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Grant's Canal Park
Historic Sites in Louisiana
If you are interested in
learning more about the Civil
War in Louisiana, we
recommend the following:
One of the most beautiful reminders of the Civil
War can be found in the picturesque Northeast
Louisiana town of Lake Providence. Here, on the
southern edge of the magnificent lake from which
Lake Providence takes its name, can be found a
1,000 foot surviving section of one of General
Ulysses S. Grant's planned canals to bypass the
Confederate stronghold of Mississippi.

Grant hoped to use this canal to connect Lake
Providence with the Mississippi River. Had things
gone as planned, he would have used the lake to
carry gunboats, transports and supply vessels
around the Confederate batteries at Vicksburg via
Baxter Bayou, Bayou Macon and the Tensas, Black
and Red Rivers.

Troops under General James McPherson worked
from January through March of 1863 digging the
canal, which was 100 feet wide and 5 feet deep.
The levee separating the Mississippi from the
canal was cut on March 18, 1863, opening Lake
Providence to access by boats. Although this
phase of the project worked well, the rest of the
conceived route proved impractical and Grant was
unable to bypass Vicksburg.

The canal survived as an open ditch until 1953,
when U.S. Senator Russell Long secured
legislation to fill it at the request of local residents.

Today, only about 1,000 feet of the original canal
can still be seen, but the access point is extremely
picturesque. A well-maintained park across U.S.
Highway 65 from the Louisiana Welcome Center
provides historical interpretation and an elevated
boardwalk and observation pier.

Other points of interest nearby include the
Louisiana State Cotton Museum, Poverty Point
State Historic Site and scenic Lake Providence.
Grant's Canal Marker
Lake Providence, Louisiana
Logo 100x100
An Attempt to Bypass Vicksburg
View of Lake Providence
Grant's Canal Park
Lake Providence, Louisiana