A documentary by Rex Jones titled “Camille: The Original Monster Storm” will make its world television premiere on Mississippi Public Broadcasting Television at 8 p.m. Wednesday, August 28. An encore presentation is set for 4 p.m. Sunday, September 1.
Hurricane Camille made landfall in Waveland, Mississippi 50 years ago on August 17, 1969. Camille ranks as the second most intense hurricane to strike the continental United States, claiming the lives of 256 individuals and causing more than $1 billion in damage.
The hour-long documentary was produced for the Southern Documentary Project at the University of Mississippi. Jones interviewed notable Coast residents Charles Sullivan, George Schloegel, Gerald Blessey, Vincent Creel and others for the project.
Jones is a filmmaker and instructor with the Southern Documentary Project at the University of Mississippi. His films have been broadcast nationally on PBS, won awards from various organizations, and been chosen as official selections of film festivals worldwide. Jones is a native of Hickory, Mississippi, and an MFA graduate in Science and Natural History Filmmaking from Montana State University.
He is scheduled to discuss the film at noon Wednesday, August 21, as part of the Mississippi Department of Archives and History’s History Is Lunch series. The program will take place in the Craig H. Neilsen Auditorium in the Two Mississippi Museums – the Museum of Mississippi History and Mississippi Civil Rights Museum – located at 222 North St. in Jackson. There is no charge to attend.
Earlier this week, Gov. Phil Bryant issued a proclamation declaring August 11-17 as “Hurricane Camille 50th Anniversary Commemoration Week.”
“Mississippians should be aware that while the state is better prepared than ever to respond to a hurricane, it is imperative to take an active role in improving their ability to prepare for, survive and recover from the impacts of hurricanes by developing a family emergency plan, learning evacuation routes,” Bryant said. “By promoting preparedness information about the dangers to the public’s health and safety that hurricanes pose and helping with relief efforts when these powerful storms strike, we can reduce the loss of life and property and help our neighbors recover more quickly from their devastating effects.”