A Brief History of Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Mule-drawn street cars began to run in Baton Rouge on October 16, 1890.

Baton Rouge is the capital of Louisiana. Located on the eastern bank of the Mississippi River, it is the parish seat of East Baton Rouge Parish, the most populous parish in Louisiana. The second largest city in Louisiana, Baton Rouge was established as a military post by the French in 1719. The present name of the city, however, dates back to 1699, when French explorers noted a red cypress tree stripped of its bark that marked the boundary between Houma and Bayou Goula tribal hunting grounds. They called the tree “le baton rouge,” or red stick. Since European settlement, Baton Rouge has functioned under seven governing bodies: France, England, Spain, Louisiana, the Florida Republic, the Confederate States, and the United States (City-Data, 2019). 


(2019). Baton Rouge: History. Retrieved from city-data.com.

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