A Written History of Richland Parish, from the W.P.A. Era, ca., 1935
Richland Parish, so-named because of the rich alluvial quality of its soil, is situated in the western belt of the delta section of northeast Louisiana. The parish has an area of 565 square miles, a large portion of which is devoted to the cultivation of long-staple cotton, which brings a higher market price than the other varieties grown in the cotton belt. The fertile delta land is excellent for the growing of other crops such as corn and vegetables, a fact which has made Richland a leader in farm organization work. Large tracts of hardwood timber abound, supporting several lumber mills, and add materially to the wealth of the parish.
The Richland Gas Field at Alto
From an industrial standpoint, however, the parish is best known as the home of the Richland Gas Field, one of the most important that has been discovered, and which supplies natural gas by means of pipeline to several metropolitan centers in the South. At Alto, which is in about the center of the parish, is a crater of one of the largest wild gas wells in the state. The well caught fire during drilling operations and burned continuously for several years.
The Railroad in Richland Parish
Richland is served by the Illinois Central railroad running east and west and a branch of the Missouri Pacific north and south, while U.S. 80, a coast to coast paved thoroughfare bisects it, and excellent paved and gravel roads link its communities with those of adjacent parishes.
Big Creek Settlers
At the time of the organization of the present parish of Richland, which was after the Civil War, it was very sparsely populated and had only a few years of history behind it as part of Ouachita, Morehouse, Franklin and Carroll parishes. When settlements were projected in the Ouachita District and Northeast Louisiana during the first decades of the nineteenth century, very little emigration into what is now Richland was possible. Settlers followed the bayous and established themselves on prairies or in spots big enough for a fair margin of safety from floods, and which were capable of being cleared and cultivated. The region now included in Richland did not answer this description to a recognizable extent, the present parish being bounded on the west by Bayou Lafourche, and on the east by Big Creek and Bayou Macon. Boeuf River flows through the center in a winding course.
Though the latter stream was, to an extent, navigable, there were few prairies suitable for settlement on its banks in Richland, Oak Ridge, originally known as Prairie Jefferson, in Morehouse being the nearest.
From Fort Miro, later Monroe, to the Mississippi River, stretched an almost impassable swamp, unknown, and with no path through its alligator-infested morasses, and presenting a most discouraging aspect to any prospective farmer. In fact, in all the region between Boeuf River and the Mississippi in 1830, with the exception of Morehouse Parish, there were few settlements except those directly on the bank of the Mississippi.
It was presumably after this time, although the exact date is difficult to ascertain, that the first settlers made a group of homes in the confines of the parish. This was in the eastern portion on or near Bayou Macon where the Macon hills offered the only sites then practicable.
Early Settlers Near Delhi
In his “Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Louisiana,” Goodspeed asserts that settlers living in Richland along Bayou Macon at an early date were Mrs. E. Scott, U. E. Travis, Ben Spade, John Bishop, and John Harris. He adds that. two settlements were formed near the -present town of Delhi, one five miles west by James Gwinn, a bit north of the hamlet of Dunn, and the second, called Deerfield, one mile northwest of the site of Delhi. Deerfield was settled by W. T. Oliver, who was successful in obtaining a post office for it.
John Ray, who was to be instrumental in organizing the parish, and whose family gave Rayville, the parish seat, its name, wrote of the region in after years as follows:
“In 1836 or 1837, I am not positive which, the citizens of Monroe being desirous of having a road cut out… for horseback travel between Monroe and Vicksburg, employed three of the best woodsmen in the country to explore and mark out such a road between those points. The men employed were Peter J. Oliver, James H. Stevens and Dr. Hubbard. They had been land-hunters by profession, and were selected on account of their supposed knowledge of the country, and were given $1,000 each for their services.”
“They had set out in the fall of the year on their exploration, and after crossing Boeuf River, now in Richland Parish, they became so embarrassed in the thick canebrakes and swamps between Boeuf River and Bayou Macon that they got lost and were some ten days before finding themselves in Prairie Jefferson, (Oak Ridge) a distant settlement entirely out of their right course. The writer often heard them relate their experiences…. wandering….so many days through these almost impenetrable forests of cane and subsisting alone on the meat of the alligator and wildcat.”
“These same men, the following year, I think…. again, and with the help of a compass…. succeeded in marking out the road from Monroe to Vicksburg. The present Vicksburg, Shreveport & Pacific Railroad (Illinois Central) runs nearly on the line surveyed by these men, which was the only foot or horseback road ever established between Monroe and Vicksburg since the country was settled by the whites. There are signs that the Indians, in early times, had a trail from Monroe to what is called ‘Walnut Hills — the name by
which Vicksburg was often designated in those days.”
“The explorers….mentioned above, had often informed the writer that the country was a solid cane brake from near the vicinity of Monroe to the Mississippi River when they marked out this road…The writer traveled it as early as 1840 and found this information fully confirmed; the country presented a continuous canebrake….and only one settlement was found after leaving Boeuf River.”
“The building of a railroad from Vicksburg to Monroe and on to Shreveport was first mentioned in 1840….the subject was again agitated….until 1853, when the legislation passed the act of incorporation of the V.S. & T RR. Co…”
Mr. Ray’s description reveals the nature of the Richland Parish region as late as 1840. It also recalls the…settlement on the western bank of Boeuf River, not mentioned by Goodspeed, which is, in all probability the oldest one of Richland Farish. That was the Girard colony, now the hamlet of Girard just west of the Boeuf River on both highway and railroad.
Stephen Girard and Henry Bry
In 1821, Stephen Girard bad been interested in the Bastrop grant, (which included much of this region) by Henry Bry of Monroe. Influenced by Bry, he had purchased a large tract of land from the heirs (first wife and children) of Abraham Morehouse and formed a colony at the present site of Girard between 1821 and 1830. This project, which was an agricultural one, was under the supervision of Bry.3
There was little development aside from Girard and the few settlers on Bayou Macon, however, during the 1840s with the chartering of the railroad in 1853 and renewal of the charter in 1856, settlement was encouraged and the horseback road greatly improved…. more home seekers came, although the nature of the country was such that few wandered far from the vicinity of the poor road.
This condition was improved, and stagecoach service inaugurated, either in the late 1840’s or the early 1850s. Charles Carpenter, a resident of Gwinn’s settlement west of modern Delhi, erected a house there in 1845, and the stagecoach service developed until the Carpenter house became quite famous as an inn. In 1854, the original house having burned, Carpenter built another of logs a few hundred feet south of the point where the road crossed a small stream. This home, sheathed and lined until its walls are five feet thick, is still standing, as is the original old well with a wooden windlass.
In the fall of 1855, work was be3un at the Vicksburg end on the railroad. Progress was slow, but settlements sprang up along its proposed route, the town of Delhi coming into existence at that time (1860). There is a tradition that the name Delhi came from a whimsy of John Bishop, who had recently read “Lalla Rook.”
More people had come to the region, although not a great number when the first train ran over the new railroad in the summer of 1860. Trains continued to run regularly until 1863, but the Civil War put a temporary end; to all immigration and settlement.
A band of guerrillas favorable to the Confederacy operated in the Bayou Macon hills under Captain Joe Lee, a colorful figure who had come from Missouri with the famous Quantrelle. Captain Lee was a capable soldier and disciplinarian, and although the particular service in which he was engaged was contrary to all rules of war, his men being subject to arrest at the hands of the Confederates, and certain to be hung if captured by the Federals, he increased his command to a full company which was regularly officered and well mounted. Lee kept his own commissary, and his men lived upon their own earnings, which many times were not meager.
The tide of organized war swept over Richland Parish in 1863, when Stevenson’s raid reached as far as Monroe, and intermittently during the remainder of the war. It was in 1863 that the railroad was destroyed, Confederate generals burning ties and twisting rails to keep the Federals from using the road. Federal forces in some strength were reported at Delhi in May of 1863, and from then on there were few or no organized units of the Confederate army in the section. Walker’s Division, under Taylor’s orders, did make a move towards Milliken’s Bend, but traveled by water rather than by land.8
The end of the war found all the region in Federal Hands. The railroad, as a means of travel or transportation, was useless, but in spite of that fact, settlements were growing.
James and John Ray – The Founders of Richland Parish
James Ray, a brother of John Ray of Monroe, had established a store east of Boeuf River. Others gathered around him, and th¢is settlement became known as Rayville, which was at that time in Morehouse Parish. It was located on the railroad, which had been one of the reasons for the little town coming into existence.
In 1865 and the years that followed, this was a place of redoubtable reputation. Settlers were of all types, and bitterness was rife between Democrats and Republicans. On August 11, 1868, while there was talk of creating a new parish, outrages which each party blamed upon the other occurred in Rayville. Fifteen whites were said to have kidnapped, and mutilated the ears of a deaf and dumb negro. Rumors of white men living with negro women and similar violations of the unwritten code permeated that section of what was then Morehouse Parish. James Ray’s store, during this period of violence, was broken into by unknown parties.10
Meanwhile, John Ray had attained prominence as a state senator in Warmoth’s newly-elected legislature. Franklin and Union parishes, particularly those portions now included in Richland, were reputedly very lawless. Editor Lewis Zim of the Winnsboro paper, the Franklin Sun, complained that the district judge refused to go to the parish court without a guard. President Johnson was asked to send United States soldiers to the region, a garrison at that time being stationed in Monroe. This account was not wholly believed, and the soldiers were not sent.11
Influences were even then at work for the creation of a new parish. Senator Ray, in the fall of 1868, had introduced a bill in the legislature to form the parish and call it Richland. This project was attacked by Democratic newspapers of the district, but naturally, their objections were futile. A Republican paper, the Monroe Intelligencer, asserted that 600 citizens of the proposed parish had signed a petition for its creation, suggesting Rayville as parish-seat. The idea was not new, even with Democratic opposition. Shortly after the war, a Morehouse Parish legislator had entered a bill for a similar purpose. It had received favorable action, but hostilities· became rife before it could be put into legal effect, and the parish of Richland was not actually created until 1868.13
At that time, with John Ray as one of the prime movers and largest property holders, it can scarcely be doubted that Richland was created almost purely for political purposes. The Republicans, in spite of being all-powerful, left no stone unturned which might add to their influence. Ray was practically certain that a Republican set of officials including legislators, would be chosen, which in fact would add both to his party’s strength in the state government and to his own personal following since he might reasonably count on gratitude.
In November, the new parish chose its first officers. J .M. Olivier was selected as representative; W.S. McIntosh, parish judge; A.J. Liddell, sheriff; J.N. Pitts, clerk; W.P. Mangham, recorder; Newton Harris, assessor.
W.P. Mangham and The Richland Beacon News
W. P. Mangham, the new recorder, was also the founder and editor of the parish’s first newspaper. This was the Richland Beacon, established at Rayville about 1870, and still in the hands of the Mangham family. Wiley P. Mangham and T. J. Mangham were both to be associated with this paper and with the Delhi Chronicle which had a few years of existence in the next decade.
Because of the fertility of its soil, Richland developed in economic wealth and resources along with, or perhaps in spite of its political growth. In the 1830s, Judge Henry Bry, early settler and prominent jurist of Ouachita Parish had prophesied that the swamps and marshes of Richland, once they were properly drained, would be the most fruitful soil of all northeast Louisiana, a prophesy which has indeed come true.
The parish did not become a region of great plantations. Much of the property of Stephen Girard in the section was left, (after his death, which occurred before the Civil War), to the cities of New Orleans and Philadelphia, which prevented to a certain extent, the expansion of the fertile region.
During the post-war years, the destruction of the railroad had been a handicap. The rebuilding of the line was started at the Monroe end, and with floods inundating the lower sections, many times very little of the track in Richland except in the highlands at Bayou Macon remained above water.
The railroad company, like its property, had gone bankrupt. Following the war, it had been acquired by a group including John Ludeling, John Ray, Frank P. Stubbs, George A. Waddill, and William F. Gordon, and the process of reconstruction finally began. Aid was given by the state, but it was not until June 15, 1867, that the first train since Stevenson’s raid in April of 1863, ran from Monroe to Delhi. From the latter point to Vicksburg, travel was effected by stagecoach, which required fourteen hours.15
The railroad gave the parish an outlet for its cotton and other products, and a steady growth began which has increased throughout the years. The discovery of the Richland gas field augmented this growth, and with the building of the excellent highway system of the parish, coupled with the progressive spirit of its citizens, Richland looks forward to a bright and prosperous future.
Situated in about the center of Richland. Parish some 35 miles east of Monroe, La. on U.S. 80, a paved thoroughfare that stretches across the United States east and west from Savannah, Georgia to San Diego, California is Rayville, the parish seat.
Served by two railway systems, the Illinois Central running east, and west, and the Missouri-Pacific north and south, as well as motor buses connecting it with all points in every direction, the little community, with a population of 2,075 (1930 census), is the shipping point for the thousands of bales of cotton ginned in the section. Business houses of every type have been established to serve the citizens within an area of some twenty miles, and while the discovery of the Richland gas field was of great benefit to individuals on whose property wells were drilled, it did not change the town from an agricultural center to that of a manufacturing one. This was probably due in part to its proximity to Monroe, La., a considerably larger community with river as well as rail facilities. While the town enjoys the benefits of natural gas as cheap fuel, it is used for domestic purposes almost entirely.
There is much more to the thriving little town than is seen from the main highway which skirts its edge. While no particular type of architecture characterizes the homes or Rayville, the well-kept lawns and flower gardens are evidence of an intense civic pride for which its citizens are noted.
“John Ray” – The Namesake of Rayville, Louisiana
Rayville was selected as parish seat when Richland was created by an act of the Louisiana legislature in the year 1868 and was incorporated as a town in 1882.16
It received its name from John Ray, an early settler and large property owner in the vicinity, who was instrumental in having the site chosen as the seat of government rather than the village of Girard, which was located on much higher ground and therefore seemed a more desirable place to build a courthouse. A frame building was constructed for the purpose at the time and served until the present courthouse was built in the year 1880.
The town suffered from several disastrous fires in its early days, and floods have caused considerable property damage, but the indomitable courage of the people surmounted these difficulties, and floods at least, have been controlled by the splendid levee systems that have been constructed in Louisiana.
The progressive spirit of the citizens of Rayville is shown in the public utilities and civic improvements that are constantly being added to. The electric light plant and waterworks system are municipally owned, and the town has more miles of concrete sidewalk than any other place of its size in the entire state. Great care was taken when these walks were laid to save the trees which lend Rayville its chief charm.
A splendid fire-proof high school with a modern and well-equipped gymnasium and a grammar school with a commodious auditorium adjoining, provide excellent educational facilities, and on the western outskirts of the town are the fairgrounds, with a municipal swimming pool and dance hall.
The First Folk School in America
Rayville enjoys the distinction of being the home of the first Folk School held in America. The idea originated with Miss Mary Mims, noted Louisiana community worker, who had studied their successful operation in Denmark. Shortly after the organization of a club known as the Richland Parish Guidance Association, which was the outgrowth of classes held throughout the parish by Dr. Kreager, at that time connected with the extension department of Louisiana State University. Miss Mims visited the community, and members of the club, many of them among the most influential men and women of the parish, asked for suggestions for a worthwhile project that would be parish-wide in scope. The answer was a Folk School. The efforts of the citizens of Rayville in making the first Folk School a success were productive of so much good, that the idea has spread, and schools of this type are now held yearly in many parishes of Louisiana.
Many things were taught the people who came from far and near to be instructed as well as entertained. Noted speakers gave lectures on agriculture, home planning, dairying, and the like, and exhibits of hats, baskets, table mats, etc., made from the fronds of the palmetto found in abundance in the parish were shown. Another worthwhile exhibit was a group of early American ladder-back chairs of solid maple, which grows in small quantities in the wooded areas of the parish. These chairs, made by Mr. Sharbono, were done entirely by hand with the use of a pocket and draw knife.20
The Rhymes Library and the Richland Parish Library Board
Citizens of Rayville point with pride to their comprehensive and growing library. The Richland Parish Library Board in 1926-27, agreed to a plan that the State Library Commission help strengthen its branch service by sending an additional loan collection of books to be distributed from Rayville and that state and parish-wide publicity be given in return for the privilege, by citing the parish as a demonstration of the plan advocated by the commission for the entire state. The library at that time was six months old.
During the flood of 1927, the librarian, who was a grandmother, donned hip boots and waded to the library every day, using a boat where the water was too deep to walk in. The building where the books were kept was also used as a drugstore and a shelter for Negro refugees, it being the only public building that was kept open during those troublous times. In 1927, a small brick library building was erected on the school grounds at Rayville by Mr. Rhymes as a memorial to his wife, Mrs. Nonnie Roark Rhymes. In 1936, after the passage of a law providing for parish libraries with one central location, Richland was the first parish in Louisiana to take advantage of it. A small balance in the Carnegie fund, trained librarian and other assistance was offered by the Louisiana Library Commission and accepted by the Police Jury and School Board of the parish, who in joint session, appropriated $3,000 for the purpose.
That the citizenship of Rayville has always been interested in culture is attested by the four women’s clubs organized for the study of music, drama, literature and the arts. The atmosphere of the place is reminiscent of what one usually finds in a small college town.
Delhi, LA., is the second largest town in Richland Parish, boasting a population of 1,023, (according to the 1930 census.)
As early as 1850, James Gwinn had built a house a few miles west of the present site of Delhi, while W. T. Oliver started a small settlement one-mile northeast for which he secured a post office and called it Deerfield. Upon completion of the Vicksburg, Shreveport and Pacific Railroad, however, the post office was moved to Delhi, which was on the railroad, and which had been incorporated as a town in 1882.22
According to tradition, the name Delhi was given to the village by its founder, John Bishop, after he had read “Lallah Rook.” The little town may not have reached the splendor which its founder possibly had in view when he christened it, but it has traveled far since its earliest days.
Travis Landing on Bayou Macon
A descendant of D. S. Travis, who came to the section in 1844, before Delhi or Richland Parish existed, describes early conditions. Lake Providence was the nearest town of any importance, and trips there were made on horseback or in mule-drawn wagons. A journey was a matter of much preparation requiring several days, and always there lurked the danger of bandit interference. Cotton was carried to Vicksburg for shipment in mule teams, two weeks being allowed for the trip. During high water, boats came up Bayou Macon as far as Travis Landing, a little to the northeast of Delhi, bringing a year’s supply of necessary commodities to the planters and carrying back many bales of cotton.
The hardy pioneers living there did not enjoy a daily paper. They were duly thankful when the mail arrived every three or four months. Stagecoaches plied from Vicksburg to Monroe, crossing Bayou Macon at Deerfield Landing on a large flat.
Grandfather Travis came to his new home from Tennessee by stagecoach; his granddaughter trips in a Pullman or a high powered automobile!
One of the greatest hardships of these early times was the difficulty of securing medical attention. In the Delhi neighborhood, one doctor covered a radius fifty miles setting forth on horseback, saddlebags behind him, on a tangled woods trail or a muddy public road.
The country doctor was in many cases, physician, nurse, priest, friend, and indeed deserves first place in the procession of unsung heroes.
Jesse and Frank James in Delhi
The community is rich in traditions of escapades of the famous James bandits, Jesse and Frank. The story is told that Frank James, journeying to Delhi to visit a cousin, found upon his arrival, a Protracted Meeting in full sway. Being a person of catholic tastes, he decided to attend.
Although the evangelist received his attention, Mr. James, during the evening service, felt the eyes of a pretty girl fixed upon him. Ordinarily, this would have proven to be a pleasing situation, but under existing circumstances the gentleman became uneasy, and after the meeting, he joined the young lady in the shadows of the churchyard and asked if he might walk home with her. She acquiesced—what romantic girl could have refused–and away they went. “I see that you have recognized me,” said Mr. James. “What are you going to do about it?”
“What would you suggest?” replied the young lady, Miss Jennie Rapp by name, who was at that time governess for Colonel Hiram Lott, prominent citizen and statesman of the community.
“There are officers of the law nearby,” said James, “and you know what would happen if they should discover my identity. I should like it if you would keep my secret, and at the same time take this envelope, but do not open it until I come.”
At her gate, Miss Jennie bade the dashing desperado adieu, and after the proper time had elapsed, opened the envelope from which fell three crisp fifty dollar bills. With this literal “hush money,” the lady bought a watch.23
Another reminder of the James era is an old house on La.16, just north of the high school, known as the Jesse James House. It was built by a Captain Jaret, uncle of Frank and Jesse James, and is reputed to have been used as a place of refuge by the outlaws. At the time of its purchase by Mr. Tom Haney, the present owner in 1906, it contained many relics of those lawless days and was said to be haunted as well. In Mr. Haney’s saloon on Main Street in Delhi, there is a pair of ancient saddle holsters for cap and ball pistols made of heavy pigskin and believed to have belonged to Jesse James.
Excellent fishing may be found in the vicinity of Delhi, Judge’s Lake, Big Indian Lake, and Bayou Macon, all on the eastern outskirts of the town, having long been famous fishing spots.
With a progressive school system, and the usual complement of stores, churches, public buildings and hotels, the Delhi of today is a thriving little community with sawmills and cotton gins its principal industries, the king of north Louisiana crops being the mainspring of its existence.
Holly Ridge, Alto, Archibald, and Girard
Other hamlets of Richland are Holly Ridge, the home of a large lumber company, Mangham, Alto, Archibald, and Girard. Girard, although now having fewer than 100 inhabitants, once held hopes of being the parish seat. It had been settled long before Rayville and was on comparatively high ground, but being too near the western boundary of the parish, as well as for political reasons, it lost out.
The Carpenter House in Dunn
An interesting old home of Richland Parish is the Carpenter house, reached by turning left on a gravel road one mile east of Dunn. Only a small part of the busy center once established at this point, the house was built by Charles Carpenter in 1854. It replaces a still older one also built by Mr. Carpenter in 1845, which was used as an inn when the old Vicksburg-Monroe stagecoach road passed there.
The present building is a long one-story house with a wide gallery extending along the entire front. Its walls have five thicknesses, the logs of which it was originally built being covered with shiplap, clapboards and double interior wall. All joists are solid, hand-hewn logs joined with oak pegs. At the left is a well, dug when the house was built and still in use.
The home serves as a family museum, containing old furniture which has been handed down for generations, some of which has historic importance. At the time of the siege of Vicksburg, most of the furniture was at the Grove plantation at Delta. Captain R. Kennedy of Grant’s quartermaster department seized the furniture, giving Mrs. Grove a receipt for it, which is among the papers in Mr. H.D. Carpenter, the present owner’s possession. Mrs. Grove, who was Mr. Carpenter’s grandfather’s sister, was removed to Milliken’s Bend, and a letter from Captain John L. Woods of the Federal army, apprising Mr. Groves of the act is also included in Mr. Carpenter’s papers.
Both the Groves and the Carpenters were staunch Confederates. Charles Carpenter Jr., sn of the builder, served with Quantrelle’s Guerillas, a contingent of which force under Captain Lee, operated in this section.
Among the articles seized by the Federals were two beds, a large fourposter of unfinished mahogany, and a Victorian half-tester, the latter being draped with an American flag, and a fine white bedspread used by General Chambers of Grant’s army.
The Carpenters possess besides the articles mentioned, a fine old refrigerator dating back to around 1870, lamps of the variety in which lard was burned, numbers of old books and family souvenirs, such as a dance program for a Louisiana State University Hop in 1872, and garments worn by feminine ancestors of fifty to seventy-five years ago.
The place has not yet been turned into an official museum, public or private, but the Carpenters graciously show their treasures to anyone interested.
And so with its rich historical background, excellent agricultural and lumbering facilities, splendid system of roads, large supply of natural gas, adequate school system, and a hight type of citizenship, Richland Parish is indeed well-deserving of its name.
- “Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Louisiana.” Goodspeed. Vol.2. p.196.
- “Ouachita Telegraph.” Monroe, La. newspaper. Oct.20, 1888, p.4; cols.1,2.
- Letters of Henry Bry. (Agent for Stephen Girard.) In possession of Robert Layton III, Monroe, La.
- Ouachita Telegraph. 11 Oct. 20, 1-888, p .4, cols. 1, 2.
- H.D. Carpenter, Dunn, La.
- “Ouachita Telegraph”, Oct. 20, 1888. p.4, cols. 1,2.
- Ibid. July 26, 1873, p.3, col.2.
- “Destruction and Reconstruction.” Richard Taylor. pp.138, 139.
- “Ouachita Telegraph.” Aug. 15, 1868. p.2, col.1.
- “Ouachita Telegraph.” Aug. 15, 1873, p.2, col.l.
- “The Intelligencer.” Monroe, La. newspaper. Aug.19, 1868, p.2., col.2.
- Ibid. Sept. 23, 1868, p.2, col.2.
- Ibid. Nov. 11, 1868, p.2, col.3
- “Ouachita Telegraph.” June 20, 1867, p.2, col.5
- “Louisiana.” Alcee Fortier, Vol.2, p.351.
- Miss Lavelle Calhoun, Rayville, La.
- Records in the Assessor’s Office, Rayville, La.
- “Richland Beacon-News.” 1st Folk School Edition, July 13, 1929. pp. not numbered.
- Interview with Mr. Sharbono, May 27, 1936.
- Sixth Biennial Report of Louisiana Library Commission. pp.9,10.
- Biographical and Historical News
- Mrs. Philley, Oak Grove, La., Mrs. Fanny Travis, Delhi, La.
- “Know Louisiana.” A tourist guide published by the La. Highway Commission. p.28. Also Mr. Tom Haney, Delhi, La.
- Goodspeed, “Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Louisiana.” Pub. by the Goodspeed Co. Chichgo, Ill. 1892. 2 vols. (Louisiana Library Commission, Baton Rouge, La.)
- The Ouachita Telegraph, Monroe. La. A weekly newspaper. Sept.27, 1866 to Dec.28,1889. Files from Sept.27,1866 to Sept.17, 1870 in Louisiana State University Library, Baton Rouge, La. Incomplete files from Sept. 27, 1866 to Dec. 28,1889 in possession of Don McCranie, Cheniere Station, West Monroe, La.
- “Letters and Records of Henry Bry,” early settler of Fort Miro, Monroe and agent for Stephen Girard. Author of appearing in DeBow’s Review. (Records and letters in possession of Robert Layton, III, Monroe, La.
- Carpenter, H.D., Dunn, La. Present owner of old Carpenter home. Very cooperative.
- Taylor, Richard, “Destruction and Reconstruction.” Pub. by D. Appleton and Co., New York, 1879. (Private library of J. Fair Hardin, Shreveport, La.)
- “The Intelligencer” Monroe, La. 1868. A weekly newspaper. March 18, 1868, to Dec. 30, 1868. (Complete files in Louisiana State University Library, Baton Rouge, La.)
- Fortier, Alcee, “Louisiana.” 3 vols. Pub. by Southern Historical Society, Atlanta Ga., 1909. (Monroe Public Library, Monroe, La.)
- Calhoun, Miss Lavelle, Rayville, La. Very cooperative.
- Records of the Assessor’s Office, Courthouse, Rayville, La. (Refers to the building of courthouse.)
- “Richland Beacon-News,” Rayville. La. A weekly newspaper. First Folk School Edition, July 13, 1929. (Project files.)
- Sharbono, J.W., farmer R.F.D. Box 460, Rayville, La., maker of handmade early American chairs.
- Sixth Biennial Report of Louisiana Library Commission, 1934-1935, 17 PP. No publisher is given. (Richland Parish Library, Rayville, La.)
- “Know Louisiana.” A tourism guide published by the La. Highway Commission, Baton Rouge, La., compiled by J.G. Ewing, 1933. 95 pp. (Project files.)
- Haney, Tom, Delhi, La. Owner of “Jesse James House.”
History. The parish was officially created on September 29, 1868. Rayville, Louisiana, the parish seat, was named for John Ray, a politician from Monroe with large land holdings in present-day Rayville. Richland Parish is home to the first public parish library in the State of Louisiana, the Rhymes Memorial Library.How did Richland Parish get its name? ›
The Richland Parish was named for the rich fertile land and was created on September 29, 1868. The parish seat is Rayville and is located in the northeast area of the state.What parish is Rayville in? ›
Rayville is a town in the parish seat of, and the largest community in, Richland Parish in northeastern Louisiana.Who founded Louisiana's first settlement? ›
The French explorer Robert Cavelier de La Salle named the region Louisiana in 1682 to honor France's King Louis XIV. The first permanent settlement, Fort Maurepas (at what is now Ocean Springs, Mississippi, near Biloxi), was founded in 1699 by Pierre Le Moyne d'Iberville, a French military officer from Canada.Who founded Richland? ›
Benton Land and Water Company Founded Richland
The Benton Land and Water Company were formed in 1892 by Nelson Rich and Howard Amon. They founded the town that we now know as Richland.
In 1904–1905, W.R. Amon and his son Howard purchased 2,300 acres (9 km2) and proposed a town site on the north bank of the Yakima River. Postal authorities approved the designation of this town site as Richland in 1905, naming it for Nelson Rich, a state legislator and land developer.When was Richland founded? ›
Richland was founded by Benjamin Rosencrance in 1900, a farmer who bought land from Northern Pacific Railway. A town site was platted by H. M. Amon, in 1905 and an irrigation canal was built, which watered 3,500 acres. One source states that in 1904 the place was named for Nelson Rich, a landowner.How did Church Point Louisiana get its name? ›
“In 1872, a U.S. Post Office official in seeking for a name for the post office between two settlements, decided on the name because of a church with a high steeple in one of the settlements.What parish is Sun LA in? ›
Sun is a village in the northeastern corner of St. Tammany Parish, Louisiana, United States.What parish is Transylvania in? ›
Transylvania is an unincorporated community in East Carroll Parish, Louisiana, United States.
Founded in 1811, St. Mary Parish occupies approximately 1,100 square miles in south central Louisiana. Parish cities and towns include Baldwin, Bayou Vista, Berwick, Franklin, Morgan City, Patterson, and surrounding unincorporated areas. The parish's southern border is the Gulf of Mexico.What is the history of Pointe Coupee Louisiana? ›
Pointe Coupée means Cutoff Point and was noted in Iberville's exploratory trip up the Mississippi River in 1699. Pointe Coupée Parish is one of the oldest settlements in the Mississippi River Valley. Pointe Coupée Parish is the birthplace of Louisiana public education with three public schools dating back to 1811.Which parish in Louisiana gained the most people from 2010 to 2020? ›
The parish with the largest percentage increase of new residents over the last decade was the New Orleans suburb of St. Bernard Parish, while Tensas Parish in the Mississippi Delta region saw the steepest percentage decline, losing 21% of its people.What is the history of Church Point Louisiana? ›
Church Point is a Cajun Country town with a colorful history. Its first post office, effectively establishing the city, was built in 1873, though it was home to both American Indians and Cajun settlers long before that. Church Point was once known as Plaquemine Brulée.What is the history of Catahoula Parish Louisiana? ›
Originally founded in 1808, 4 years before Louisiana was admitted to the Union, Catahoula Parish was taken from parts of both Ouachita and Rapides Parishes. For 30 years it held it's shape until 1838, when Caldwell Parish was formed from parts of Catahoula and Ouachita.