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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Savoy, Joseph and Paul. Papers, 1859-1885. 28 items. Location: A:10. Joseph Savoy was a sugar planter of Bayou Lafourche, Assumption Parish, Louisiana. His brother was Paul Savoy. Papers include bills of sale, account statements, correspondence, notes, and printed items related to Joseph and Paul Savoy's sugar operations and other business endeavors. Some items are in French, and some items bear the name of Mrs. Paul Savoy.  Mss. 5360.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Business, Acadiana, French

Simms, Mary Cannon. Memoir, circa 1942. 15 pages. Location: MISC:S. Native of Plaquemines Parish. Memoir (copy of a typewritten manuscript) recounts events including "the big gale of 1860" (a hurricane); the death of family members because of a yellow fever outbreak in 1878; and the New Orleans Levee Board forcing Simms to sell family land. Mss. 5336.

Referenced in Guides: Women, New Orleans 1866-, Acadiana

Sims, William. Diary, 1859-1860. 1 volume. Location: M:18. Member of the Confederate States Army. Diary relates his journey by horse and foot from Chapel Hill, North Carolina to the Hermitage Plantation, Louisiana. His 145 page journal contains descriptions of the terrain, towns, and people he encountered from September to December 1859. The final five pages of the diary list Sims' expenses for 1860. Mss. 4690.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War, Acadiana

St. Martin Parish motion, 1820.1 item. Location: MISC:S. Motion to Seth Lewis, district judge for the Fifth Judicial District of St. Martin Parish, from petitioners Joseph Dusuau Delacroix, Francois Dusuau Delacroix, and other Delacroix and DeBlanc family members. Petitioners charge that Furcy Hollier and Valerie (also spelled Vallery in the document) Bara, who purchased a slave woman named Perrine (or Perine, aged 20) at a public sale of property belonging to the Widow Dusuau Delacroix, have not paid the agreed upon amount. Petitioners seek for Perrine to be seized from Hollier and Bara. Mss. 5383.

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

Sundberry, Frederic Oscar. Papers, 1923-1966. 0.1 linear ft. Location: T:14, OS:S. Son of Oscar Charles Sundbery (1888-1939) and Caroline (Carrie) Awles. Oscar worked cypress lumber and sugar industries. Frederic married Florence Sidney Mize in 1940. They were residents of Houma, Louisiana. Papers document primarily Frederic Oscar Sundbery and Oscar Charles Sundbery's involvement with Freemasonry in Louisiana. Items of note in the papers include Frederic's ritual volume (Brashear Chapter No. 82 at Houma, Louisiana; 1941); a copy of "The Louisiana Monitor..." by G. C. Huckaby (1941); a resolution of respect for Frederic issued by Unity Lodge No. 267, Houma (1966); and images (one a printed item and one a photographic print) of class reunions outside of the Scottish Rite Temple in New Orleans (1944). Oversize items include Master of the Royal Secret degrees for both Frederic and Oscar, issued by the Grand Consistory of Louisiana in the Valley of New Orleans, Orient of Louisiana (1923, 1944); a certificate signed by Governor Robert Kennon appointing Frederic as Aide-de-Camp (1952); a Shriners Hospital for Crippled Children membership certificate issued to Frederic by the Jerusalem Temple of New Orleans (undated); and other certificates. Mss. 5392.

Referenced in Guides: New Orleans 1866-, Acadiana, Medicine

Taylor, Cecil G., 1909- interviewee, Oral history interview. 12 sound cassettes (14 hours), Transcript (590 p.). LSU French professor, assistant to the president, dean of arts and sciences, and chancellor. In a series of 8 interviews, Taylor describes his career as a French professor and administrator at LSU. He describes his family background, his education at the University of North Carolina, and his French language studies and Cajun French. He also describes Baton Rouge beginning in the 1930s, Huey Long and Louisiana politics, and the desegregation of education in Louisiana. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4700.0071.

Texas Gas Transmission Corporation, Gas Supply Department. Report, 1957 October 1. 1 report. MISC:T. Report contains details of gas reserves by fields and contracts; south Louisiana system map and index; gas gravity reports of south Louisiana fields; and field summaries and gathering system maps. Mss. 5369.

Referenced in Guides: Acadiana

Trudeau, Carlos. Papers, 1800, 1804. 7 items. Location: MISC:T. Surveyor general of Spanish Louisiana in the early 1780s, he served in that capacity until his resignation in 1805. Papers (in Spanish) include an official statement concerning land in Attakapas and surveys of lands on Lake Ponchartrain and Tangipahoa River. Mss. 426.

Referenced in Guides: Spanish, Acadiana

Voorhies, Felix. Miscellany, 1859-1965. 18 items. Location: 98:V, A:70, OS:V, VAULT:49. Lawyer, politician, and judge born in St. Martinville, Louisiana. Collection is composed of various materials related to the life and work of Voorhies. Materials include typescripts of historical sketches concerning St. Martin Parish; correspondence; newspaper clippings of Voorhies' historical sketches and writings; two photographs of Voorhies; other printed materials; and a scrapbook. Mss. 804, 2033, 2056, 2153, 2154.

Referenced in Guides: Acadiana, French, Literature

White Castle Moss Factory. Records, 1908-1956. 0.3 linear ft., 34 volumes. Location: 5:24-26. A firm processing and dealing in Spanish moss run by Luke B. Babin and located in White Castle, Iberville Parish, Louisiana. Papers include correspondence, bills, and receipts recording sales. Articles and printed pamphlets about the moss industry are included along with a list of moss ginneries in Louisiana and materials related to the White Castle Farmers' Cooperative, Inc. Manuscript volumes include ledgers, sales records, rent records, journals, ledgers of the company's accounts at the Whitney National Bank, and a notebook containing invoices. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3021.

Referenced in Guides: Business, Acadiana