PAGE 13: Coast's rich maritime history coming to Pascagoula

PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) - Money is being raised and artifacts are being collected as the Mississippi Maritime Museum prepares to open inside the old Pascagoula High School.

The museum hopes to share the rich maritime history of the Gulf Coast within its walls. Photographs, artifacts, and an assortment of items will tell the story of the relationship between families, industries and communities built around maritime interests.

"Everyone knows we have great recreation," said Jan Dearman with the museum. "They can go out on their boats and go fishing. I'm not sure they appreciate the history of why we're here. It's because of access to the water. all the industries here that provide jobs, helping businesses are here because of that maritime industry."

The museum will be in the former high school's math and science building. Construction is set to begin sometime in 2020. An artist rendering previews what the $4.7 million facility hopes to look like.

The Maritime Activities Center has already opened, providing a preview of things to come. Lecture series and other events are held at the center, which includes many items and displays that will be a part of the museum once its built.

"We're collecting artifacts from the community that will illustrate the connection between people and how they promoted their businesses through the maritime connection," said Robert Smith.

The hope is interest in the Mississippi Maritime Museum will go beyond Jackson County.

"We have something that is unique," said Dearman. "Our history is unlike anyplace on the planet. We think there is a great potential to have people visit the museum and enjoy other assets on the Gulf Coast."

You can learn more about the Mississippi Maritime Museum at their website HERE.

Copyright 2018 WLOX. All rights reserved.