A Brief History of Pineville, Louisiana

Photo courtesy of Stamps Crowell. Crowell Family Collection from R. D. Crowell III.

Pineville is a city in Rapides Parish, Louisiana. It is located across the Red River from the larger Alexandria. The earliest records indicate that around 1711, Pineville was an outpost and trading village for early settlers. Pineville owes its origin to the Red River. By the mid-1800s, this area became known as Pineville because of the large number of beautiful virgin pine trees on the rolling hills overlooking the Red River and had become a very important location along the river.  In 1860 a visitor, J. W. Dorr, wrote that in “Pineville dwell a large number of citizens whose occupation is in Alexandria.” Many preferred living in Pineville because of its higher elevation and healthier climate (Pineville, 2019). In the 1800s Pineville was in the center of massive native forest lands, much of which is now included in the Kisatchie National Forest. The growth of the lumber industry in the latter years of the 19th century and the opening of the area by the railroads allowed the Alexandria and Pineville area to prosper immensely. The golden age of this “sawmill capital of the world” was dawning, with seventy-five mills operating within forty miles of Pineville (History, 2000).


(2000). The History of Alexandria. Retrieved from alexandria-louisiana.com.

City of Pineville. (2019). Early History of Pineville. Retrieved from pineville.net.

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