Manuscript Resources on Acadian History

In 1755, a group of French-speaking people were exiled from their homeland by British military tactics in a part of Nova Scotia then known as "French Acadia". Those Acadian immigrants who relocated to Southern Louisiana adapted to the unique challenges the region provided, to become known as the "Cajuns," an ethnic and cultural group much celebrated, and sometimes misunderstood.

The collection of manuscripts pertaining to the Cajuns that may be found in the Louisiana and Lower Mississippi Valley Collections (LLMVC) of the LSU Libraries is varied in nature, ranging from the large group of records compiled by the Acadian Handicraft Project to a single French Acadian Music Festival program. Oral history interviews, personal papers, cartoons, photographs, scripts, and other artifacts are present in the manuscripts groups. A range of dates from the late nineteenth to the late twentieth centuries are present (see chronological listing).

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Honore Daigre and Adelaide Hebert sale, 1856, November 17. 1 item. Location: Misc:H. Honore Daigre and Adelaide Hebert were residents of Iberville Parish, Louisiana. A true copy of sale and adjudication of the sale of the plantation, land, and slaves of Honore Daigre and Adelaide Hebert, Iberville Parish. Includes a listing of their slaves' ages, sex, and family relationships, as well as a description of land and moveable property. In English and French. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4888.

Hunter, Edwin. Papers, 1956-2001 (bulk 1970-1980). 2.3 linear ft. Location: T:123-125, OS:H. Practiced law at Smith, Hunter, Risinger and Shuey in Shreveport, Louisiana. from 1940 to 1953; was U.S. Judge originally under President Eisenhower from 1954 to 1993; was Chief Judge, Western District of Louisiana from 1970 to 1976; and presided over federal appellate courts in New York, Texas, Georgia and South Carolina. Papers chronicle a portion of the legal career of Judge Edwin Ford Hunter, Jr. The first half of the collection contains files that include trial calendars for cases presented before Judge Hunter and copies of legal papers with related correspondence. The correspondence addresses issues discussed in the surrounding legal papers, with the principal parties of the correspondence being attorneys and the judge. The topics of the cases mentioned are general in nature and reflect the typical cases assigned to Judge Hunter. The second half of the collection contains information regarding the integration and desegregation of the public schools in Louisiana, specifically Bossier, Calcasieu, Jefferson Davis, and Rapides parishes. Topics broadly cover the school boards and racial issues for the above mentioned parishes, as well as papers for the Bi-Racial Committee of Calcasieu Parish. Items include copies of correspondence among the school boards, attorneys, and Judge Hunter; statistics of the percentage of African American students in schools; legal documents, such as orders, motions, and briefs; and newspaper clippings. Items for the Bi-Racial Committee include correspondence, membership lists, and meeting minutes. Mss. 4918.

Referenced in Guides: Politics, Acadiana, African Americans

Iberville Parish (La.) Parish Court. Probate sale, 1837 February 14. 1 item. Location: Misc:P. A broadside for a probate sale to take place March 1837 in the Parish of Iberville (Louisiana) for the estate of Robert Loyd. The items to be auctioned include the undivided half of a plantation, livestock, and slaves. Slaves are listed by name and their age. The item is signed by John Dutton, Parish Judge. In English and French. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4892.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Acadiana, African Americans, French

King, Grace Elizabeth. Selected papers, 1864, 1883-1933. 1 linear ft., 2 microfilm reels. Location: UU:31, MSS.MF:K, Vault:1. New Orleans writer and historian. Business and personal correspondence pertaining to Grace King's literary career, European travels, and social and family life; includes some family correspondence, principally of her sister, Annie R. King. Papers also include a copy of an order issued by Richard Taylor concerning the Battle of Mansfield (1864), a program for the memorial service for Jefferson Davis held in New Orleans (1903), and manuscript notes concerning the United States Army occupation of New Orleans (undated). Correspondence from Baron Edouard de Pontabla, Charles Wagner, Henry Vignaud, and Flora O'Gorencees discuss World War I. Partly in French. For further information, see online catalog. Part of the Grace King Collection. Mss. 1282.

La Houssaye, Sidonie de. Papers, circa 1880-1894. 22 volumes, 6 microfilm reels. Location: F:17, MSS.MF:L. French Louisiana author of Franklin, St. Mary Parish, Louisiana. Manuscript drafts of short stories (in French) written by Madame Sidonie de la Houssaye : Volumes 1 and 2: L'etoile d'argent. Volume 2: Le fort de Keronec; Une paire de gants; Une poupee d'autrefois; Les fleurs et les bijoux de la grand'mere; Rose Blanche; Les petits vagabonds; Volume 3 Mythologies des petits enfants; Volume 4: George Gerard.For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 105.

Lafayette, Marquis de. Pointe Coupee Parish land records, 1805-1847. 118 items. Location: 102:. French reformer and participant in the American Revolution. Correspondence, legal files, and survey documents pertaining to land along the Mississippi River in Pointe Coupee Parish granted by the United States to the Marquis de Lafayette. Most items are in English, but a few are in French and Spanish. Mss. 1521.

Referenced in Guides: Spanish, Acadiana, French

Landreth, John. Field notes book, 1819. 1 volume. Location: M:19. Surveyor. Volume contains Landreth's field notes (January-April 1819), created during his survey expedition for live oak and red cedar timber lands in Louisiana, for a commission from the United States Navy. Daily field notes include notations of directions and distances traveled, landmarks sighted, and short narrative descriptions of daily events and people met. Locations described include Franklin, St. Martinville, New Orleans, and a variety of bayous, lakes, and waterways. Mss. 5386.

Landry family. Papers, 1831-1903, undated. 0.5 linear ft. Location: U:198, G:15, OS:L. Residents of Paincourtville, Assumption Parish, Louisiana. The majority of letters are personal and are written by various members of the family, including some relatives from Quebec. The later correspondence has a good percentage of business letters. The documents include bills, receipts, and sugar sales. Some in French. Available (with some omissions) on microfilm 5322: University Publications of America Records of Ante-bellum Southern Plantations Series I, Part 1, Reel 8. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 731.

Lewis, William Young. Slave indentures, 1831. 7 items. Location: MISC:L. Notarized copies of indentures for Alabama, Louisiana, and Missouri slaves bound for Texas, notarized by William Young Lewis of New Orleans, Louisiana. These were the slaves of the following slaveholders: John James Dillard of Tuscumbia, Alabama; Isaac Turner Tinsley of Pikesville, Alabama; James Routh of Concordia Parish, Louisiana; Patrick Herndon of New Orleans; Gowan Harris of Iberville Parish, Louisiana; Edwin Waller of Palmyra, Missouri; and Samspon Blossman of New Orleans. Indentures give the name, age, and family relationships of the slaves. Mss. 4762.

Liddell, Moses and St. John Richardson. Family Papers, 1813-1919 (bulk 1838-1870). 6.5 linear ft., 39 vols., 11 mf reels. Location: U:200-209, G:21, 98:, Mss.Mf:L, microfiche 2729. Planters of Woodville, Mississippi and Catahoula Parish, Louisiana, Confederate officers. St. John Richardson Liddell was Moses Liddell's son. Bulk of the material is that of St. John Richardson Liddell, Confederate officer and son of Moses Liddell. Papers consist of plantation records, personal correspondence, slave lists, business and legal papers, account books, notebooks, plantation diaries, and persecution of Jews. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 531.