Vieux Marche is a small segment of Biloxi’s earliest thoroughfare, Pass Christian-Point Cadet Road. Later it became Howard Avenue which was named after a prominent Biloxi family. It was the heart of downtown and featured numerous department stores, banks, and theaters. The road was originally two-way traffic.
During urban renewal in the early 1970’s, the thoroughfare was renamed Vieux Marche, which means Old Market. Several buildings dating from the 1890s survive and still flank both sides of the street. They are reminders of Biloxi’s once-thriving commercial and cultural center. The Vieux Marche Mall is still the heart of downtown and still features numerous department stores, banks, and theaters, but now it is a one-way street. Howard Avenue that runs through Vieux Marche Mall runs East, beginning at Reynoir Street on the West, running to Lameuse Street on the East. It stops at the corner in front of the Historic Peoples Bank Building.
Fun Facts: Many of us remember the Biloxi Golden Fisherman. The Golden Fisherman is one of the largest free standing statues in Mississippi standing an impressive 16 feet. The original fisherman was primarily funded by the fishing community under Mayor Jerry O’Keefe. The statue was unveiled at the Vieux Marche Mall in 1977 to commemorate the city’s seafood heritage and celebrate a newly redeveloped downtown Vieux Marche Mall.
We’d thought you would like an update: In 2005 the Statue was severely damaged by Hurricane Katrina and unfortunately stolen and removed from Mississippi by scrap metal scavengers. Law Enforcement returned what remained of the dismantled statue back home to the Gulf Coast in 2006.
The Golden Fisherman Restoration Project -Phase1 is brought to you by the City of Biloxi, The MS Department of Marine Resources, The MS Tideland Trust Fund, Gulf Coast National Heritage Area, and The Maritime & Seafood Industry Museum.
Address: Howard Avenue, Between Reynoir St (West) and Lameuse St (East)
Accessibility: this area is wheelchair accessible; some building are not open.
Vieux Marche Mall Walking Tour, not all buildings are open to the public.
This link has a street map that identifies Vieux Marche Mall.