The Hendersons of Henderson's Point We are here today to honor John Henderson and his family members who planned for and developed all of the area known as Henderson's Point. John Henderson, Sr. of New Jersey became a lawyer about the same time that his first wife died. With their son, John Jr., he moved to Natchez and then to Woodville, Mississippi where he met and married Louisa Fourniquet Post and adopted her daughter, Julia. While there he ...
The Hendersons of Henderson's Point
We are here today to honor John Henderson and his family members who planned for and developed all of the area known as Henderson's Point.
John Henderson, Sr. of New Jersey became a lawyer about the same time that his first wife died. With their son, John Jr., he moved to Natchez and then to Woodville, Mississippi where he met and married Louisa Fourniquet Post and adopted her daughter, Julia. While there he was elected a state senator and later, he became a U.S. Senator. Following the birth of their son, Elliot, and the 1836 purchase of a large tract of land, they moved to Pass Christian.
The large land purchase consisted of almost the entire peninsula of Pass Christian, extending to the middle of Long Beach as it is today. In 1837, the land partnership with Charles Shipman and David Hughes was dissolved. The vast area contained approximately 12,000 acres consisting of two township sections (one-square-mile each) and other partially platted areas. Each of the three men was allocated 21 portions of 63 units, many of which contained 330-foot lots fronting the Gulf - starting from the Bay of St. Louis all the way eastward to Bear Bayou and northward to Bayou Portage.
Following their division of interests, John Henderson started swapping his eastern lands with Shipman and Hughes and from their successors. This land swap resulted in his accruing properties that were predominantly aggregated on the west side of the Lighthouse.
From this base, he became aggressive in land development and promotions. His large home was located near the Fort Henry site.
His older son, John Jr,, also an attorney, did not have the same penchant for land sales as his father or the younger son, Elliot.
John Henderson, Sr.'s Will, allocated his remaining properties to his wife, Louisa; his adopted daughter, Julia; his daughter-in-law, Kate (who was John, Jr.'s wife); and to his younger son, Elliot.
Elliot followed in his father's foot-steps - and had become an attorney, a Mississippi Senator, and Mayor of Pass Christian.
John, Jr. and Catherine had two sons, Louis Fourniquet Henderson and John Leland Henderson. Due to Catherine's health problems, the two boys remained with their mother, as she moved to different places. As a young man, John Leland Henderson returned to this area from Oregon and became a junior partner with his uncle Elliot. He established an office in Bay St. Louis and with Elliot, formed the Mexican Gulf Land Company in 1903. They were the first promoters of land sales in Henderson's Point that extended from the Gulf to Bayou Portage.
John Henderson Sr. also donated the land for the St. Louis Cemetery, the Episcopal Church, and other community causes. His son Elliot donated part of the land where Fort Henry was built in the vicinity across from this marker. Today, streets which commemorate this family are Henderson Avenue, and Louisa, Julia, and Elliot streets.
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Meet the Author
Originally from New Orleans, in 1990, Ellis established permanent residence at his Pass Christian weekend home. His interest in writing lead to publishing vignette columns in local newspapers. Upon researching for his first community heritage book, he realized that a significant amount of misinformation abounded. This resulted in his seeking primary source information from archival records in Mobile, Alabama, Jackson, Mississippi, New Orleans, Louisiana, and from local courthouses and churches.
Ellis's books are filled with treasured photographs and maps; and he takes special effort to seek out individuals, whether obscure or prominent - those who can add a touch of personal experience by revealing anecdotal interviews.
Not being able to find a publisher, Ellis was determined to get his history books to the general public, so he learned to be a self-publisher and now distributes his history books through bookstores and gift shops and the Internet. He also publishes much information to his several web sites providing free access to information and photographs. Ellis's books are computerized in order to enable easy updating and error corrections.
He calls himself an Historiographer and Scrutinier, which simply translates to a "writer of history with authenticity." Since Hurricane Katrina, Ellis has chosen Eureka Springs, Arkansas as his new home base.