks ago. He then left on a vacation, at the end of which he retired. Captain Bellande will become vice-president of a  company manufacturing p h o t o g r a p h i c equipment for the U. S. Army Air-Corps.  The Associated Press said he served as a Navy instructor at Pensacola, Fla., during the First World War.(The Albuquerque Journal,  January 28, 1942, p. 10)

Biloxi visit

During Mardi Gras of 1950, Eddie and Molly came to Biloxi from Los Angeles and visited with Esther Catchot Chamblee who resided at 438 Delauney Street.  He was with Air Research Aviation at the time.  They flew to Biloxi.(The Daily Herald, February 20, 1950, p. 8)

Molly Lamont

     Margerie Edith 'Molly' Lamont (1911-2000) was born at Boksburg, Natal, South Africa, on May 22, 1911.  In 1930, she was a dance teacher in Natal and won the Outspan Film Candidate Competition.  The prize was a holiday in England and a screen test with the Elstree Studios.  It launched her into an international movie career in which she made more than fifty films.(The Sunday Times, June 21, 1998)  They and the character that she played follow: “The Wife’s Family” (1931)"-Sally; “What a Night!”-Nora Livingstone (1931); “Uneasy Virtue” (1931)-Ada;“Shadows”(1931)- Jill Dexter; “The House Opposite” (1931)- Doris; “Strictly Business” (1932)-Maureen; “The Strangler”-Frances Marsden-(1932); “Old Soldiers Never Die” (1932)-Ada; “Lucky Girl” (1932)-Lady Moira-(1932); “Lord Camber’s Ladies” (1932)-Actress; “The Last Coupon” (1932)-Betty Carter; “Josser on the River”(1932)-Julia Kaye; “His Wife’s Mother” (1932)-Cynthia; “Brothr Alfred” (1932)-Stella; “Paris Plane” (1933);“Letting in the Sunshine” (1933)- Lady Anne; “Leave It to Me” (1933)-Eve Halliday; “Norah O'Neale" (1934)-Nurse Otway, “White Ensign” (1934)-Consul’s Daughter; “The Third Clue” (1934)-Helen Arnold; “No Escape”(1934)-Helen Arnold; Murder at Monte Carlo” (1934)-Margaret Becker; “Another Face aka Two Faces” (1935)-Mary McCall; “Rolling Home” (1935)-Ann; Oh, What a Night” (1935)-Pat; "Jalna" (1935)-Pheasant, “Handle With Care” (1935)-Patricia; “Alibi Inn” (1935)-Mary Talbot; "Muss 'Em Up" (1936)-Nancy Harding; "Mary of Scotland" (1936)-Mary Livingstone; "The Jungle Princess" (1936)-Ava; “A Woman Rebels” (1936)-Young Girl;"Doctor's Diary" (1937)-Mrs. Fielding; “Fury and the Woman” (1937)-June McCrae; "The Awful Truth" (1937)-Barbara Vance; “Somewhere I’ll Find You” (1942)-Nurse Winifred; "The Moon and Sixpence" (1942)-Mrs. Amy Strickland; “A Gentle Gangster” (1943)-Ann Hallit; “Thumbs Up” (1943)-Welfare Supervisor; “Follow the Boys aka Three Cheers for the Boys” (1944)- Miss Hartford, secretary; “White Cliffs of Dover” (1944)-Helen; "Mr. Skeffington" (1944)-Miss Morris, a secretary; “The Suspect” (1944)-Edith Simmons; "Minstrel Man" (1944)-Caroline (mother), "Devil Bat’s Daughter” (1946)-Ellen; , "So Goes My Love" (1946)-Cousin Garnet, "The Dark Corner" (1946)-Lucy Wilding; “Scared to Death” (1947)-Laura Van Ee; "Christmas Eve aka Sinners Holiday"(1947)-Harriett, "Ivy" (1947)-Bella Crail;  "South Sea Sinner aka East of Java" (1949)-Kay Williams; and "The First Legion" (1951)-Mrs. Gilmartin.  Many of these films can be seen on television and VHS tape.

Molly left Southampton, England for America and arrived at NYC on March 12, 1935 aboard Olympic.  She arrived at Los Angeles on March 17, 1935.

Eddie and Molly had no children.

The Bellande's enjoyed many visits to Ocean Springs and the Mississippi Gulf Coast to visit Eddie's mother who lived until 1931.  She sold her residence on Jackson Avenue to Frederick C. Gay in December 1924, and moved in with her relatives at Biloxi.  Mrs. Bellande expected to relocate to Los Angeles to reside with Eddie Bellande.  Mary Catchot Bellande expired in California on May 22, 1931.  Her corporal remains were interred in the Catchot family area of the Evergreen Cemetery on Old Fort Bayou at Ocean Springs.(The Jackson County Times, December 11, 1924, p. 5 and May 28, 1931, p. 2)

Eddie Bellande died in the Century City Hospital on November 17, 1976, at the age of 78 years.  He had a remarkable life and contributed greatly in the development of American aviation and aerospace technology.  It is notable that the lives of Edward and Captain Antoine Bellande, his father, spanned 147 years of time of which much was filled with adventure and discovery.

Molly Lamont expired at Los Angeles on July 7, 2001.        

 

More Eddie Bellande from General Aviation News, December 4, 2009.

Edward Bellande: Pioneering pilot

Posted by Dennis Parks · November 24, 2009

Bellande in 1916

“Air speed record to Los Angeles broken” was a headline in the Oakland (California) Tribune on Jan. 28, 1932. The story reported that a new coastal speed record for tri-motored planes was made on the Oakland-Los Angeles airway when a Transcontinental and Western airplane made the 360-mile hop in 1 hour and 52 minutes.

The craft, a Ford Tri-Motor, piloted by Eddie Bellande and Erwin Lewis, left the Bay Airdrome in Alameda at 10 a.m. and arrived at the Grand Central Air Terminal in Glendale at 11:52 am. Nine passengers were carried on the record-setting flight.

That was just one of the many highlights of Edward A. (Eddie) Bellande’s career in aviation, which spanned nearly 60 years. His career was as diversified and active as the industry itself during those years.

He participated, with other contemporary pilots like Charles Lindbergh, in some of the benchmark flights and activities of this dynamic era. He flew as a test pilot for Lockheed, piloting the first Lockheed Vega. He checked out Wiley Post in the famed “Winnie Mae” and co-piloted Charles Lindbergh on the first TWA transcontinental run in 1929. In addition, he either organized or directed some of the aviation industry’s largest business organizations.

Bellande was born Dec 19, 1897, in Ocean Springs, Miss. In 1915, after completing high school, he went to Buffalo, N.Y., where he spent three months taking flying lessons at the Curtiss Company. He was the youngest member of the graduating class when he received his license (No. 639) from the Aero Club of America.

He then went to the Atlantic Coast Aeroplane Station at Newport News, Va. During World War I, he was at the Georgia School of Technology at Atlanta where he was an instructor in motors and planes at the government ground aviation school. He also served in the United States Marine Corps as a naval reserves aviator from Aug. 18, 1918, until Feb. 24, 1919, ending his service as a flight instructor at the Pensacola Naval Air Station.

Early in 1921, he left for Southern California to work for one of the large movie companies as an aviator. While working in Hollywood, he flew for movie studios headed by Jack L. Warner and Darryl F. Zanuck. Besides being a movie stunt pilot, he kept busy as a flight instructor and barnstormer.

Shortly after arriving in Los Angeles he flew for DeMille’s Mercury Aviation Co. at its Wilshire Boulevard Airport. From 1922 to 1927 he was a freelance pilot flying for motion pictures, skywriting, crop dusting and barnstorming.

 

Bellande in the cockpit of an Avion with

its designer Jack Northrop on the left.

 

During 1927-1929 he was in great demand as test pilot by airplane manufacturers. He made the test flights on most of the Lockheed airplanes, including the first “Vega” and the “Golden Eagle.” He also did all test flights on Northrop’s first flying wing. Later Bellande would join Northrop as a sales pilot and corporate director.

During this same time, he joined Maddux Airlines flying Ford Tri-Motors. He continued flying for the fledgling airline through the mergers of Maddux and Transcontinental Air Transport (TAT) and the later Transcontinental and Western Air merger (which would eventually become Trans World Airlines or TWA).

By mid-year 1929 TAT commenced a 48-hour combination rail and air service across the United States between New York and Los Angeles. The first west-to-east flight was made July 8, 1929, aboard the Ford Tri-Motor, “City of Los Angeles,” piloted by Lindbergh and Bellande. The first east-bound leg was from Glendale, Calif., to Clovis, N. M. The next day Bellande and Lindbergh picked up passengers for the last leg of the transcontinental trip to Los Angeles. Among the passengers on this trip was Amelia Earhart, who had been hired by TAT to help market the service.

Preparing for the first east-bound TAT Air-Rail
coast-to-coast service is pilot Charles Lindbergh
(second from right) and co-pilot Eddie Bellande
(on Lindbergh’s right)

 

The advent of this service so captured the public imagination that six weeks before the service commenced, TAT reported receiving more than 1,000 applications for tickets for the first trip.

One of the most remarkable events in Bellande’s career was the result of an in-flight fire. On Feb. 10, 1933, on a night flight in a TWA Ford Tri-Motor from San Francisco to Los Angeles via Fresno and Bakersfield, the airplane caught fire about 10 miles out from Bakersfield. Apparently the floor heater, which operated from an exhaust stack on the nose engine, caught fire. Bellande managed to make it to the airport, land and safely evacuate the passengers. The fuselage of the plane was completely burned through. A close call, used by some to tout the benefits of “all-metal” construction.

Because of his heroic actions during the emergency, Bellande was one of seven mail pilots who earned the Air Mail Flyers Medal of Honor from President Roosevelt.

Bellande flew for TWA another 10 years. At the time of his retirement in January 1943, he was the Number 2 pilot in seniority. He had logged more than 23,000 hours and flew an impressive 3.1 million miles without injury to passengers or mail cargo.

He joined the Garrett Corp. in 1943 as an assistant to the president. He was elected to the board of directors in 1948, and named chairman of the board in July 1963.

The early days of aviation in California were rich in flying excitement against a background of aircraft and airline development. Edward Bellande was an integral part of many of these developments.

Dennis Parks is Curator Emeritus of Seattle’s Museum of Flight. He can be reached at dennis@generalaviationnews.com.

 

Antoine Victoire Bellande References

 


REFERENCES:

Charles L. Dyer, Along The Gulf, (Women of the Trinity Episcopal Church:  Pass Christian-1971.  Originally published 1895.

Jerome Lepre, Catholic Church Records Diocese of Biloxi, Mississippi, Volume I, (Catholic Dioceses of Biloxi: Biloxi, Mississippi-1991).

 

Chancery Court Cases

Harrison County, Mississippi Chancery Court Cause No. 1359, "Sam Levy v. Antoine Bellande Jr."-February 1901.

 

Magazines

Hotel Greeters of America, Louisiana-Mississippi Chapter No. 32.

 

Movies

Flights and Flyers - (documentary; Blackhawk Films, 30m) Three newsreel shorts about Jimmy Walker, Corrigan,Costa & Bellande, Earhart, Hughes, the Mollisons, Post & Gatty, Rickenbacker, et al.

 

Journals

The Albuquerque Journal, "Pilot Retires  Flew 3 Million Miles Without a Mishap", January 28, 1942, p. 10.

The Bay Press, “Cancer benefit, dance to honor Billy Bellande”, October 12, 2001, p. 6.

The Biloxi Herald, “City Paragraphs”, February 18, 1888.

The Biloxi Herald, “City Paragraphs”, March 1888.

The Biloxi Herald, “Local Happenings”, January 9, 1892.

The Biloxi Herald, “Back Bay”, January 30, 1892.

The Biloxi Herald, “Local Happenings”, December 9, 1893.

The Biloxi Herald, “Bellande-Barthes”, September 1, 1894.

The Biloxi Herald, “Petition For Liquor License”, April 13, 1895.

The Biloxi Herald, “Latest City News”, July 31, 1897.

The Biloxi Herald, “Latest City News”, August 14, 1897.

The Biloxi Herald, Latest City News”, January 8, 1898.

The Biloxi Herald, “Public Notice”, June 4, 1898.

The Biloxi Herald, “Local Happenings”, February 13, 1892.

The Biloxi Herald, “Local Happenings”, April 9, 1892.

The Biloxi Herald, “Biloxi Blues”, June 18, 1892.

The Biloxi Herald “Local Happenings”, December 10, 1892.

The Biloxi Herald “Local Happenings”, May 11, 1895.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “Local and Personal", September 10, 1898.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “Local and Personal”, October 4, 1898.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “Bay View Cottage [advertisement], July 22, 1899.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “City News", June 10, 1900.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “City News", October 30, 1900.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “City News", October 31, 1900.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “Opera Saloon", November 7, 1900.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “Thrilling Accident”, May 29, 1901.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “City News”, October 11, 1901.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “City News", January 8, 1902.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “City News", November 12, 1902.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “Personal", November 17, 1902.

The Biloxi Daily Herald, “City News", March 16, 1903.

The Biloxi Mirror, “R. Caillavet”, September 9, 1876.

The Chicago Tribune, "Linda Bellande", September 8, 2007.

The Daily Herald, “Pilots Have Been Reinstated”, January 31, 1907.

The Daily Herald, “U. Desporte returned from East", June 4, 1908.

The Daily Herald, “Southern drinks for New York”, May 23, 1911.

The Daily Herald, “Lund Will Have Charge of Wireless Station”, July 1, 1911.

The Daily Herald, “Biloxi Society and Personal Items”, November 25, 1912.

The Daily Herald, “Policeman on vacation", January 13, 1914.

The Daily Herald, “Garbage gathered”, July 18, 1914.

The Daily Herald, “$100 fine given liquor dealers", July 17, 1916.

The Daily Herald, “Biloxi Runner (Harold Davidson)To Compete In Race”, September 28, 1916.

The Daily Herald, “Fine of $100 for liquor holdings”, November 2, 1916.

The Daily Herald, “Davidson Wins Loving Cup”, November 20, 1916.

The Daily Herald, “Biloxi Newsboy (Albert Ragusin) Magazine Writer”, January 5, 1917.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande’s (Peter) Hours Undergo A Change”, January 21, 1917.

The Daily Herald, “Harold Davidson Will Run in Mobile”, January 22, 1917.

The Daily Herald, “Steals Police (Pete Bellande) Bicycle”, January 22, 1917.

The Daily Herald, “Wagon load beer taken in charge, March 13, 1917.

The Daily Herald, “Mrs. DeVeaux Dies”, April 24, 1917.

The Daily Herald, “Aviator Bellande Visits Biloxi”, July 7, 1917.

The Daily Herald, “Restraining order is granted to prevent service interference', December 24, 1917.

The Daily Herald, “Too much friction cause of cops downfall asserts Mayor Glennan, January 3, 1918.

The Daily Herald, “Notice to Public", January 14, 1918.

The Daily Herald, “Fifty men entrain [Harold J. Davidson] for Camp Pike Sunday Feb. 25", February 20, 1918.

The Daily Herald, “Returns home [Harold J. Davidson], March 2, 1918.

The Daily Herald, "Biloxi Boy [Roy P. Bellande] to come home", December 6, 1918.

The Daily Herald, “Mayor and Commissioners meet and transact important business", January 8, 1919.

The Daily Herald, [Harold J. Davidson] Returns after visit", January 30, 1919.

The Daily Herald, “Gus Bellande For Justice Of Peace”, April 22, 1919.

The Daily Herald, “Harold Davidson in Track Meet”, August 28, 1919.

The Daily Herald, “Harold Davidson Returns”, September 18, 1919.

The Daily Herald, “Biloxi News Paragraphs", July 14, 1920.

The Daily Herald, “Bellanda (sic) Body To Arrive Tommorow”, May 21, 1924.

The Daily Herald, “Anthony Belland (sic) Buried Today”, May 22, 1924.

The Daily Herald, “Pallbearers For Bellande Funeral”, May 23, 1924.

The Daily Herald, “Death of Mrs. Davidson”, April 6, 1925.  

The Daily Herald, “To Sail Across”, May 1, 1925.

The Daily Herald, “Gaddy Coach Biloxi High”, June 20, 1925.

The Daily Herald, “Coast Aviator Makes Record”, January 20, 1926.

The Daily Herald, “August Bellande to Make Race for Justice of Peace", September 1, 1926.

The Daily Herald, “Biloxi Police Desk Sargeant [sic] on vacation", November 19, 1926.

The Daily Herald, “New Plumbing Business”, February 11, 1927.

The Daily Herald, “Peter Bellande in Constable's race”, June 27, 1927.

The Daily Herald, “Judge Bellande Is Candidate For Justice of Peace”, January 27, 1928.

The Daily Herald, “High Schoolers Play Hard But Lose to Finny Tribe”, April 9, 1928.

The Daily Herald, “Albert Ragusin Leaves”, May 24, 1929.

The Daily Herald, “Ocean Springs News”, May 31, 1930.

The Daily Herald, “Fickes Family Return”, September 1, 1930.

The Daily Herald, “Clarence Galle, Sr. Dies”, May 4, 1931.

The Daily Herald, “Mrs. Bellande Buried”, May 28, 1931.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande Leaves For Tryout With Cleveland Club”, June 1, 1931.

The Daily Herald, “Covering the Coast”, June 26, 1931.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande-Fickes”, December 8, 1932.

The Daily Herald, “Biloxi Boy In Lineup”, March 15, 1933.

The Daily Herald, “Atlanta Looks Like Team To Beat In Southern Loop”, March 18, 1933.

he Daily Herald, “Bellande sold to Minneapolis club", February 4, 1935.

The Daily Herald, “Attend Lott funeral", November 20, 1936.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande-Lamont”, March 30, 1937.

The Daily Herald, “Bellandes In New Home”, December 4, 1937.

The Daily Herald, "Make 2000-Mile Trip", March 31, 1938.

The Daily Herald, “Charter of Incorporation of Bellande Beverage Company, Inc.”, August 19, 1938.

The Daily Herald, “Ragusin-Bellande”, November 6, 1939.

The Daily Herald, “Mildred Davidson Funeral”, February 21, 1940.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande Winner of Biloxi Golf Tourney”, January 13, 1941.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande Sets New Amateur Mark at Biloxi Golf Club”, January 27, 1941.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande Pace Setter; In Stag Golf Tournament”, March 10, 1941.

The Daily Herald, “Vote For A. Bellande”, July 31, 1943.

The Daily Herald, “Election Results”, August 5, 1943.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande Subject Of Post Article”, May 5, 1948.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande Visit”, February 20, 1950.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande Rites Set”, April 30, 1952. 

The Daily Herald, Judge A. Bellande Fatally Injured In Traffic Crash”, November  , 1953.

The Daily Herald, “Giles Peresich New Champion of Sunkist Golf Club”, May 18, 1954.

The Daily Herald, “[Mickey] Bellande is medalist for 3rd Annual Sunkist Club Championship golf event", August 7, 1956, p. 15.

The Daily Herald, “Alton Bellande names Back Bay Fire Marshal, September 20, 1957.

The Daily Herald, “One Time Marathon Runner Ends Career As Electric Serviceman”, January 1, 1960.

The Daily Herald, “Joseph Bellande”, January 20, 1961.

The Daily Herald, “Know Your State”-The Pilot Who Was Farragut’s Pilot In The Battle of Mobile Bay, June 8, 1961, p. 4,

The Daily Herald, “Roy Bellande Head Beverage Firm Expires”, January 30, 1964.

The Daily Herald, “Ragusin Holds Civilian Record”, June 12, 1971.

The Daily Herald, “Betty Travis”, July 15, 1973.

The Daily Herald, “Bellande Beverage Company sold to Tennessee firm”, May 10, 1979.

The Daily Herald, "R.L. Fickes dead at 93", December 31, 1979.

The Daily Herald, "Four Biloxians were valuable cogs in Spring Hill machine", December 7, 1929.

The Daily Herald,

The Daily Herald,

The Daily Herald,

The Daily Review [Hayward, California], “TWA founder dead at 78”, November 18, 1976, p. 36.

The Daily Times News [Ocean Springs]"Man of the Year-[Marcel] Bellande", January 31, 1964.

The Gulfport Advocate, "Gus Bellande", February 27, 1915.

The Hartselle Inquirer [Alabama]"Hasbur W. Denning"October 16, 2007.

The Hattiesburg American, “Services today for Miss Alice Bellande”, August 21, 1967.

The Jackson County Times, “Local News Items”, August 24, 1918.

The Jackson County Times, “Edward Bellande Instructing Aviators”, September 21, 1918.

The Jackson County Times, “Local News Items”, May 29, 1920.

The Jackson County Times, “Local News Items, June 12, 1920.

The Jackson County Times, “Local News Items”, October 2, 1920.

The Jackson County Times, “Aviator Bellande Does Stunts”, May 28, 1921.

The Jackson County Times, “Edward A. Bellande Daring Aviator”, September 20, 1924.

The Jackson County Times, “Vanderbilt Plane Scoops World On S.F. Fleet Photos”, September 20, 1924.

The Jackson County Times, “Local and Personal”, December 11, 1924.

The Jackson County Times, “The Column”, March 2, 1935.

The Jackson County Times

The Los Angeles Times, “Burning Plane Pilots Given High Praise”, ?

The Naperville Sun, "Signe V. Bellande", March 3, 1999.

The Ocean Springs News, “Bellande Beverage Co. Is Largest Firm Of Its Kind On The Coast Operates Fleet Of Ten Trucks”, May 30, 1957.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Ocean Springs flyer [Eddie Bellande] now firms consultant", July 4, 1968, p. 1.

The Ocean Springs Record, “Ragusin renamed to legislative commission", November 11, 1976.

The Pascagoula Chronicle-Star, “Bellande Beverage Company” (advertisement), May 15, 1942.

The Pascagoula Chronicle-Star, “Bellande Beverage Company” (advertisement), June 5, 1942.

The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, “Local Paragraphs”, May 21, 1880.

The Pascagoula Democrat-Star

The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, “Biloxi Gleanings”, October 5, 1883.

The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, “Marine Matters”, April 18, 1884.

The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, “Biloxi City Elections”, January 9, 1885.

The Pascagoula Democrat-Star

The Pascagoula Democrat-Star, “Ocean Springs Locals”, January 7, 1898.

The Sun Herald, “Prominent Biloxian, Bellande, Dead at 72”, March 5, 1982.

The Sun Herald,  “George B. ‘Bunny’ Dubaz”, May 6, 1992.

The Sun Herald, “Felder B. O’Neal”, February 25, 1996.

The Sun Herald, "Ida 'Sue' Bellande", March 2, 1997.

The Sun Herald, “William E. Bellande Sr.”, January 23, 2002.

The Sun Herald, “Christine Dubaz”, January 24, 2002.

The Sun Herald, “Thelma Bellande”, August 4, 2002.

The Sun Herald, "Jeanette Blanchard", January 10, 2003.

The Sun Herald, "William E. Bellande Sr."

The Sun Herald, "Betty Faye Bellande Denning", July 22, 2005.

The Sun Herald, “Ernestine Balius Bellande”, May 19, 2005.

The Sun Herald, "Mr. John "J.B." Dubaz", April 1, 2006.

The Sun Herald, "Family, bologna made life sweet for Dubaz", April 4, 2006, p. A4.

The Sun Herald, "Foster gets medical degree", May 29, 2006, p. A11.

The Sun Herald, "Mrs. Katherine "Kate" Bellande", October 9, 2006, p. A4.

The Sun Herald, "Miss Mary Elizabeth Bellande weds Mr. Austin Blake Smith", March 8, 2009, p. F1.

The Sun Herald, "Margaret Fickes Foster", April 2, 2009, p. A4.

The Sun Herald, "Billy Ray Bellande Sr.", July 10, 2009, p. A4.

The Sun Herald, "Tomiko Ohi Burdick", February 1, 2010, p. A6.

The Sunday Times, “Queens After The Reign”June 21, 1998.

The Times Picayune, “Bellande on Al-Star ‘9’”, November 15, 1934.

The Times Picayune, "Molly Lamont", April 3, 1937.