After the President of the Republic of Croatia seems on the United Nations Basic Meeting in New York Metropolis, his first cease will likely be in Biloxi.
This can be the primary time a world president has made a visit to South Mississippi, stated Mayor Andrew “FoFo” Jelic, whose 4 grandparents got here to Biloxi from Croatia in Japanese Europe.
Zoran Milanovic will take part within the United Nations General Assembly In New York Metropolis as a part of his official go to to the US
He’ll then head farther south, spending the day in Biloxi on September 22, earlier than touring to Belle Chase, Louisiana to attend the opening on the Croatian Inn in that metropolis.
Biloxi hosted the go to of Sanja Cakovit, Croatian Consulate Basic in Chicago, in 2022, they usually took two buses of Croatian origin from Biloxi to Belle Chase.
“We will need to have made an impression,” Jelic stated.
A couple of month in the past, Pierre Simonović, the Croatian ambassador to the US, referred to as Jelić and stated that the president of Croatia wished to go to Biloxi after which Invoice Chase to inaugurate the brand new constructing.
Getting ready for the go to
A delegation from Croatia will arrive in Biloxi this week to finalize the small print of the president’s go to.
It would start with a welcome at Biloxi Metropolis Corridor, Jelic stated.
Then, like many guests to Biloxi, he and his entourage may have dinner Mary Mahoney’s Old French House Restaurant.
Mary Cvitanovich Mahoney Daughter of Croatian immigrants who labored within the seafood enterprise in Biloxi, based the tremendous eating restaurant she hosted Many celebrities and VIPsand her household continues to run it.
The president will meet the neighborhood — lots of whom are of Croat descent — at a reception on the Croatian American Cultural Heart, referred to as the Slovenian Lodge, in east Biloxi.
A number of elected officers are anticipated to be in Biloxi to go to, and Gilich stated the neighborhood will be capable of see him on the resort.
Jelic stated he did not know if Milanovic spoke English, and the mayor stated the one Croatian he remembered have been the “unhealthy phrases” he and the kids rising up in Biloxi realized. He’s certain the translator will journey with the group.
The President’s go to coincides with one of many greatest occasions of the 12 months for the Croatian neighborhood – Slavic International Golf Championship Which attracts about 300 golfers. Members of the Croatian Cultural Society of America will put together about 1,000 dinners for golfers and their households this weekend on the Slvoanian Lodge in Biloxi.
Croatian historical past of Biloxi
The historical past of Croatians in Biloxi is a few century longer than that of the Republic of Croatia. The nation was a part of the previous Yugoslavia Until 1991It turned a member of the European Union in 2013.
Ties amongst Croatians in Biloxi stay sturdy with the nation their ancestors left within the early 1900s to return to America.
Jelic and his spouse, Serena, traveled to resume their vows on their fiftieth wedding ceremony anniversary, and several other from South Mississippi just lately visited Croatia, a world vacationer hotspot.
To protect their customs and historical past of their new homeland, the Croatian-speaking immigrants based it Slovenian forum in 1913 and their households will rejoice the a hundred and tenth anniversary this 12 months.
Their 1938 hostel was the primary hostel to have an air-conditioned corridor within the area in 1955.
“And you’d know who? Elvis Presley!” – stated Jelic. His live performance ticket bought for 50 cents and 600 tickets have been bought, greater than the inn was crammed.
It was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and a brand new lodge was in-built East Biloxi.
That is the sturdy Croatian
The primary Croatians arrived in Biloxi within the late Nineties and early 1900s, influenced by jobs within the seafood trade, Jelic stated.
The story goes that considered one of these early immigrants did the work of 10 males, asking if he had brothers and associates at house. They adopted him to Biloxi.
Once they arrived, nobody spoke English, Jelic stated. “nobody.” They inhabited the Level in Biloxi, the place males labored within the seafood trade and ladies and youngsters labored in seafood factories.
“The Croatian coalition was shaped to assist the dwelling and bury the useless,” Jelic stated. “And it nonetheless is.”
By the Nineteen Twenties, Croatians dominated the shrimp and oyster trade in southern Mississippi, he stated. The following era turned medical doctors, attorneys, pharmacists and different professionals. His uncle was the police chief, and his aunt, Claire Seacole Hornsby, born in Biloxi to Croatian immigrants, was the primary girl to graduate from the College of Mississippi Faculty of Regulation and apply legislation in Mississippi, Jelic stated.