Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana
|Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana|
Natchitoches Parish Courthouse (completed 1939)
Location in the state of Louisiana
Louisiana's location in the U.S.
|Named for||Natchitoches Native Americans|
|• Total||1,299 sq mi (3,365 km2)|
|• Land||1,255 sq mi (3,252 km2)|
|• Water||44 sq mi (114 km2), 3.37%|
|• Density||30/sq mi (39,566/km²)|
|Time zone||Central: UTC-6/-5|
Natchitoches Parish (French: Paroisse des Natchitoches) is a parish located in the U.S. state of Louisiana. The parish seat is Natchitoches. As of the 2010 census, the population was 39,566. This is the heart of the Cane River Louisiana Creole community. The Natchitoches Micropolitan Statistical Area includes all of Natchitoches Parish.
Including extensive outbuildings at Magnolia and Oakland plantations, the Cane River Creole National Historical Park interprets the history and culture of the Louisiana Creoles. It was designated one of the original sites on the Louisiana African American Heritage Trail.
Natchitoches Parish was created by the act of April 10, 1805 that divided the Territory of Orleans into twelve parishes, including Orleans, Iberville, Rapides and Natchitoches. The parish boundaries were much larger than defined, but gradually wore away due to the creation of numerous parishes in the state. Caddo, Claiborne, Bossier, Webster, DeSoto, Bienville, Jackson, Sabine, Red River, Winn, and Grant parishes were eventually formed from Natchitoches' enormous territory. Natchitoches Parish has fifteen border revisions, making it second only to Ouachita parish in number of boundary revisions.
Until the past decade, Natchitoches Parish was reliably Democratic in most competitive elections. In 2012, Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney won the parish with 9,077 votes (52.6 percent) to U.S. President Barack H. Obama's 7,942 votes (46 percent). At the parish-level, former State Representative Rick Nowlin, a Republican, became the first elected president of the new Natchitoches Parish government, which replaces the former Natchitoches Parish Police Jury system. Nowlin received 9,283 votes (59.2 percent) to the Democrat Gerald "Jerry" Longlois' 6,393 (40.8 percent). Natchitoches Parish cast 73 percent of its ballots for Republican U.S. Representative John Fleming, who faced opposition only from a Libertarian Party candidate.
By a similar margin U.S. Senator John S. McCain of Arizona won Natchitoches Parish over Barack Obama in the 2008 general election, 9,054 votes (53.1 percent) to 7,801 votes (45.7 percent). The 2004 presidential results in Natchitoches Parish were similar to those of 2008 and 2012, with U.S. President George W. Bush prevailing over U.S. Senator John F. Kerry, 9,261 (54.6 percent) to 7,398 (43.6 percent). In his first and disputed election of 2000, Bush topped then Vice President Al Gore in Natchitoches Parish, 7,332 (49.4 percent) to 6,924 (46.6 percent). Patrick J. Buchanan as the Reform Party nominee, received 271 votes (1.8 percent).
The last Democrat hence to win in Natchitoches Parish at the presidential level was Bill Clinton in 1996, who received 8,296 votes (54.7 percent), compared to Republican Robert J. Dole's 5.471 ballots (36.1 percent). Ross Perot of the Reform Party held 1,053 votes (6.9 percent).
The parish is one of the largest in the state in terms of land area. It has a total area of 1,299 square miles (3,365 km²), of which, 1,255 square miles (3,252 km²) of it is land and 44 square miles (114 km²) of it (3.37%) is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 39,080 people, 14,263 households, and 9,499 families residing in the parish. The population density was 31 people per square mile (12/km²). There were 16,890 housing units at an average density of 14 per square mile (5/km²). The racial makeup of the parish was 57.85% White, 38.43% Black or African American (42 percent in 2010), 1.08% Native American, 0.44% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.92% from other races, and 1.27% from two or more races. 1.45% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 14,263 households out of which 33.00% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.30% were married couples living together, 17.70% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.40% were non-families. 27.10% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.90% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.56 and the average family size was 3.14.
In the parish the population was spread out with 26.00% under the age of 18, 17.90% from 18 to 24, 24.30% from 25 to 44, 19.70% from 45 to 64, and 12.10% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 30 years. For every 100 females there were 90.60 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 85.80 males.
The median income for a household in the parish was $25,722, and the median income for a family was $32,816. Males had a median income of $29,388 versus $19,234 for females. The per capita income for the parish was $13,743. About 20.90% of families and 26.50% of the population were below the poverty line, including 32.70% of those under age 18 and 19.00% of those age 65 or over.
A Troop 2-108TH CAV is headquartered in behind the local college and the airport. This unit has deployed twice to Iraq, first as part of the 1-156TH Armor Battalion in 2004-2005 and then as part of the 2-108TH CAV SQDN in 2010. Both times this company sized element deployed with the 256th Infantry Brigade.
National protected areas
- Cane River Creole National Historical Park
- Kisatchie National Forest (part)
- Red River National Wildlife Refuge (part)
- Saline Bayou
Notable natives and residents
- H. Welborn Ayres (1900–1985), born in Ashland, judge of the Louisiana Third Judicial District Court in Jonesboro and the Second Circuit Court of Appeal in Shreveport
- Leopold Caspari (1830-1915), merchant in Cloutierville from 1849-1858 and thereafter businessman and banker in Natchitoches. He served nonconsecutively in both houses of the Louisiana State Legislature between 1884 and 1914.
- Caroline Dormon (1888–1971), naturalist, botanist, and preservationist (1888–1971) was born and lived on her family estate of Briarwood in Natchitoches Parish.
- Boyd B. Durr (1926-2010), Ajax native, United States Army Air Corps service in World War II, law-enforcement officer from 1946-2000, Natchitoches chief of police and then town marshal, Democratic sheriff of Natchitoches Parish from 1992 to 2000; unseated in the 1999 nonpartisan blanket primary by Victor E. Jones, Jr., Baptist.
- Norman Allen "Norm" Fletcher (1931-2012), Natchitoches native, broadcaster, public servant, and sheriff of Natchitoches Parish from 1980 to 1992. Fletcher was inducted in 2010 into the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame. The home broadcast booth at Northwestern State University's Turpin Stadium is named in his honor. Fletcher donated his body to medical science. United Methodist.
- Andrew R. Johnson (1856–1933), Louisiana state senator and former mayor of Homer, Louisiana, in 1901 named and sold lots to establish the village of Ashland in Natchitoches Parish.
- Bob Reese (1929-2004), Co-chairman of the Natchitoches Parish Republican Executive Committee, 1968-2004.
Natchitoches Parish School Board operates local public schools. Parish schools include: Cloutierville Elementary & Junior High School, East Natchitoches Elementary & Middle High School, Fairview Alpha Elementary & Junior High School, Frankie Ray Jackson, Sr. Technical Center, George L. Parks Elementary & Junior High School, Goldonna Elementary & Junior High School, L.P. Vaughn Elementary & Junior High School, Lakeview High School, M.R. Weaver Elementary, Marthaville Elementary & Junior High School, Natchitoches Central High School, Natchitoches Magnet School, NSU Elementary Laboratory School, NSU Middle Laboratory School, and Provencal Elementary & Junior High School.
- Interstate 49
- U.S. Highway 71
- U.S. Highway 84
- Louisiana Highway 1
- Louisiana Highway 6
- Louisiana Highway 9
- Louisiana Highway 117
- Louisiana Highway 119
- Louisiana Highway 126
- Louisiana Highway 153
- Louisiana Highway 156
- Louisiana Highway 174
- Louisiana Highway 1226
- Bienville Parish (north)
- Winn Parish (northeast)
- Grant Parish (east)
- Rapides Parish (southeast)
- Vernon Parish (south)
- Sabine Parish (west)
- De Soto Parish (northwest)
- Red River Parish (northwest)
||De Soto Parish||Red River Parish||Bienville Parish|
|Sabine Parish||Winn Parish|
|Vernon Parish||Rapides Parish||Grant Parish|
- "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved August 10, 2013.
- "Natchitoches Parish election returns, November 6, 2012". staticresults.sos.la.gov. Retrieved November 17, 2012.
- "Natchitoches Parish election returns, November 4, 2008". staticresults.sos.la.gov. Retrieved November 17, 2012.
- "Natchitoches Parish election returns, November 2, 2004". staticresults.sos.la.gov. Retrieved November 17, 2012.
- "Natchitoches Parish election returns, November 7, 2000". staticresults.sos.la.gov. Retrieved November 17, 2012.
- "Natchitoches Parish election returns, November 5, 1996". staticresults.sos.la.gov. Retrieved November 17, 2012.
- "U.S. Decennial Census". Census.gov. Retrieved August 10, 2013.
- "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012". Census.gov. Retrieved August 10, 2013.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "Caspari, Leopold". Louisiana Historical Association, A Dictionary of Louisiana Biography (lahistory.org). Retrieved December 22, 2010.
- "Obituary of Boyd B. Durr". Alexandria Daily Town Talk, September 6, 2010. Retrieved September 11, 2010.
- "Norman A. "Norm" Fletcher". findagrave.com. Retrieved December 23, 2012.
- Mike Miller (1925). "Andrew R. Johnson". In Henry E. Chambers. A History of Louisiana II. Chicago and New York City: usgarchives.org. pp. 147–148. Retrieved May 25, 2010.
- Obituary of Bob Reese. Shreveport Times, November 27, 2004