121 Fun & Interesting Facts About Louisiana

Are you ready to explore a state filled with amazing music, delicious food, and lots of fun history? Let’s take a trip down to Louisiana, a place where every day feels like a party. From the lively streets of New Orleans to the peaceful swamps, Louisiana is a state that has something special for everyone. So, grab your explorer’s hat, and let’s discover some cool facts about Louisiana!

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First off, did you know Louisiana is famous for its incredible music? It’s the birthplace of jazz, a type of music that makes you want to dance and sing. In cities like New Orleans, you can hear jazz music playing in the streets, in parks, and even in restaurants. Imagine walking around, hearing trumpets and saxophones filling the air with joyful tunes!

Louisiana is also known for its mouth-watering food. Have you ever heard of gumbo or jambalaya? These are just two of the yummy dishes that come from Louisiana’s unique mix of French, African, Spanish, and Native American cultures. Eating in Louisiana is like going on a flavor adventure with every bite!

And here’s a fun fact about Louisiana: it is home to some amazing animals and plants. The state has huge swamps and wetlands where alligators live, along with lots of birds, fish, and even some black bears. Plus, Louisiana’s state flower is the magnolia, a beautiful, big, white flower that smells really sweet.

Are you excited to learn more facts about Louisiana? From its jazz-filled streets and delicious foods to its beautiful nature, Louisiana is full of surprises and fun facts. Let’s keep exploring and find out all the amazing things that make Louisiana a fascinating place to visit and learn about!

Be sure to discover even more interesting facts with our Facts about Arizona and our Facts About North Carolina.

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Facts about Louisiana

  1. In 1853, the Cabildo Building became the home of the Louisiana Supreme Court.
  2. Once threatened with extinction, the Louisiana black bear has made a remarkable recovery and was removed from the endangered species list in 2016.
  3. Notations on the original plats of survey for the area that is now Ville Platte stated that surveyors had to use pirogues and flat boats to properly do their work.
  4. The name “Bogalusa” is derived from the Indian named creek “Bogue Lusa”, which flows through the city.
  5. The Louisiana state license plates had the following nicknames and phrases appear on them, beginning with: the “Bayou State”, “World’s Fair Plate” and the “Sportsman’s Paradise Plate.”
  6. In 1823, the first natural gas field was discovered in Louisiana. It was found at a depth of 400 feet.
  7. The City of Sulphur is the 13th largest city in Louisiana and is named for the chemical and mining industry that helped to establish Calcasieu Parish in the late 1800s.
  8. The Catahoula Leopard Dog, often called the Catahoula Hound, is the official state dog.
  9. Le Musee de la Ville de Kaplan {The Kaplan Museum} is located in the center of downtown Kaplan. Le Musee at appropriate times has exhibits centered on seasonal festivals. Mardi Gras, Easter, July 4, Bastille Day, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas.
  10. President Thomas Jefferson purchased Louisiana from Napoleon Bonaparte in 1803. The purchase encompassed 530,000,000 acres of territory in North America that the U.S. purchased for $15 million. The purchase doubled the size of the United States.
  11. Gueydan is known as the “Duck Capital of America” in recognition of its abundance of waterfowl.
  12. The Mississippi River borders and runs through the state.
  13. Louis Cemetery No. 1 in New Orleans is one of the oldest and most famous above-ground cemeteries in the United States. This historic cemetery was established in 1789.
  14. The Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve encompasses six different sites, highlighting the region’s cultural and ecological significance.
  15. The state is also a major producer of soybeans and corn.
  16. Voodoo is widely practiced in New Orleans. Early proponents included migrants from the Haiti slave revolt of 1791 and freed people of color from West Africa. They merged their religious rituals with local Catholic practices. Voodoo kings and queens were powerful political figures in the city during the 1800s.
  17. The St. Charles Avenue Streetcar Line in New Orleans is the oldest continuously operating streetcar line in the United States, dating back to 1835.
  18. Louisiana is one of the wettest states in the U.S. Hawaii overall is the rainiest state in the U.S.
  19. The state of Louisiana has the highest number of alligator hunters in the United States. Over 2,000 daring individuals venture into the swamps each year to catch between 30,000 and 35,000 of these impressive creatures.
  20. The Creole House in French Settlement was built of cypress wood. It is typical of the dwellings built in the late 1800s because cypress was so plentiful in the surrounding swamps.
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  1. Saint Joseph’s Cemetery, the only known United States cemetery facing north-south is in Rayne.
  2. In Louisiana, biting someone with your natural teeth is considered a simple assault, but biting someone with your false teeth is considered an aggravated assault.
  3. Saint Martin Parish is home to the world’s largest freshwater river basin, the Atchafalaya Basin; the basin provides nearly every type of outdoor recreational activity imaginable.
  4. Blues also has a special link to Louisiana’s history.
  5. The state of Louisiana houses the most Native American tribes in the US, with the Chitimacha, the Coushatta, the Choctaw, and the Tunica-Beloxi federally recognized.
  6. The official Louisiana state flower is the Magnolia.
  7.  The state’s lowest point is the iconic city of New Orleans.
  8. The first opera ever performed in the U.S. took place in the French Quarter of New Orleans in 1796.
  9. Kisatchie National Forest is one of the biggest nature reserves in Louisiana. This nature reserve covers an area of land over 2,400 km², with a flatwood forest covering over half of that land. 
  10. The first opera ever performed in the U.S. took place in the French Quarter of New Orleans in 1796.
  11. In 1718 The French found New Orleans and marked “Cannes Brulee” on maps upriver in the area known today as the City of Kenner. French for “Burnt Canes”, Cannes Brulee was a name given by explorers who observed natives burning cane to drive out wild game.
  12. Louisiana is the only state that still refers to the Napoleonic Code in its state law.
  13. “Louisiana My Home Sweet Home,” the state’s official march, was written by songwriter Sammie McKenzie and adopted as the state march in 1952.
  14. Vieux Carré, or the French Quarter, in New Orleans, is the oldest neighborhood in the city and showcases French and Spanish colonial architecture. The French founded this part of the city in 1718.
  15. Louisiana is known for its distinct cuisine, and one of the most iconic dishes is the po’boy sandwich. Legend has it that the name “po’ boy” originated during a streetcar strike in 1929 when the Martin Brothers, former streetcar operators, would feed hungry strikers with sandwiches.
  16. Louisiana has a vibrant film industry, earning the nickname “Hollywood South.” Movies such as “Interview with the Vampire” and “12 Years a Slave” were filmed in the state.
  17. The nickname of the state “the Pelican State” comes from the many pelicans that used to inhabit the state’s Gulf Coast. 
  18. Winnsboro, the “Stars and Stripes Capital of Louisiana”, is one of the most patriotic cities in America. On Memorial Day, July 4th, Veteran’s Day, Labor Day, and other special occasions, approximately 350 American flags fly proudly along highway 15.
  19. The Louisiana State University (LSU) football team, known as the Tigers, has won the NCAA National Championship four times (1958, 2003, 2007, and 2019). This team has played in 54 bowl games, the fifth-highest among all college football programs.
  20. The Saint Charles streetcar line in New Orleans and the San Francisco, California cable cars are the nation’s only mobile national monuments
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  1. The official song of the state of Louisiana are called ‘You Are My Sunshine‘ and ‘Give Me Louisiana‘
  2. Tourists come to see Louisiana’s rich cultural legacy, born of the state’s history and the varied peoples that live there. In fact, tourism earns Louisiana over $5 billion per year alone.
  3. Louisiana has no official state language.
  4. The first-ever opera to take place in the US happened in the New Orleans French Quarter in 1796.
  5. Louisiana is home to the world’s largest bridge over a body of water. Known as the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway, the bridge is roughly 24 miles long.
  6. The Louisiana Native Guards were the first American army to swear in African-American officers in 1862.
  7. POCs in Louisiana started fighting discrimination in the mid-20th Century.
  8. Louisiana is the birthplace of jazz.
  9. Jennings is called the “Garden Spot of Louisiana” for its rich and productive farmland. Jennings sobriquet {nickname} became a “Northern Town on Southern Soil”.
  10. French-speaking Acadians in the mid-1700s settled in the Lafayette Parish region of south Louisiana. The Acadians were joined by another group of settlers called Creoles, descendants of African, West Indian, and European pioneers. At the time of the migration, Louisiana was under Spanish rule and authorities welcomed the new settlers.
  11. Louisiana has the highest alligator population in the U.S. (approximately 2 million). The highest population of the alligator occurs in coastal marshes. The state harvests less than 2% of the wild population annually.
  12. There are 11 recognized Native American tribes in Louisiana, making the state home to the largest number of Native American tribes east of the Mississippi River, including the Choctaw, Chitimacha, and Houma tribes.
  13. The Louisiana State Penitentiary, also known as Angola Prison, is the largest maximum-security prison in the United States and covers an area as large as the island of Manhattan – 18,000 acres.
  14. Abita Springs in Louisiana has its own natural artesian spring, which has been used as a source of freshwater since the 1800s. Since 1986, the water from this spring has been used to brew the popular Abita Beer.
  15. Jim Bowie, the legendary adventurer and hero of the Battle of the Alamo, lived in Opelousas after moving there from Kentucky. Opelousas is the third oldest city in Louisiana.
  16. Since 1835 the New Orleans & Carrollton Line is the oldest street railway line still in operation.
  17. Agriculture, fishing, oil, and natural gas are among Louisiana’s top industries. 
  18. Tabasco sauce itself originated from Louisiana, specifically from Avery Island in 1868.
  19. Louisiana has a rich ecology of swamps and highlands.
  20. The United States government offered ten million dollars to France for the city of New Orleans. However, Napoleon offered the entire Louisiana Territory for only $15 million, effectively doubling the size of the U.S. in one fell swoop.
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  1. As of 2018, Louisiana is the least healthy state in the USA, with high rates of alcoholism and drug-related deaths.
  2. Tornadoes are also common in Louisiana. About 27 tornadoes strike Louisiana on average in a single year. 
  3. Louisiana cuisine is famous worldwide. Particularly famous are Cajun, Creole, and Native American cooking. These cuisines all use distinct seasonings such as Cayenne pepper and Tabasco sauce.
  4. Money Magazine has rated Terrebonne Parish, in the heart of Cajun Country, the best place to live in Louisiana for 3 years in a row.
  5. Fort Polk was established in 1941 and named in honor of the Right Reverend Leonidas Polk, the first Episcopal Bishop of the Diocese of Louisiana. On March 12, 1993, Fort Polk officially became the home of the Joint Readiness Training Center.
  6. The unique architecture of shotgun houses, characterized by their narrow structure and rooms laid out in a single line, has been a part of the Louisiana landscape since early in the 19th century.
  7. In 1983, milk was designated as the state’s official drink due to its importance in its agricultural economy.
  8. Elvis Presley often went to the Shreveport store of Southern Maid to get some donuts before going to the Louisiana Hayride Show. In fact, he sang the jingle for the brand in 1954. This is the only commercial endorsement he ever did throughout his whole career.
  9. The golden spike, commemorating the completion of the east-west Vicksburg, Shreveport, and Pacific Railroad, was driven at Bossier City on July 12, 1884, by Julia “Pansy” Rule. It was the first such spike driven by a woman.
  10. The Louisiana state flag was originally adopted in 1912 but in November 2010 it was updated with more detail.
  11. Louisiana is home to both the “Crawfish Capital of the World” (Breaux Bridge) and the “Frog Capital of the World” (Rayne).
  12. Louisiana has 3 other US states on its sides.
  13. New Orleans’ famous Saint Charles streetcar is one of the only two mobile national monuments in the country.
  14. The highest point in Louisiana (Driskill Mountain) is 535 feet above sea level, while the lowest point (New Orleans) is 8 feet below sea level.
  15. In Louisiana, rain is common throughout the whole year, though it generally gets more frequent as winter approaches. On average, summer temperatures range from 22°C to 32°C. In winter, temperatures average from 8°C down to 3°C.
  16. In its wake, Hurricane Katrina gravely damaged New Orleans, with an estimated 80% of the city submerged by the time the storm was through. The hurricane left 1500 casualties in New Orleans alone, with over 2 million more across the state.
  17. The town of Jean Lafitte was once a hideaway for pirates.
  18. Pineville is home to a one-of-a-kind museum called the Old Town Hall Museum. It is the only museum in the entire state of Louisiana dedicated to municipal government.
  19. The Louisiana State Museum’s Cabildo building in New Orleans housed the Spanish municipal government during the late 18th century. It was built from 1795 to 1799 and was the site of the Louisiana Purchase transfer.
  20. Baton Rouge’s flag is a field of crimson representing the great Indian nations that once inhabited the area.
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  1. The Union Cottonseed Oil Mill of West Monroe was in the planning stages as early as 1883. By 1887, it provided the area with many jobs for the laborers of the area. The Union Oil Mill is the oldest industry in Ouachita Parish.
  2. Mamou bills itself as “The Cajun Music Capital of the World.” Mamou musicians, in particular, the musicians who have performed at Fred’s Lounge have been a major force in expanding the audience for Cajun music far beyond Southwest Louisiana.
  3. The Louisiana Museum of Natural History, located at the University of Louisiana at Monroe, houses over 8 million specimens, making it one of the largest natural history collections in the South.
  4. Between 1682 and 1763, Louisiana was a colony of the kingdom of France.
  5. The first American army to have African American officers was the confederate Louisiana Native Guards. The Corps d’Afrique at Port Hudson was sworn into service on September 27, 1862.
  6. Louisiana has rich oil and gas deposits.
  7. Agricultural products exported by Louisiana include cotton, soybeans, sugarcane, and even rice. Aside from cattle, poultry, and eggs, Louisiana is the biggest producer of crawfish in the whole world.
  8. The shape of the state resembles the shape of the capital letter “L” or a boot.
  9. More than 1,600 farmers produce crawfish across more than 11,000 acres of ponds in the state of Louisiana.
  10. The Louisiana Superdome, also known as the Caesars Superdome, is located in New Orleans. It is the largest enclosed stadium in the United States, and although the stadium seats many more spectators, it has an official seating capacity of over 69,065.
  11. The geographic center of Louisiana is located in Avoyelles Parish, 3 miles SE of Marksville. The state is about 380 miles long and 130 miles wide.
  12. Incorporated in 1813 under the Lawrason Act, Saint Francisville is the second oldest town in Louisiana.
  13. Louisiana is the only state in the union that does not have counties. Its political subdivisions are called parishes.
  14. Louisiana’s location along the coast of North America on the Gulf of Mexico places it on the path of storms and hurricanes moving north into the continent from the gulf.
  15. Louisiana is one of the United States’ top salt producers.
  16. Louisiana also has major industrial facilities. Chemical, oil, and coal products are also among Louisiana’s major exports, along with paper and processed foods. 
  17. Louisiana suffered a quick defeat during the American Civil War.
  18. Louisiana’s state capitol building, located in Baton Rouge, is the tallest in the United States at 450 feet high with 34 floors..
  19. The patent for Tabasco Sauce was one of the first patents ever in the state of Louisiana. It was filed in 1870.
  20. Metairie is home to the longest bridge over water in the world, the Lake Pontchartrain causeway. The causeway connects Metairie with St. Tammany Parish on the North Shore. The causeway is 24 miles long.
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  1. Between April 17, 1862, and May 18, 1864, 20 major Civil War battles and engagements were fought on Louisiana soil.
  2. Louisiana is known for its unique wetlands and swamps, including the iconic Atchafalaya Basin, the largest swamp in the United States. The Atchafalaya Basin stretches over almost 1 million acres.
  3. Louisiana also made important contributions to the United States space exploration program. The state facilitated the production of the C-5 boosters used in the Apollo moon landing program.
  4. Louisiana is home to several significant Native American mound sites, including Poverty Point, a UNESCO World Heritage site that dates back over 3,000 years. 
  5. In November 1762, France handed over Louisiana and the Isle of Orleans to Spain.
  6. The City of Ponchatoula is the oldest incorporated city in Tangipahoa Parish. Ponchatoula derives its name from the Choctaw Indian language meaning “hair to hang”.
  7. The Bald Cypress is the official state tree of Louisiana.
  8. The Louisiana climate is characterized by long, hot, and humid summers, along with short winters.
  9. The city of Kaplan is referred to as “The Most Cajun place on earth”.
  10. Louisiana was named by René-Robert Cavelier in the mid-1600’s to honor King Louis XIV, King of France from 1643 to 1715.
  11. The St. Louis Cathedral in New Orleans, built in 1789, is the oldest continuously active Roman Catholic cathedral in the United States.
  12. Louisiana is one of the top 10 largest producers of crude oil in the United States, producing around 97,000 barrels per day.
  13. The oldest town in Louisiana is Natchitoches. It was founded in 1714.
  14. Since much of New Orleans sits below sea level, mausoleums are often used instead of traditional underground graves.
  15. Louisiana is home to a large population of Cajuns. These individuals are descendants of a group called “Acadians” who were expelled from Canada in the 1700s.
  16. In 1682, The Louisiana Territory was originally claimed by Robert Cavelier de La Salle.
  17. “Mardi Gras” festival hosted by New Orleans attracts roughly 1.4 million visitors each year.
  18. The Saint Charles streetcar line in New Orleans is one of only two mobile national monuments in the US.
  19. There are 64 counties or “parishes” within the state of Louisiana.
  20. The nickname “Pelican State” is a tribute to the official state bird of Louisiana.
  21. Avery Island, located in Louisiana, is the birthplace of Tabasco sauce, which has been produced there by the McIlhenny family since 1868.

Do you have even more interesting facts about Louisiana? Share them with us in the comments!

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