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About Louisiana

The vibrant history of Louisiana began back in 1519. Spanish expeditionists arrived at the mouth of the great Mississippi River and proclaimed it for Louis XIV of France. Hernando de Soto and Sieur de la Salle were just some of the first explorers of the area. Louisiana was owned by the French and Spanish, and we eventually sold to the U.S. by Napoleon in 1803.

The most famous portion of the state, New Orleans, wasn't adopted as part of the state until 1812. Louisiana was taken by Union Admiral David Farragut during the civil war, despite its beginnings as a confederate state. After the war, the economy of New Orleans suffered greatly as reconstruction was underway. Luckily the economy turned around after oil and natural gas were found in the region.

Today, Louisiana a the lead producer of salt, petroleum, sulfur, and natural gas. Much of this is drilled out in the ocean. On land, the traditionally southern crops of rice, sugar cane, pecans, corn, cotton, and sweet potatoes are grown. The Louisiana Cotton Museum in Lake Providence preserves this famous history of the state.

New Orleans has become famous for its Mardi Gras celebration that takes place in February and March. It also has been dubiously put into the spotlight as having taken the brunt of Hurricane Katrina. The devastation of the region has made it notoriously famous for having been hit by one of the worst hurricanes in history.     

The New Orleans French Quarter is a must-see if you plan on attending Mardi Gras. Don't forget to stop by the world-famous Café Du Monde and try some beignets – Amity loves these delicious French doughnuts. The wrought iron fences and beautifully styled Victorian homes are just part of the charm.

The historic buildings, such as the Avart-Paretti House, where Tennessee Williams lived while writing "A Streetcar Named Desire," is just one spectacular place to visit. The state capital building in Baton Rouge is a popular landmark, it is the tallest capital building in the U.S. For the kids, take a trip to the Alexandria Zoo and see some of Louisiana's wonderful habitats and animals that have adapted to the bayou.