Gulfport Exposition of Photos and Artifacts
Tonight, Gulfport residents brought out photos and artifacts that told the story of Gulfport’s history.
Turning the pages of time, that’s how it felt for many who brought in their historic items including Bubba Lang and his family who had a table full of items to show off. “I think it is important to remember what our past is. The transit society we live in today, it is good to have memories of the past and what is used to be like.”
For Lang, it’s a story of his childhood and the times back in the mid-70s when his father A.W. ‘Buzzy’ Lang served as mayor. “He always said since he was a teenager that he wanted to be mayor of Gulfport and he ran and got elected the first time. My family has been for many, many years. I guess I am a fourth generation Gulfport person and I just like the old history.”
For others like Leroy Pucheu, who used to be the curator of the Gulfport History Museum which was destroyed during Hurricane Katrina, it’s about preservation. “Our children and grandchildren and all will not have anything to show if we don’t preserve this. I’m glad to pass it on to somebody and I hope that we will soon have another museum where we can put this stuff in as well as artifacts and material things rather than pictures.”
Pucheu does not stand alone in the hopes of one day restoring the Gulfport History Museum. In fact, that was one of the very reasons this ‘show and tell’ was put on. Gulfport Police Chief Leonard Papania said, “You know you’re always trying to leverage something in life and we want that. We want a common depository where we can have this and not just have it, but where people can go and look at it and enjoy it. There is a great history along the Gulf Coast, Gulfport, Biloxi, all the coastal cities and this is a way I think we can move towards holding on to that history.”
Together these citizens are restoring the scrapbook that is Gulfport’s history.