OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) - One hundred years ago, several roads and many parts of Highway 90 were considered the Old Spanish Trail, as well as an auto trail, that spanned 3,000 miles from St. Augustine, Florida to San Diego, California.
In the early 1900s parts of Ocean Springs became the Old Spanish Trail. On Thursday, Ocean Springs was designated as an official city on the trail.
"Before that you could travel from one city to the other by train, and before that, by steamer. And we had many visitors well over 150 years ago who did come by steamer," said Ocean Springs Mayor Connie Moran.
The Old Spanish Trail allowed people in the early 1900s to travel in their own vehicles on an actual highway. A group out of San Antonio, Texas has formed to preserve the history of the highway/trail and identify the trail in cities, counties, and parishes.
"Today we are re-enacting each conference for planning the highway. So last year in Mobile, Ocean Springs sent a representative to exhibit Ocean Springs activities and that qualifies them as an official city," said
Charlotte Khal, chairman of the Old Spanish Trail centennial celebration.
Additionally, Ocean Springs recently applied to be designated the Old Spanish Trail scenic byway. If the city receives that designation from MDOT, they'll have more ways to market Ocean Springs.
"To pull people off of the interstate to come through town on Washington Avenue around our beach, around our beautiful harbor, up through government street, which is the original Old Spanish trail," Mayor Moran explained.
Other cities and counties may be added to the official list by either exhibiting OST corridor successes at an annual conference or by locating and marking their OST corridor with the official signage.
Learn more by visiting Old Spanish Trail online.