ExploreSouthernHistory.com - Historic Sites of Baton Rouge, Louisiana
ExploreSouthernHistory.com - Historic Sites of Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
The historic and thriving city of Baton Rouge is now
the largest in Louisiana. Dotted with noted historic
sites, it is the state capital of the Pelican State.
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
The historic Louisiana State
Capitol, where Sen. Huey P.
Long was assassinated,
towers over Baton Rouge.
Mississippi River
Fog rises from the water of
the Mississippi River at Baton
Rouge. The great has played
a vital role in the city's history.
Baton Rouge, Louisiana - Historic Sites & Points of Interest
Louisiana's Historic Capital City
Copyright 2012 by Dale Cox
All rights reserved.

Last Update: August 19, 2012
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Battle of Baton Rouge (1862)
Confederate troops tried to
retake Baton Rouge in a
bloody battle. Much of the site
is now in Magnolia Cemetery.
Powder Magazine Museum
The historic magazine of the
19th century Baton Rouge
arsenal has been restored
and now interprets the history
of the complex.
USS Kidd & Museum
Part of one of the finest inland
naval museums in the South,
the USS Kidd was a fighting
ship of World War II.
The largest city in Louisiana, Baton Rouge is
the capital of the Pelican State and is rich in
Southern history and culture.

Baton Rouge is now a city of more than
800,000 people, but began its existence as a
small French outpost. In 1699 the French
soldier and explorer Pierre Le Moyne, Sieur
d'Iberville, discovered a red pole on the bluff
where Baton Rouge would later grow. The
place became known to the French as
le
baton rouge
or "Red Stick."

The first permanent French settlement was
established there in 1719, but the site had
long been the scene of Native American
settlements. Two Indian mounds on the
campus of Louisiana State University (LSU),
in fact, are believed to date back thousands
of years before Christ. Another large mound
adjacent to the
Old Arsenal Museum and
State Capitol is from the Mississippian
period and is perhaps 1,000 years old.

Baton Rouge grew slowly over the 30 years
after its founding, but in 1755 the British
expelled 11,000 Acadians from Canada and
many resettled in Louisiana. French in
heritage and language, they were the
ancestors of the Cajuns for whom Louisiana
is famous today.

The Acadians settled primarily west of the
Mississipppy, but they traded with and had a
strong influence on Baton Rouge. Their
presence contributed to the growth of the city.

Despite its strong French culture and
loyalties, Louisiana passed into the hands of
the British and Spanish in 1763 after France
was defeated in the Seven Years War (known
in America as the French and Indian War).
Spain gained control of New Orleans and the
part of Louisiana west of the Mississippi,
while the British took over Baton Rouge and
the area known today as the Florida Parishes.

The British occupation of Baton Rouge lasted
only sixteen years. In 1779 the Spanish allied
with the United States in the American
Revolution and declared war on Great Britain.
Baton Rouge became the scene of one of the
westernmost battles of the Revolutionary War.

Led by General Bernardo de Galvez, a force
of Spanish, Acadian, Indian and American
regulars, volunteers and militia laid siege to
Fort New Richmond at Baton Rouge. The
Battle of Baton Rouge ended with the
surrender of the fort and city on September
21, 1779. The name of the fort was changed
to Fort San Carlos and West Florida, which
then included Baton Rouge, became a
colony of Spain.

The Spanish developed the town as a
political and military center and maintained
control until 1810 when area residents
rebelled against Spain and declared the
independence of the
Republic of West
Florida. Led by General Philemon Thomas, a
veteran of the American Revolution, Republic
forces captured Fort San Carlos and raised
over it a blue flag with a single white star.

The Republic of West Florida was short lived
and was quickly taken over by the United
States. Some leaders of the independence
movement objected to the move, but had no
real choice in the matter as U.S. troops took
possession of Baton Rouge and other key
points.
History near Baton Rouge
Louisiana was admitted to the Union in 1812
and the U.S. Army built an important
arsenal,
barracks and other facilities in Baton Rouge.
The city became the capital of the state in
1846 when the legislature decided to move
upriver from the much larger city of New
Orleans.

A castle-like
Neo-Gothic state capitol was
built and Baton Rouge grew rapidly over the
next decade. By eve of the Civil War in 1860, it
had become a city of around 5,500 people.

State troops took possession of the
Baton
Rouge Arsenal and Pentagon Barracks in
1861 as Louisiana left the Union. Among the
cannon found there were two small iron guns
thought to be the famed "Twin Sisters" used
during the Texas Revolution at the Battle of
San Jacinto. The cannon were remounted
and returned to Texas.

Baton Rouge was taken without a fight by the
Union Navy in 1862, but did become a scene
of bloodshed later that year when Southern
forces tried to take it back. The
Battle of Baton
Rouge ended in Union victory.

During the 20th century, the city became the
headquarters of the noted Long dynasty of
Louisiana. The 34-story
new State Capitol
was a dream of
Governor Huey P. Long. One
of the most powerful men in the history of
American politics, he was a U.S. Senator
when he was assassinated in a capitol
hallway in 1934. His brother, Earl K. Long,
also rose to the governor's chair.

Baton Rouge today is a progressive and
growing city, rich in history and culture. To
learn more, please follow the links below.
And click here to access Visit Baton Rouge.