Union Parish, Louisiana
|Union Parish, Louisiana|
Union Parish Courthouse in Farmerville
Location in the state of Louisiana
Louisiana's location in the U.S.
|Named for||Union of American states|
|• Total||905 sq mi (2,345 km2)|
|• Land||878 sq mi (2,273 km2)|
|• Water||28 sq mi (72 km2), 3.06%|
|• Density||26/sq mi (10/km²)|
|Time zone||Central: UTC-6/-5|
Located in far northern Louisiana next to the Arkansas state line, Union Parish is heavily Republican in most competitive elections, particularly at the presidential level. In 2012, Mitt Romney received 7,561 votes (70.2 percent) of the parish total to 3,075 (28.6 percent) for U.S. President Barack Obama.
Union Parish/Union County Monument
In 1931, a monument was established at the Union Parish border with Union County, Arkansas, through the private efforts of former Arkansas Governor George Washington Donaghey (1856–1937), who was born in Union Parish and grew up in the border area before he moved as a teenager to Conway, Arkansas. As governor, he oversaw the construction of the state capitol building in Little Rock and brought about the establishment of the state health unit and its agricultural colleges. After his gubernatorial tenure, Donaghey, who felt a kinship to both states, commissioned a park on the land about the monument. Known for its intricate carvings and Art Deco style, the monument includes references to different modes of transportation in 1831 and 1931 and mentions Huey P. Long, Jr., whose educational program Donaghey admired. The land was not registered with the state parks offices in either state, timber companies cut trees thereabouts, and the monument was forgotten. In 1975, State Representative Louise B. Johnson obtained passage of a law to refurbish the monument. Restoration efforts were finally unveiled in 2009.
The parish has a total area of 905 square miles (2,340 km2), of which, 878 square miles (2,270 km2) of it is land and 28 square miles (73 km2) of it (3.06%) is water.
Geographically north central Louisiana and more closely resembles Lincoln Parish, to which Union is deeply tied culturally, politically, and educationally. The Piney Hills Country is very different from the flat, hardwood delta lands of northeastern Louisiana.
Adjacent parishes and counties
- Union County, Arkansas (northwest)
- Ashley County, Arkansas (northeast)
- Morehouse Parish (east)
- Ouachita Parish (southeast)
- Lincoln Parish (southwest)
- Claiborne Parish (west)
||Union County, Arkansas||Ashley County, Arkansas|
|Claiborne Parish||Morehouse Parish|
|Lincoln Parish||Ouachita Parish|
Union Parish in Louisiana and Union County in Arkansas are two of twenty-two counties or parishes in the United States with the same name to border each other across state lines. The others are Big Horn County, Montana and Big Horn County, Wyoming, Sabine County, Texas and Sabine Parish, Louisiana, Bristol County, Massachusetts and Bristol County, Rhode Island, Kent County, Maryland and Kent County, Delaware, Escambia County, Alabama and Escambia County, Florida, Pike County, Illinois and Pike County, Missouri, Teton County, Idaho and Teton County, Wyoming, Park County, Montana and Park County, Wyoming, San Juan County, New Mexico and San Juan County, Utah, and Vermilion County, Illinois and Vermillion County, Indiana. respectively. (Note, despite the different spellings, the source of the name is the same for Vermilion County, Illinois and Vermillion County, Indiana—the Vermillion River which flows through both counties.)
National protected areas
As of the census of 2000, there were 22,803 people, 8,857 households, and 6,412 families residing in the parish. The population density was 26 people per square mile (10/km²). There were 10,873 housing units at an average density of 12 per square mile (5/km²). The racial makeup of the parish was 69.79% White, 27.95% Black or African American, 0.19% Native American, 0.26% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 1.26% from other races, and 0.50% from two or more races. 2.02% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 8,857 households out of which 31.30% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.30% were married couples living together, 13.70% had a female householder with no husband present, and 27.60% were non-families. 24.90% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.00% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.52 and the average family size was 3.01.
In the parish the population was spread out with 25.70% under the age of 18, 9.10% from 18 to 24, 26.50% from 25 to 44, 23.80% from 45 to 64, and 14.90% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 94.50 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.90 males.
The median income for a household in the parish was $29,061, and median income of a family was $36,035. Males had a median income of $30,494 versus $21,070 for females. The per capita income for the parish was $14,819. About 14.30% of families and 18.60% of the population were below the poverty line, including 25.60% of those under age 18 and 17.70% of those age 65 or over.
Cities and towns
Residents are assigned to Union Parish Public Schools.
People from Union Parish
Two Louisiana governors came from the Shiloh Community in Union Parish:
Two Arkansas governors were natives of Union Parish:
- George Washington Donaghey, governor of Arkansas from 1909 to 1913
- Tom Jefferson Terral, governor of Arkansas from 1925 to 1927
Other Union Parish residents include:
- Lonnie O. Aulds (1925-1984), state representative from 1968 to 1972 from Shreveport, real estate developer, born in Union Parish
- George Washington Bolton (1841-1931), state representative from 1888 to 1896 from Alexandria; Speaker of the House from 1892 to 1896; businessman, banker, school board member, Southern Baptist layman in Alexandria, lived and educated in Union Parish in his father's private school prior to the American Civil War
- Robert G. "Bob" Buckley (1947-2013), sheriff of Union Parish, c. 1989 until his death in office, president of the Louisiana Sheriffs Association, 2012-2013; resident of Linville Community; a Democrat, Buckley won his most recent election in 2011 with 59 percent of the vote over the Republican Matt Allen Jones (born 1957) of Farmerville.
- Dusty J. Gates (born 1956), the interim sheriff after the death of Bob Buckley and a resident of Farmerville, won the special election for the position held on April 5, 2014. With 3,283 votes (74.4 percent), Gates handily defeated two fellow Republicans, former state trooper Matt Jones and Richie Dunn.
- Fred Preaus, businessman from Farmerville, ran unsuccessfully in the 1956 Democratic gubernatorial primary election
- James Peyton Smith (1925-2006), born in the Conway Community in Union Parish; state representative from Union and Morehouse parishes from 1964 to 1972; namesake of Louisiana Highway 33 bridge over Lake D'Arbonne in Farmerville
- Cona S. Spillers (1914-2012) was from 1956 to 1976 a member of the Union Parish Police Jury, the parish governing body. A resident of the Spencer community, Spillers was instrumental in securing the paving of sixty miles of Union Parish roads. He served on the building committee that planned the construction of the Union Parish Courthouse in Farmerville. He was a former president of the Union Parish Community Action Association and a board member of the North Delta Regional Planning and Development District.
- Lee Emmett Thomas, was born in Marion in Union Parish and educated as a child in the Shiloh Community at the former Concord Institute. He was mayor of Shreveport (1922–1930) and Speaker of the Louisiana House of Representative (1912–1916). Thomas also served by appointment in both the Heard and Pleasant administrations.
Many facts concerning events in early Union Parish history come from the conveyance, probate, and lawsuit records on file in the Union Parish courthouse, as well as records of the United States Land Offices available in the National Archives. Other sources include:
1) Williams, E. Russ, Jr., Spanish Poste d’Ouachita: The Ouachita Valley in Colonial Louisiana 1783–1804, and Early American Statehood, 1804–1820, Williams Genealogical Publications, Monroe, LA, 1995.
2) Williams, E. Russ, Jr., Encyclopedia of Individuals and Founding Families of the Ouachita Valley of Louisiana From 1785 to 1850: Organized into Family Groups with Miscellaneous Materials on Historical Events, Places, and Other Important Topics, Part Oe A – K, Williams Genealogical and Historical Publications, Monroe, LA, 1996.
3) Williams, E. Russ, Jr., Encyclopedia of Individuals and Founding Families of the Ouachita Valley of Louisiana From 1785 to 1850: Organized into Family Groups with Miscellaneous Materials on Historical Events, Places, and Other Important Topics, Part Two L – O, Williams Genealogical and Historical Publications, Monroe, LA, 1997.
4) Williams, Max Harrison, Union Parish (Louisiana) Historical Records: Police Jury Minutes, 1839–1846, D’Arbonne Research and Publishing Co., Farmerville, LA, 1993.
5) Union Parish Civil Suit #124D, Lawrence Scarborough to Sarah Scarborough his wife, 15 October 1829. Lawrence gives to his wife his legal right of "pre-emption" to land on Bayou d'Loutre. Specifically, Lawrence gave to his wife
"...anticipated by law an improvement on public land situated on the loutre..."
This proves that Scarborough had settled and made improvements on a tract of land in Union Parish by 1829. However, the records of the United States Land Office indicate that the land and improvements given to Sarah Scarborough were actually on Bayou Corney, not Bayou d'Loutre. The Loutre was some eight miles (13 km) northeast of the 200 acres (0.81 km2) of land Sarah Scarborough purchased at the Ouachita Land Office in Monroe between 1840 and 1843.
Written by Timothy Dean Hudson, 2007.
6) Luke H. Smith, Union Parish Louisiana Police Jury Minutes, Second Book, 22 July 1844 - Land Grant on 21 November 1846 at the Land office of Ouachita Parish, Louisiana. Conveyance abstracts of court records of Union Parish, Louisiana in a book entitled "Some Slaveholders and Their Slaves" 1839-1865 by Harry F. Dill and William Simpson, pgs 74, 83, 89, 100, and 107
- "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved August 18, 2013.
- "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
- "Union Parish presidential election returns, November 6, 2012". staticresults.sos.la.gov. Retrieved November 11, 2012.
- "Matthew Hamil, "Monument Forgotten by Time"". Monroe News Star, August 31, 2009. Retrieved August 31, 2009.[dead link]
- "U.S. Decennial Census". Census.gov. Retrieved August 18, 2013.
- "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012". Census.gov. Retrieved August 18, 2013.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "Membership of the Louisiana House of Representatives, 1812-2012". legis.la.gov. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- "Bolton, George Washington". Louisiana Historical Association: A Dictionary of Louisiana Biography. Retrieved April 9, 2014.
- "Sheriff Robert G. "Bob" Buckley". Monroe News-Star. Retrieved September 21, 2013.
- "Union Parish election results, October 22, 2011". staticresults.sos.la.gov. Retrieved September 21, 2013.
- "Results for Election Date: 4/5/2014: Union Parish". staticresults.sos.la.gov. Retrieved April 15, 2014.
- "Greg Hilburn, State honors the late Rep. Smith with bridge renaming, September 12, 2013". Monroe News-Star. Retrieved September 13, 2013.
- "Cona S. Spillers obituary". Monroe News Star, April 30, 2012. Retrieved May 1, 2012.
- "Thomas, Lee Emmett". Louisiana Historical Association, A Directory of Louisiana Biography (lahistory.org). Retrieved December 29, 2010.