Cat Island

The History of a Mississippi Gulf Coast Barrier Island


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SKU: 9780786463282 Categories: ,

About the Book

Just off the coast of the Gulf Islands National Seashore lies Cat Island, an isolated, T-shaped sliver of sand with a remarkable past. A coveted hiding place for Jean Lafitte’s pirate treasure in the late eighteenth century and illegal booze during Prohibition, Cat Island also witnessed the first shots of the Battle of New Orleans, an encampment for Seminoles during the Trail of Tears and the first lighthouses on the Mississippi coast.
As a child, author John Cuevas learned that his family had owned and lived on the island for three generations beginning with his ancestor, Juan de Cuevas, referred to as “The King of Cat Island,” who received it by way of a Spanish land grant. In this engaging work, Cuevas chronicles the historic events that occurred on the island’s shores and offers a tribute to the legacy of one of the Gulf Coast’s pioneer families.

About the Author(s)

A retired advertising executive, John Cuevas has been researching and writing about his family’s connection to Cat Island since the 1950s and has published several articles on the subject.

Bibliographic Details

John Cuevas
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 203
Bibliographic Info: 42 photos, 9 maps, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2011
pISBN: 978-0-7864-6328-2
eISBN: 978-0-7864-8578-9
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      v

Preface      ix

1. About Cat Island      1

2. The French Discover Cat Island and Settle Biloxi      8

3. The Fort on Cat Island      13

4. The First Mutiny on American Soil      15

5. Jean Lafitte, the Pirates, and Buried Treasure      22

6. The Hero of Cat Island      33

7. Juan de Cuevas Captures the Pirates      42

8. A British Soldier Visits Cat Island After the War      45

9. The Cuevas House on Cat Island      50

10. Pioneer Life on Cat Island and the Developing Coast      58

11. The Seminole Indians on Cat Island      79

12. The Last Great Party on Cat Island      85

13. The Funeral of Juan de Cuevas      90

14. How the Truth Became a Legend      97

15. The Lighthouses on Cat Island      106

16. Turpentining and the Lumber Industry on Cat Island      115

17. Al Capone and the Rumrunners      120

18. The Goose Point Tarpon Club      124

19. The Secret War Dogs of Cat Island      129

20. Cat Island Owners from the Past to the Present      138

21. A Visit to the Cuevas Homestead in Spain      157

Notes      163

Bibliography      179

Index      185