Historic Stone County Post Cards – John Sharp

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Fun Fact: “Moon Pines”

Bill Mauldin and his Moon Pine
Bill Mauldin and his Moon Pine

Perhaps these trees do talk back! In January 1971, Astronaut Stuart Roosa selected seeds from five different trees to take to the moon on Apollo 14. Upon their return to earth, some of the seeds were sent to Bill at the Harrison Experimental Forestry Station in Gulfport, Mississippi. The seeds were planted, celebrated and continue to share their story; “moon trees” and their direct descendents (baby moons) are planted across the world. Some trees were planted in 1976 to celebrate our Bicentennial. Another moon pine was planted in honor of Bill Mauldin in McHenry, Mississippi at the George Austin McHenry House and yet another in honor of Astronaut Fred Haise on the Perkinston Campus of Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College — his alma mater.

The “moon trees” continue to flourish, a living monument to our first visits to the Moon and a fitting memorial to Stuart Roosa, Bill Mauldin, and our space program.

 “This story was told in its entirety as part of the Telling Trees story gathering project in Stone County, MS with assistance from the MS Humanities Council and the National Humanities Council.”  Kathryn Lewis, project director.

Fun Fact: Jed O’Neal

Jed O’neal came from a long line of Stone Countians. His grandfather Van O’neal donated 40 acres of land to help establish the Harrison County Agricultural High School (HCAHS). Over the years. HCAHS became first Perkinston Junior College and later the Perk Campus of Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College.

Jed’s parents, Ford and Jewel O’neal were well known Stone County folks. Mom Jewel for years taught in the Wiggins and Stone County Schools.

Perhaps one of the best examples of the initiative within Stone County folks is the story of how Jed got the new steeple for the Little Creek Baptist Church in the Ramsey Springs Community from the manufacturer to the church.  Smile as you read the story here.

Jed Oneal Obit

Fun Fact: “Schools of Yesterday”

From: W.P.A.  for Mississippi Research Project, July 7th , 1936

By Marshall Taylor and H.V. Redfield

Subject:  EDUCATION  “Schools of Yesterday”

The early school days of Stone County date back to the early part of the nineteenth century.  Schools in those days were organized by citizens residing in their respective communities.  The buildings were of logs, an the benches of hewn timbers and there were no desks at all.  The patrons financed these schools, paying $1.00 per month for each pupil attending and usually taking turns among them, boarding the teachers.

One of the first schools of Stone County was located in the western part of the county on Griffin’s Branch, eleven miles northeast of Wiggins.  This school was known as the Davis-Perkins School, named after two of its founders.  It was a private pay school and was founded about 1871 by William Davis, Ben Perkins, Calvin Griffin, and others.  Some of the early teachers of this school were Luther Cox, Mr. Reynolds, John Davis, and James Carpenter.  This school operated at this location for four years; then it was reorganized and moved to a new location, five miles southwest of Bond.  It continued at this location for several years and was known as the Eureka Public School.

Fun Fact: Perk Bulldogs Win Championship

From the Stone County Enterprise …. Oct. 13, 1927


Bull Dogs Defeat Goodman

 The first championship game was played Saturday on the court at Perkinston, Miss. between the Perk Bull Dogs and Goodman Junior College.  The Goodman boys put up a hard fight, but were defeated in the end, the score being thirty-one to nothing, in favor of Perk.

The weather was so unpleasant that everyone was afraid the game would be postponed, but upon questioning Coach, the following answer was given as the boys yelled over the campus… “we are going to play if we have to swim”.  The rush began and the students could not be checked…  Then standing in a torrent of rain, every student put his heart and soul in the game, and showed a clean one, and everybody enjoyed it.

Fun Fact: SHS Class of 1973 Celebrates 40 Years

Class of 1973 - 10th Reunion Photo
Class of 1973 – 10th Reunion Photo

The Stone High Class of 1973 celebrates their 40th Reunion today.  The Old Firehouse Museum will honor the Class of 1973 with a special exhibit and open house today from 9am-11am at the Museum.  As you can see from the baby photos in this post, “Things Have Definitely Changed”.

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Fun Fact: Darryl Tillman

Darryl Tillman, a member of the Stone High Tomcat football team from 1984085, was the on the receiving end of one of the “Best Hail Mary Passes in College Football History”. Darryl played for University of Southern Miss. with another star, Brett Favre.

Check this pass and pass reception out on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ziDPsDRQJzI&feature=share

For stats on Darryl’s career with the Arena Football League: http://www.arenafan.com/players/Darryl_Tillman-1602/

Fun Fact: Ode Burrell

Ode Burrell Rookie Card
Ode Burrell Rookie Card

Among the coaches of the 1984-85 championship Tomcat football team was Coach Ode Burrell. Coach Burrell was an athlete from an early age excelling in football and track.  He received a degree from Mississippi State University and played with the Houston Oilers from 1964-1969 as a tailback. He received many awards including Senior Bowl MVP, Liberty Bowl MVP, Blue-Gray Game MVP,  MVP of Houston Oilers 1967,Pro Bowl 1967, College All American to name a few.  He coached at various schools Bogalusa High School, Holmes Community College, Vancleave High School, Stone County High School,  St. Stanislaus High School and Gulf Coast Community College where he retired.   He was a member  of the MSU “M” Club, Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame, Mississippi Coaches Association, Holmes Community College Hall of Fame,  Mississippi State University Sports Hall of Fame,  Mississippi Junior College Sports Hall of Fame, NFL Alumni Association

Fun Fact: Stevon Moore

Stevon Moore
Stevon Moore

 Stevon Moore (born February 9, 1967 in Wiggins, Mississippi) is an American former football player who was selected by the New York Jets in the 7th round (181st overall) of the 1989 NFL Draft. A 5’11”, 204-lb. safety from the University of Mississippi, Moore played in nine NFL seasons from 1990-1999.

OBTW – he was a member of the conference winning SHS 1984-1985 Tomcats football team!