April 30 – Anniversary of Louisiana's Statehood

Posted on April 30, 2016

Most people who grow up in the U.S. know that “the Louisiana Purchase” – made by the U.S. government led by then-President Thomas Jefferson – bought from France a lot more than the current state of Louisiana!

Actually, it was James Monroe, special envoy to Napoleon, and Robert R. Livingston, U.S. Minister to France, who took advantage of France's surprising offer of more than 800 thousand square miles of territory, including the vital port city of New Orleans. 

It was such a good deal (about 3 cents an acre) that Monroe and Livingston felt that they couldn't even wait for presidential approval for the purchase. 

The two men had gone to France to offer up to 10 million dollars for the city of New Orleans and a bit of surrounding land – and they came back with an agreement to trade $15 million dollars for enough land to double the size of the country!

It was on this date in 1803 that they closed the deal. So it is very appropriate that this date was chosen, in 1812, for the state of Louisiana (which had formerly been called the Territory of Orleans) to join the union.

Why are Louisiana and New Orleans so important?

Especially in the olden days, the Mississippi River was crucial for moving crops and goods through the U.S. and to the world. And the Mississippi empties into the Gulf of Mexico at New Orleans.

Because of that fact, Louisiana promoters say things like, “Much of the world's food, coffee, and oil pass through the Port of New Orleans.”

New Orleans is connected to 14,500 miles of inland waterways!

With its colonization by Spain and France, with its large number of Native American tribes, with its large population of African-Americans, and with the post-Civil War emphasis on Anglicization (promotion of the English language, for instance), New Orleans has a vibrant mix of cultures and architecture and is famous for its cuisine (for example, gumbo, jambalaya, crawfish, beignets, and po-boys) and music (especially jazz). Its also famous for Mardi Gras!

Learn more at Louisiana Fun (Facts.com). 

Here are some New Orleans highlights:

My two TOP favorites things about New Orleans are:
(1) beignets at Cafe du Mond, above, and
(2) the art galleries, especially those on Royal Street.

The two most famous things about New Orleans have to be:
(1) jazz music, which was invented in New Orleans, above, and
(2) Mardi Gras festivities, below.

The architecture of New Orleans is wonderful and varied.
I stayed in a wonderful apartment like the one pictured here, above
- and I loved listening to the saxophone player in Jackson
Square as we sat on the balcony!

Also, I enjoyed the green-green parks, cemeteries, and
yards, and all the charms of the Old South.

Also on this date:

Eeyore's Birthday Party

Plan ahead:

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