Bayou La Batre, Alabama

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Bayou La Batre (pronounced /ˌbaɪ.oʊ lə ˈbætri/, locally /ˌbaɪlə ˈbætri/) is a town in Mobile County, Alabama, United States. It is included in the Mobile metropolitan statistical area. At the 2000 census, the population was 2,313. According to the 2005 U.S. Census estimates, the city had a population of 2,725.[2]

Bayou La Batre is a fishing village with a seafood-processing harbor for fishing boats and shrimp boats. The local Chamber of Commerce has described the city as the "Seafood Capital of Alabama" for packaging seafood from hundreds of fishing boats.[3]

Bayou La Batre was the first permanent settlement on the south Mobile County mainland and was founded in 1786, when French-born Joseph Bouzage (Bosarge) [1733-1795] was awarded a 1,259-acre (509 ha) Spanish land grant on the West Bank of the bayou (see history below). The modern City of Bayou La Batre was incorporated in 1955.

Bayou La Batre was featured in the 1994 movie Forrest Gump and the book upon which it is based. In April 2005, Disney Studios launched a secretly built pirate ship, the Black Pearl, out of Bayou La Batre for filming sequels to Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl.[4]

On August 29, 2005, the area was devastated by Hurricane Katrina, which produced the largest storm surge ever recorded in the area, reaching nearly 16 feet[5] and pushing many shrimp boats and the cargo ship M/V Caribbean Clipper onto shore.

Contents

History

As part of the French settlement of the Gulf Coast, the bayou was originally called "Riviere D'Erbane" and acquired the present name from the French-maintained battery of artillery on the west bank ("bayou of the battery"). Bayou La Batre was the first permanent settlement on the south Mobile County mainland and was founded in 1786, when Joseph Bouzage (Bosarge) [1733-95] moved into the area and was awarded a 1,259-acre (509 ha) Spanish land grant on the bayou's west bank.

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