Local Experiences

In Honor of Black History Month, check out these 6 Gulf Coast African-American owned businesses

2/5/2019 |

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African-American history in Mississippi is older than the state itself. The earliest African-Americans were brought here as slaves before statehood in 1817.

Less than a half-century after Mississippi was granted statehood, the nation erupted in Civil War. The war brought emancipation, and the slow road to civil rights began. In 1870, Hiram Revels of Natchez became the first African-American to serve in the United States Senate — even though African-Americans had not yet gained the right to vote and continued to live in a segregated society. Years later, Mississippians such as Ida B. Wells, Medgar Evers and James Meredith would help lead the charge to a more equal society.

Other African-Americans hailing from Mississippi would make major contributions to American culture. William Grant Still of Woodville, a prolific and respected classical composer, became the first African-American to conduct a major American symphony orchestra and the first to have a symphonic composition performed by a major orchestra. Richard Wright would become one of the leading writers of his generation, and later William Raspberry and Natasha Trethewey would win Pulitzer Prizes. The imprint that these and other African-American Mississippians have made on American history and culture continues to impact and enrich our lives today. *Source

Check out these 6 Businesses that are 100% African-American Owned.

 Pleasant's BBQ Ocean Springs, MS

Bar-B-Q restaurant established in 1982 in Ocean Springs, MS by the late Mr. John A. Pleasant and Marie Pleasant. The business is located in close proximity to downtown Ocean Springs Mississippi and to date has remained family owned and operated. 

Initially the business purchased barbecue sauce from restaurant food distributors. In 1984 Mrs. Pleasant developed a recipe for barbecue sauce with the intent to distinguish their business from any other. Customers were surveyed and with the strong positive feedback the family began using their own homemade sauce, which is often purchased directly from the business by new and repeat customers. 

Since the family decided to market their recipe, they are working with a bottling company to produce the sauce in larger quantities, while at the same time ensuring that the quality of the product is unchanged and the taste remains authentic. Fitlife Studio  Gulfport, MS


TUES - SAT 11:00am - 7:30pm


(228) 875-3384

Location: 1415 Government St Ocean Springs, MS 39564

Taylor Harris Drug Store

The Almanett Hotel & BistroMs. Audrey's Southern Kitchen & Catering

Brian Pearse Photography 

Looking for more information on Aferican-American owned businesses on the Mississippi Gulf Coast? Please reach out to MSGC BOB Awards Gala at https://www.facebook.com/MSGCBOBAwardsGala/