St. James Parish, Louisiana

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Saint James Parish, Louisiana
Oak Alley Plantation, Louisiana (Scott Oldham).jpg
Map of Louisiana highlighting Saint James Parish
Location in the U.S. state of Louisiana
Map of the United States highlighting Louisiana
Louisiana's location in the U.S.
FoundedMarch 31, 1807
Named forSaint James
SeatConvent
Largest townLutcher
Area
 • Total258 sq mi (668 km2)
 • Land242 sq mi (627 km2)
 • Water16 sq mi (41 km2), 6.4%
Population (est.)
 • (2015)21,567
 • Density92/sq mi (36/km2)
Congressional district2nd
Time zoneCentral: UTC−6/−5
Websitewww.stjamesla.com

St. James Parish (French: Paroisse de Saint-Jacques) is a parish located in the U.S. state of Louisiana. As of the 2010 census, the population was 22,102.[1] The parish seat is Convent.[2] The parish was created in 1807.[3]

History[edit]

St. James is one of the state's nineteen original parishes, created by act of the territorial legislature, March 31, 1807. The original seat of government was the community of St. James, on the west bank of the Mississippi, but this was moved in 1869 to what is now Convent, on the east bank.

St. James Parish is part of the Acadian Coast. While it is possible that some Acadians did arrive prior to 1755 or between 1755 and 1764, the first documented group of Acadians [4 families: 20 individuals] arrived in New Orleans in February 1764. The arrival was documented in a letter dated April 6, 1764, from Governor D'Abbadie to his superior in France. They were settled along the Mississippi River in present-day St. James.

St. James is known for its tradition, Bonfires on the Levee, which takes place every Christmas Eve. Residents build large bonfires along the River levee, lighting them all at nightfall. The townsfolk tell the children that the purpose of this tradition is so Papa Noel can easily see his way down the Mississippi as he is delivering gifts.

St. James is the only cultivation site in the world for Perique tobacco, introduced by an Acadian exile, Pierre Chenet, whose nickname was "Perique." It has been produced by his descendants for nearly two centuries (now covering only a 300-acre (1.2 km²) tract) and is in great demand by large tobacco companies.

Post office in Paulina, 1938

Geography[edit]

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the parish has a total area of 258 square miles (670 km2), of which 242 square miles (630 km2) is land and 16 square miles (41 km2) (6.4%) is water.[4] It is the fourth-smallest parish in Louisiana by land area and second-smallest by total area.

Major highways[edit]

Adjacent parishes[edit]

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
18205,660
18307,14626.3%
18408,54819.6%
185011,09829.8%
186011,4993.6%
187010,152−11.7%
188014,71444.9%
189015,7156.8%
190020,19728.5%
191023,00913.9%
192021,228−7.7%
193015,338−27.7%
194016,5968.2%
195015,334−7.6%
196018,36919.8%
197019,7337.4%
198021,4958.9%
199020,879−2.9%
200021,2161.6%
201022,1024.2%
Est. 201621,557[5]−2.5%
U.S. Decennial Census[6]
1790-1960[7] 1900-1990[8]
1990-2000[9] 2010-2013[1]

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 22,102 people residing in the parish. 50.6% were Black or African American, 48.0% White, 0.2% Native American, 0.1% Asian, 0.4% of some other race and 0.7% of two or more races. 1.2% were Hispanic or Latino (of any race).

As of the census[10] of 2000, there were 21,216 people, 6,992 households, and 5,551 families residing in the parish. The population density was 86 people per square mile (33/km²). There were 7,605 housing units at an average density of 31 per square mile (12/km²). The racial makeup of the parish was 49.99% White, 49.38% Black, 0.09% Native American, 0.05% Asian, 0.12% from other races, and 0.37% from two or more races. 0.61% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 93.78% of the population spoke only English at home, while 4.97% spoke French or Cajun French[1].

There were 6,992 households out of which 38.90% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.30% were married couples living together, 19.30% had a female householder with no husband present, and 20.60% were non-families. 18.40% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.70% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.00 and the average family size was 3.43.

In the parish the population was spread out with 29.50% under the age of 18, 9.80% from 18 to 24, 28.10% from 25 to 44, 21.40% from 45 to 64, and 11.10% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 93.10 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.40 males.

The median income for a household in the parish was $35,277, and the median income for a family was $41,751. Males had a median income of $37,487 versus $21,712 for females. The per capita income for the parish was $14,381. 20.70% of the population and 18.00% of families were below the poverty line. Out of the total people living in poverty, 27.70% are under the age of 18 and 15.10% are 65 or older.

Education[edit]

St. James Parish Public Schools serves all of St. James Parish.

Communities[edit]

Map of St. James Parish, Louisiana With Municipal Labels

Towns[edit]

Census-designated places[edit]

Politics[edit]

The current parish president is Timmy Roussel (D). In 2016, Roussel was indicted on corruption charges for having parish employees build a private natural gas line.[11]

St. James Parish is strongly Democratic, although in 2016 Donald Trump went within ten percent of carrying the parish. The last Republican to win a majority of the parish’s vote was Warren G. Harding in 1920, when Louisiana’s Acadian population revolted against Woodrow Wilson because of his bitter disagreement with French President Georges Clemenceau.[12] Dwight D. Eisenhower won a 17-vote plurality in 1956, and Richard Nixon also won a plurality in his 2,900-plus-county 1972 landslide.

Presidential elections results
Presidential elections results[13]
Year Republican Democratic Third parties
2016 45.2% 5,456 53.1% 6,418 1.7% 211
2012 42.0% 5,209 57.0% 7,059 1.0% 127
2008 43.2% 5,432 55.7% 6,994 1.1% 138
2004 40.9% 4,545 57.7% 6,407 1.4% 156
2000 35.6% 3,813 60.9% 6,523 3.5% 369
1996 26.4% 2,832 67.5% 7,247 6.2% 664
1992 29.9% 3,339 59.1% 6,609 11.1% 1,238
1988 35.4% 3,799 62.6% 6,707 2.0% 213
1984 43.1% 4,627 55.8% 5,989 1.1% 119
1980 34.9% 3,429 63.2% 6,206 1.9% 189
1976 36.9% 2,751 60.7% 4,531 2.5% 184
1972 49.5% 3,112 41.9% 2,633 8.7% 546
1968 11.9% 778 45.7% 2,987 42.3% 2,765
1964 25.8% 1,467 74.2% 4,214
1960 11.7% 620 82.1% 4,362 6.3% 332
1956 49.2% 1,849 48.7% 1,832 2.1% 78
1952 38.5% 1,353 61.5% 2,165
1948 21.4% 453 40.6% 859 38.0% 805
1944 16.0% 265 84.0% 1,387
1940 25.7% 506 74.3% 1,463
1936 14.1% 259 85.9% 1,575
1932 12.3% 240 87.7% 1,715
1928 7.9% 128 92.1% 1,486
1924 31.0% 278 68.6% 615 0.3% 3
1920 60.9% 533 39.1% 342
1916 25.5% 185 71.5% 520 3.0% 22
1912 33.6% 228 54.1% 367 12.4% 84

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved August 18, 2013.
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
  3. ^ "St. James Parish, Louisiana". Archived from the original on 1996-12-15. Retrieved 2018-03-06.
  4. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Archived from the original on September 28, 2013. Retrieved September 1, 2014.
  5. ^ "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9, 2017.
  6. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved September 1, 2014.
  7. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved September 1, 2014.
  8. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved September 1, 2014.
  9. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. Retrieved September 1, 2014.
  10. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  11. ^ McKnight, Laura; ‘St. James Parish president indicted on corruption charges: Louisiana Attorney-General’
  12. ^ Phillips, Kevin P.; The Emerging Republican Majority, p. 211 ISBN 978-0-691-16324-6
  13. ^ Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". uselectionatlas.org. Retrieved 2018-03-06.

External links[edit]

Geology

Coordinates: 30°02′N 90°48′W / 30.03°N 90.80°W / 30.03; -90.80