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Advance apology to readers by the authors: This comprehensive history of Hancock County Ms deserves to be available on the World Wide Web.

Countless hours have gone into its creation and researchers ought to be able to avail themselves to its offering. 143 The East bank of the East Pearl River is high and dry land, built in the Pleistocene period, tens of thousands of years before the present.

Even the former county seat, Gainesville, can be found only on old maps.

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In this case, they are far too numerous to list, so we must content ourselves with just the major ones. Here, the Americans drew the boundary line separating the new Louisiana Purchase from Spanish territory.

There is, after all, a certain element of finality to their being, in that, at least for the foreseeable future, they will not, nay cannot, be resurrected.

Besides the physical evidence, including shell middens, overgrown streets, an occasional brick or other artifact, there is a wealth of written testimony to the history of the area.

Earlier, Iberville had named it Pea Island, because he lost a sack of peas there in 1699.

The Pearl empties into the Mississippi Sound, protected from the open Gulf by a series of barrier islands with names like Ship and Cat, important to the early Canadian explorers under Iberville and his brother Bienville.

That edge of Hancock County, Mississippi, which borders Louisiana at the mid-point of the Pearl River, is in many ways now nondescript, quiet and forlorn bereft of whatever culture evolved there over the ages.

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