The history of Baton Rouge is unlike any other part of the country. Its name literally means red stick. French explorers in 1699 called the red cypress tree stripped of bark, marking the boundary between native tribal hunting grounds “le baton rouge.”
Founded first by the French it has been governed by England, Spain Louisiana, the Florida Republic, the Confederate States, and finally by the United States. Influenced by steamboat trade, transportation, and an influx of French speaking settlers, Baton Rouge has maintained a rich vibrant culture and today is the second largest city in Louisiana.
Tour the grounds and discover the life of a wealthy Sugar Baron in the 1800s by visiting the Houmas House Plantation and Gardens. The plantation is decorated with old world furnishings, original artwork, and rare antiques offering you a glimpse into the lavish lifestyle. A short film shows the history of the property and tours are given to guests filled with interesting stories of past owners. There is also 38 acres of gardens to explore and relax in.
Lonely Planet Travel called Laura: A Creole Plantation “The best history tour in the United States.” For the last 20 years this historical plantation has been used to better understand the slave experience in Creole Louisiana.
In its 175-year history, Oak Alley Plantation has been many things. It began as a sugar plantation and through many changes became a landscape of defiance in the face of the Army Corps of Engineers. It has even been the site of unexplainable phenomena capturing the attention of Ghost Hunters who investigated the plantation in 2008.
Each plantation in Baton Rouge is unique. You could spend years exploring all they have to offer.
Explore Local Museums
Baton Rouge is filled with museums honoring America and Louisiana’s past.
The National WWII Museum uses exhibits, multimedia, and personal testimonies to immerse people in the story of the American experience in the war that changed the world. They ask and share with the visitor why it was fought, how it was won, and what that means for us today.
At the Capitol Park Museum, you will learn about Louisiana’s rich history. You will discover the people who shaped Baton Rouge into one of the most culturally rich cities in the world. You’ll see the richness of the state’s agriculture and aquatic resources.
You’ll get a glimpse into the life of those who lived during the civil war, steamboats, slave markets, and Jim crow. Find out how Baton Rouge’s bus boycott inspired civil rights leaders in the South.
These are only two of the many museums that illustrate how the history of Baton Rouge, and the strength of their citizens shaped their culture and influenced the America of today.
Where To Stay
Convenient to these historical sites and museums is the Marriott SpringHill Suites. Escape from Baton Rouge’s heat in their pool or spend a day at the nearby Blue Bayou Waterpark. Rest and reflect on the history you are soaking in.
Baton Rouge Is Your Next Vacation
Filled with history, culture, and amazing food there isn’t a better place to take the family on your next vacation. Discover the beauty of Baton Rouge and how it has reached out and impacted your own life today. You will not leave unchanged!