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Things You May not Know About Louisiana

  • There is no fear of gators becoming extinct in Louisiana since their numbers are equivalent to half the human population of the state.
  • Thank goodness the folks in LA (that’s Louisiana, ya’ll,) had the good sense to build a bridge causeway through the swamp and over Lake Pontchartrain to keep travelers well out of the gators’ reach. This section of highway is the longest continuous bridge over water in the world spanning over 23 miles.
  • The Battle of New Orleans was fought two weeks after the War of 1812 had ended.
  • The Louisiana Territory was claimed by Robert Cavelier de La Salle in 1682 and named for King Louis XIV. In French, “La Louisiane” means “Land of Louis.”
  • Though claimed in 1682, French frontiersmen did not begin settling the territory until 1698 when a Canadian Frenchman named Iberville left Brest, France with four ships. He sailed along the Florida coast past the new base the Spanish were building at Pensacola on his search for the mouth of the Mississippi River where La Salle had staked a claim. In March 1699, he entered the Birdfoot Delta. It was only after meeting some Indians who remembered La Salle that he was sure that he had found the Mississippi. Having achieved his first aim, but finding no good sites in the delta to set up, the contingent, including two of his brothers, settled on  building a temporary fort near what is now Biloxi, MS. Iberville then left a garrison of 81 men, and returned to France, the first of many trips he would take during the establishment of the French colonies in “Louisiana.”
  • Louisiana  is the only state in the U.S. that uses the term parishes instead of counties based off the Catholic Church parishes.
  • New Orleans is the largest city and metropolitan area in the state of Louisiana, and occupies both sides of the Mississippi River.
  • The New Orleans and Carrollton streetcar lines are the oldest street railway lines still in operation in the U.S.
  • Louisiana makes up about 41% of the nation’s wetlands.
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