St. Martin, Mississippi is an unincorporated community in western Jackson County, located east of D’Iberville and north of the Back Bay of Biloxi. The area was originally settled at the beginning of the 19th century by Jean Baptiste Ladner, while the area was part of Spanish West Florida. Most of the early settlers here were immigrants from Spain, France, Portugal, Denmark and Italy, with few American pioneers arriving until much later.
For much of its early history, the St. Martin area was geographically isolated because of a lack of good roads and bridges, so families here often maintained their unique language, culture and religion for generations. Early coast families lived off the sea and land.
In the mid-1920s, a group of northern investors built the resort of Gulf Hills in eastern St. Martin, at the mouth of Old Fort Bayou. The investors chose the area because of its mild climate, natural beauty and access to the railroad, making it very attractive to tourists from the North and Midwest seeking a winter retreat.
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