Ray L. Bellande (b. March 4, 1943) is a Biloxi, Mississippi native. He is the great grandson of Antoine V. Bellande (1829-1918), born at Marseille, France, and Marie Harvey (1840-1894) of Back Bay (now D'Iberville). Louis Arbeau Caillavet (1793-1860) and Marguerite Fayard (1787-1863), the daughter of Jean-Baptise Fayard II (1752-1816) Angelique Ladner (1753-1830), the Widow Fayard, are Bellande's great-great-great grandparents. The Widow Fayard once owned all the land at Biloxi from just east of Hopkins Boulevard east to Lameuse Street and from Back Bay to the Biloxi Channel.
Bellande and his siblings were reared on the west side of Lameuse Street within the boundary of the Widow Fayard's Spanish Land Grant.
Ray L. Bellande attended Biloxi, Mississippi parochial and public schools. He attended New Mexico Tech in 1961, and graduated with a B.S. degree in Petroleum Geology from Mississippi State University in 1965. Bellande was employed by Humble Oil (Exxon), Tenneco, and others before becoming an independent geologist and oil operator at Lafayette, Louisiana in 1980. His oil exploration activities brought him to many petroleum provinces as he has resided or worked in Louisiana, California, Alaska, Texas, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Mississippi, and Alabama.
Presently Ray L. Bellande resides at Ocean Springs, home of his ancestors, where he has written from 1993-2009, a weekly history column for The Ocean Springs Record entitled, "Sous Les Chenes" and "Images Under the Oaks". He has published several books: The Bellande Cemetery: A History and Register (1990); From Marseille to Mississippi, A Bellande Family History (1991); Ocean Springs Hotels and Tourist Homes (1994); and Ocean Springs, The Way We Were 1900-1950 (1996). In 2009, Bellande contributed an essay in William Woodward: American Impressionist, edited by Robert Hinckley.
Journals or magazines
Humble Hesperian, Volume 5, No. 5, June 1972. I wrote a travel article, "Our Man in Sabah", about my oil exploration experiences in Sabah, East Malaysia.
The Ocean Springs Record. Over 350 historic articles about Ocean Springs and western Jackson County, Mississippi published in The Ocean Springs Record from May 1993 to March 2001.
Mississippi Archaeology, "Fort Maurepas and Vieux Biloxi: Search and Research", Volume 30, No. 1 (June 1995). Coauthor with John H. Blitz and C. Baxter Mann.
Ocean Springs: The way we were, (E.L. Roberts and J.K. Lemon: Ocean Springs, Mississippi-1996). Coauthor with Elizabeth L. Roberts.
The Mississippi Coast Historical and Genealogical Society Journal
The Journal of the Jackson County Genealogical Society
The Ocean Springs Genealogical Society Journal
The Biloxi Public Library Archives
The Jackson County Chancery Court Archives
Oil Fields of Southwest Louisiana, (The Lafayette Geological Society: Lafayette, Louisiana-1988). One article-Eunice and Mowata Oil Fields, Acadia Parish, Louisiana.
The History of Jackson County, Mississippi, (Jackson County Genealogical Society: Pascagoula, Mississippi-1989). Two biographical articles, "Captain A.V. Bellande" and "Edward Antoine Bellande".
Marine Resources and History of the Mississippi Gulf Coast, Volume I, (Mississippi Department of Marine Resources: Jackson, Mississippi-1998). Three articles, "The History of D'Iberville", "A History of the St. Martin Community", and "A History of Ocean Springs".
The Jackson County Cemetery Book (Volumes I-IV), which will be published in the future.
Source, Researcher, Photographer, or Consultant
Regina Hines Ellison, Ocean Springs 1892, (2nd Edition), (Lewis Printing Company: Pascagoula, Mississippi-1991).
Darlene Krohn, The Descendants of Jerome Ryan, (Krohn: Latimer, Mississippi-1995).
Patti Carr Black, Art in Mississippi: (1720-1980), (University of Mississippi Press: Jackson, Mississippi-1998).
Mary Carol Miller and Mary Rose Carter, Written In The Bricks: A Visual and Historical Tour of Fifteen Mississippi Hometowns, (Quail Ridge Press: Brandon, Mississippi-1999).
Charles Sullivan and Murella Powell, The Mississippi Gulf Coast: Portrait of a People, (American Historical Press: Sun Valley, California-1999).
Christopher Maurer and Maria Estrella Iglesias, Dreaming in Clay on the Coast of Mississippi, (Doubleday: New York-2000).
The American Art Pottery Association Journal, (Special Issue: Gulf Coast Potters), Volume 17, No. 2, March-April 2001.
The Sun Herald, "Flashback", a weekly column featuring antique photographs of the Mississippi Gulf Coast.
WYES (ETV) at New Orleans will televise their production of the historic towns of the Mississippi Gulf Coast in August 2001. I was the spokesman for Ocean Springs.
President's Award from the Ocean Springs Chamber of Commerce in 1994.
Named Historian of the Year in 1995 at Ocean Springs.
Named Historian of the Year in 1996 at Biloxi.
Mississippi Historical Society Award of Merit in 2010.
City of Biloxi, Mississippi 2014 Historic Preservation Volunteer Award
2015-Ray L. Bellande was recognized by the Mississippi Historical Records Advisory Board with an Award for Excellence for his historical websites: www.oceanspringsarchives.net and www.biloxihistoricalsociety.org.
2016-Ray L. Bellande named Preservationist of the Year for the City of Biloxifor his historical websites: www.oceanspringsarchives.net and www.biloxihistoricalsociety.org.[see Sun Herald,
2019-named Historian of the Year by the Long Beach Historical Society.
Ray L. Bellande continues to research and report his finding about the history and genealogy of the Mississippi Gulf Coast on two websites: www.oceanspringsarchives.net and www.biloxihistoricalsociety.org. On these websites, he has essays and photographs concerning the following Gulf Coast artists as well as the Gulf Coast Art Association: Joseph Fortune Meyer (1841-1931); George E. Ohr (1857-1918); Mary Ethel Dismukes (1870-1952); Manuel Jalanivich (1898-1944); Harry Del Reeks (1820-1982), and information on the George Walter Anderson (1861-1937) family, WAMA, the Shearwater Pottery, and the Ohr-O'Keefe Museum.