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Evangeline Parish, Louisiana
Map of Louisiana highlighting Evangeline Parish
Location in the state of Louisiana
Map of the U.S. highlighting Louisiana
Louisiana's location in the U.S.
Founded 1910
Named for Acadian heroine of the poem "Evangeline"
Seat Ville Platte
Largest city Ville Platte
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

680 sq mi (1,760 km²)
665 sq mi (1,720 km²)
15 sq mi (40 km²), 2.26%
 - (2000)
 - Density

53/sq mi (21/km²)
Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5

Evangeline Parish (French: Paroisse d'Évangéline) is a parish located in the U.S. state of Louisiana. The parish seat is Ville Platte. As of 2000, the parish's population was 35,434.

History[edit | edit source]

The parish was created out of lands formerly belonging to St. Landry Parish in 1901. The area was originally settled by French, German, Spanish and English people. The majority were French, former soldiers from Fort Toulouse, and generations born there were originally called Creoles. The major families were Fontenot, Brignac, Guillory, and Lafleur. The Creoles developed a culture that was a mixture of all the ethnic groups living in the area. A few Acadians settled the area, but outsiders mistakenly labeled all the white French people as Cajuns.

The parish was named Evangeline in honor of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's narrative poem, Evangeline. Evangeline Parish was immortalized in the Randy Newman song "Louisiana 1927", in which he described the Great Mississippi Flood which covered it with six feet of water.

Geography[edit | edit source]

The parish has a total area of 680 square miles (1,761.2 km2), of which 15 square miles (38.8 km2) (2.26%) is water.

Major highways[edit | edit source]

Adjacent parishes[edit | edit source]

National protected area[edit | edit source]

Demographics[edit | edit source]

Census Pop.
1920 23,485
1930 25,483 8.5%
1940 30,497 19.7%
1950 31,629 3.7%
1960 31,639 0%
1970 31,932 0.9%
1980 33,343 4.4%
1990 33,274 −0.2%
2000 35,434 6.5%
2010 33,984 −4.1%
Evangeline Parish Census Data[1]

As of the census[2] of 2000, there were 35,434 people, 12,736 households, and 9,157 families residing in the parish. The population density was 53 people per square mile (21/km²). There were 14,258 housing units at an average density of 22 per square mile (8/km²). The racial makeup of the parish was 70.42% White, 28.57% Black or African American, 0.23% Native American, 0.14% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.18% from other races, and 0.46% from two or more races. 1.04% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 25.71% reported speaking French or Cajun French at home.[3]

There were 12,736 households out of which 38.00% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.30% were married couples living together, 15.50% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.10% were non-families. 25.80% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.90% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.64 and the average family size was 3.19.

In the parish the population was spread out with 29.60% under the age of 18, 9.60% from 18 to 24, 27.60% from 25 to 44, 20.40% from 45 to 64, and 12.80% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 99.40 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.10 males.

The median income for a household in the parish was $20,532, and the median income for a family was $27,243. Males had a median income of $30,386 versus $16,793 for females. The per capita income for the parish was $11,432. About 27.20% of families and 32.20% of the population were below the poverty line, including 39.10% of those under age 18 and 31.00% of those age 65 or over.

Cities and towns[edit | edit source]

Map of Evangeline Parish, Louisiana With Municipal Labels

Education[edit | edit source]

Public Schools in Evangeline Parish are operated by the Evangeline Parish School Board.

Notable natives and residents[edit | edit source]

  • Clint West (Clinton Guillory) was raised in L'anse Grise (Easton area - Gray Point) and became one of the pioneers of Swamp Pop music. Popular songs include, "Big Blue Diamonds" and "Please Mr. Jeweler." He was inducted into the Louisiana Hall of Fame twice.

See also[edit | edit source]

Sources[edit | edit source]

  • Title: The Cajunization of French Louisiana: Forging a regional identity.

Authors: Trepanier, Cecyle Source: Geographical Journal; Jul 91, Vol. 157 Issue 2, p161, 11p, 2 charts, 10 maps

  • French, Cajun, Creole, Houma : a primer on francophone Louisiana / Carl A. Brasseaux.
  • A history of Evangeline : its land, its men and its women who made it a beautiful place to live, Robert Gahn, Sr. ; edited by Revon John Reed, Sr. Baton Rouge, LA : Claitor's, c 1972
  • La voix des prairies, Evangeline Genealogical and Historical Society.
  • Bonnes nouvelles : good news about people, places and things in Evangeline Parish. Ville Platte, La. : Bonnes Nouvelles, 1993-
  • Fort Toulouse : The French Outpost at the Alabamas on the Coosa, Gregory A. Thomas

References[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]


Coordinates: 30°44′N 92°25′W / 30.73, -92.41

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