Background: Downtown Lake Charles Louisiana
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Living in Louisiana

Louisiana - Sportsman's Paradise

History, Geography, Homes, and State Resources of Louisiana

Louisiana USA Map
Louisiana USA Map

For those who are planning to move or have just moved to Louisiana, called the Pelican state, here is some basic information about your new home. Louisiana is the 18th state which was added to the Union, the state has an opulent history going back io the 1700's when France first settled lower parts of the state. Louisiana today boasts a population of over four million residents with a culture dissimilar to any other.

There are Sixty-four parishes, called counties throughout the other states in the nation make up Louisiana. There is a sub-tropical climate with short winters along with long, balmy summers. Winter temperatures might occasionally dip to freezing however spring comes early. Summers can be humid and hot although temperatures are typically be moderated by sweeping north breezes originating in the Gulf of Mexico.

In 1682, the French explorer Sieur de La Salle, the first to descend the Mississippi to its mouth, took possession "of the country known as Louisiana," and named it for the reigning monarch of France, Louis XIV. 1714 Louis Juchereau de St. Denis founded Fort St. Jean Baptiste, present-day Natchitoches, the first permanent settlement in Louisiana. French Fleur-de-Lis (LaSalle) [1682] 1717-31 Louisiana experienced a surge of growth and development as a colony of the Company of the West and, after 1719, its successor the Company of the Indies. The Company of the West was an elaborate colonization scheme of the Scotsman John Law, endorsed by the French government, which wreaked havoc on the entire economy of France. 1718 Sieur de Bienville began building New Orleans as a company town for the Company of the West. By 1721 New Orleans had a population of more than 370 people, including 147 male colonists, 65 female colonists, 38 children, 28 servants, 73 slaves and 21 Indians.

Climate

Louisiana has a humid subtropical climate. It has long, hot, humid summers and short, mild winters. The subtropical characteristics of the state are due in large part to the influence of the Gulf of Mexico, which at its farthest point is no more than 200 miles.

Demography

  • Louisiana Geography, Facts and History
  • Louisiana Facts & Trivia
  • Louisiana Flags
  • Famous People from Louisiana
  • Louisiana Timeline
  • Louisiana Official Song
  • Education

    Louisiana Colleges. Louisiana is home to a number of notable colleges and universities, which include Louisiana State University at Baton Rouge and Tulane University in New Orleans. Louisiana State University is the largest and most comprehensive university in Louisiana. Tulane University is a major private university and university in Louisiana with an endowment of $ 1.1 billion. Tulane is thus highly regarded for its academics nationwide, ranked fortieth on U.S. News & World Report's 2018 list of best national universities

    Economy

    Louisiana's economy consists of agriculture, shipping, a thriving film industry, tourism plus industry including gas and oil.

    The state's main agricultural products include seafood (it is the largest crawfish producer in the world, supplying around 90% of the world total), cattle, cotton, rice products, soybeans, sugarcane, poultry and eggs, dairy products, and rice.

    Industry generates chemical products, petroleum and coal products, processed foods and transportation equipment, and paper products. Tourism is an important element in the economy, especially in the New Orleans area.

    The Port of South Louisiana, located between New Orleans and Baton Rouge, on the Mississippi River is the largest volume shipping port in the Western Hemisphere and 4th largest in the world, as well as being the largest bulk cargo port in the world.

    New Orleans, Shreveport, and Baton Rouge are home to a thriving film industry. State financial incentives and aggressive promotion have given Louisiana the nickname "Hollywood South". Because of its unique culture within the United States, only Alaska is Louisiana's rival in popularity as a setting for reality television programs. In late 2007 and early 2008, a 300,000-square-foot film studio was scheduled to open in Tremé, with state-of-the-art production facilities, and a film training institute.

    Tabasco sauce, which is marketed by one of the United States' biggest producers of hot sauce, the McIlhenny Company, began on Avery Island.

    Tourism and culture are also major players in Louisiana's economy, earning an estimated $5.2 billion per year. Louisiana also hosts many important cultural events, such as the World Cultural Economic Forum, which is held annually in the fall at the New Orleans Morial Convention Center.

    Louisiana is rich in petroleum and natural gas. Petroleum and gas deposits are found in abundance both onshore and offshore in State-owned waters. In addition, vast petroleum and natural gas reserves are found offshore from Louisiana in the federally administered Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) in the Gulf of Mexico. Louisiana's natural gas reserves account for about 5 percent of the U.S. total. The recent discovery of the Haynesville Shale formation in parts of or all of Caddo, Bossier, Bienville, Sabine, De Soto, Red River, and Natchitoches parishes have made it the world's fourth largest gas field with some wells initially producing over 25 million cubic feet of gas daily.

    Flora and Fauna

    Louisiana State Flower - Magnolia
    Louisiana State Flower - Magnolia

    Louisiana State Tree - Bald Cypress
    Louisiana State Tree - Bald Cypress

    Forests in Louisiana consist of four major types: shortleaf pine uplands, slash and longleaf pine flats and hills, hardwood forests in alluvial basins, and cypress and tupelo swamps. Important commercial trees also include beech, eastern red cedar, and black walnut. Among the state's wildflowers are the ground orchid and several hyacinths; two species (Louisiana quillwort and American chaffseed) were listed as endangered in 2003. Spanish moss (actually a member of the pineapple family) grows profusely in the southern regions but is rare in the north.

    Louisiana's varied habitats—tidal marshes, swamps woodlands, and prairies—offer a diversity of fauna. Deer, squirrel, rabbit, and bear are hunted as game, while muskrat, nutria, mink, opossum, bobcat, and skunk are commercially significant furbearers.

    Prized game birds include quail, turkey, woodcock, and various waterfowl, of which the mottled duck and wood duck are native. Coastal beaches are inhabited by sea turtles, and whales may be seen offshore.

    Freshwater fish include bass, crappie, and bream; red and white crawfishes are the leading commercial crustaceans. Threatened animal species include five species (green, hawksbill, Kemp's ridlly, leatherback, and loggerhead) of sea turtle.

  • Louisiana State Bird (Brown Pelican)
  • Louisiana Official State Flower (Magnolia )
  • Louisiana Official State Tree (Bald Cypress)
  • Government

    Louisiana State Capitol
    Louisiana State Capitol
    The Louisiana State Capitol is the seat of government for the state of Louisiana and is located in downtown Baton Rouge. The capitol houses the chambers for the Louisiana State Legislature, made up of the House of Representatives and the Senate, as well as the office of the Governor of Louisiana. At 450 feet and with 34 stories, it is the tallest building in Baton Rouge, the seventh tallest building in Louisiana, and tallest capitol in the United States. It is located on  27 acres, which includes the capitol gardens. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1978 and was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1982.

    Statewide elected executive officials include the governor and lieutenant governor (separately elected), secretary of state, attorney general, treasurer, superintendent of education, commissioner of agriculture, commissioner of insurance, and commissioner of elections. All are elected for four-year terms. The governor must be a qualified elector, be at least 25 years old, and have been a US and Louisiana citizen for five years preceding election; after two full consecutive terms, a governor may not run for reelection. The same eligibility requirements apply to the lieutenant governor, except that there is no limit on succession to the latter office. Other executive agencies are the State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education, whose eight elected members and three appointed members serve four-year terms, and the Public Service Commission, whose five members serve for six years.

    Voters in Louisiana must be US citizens, 18 years old, and state residents. Restrictions apply to convicted felons and those declared mentally incompetent by the court.

  • Official State of Louisiana Website
  • Attractions

    Louisiana's top tourist attractions are in and around New Orleans, the center of Creole culture and full of things to do. This excitement-filled city is best known for its annual Mardis Gras celebrations and excellent entertainment. Another great city for sightseeing is the state capitol, Baton Rouge, where you can tour the old Capitol Building, which is rumored to be haunted. Tourists also come to Louisiana to see the historic antebellum plantations that can be found throughout the state, as well as its numerous museums that explore the complex and sometimes painful past of this southern state.

    New Canal Lighthouse
    New Canal Lighthouse
    Lighthouses in Louisiana - List of all lighthouses in the state of Louisiana as identified by the United States Coast Guard and other historical sources.

    Focal height and coordinates are taken from the 1907 United States Coast Guard Light List, while location and dates of activation, automation, and deactivation are taken from the United States Coast Guard Historical information site for lighthouses. 

  • Official Site of Louisiana Tourism
  • Amusement Parks

    Blue Bayou and Dixie Landin', Baton Rouge
      Blue Bayou Waterpark and Dixie Landin’ are adjacent amusement parks in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Blue Bayou is a water park it has 20 attractions including a lazy river, a behemoth bowl, a quadruple aqualoop, a wave pool, a ProSlide Tornado, and many other slides. Over the years, it has been adding new attractions 

      Dixie Landin’  currently has 27 attractions, including an S&S combo drop tower, a log flume, three roller coasters, and a variety of flat rides.

    Carousel Gardens Amusement Park, New Orleans
      Carousel Gardens is a seasonally operated amusement park located in the New Orleans City Park. It features many rides, including the Live Oak Ladybug Rollercoaster, a ferris wheel, a drop tower called the Coney Tower, and a miniature train that tours the park. It is also home to one of the oldest carousels in the US, also known as the “Flying Horses”.
    Celebration Station, Baton Rouge

    National Parks

    Cane River National heritiage Area - Magnolia Plantation
    Cane River National heritiage Area - Magnolia Plantation
    Atchafalaya National Heritage Area
      Our country’s landscape is rich and mysterious. It is filled with twisting bayous, rivers and America’s largest river swamp. We have fields of sugar cane and cotton, ancient live oaks and towering cypress. Alligators, raccoons, and even bears roam our lands while 270 species of birds take to our skies. From our waters come catfish, shrimp, oysters and the crawfish that make us so well known.
    Cane River National Heritage Area, Natchitoches, LA
      More than 300-years of history are etched into the rural landscape of colonial forts, plantations, churches, cemeteries, and homes that comprise Cane River National Heritage Area. Historically, this region lay at the intersection of the French and Spanish Realms in the New World, with the town of Natchitoches originating as an important 18th century trade center.
    Cane River Creole National Historical Park, Natchez, LA
      The Cane River region is home to a unique culture; the Creoles. Generations of the same families of owners and workers, enslaved and tenant, lived on these lands for over 200 years. The park tells their stories and preserves the cultural landscape of Oakland and Magnolia Plantations, two of the most intact Creole cotton plantations in the United States.
    El Camino Real de los Tejas National Historic Trail, Various States TX,LA
      Come on a journey that will carry you through 300 years of Louisiana and Texas frontier settlement and development on a Spanish colonial "royal road" that originally extended to Mexico City, Mexico.
    Jean Lafitte National Historical Park & Preserve, New Orleans, LA
      In Jean Lafitte's day, silver and gold filled a pirate's treasure chest, but today's treasures are people, places, and memories. Discover New Orleans’ rich cultural mix. Learn Cajun traditions from people who live them. Watch an alligator bask on a bayou’s bank. Walk in the footsteps of the men who fought at 1815’s Battle of New Orleans. Follow the link to discover the treasure of Jean Lafitte.
    New Orleans Jazz National Historical Park, New Orleans, LA
      Only in New Orleans could there be a National Park for jazz! Drop by our visitor center at the New Orleans Jazz Museum at 400 Esplanade Ave. or 916 North Peters St. to inquire about musical events around town. In the mood for a world class musical experience? Attend a jazz concert or ranger performance at the new state of the art performance venue on the 3rd floor of the New Orleans Jazz Museum.
    Vicksburg National Military Park, Vicksburg, MS,LA
      Confederate President Jefferson Davis, Vicksburg was the "nailhead that holds the South's two halves together." President Abraham Lincoln remarked "Vicksburg is the key" to victory, and could be the north's lifeline into the south. As the federals closed in on the Fortress City, they were met by a ring of forts with over 170 cannon. The resulting battle would determine the war's outcome.

    Kisatchie National Forest
    Kisatchie National Forest

    National Forests

    Kisatchie National Forest - 607,540 acres
      Kisatchie is Louisiana's only National Forest, covering old-growth pine forest and bald cypress groves in the bayous. There are 48 mammal species, 56 reptiles, 30 amphibians, and 155 breeding or overwintering birds in this forest.

    Sports

    Louisiana is nominally the least populous state with more than one major professional sports league franchise: the National Basketball Association's New Orleans Pelicans and the National Football League's New Orleans Saints. Louisiana has a AAA Minor League baseball team, the New Orleans Baby Cakes. The Baby Cakes are currently affiliated with the Miami Marlins.

    Louisiana has 12 collegiate NCAA Division I programs, a high number given its population. The state has no NCAA Division II teams and only two NCAA Division III teams. The LSU Tigers football team has won 11 Southeastern Conference titles, six Sugar Bowls and three national championships.

    Each year New Orleans plays host to the Sugar Bowl and the New Orleans Bowl college football games, and Shreveport hosts the Independence Bowl. Also, New Orleans has hosted the Super Bowl a record seven times, as well as the BCS National Championship Game, NBA All-Star Game and NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Championship. <;>

  • Louisiana Sports
  • Taxes

    Quick Tax Facts
    • Income tax: 2% - 6%
    • Sales tax: 5% - 11%
    • Property tax: 0.51% average effective rate
    • Gas tax: 20.01 cents per gallon of regular gasoline and diesel

    Transportation

    Aviation

    Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport
    Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport
    Louisiana Airports. Louisiana has 81 public airports. Louisiana has three international airports. Louisiana airports offer excellent service and their technology is customer friendly.

    Louisiana has three international airports. They are the Alexandria International Airport at Alexandria, Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport at New Orleans and the Chennault International Airport at Lake Charles.

    The Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport in New Orleans is traveling. The airport allows check-in in advance so travelers can explore the city. The airport is handicap friendly and has many TDD phones and soft passages for people with disabilities who can easily commute. There are internet facilities within the airport. Shopping here is tax-free and the airport offers lockers and luggage storage.

    The airlines flying from this airport are Air Canada, Jet Blue, United, American Airlines, Frontier, Delta Air Lines, Continental, Midwest, Air Tran, South West, Grupo Taca, American West Airlines, Northwest and US Airways.

    One of the major airports in Louisiana is in Baton Rouge, the state capital. The Baton Rouge Metropolitan Airport has many facilities for travelers. There are ATM machines, vending machines, a business center, a children's playground, a conference center, a non-denominational chapel, a reading room and a souvenir shop.

    Some of the airlines flying from this airport are Delta Airlines, Continental Airlines, Northwest Airlines and American Airlines. The airlines operating from Alexandria

    Ports

    Port of New Orleans
    Port of New Orleans
    he majority of the Louisiana ports are considered shallow-draft inland or shallow-draft coastal ports. Generally, the shallow-draft inland ports are cargo and/or industrially based while the coastal ports serve as industrial sites for water-related industries, for servicing the offshore oil and gas industry, and for commercial fishing in the Gulf of Mexico. The six deep draft ports in the state transfer large quantities of port related cargo and routinely rank among the top tonnage ports in the country according to the USACE

    Rails

    Louisiana offer little in the way of mountainous operations and stiff grades, as the state is almost completely flat (saving railroads from the headache of such operations). While from a railfan perspective this might be a bit visually boring, the Pelican State is an important source of both originating and terminating traffic with the Port of New Orleans and the lucrative petrochemical industry both located there. Because of this several classic lines tapped into the state, notably wishing to reach New Orleans as it was a vital interchange point and originator of traffic (both passenger and freight). Today, Louisiana is still served by several Class I railroads (six of the seven) and several short lines allowing for an interesting mix of operations.

    Roads

    The U.S. Highway System in Louisiana consists of 2,495.31 miles of mainline highway routes and 104.06 miles of special routes (both figures including concurrencies) that are constructed and maintained by the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (La DOTD).

    Louisiana Housing

    The median home value in Louisiana is $146,100. Louisiana home values have gone up 3.5% over the past year and  predictions are they will rise 0.5% within the next year. The median list price per square foot in Louisiana is $121. The median price of homes currently listed in Louisiana is $212,000. The median rent price in Louisiana is $1,250.
  • Louisiana Association of Realtors
  • Louisiana Real Estate Commission
  • Louisiana Real Estate Listings
  • Louisiana Cities & Towns

    Louisiana is divided into 64 parishes, which are equivalent to counties, and there are 308 incorporated municipalities consisting of four consolidated city-parishes, and 304 cities, towns, and villages. The largest municipality by population in Louisiana is New Orleans with 343,829 residents, and the smallest is Mound with 19 residents. The largest municipality by land area is also New Orleans, which covers 169.42 square miles, while Napoleonville is the smallest at 0.17 square miles.
  • Louisiana Cities and Towns
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