The Pass Packing Co was formed on May 16, 1899, with George Brandt, F Andressen, Frank Sutter, TV Courtenay, JH Knost, and George H Taylor as its founding officers.
In 1903, unions became organized due to the long hours and intolerable working conditions for children and women.
This plant was bought out by the Dunbar and Dukate interests of Biloxi who also acquired the cannery at Bay St. Louis.
Besides seafood packer George Washington Dunbar, there was Ernest Hudson Merrick, who was one of the first importers of out of state labor for the seafood packing industry at Pass Christian, when in 1908, he started visiting the Pass during summers to escape the heat of New Orleans. During his summers he became interested in the potential of fishing along the coast and proceeded to build a fleet of fishing schooners and a factory for processing, packing, and shipping oysters and shrimp,”said one of his sons, Bill Merrick.
“He was one of the first to ship fresh oysters and shrimp to the north packed in ice. The delicacy of the Gulf Coast oysters created a large demand in the Midwest area and, as the business grew, my father was forced to import labor from Baltimore, Maryland, as the local help could not cope with the production required. The company was wholly owned by my family, and I believe it was called the Mississippi Packing Company. Dad sold out around 1912, and returned to the United Fruit Company in New Orleans, where he had been an officer before.
Oystering today is performed by independent boat owners from multiple states. The Pass still maintains a significant part in Mississsippi's Seafood Industry. Many of the fishers sell their catch of shrimp and oysters to Pass Purchasing where the food is stored and sold for export.