Denham Springs, Louisiana

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Denham Springs is a city in Livingston Parish, Louisiana, United States, and part of the Baton Rouge Metropolitan Statistical Area. Down town Denham Springs, has transformed itself from hardware stores, drug stores, doctor's offices, and a single movie theater to a collection of various and varied forms of antique dealers. The downtown area is now called the Denham Springs Antique village. Denham Springs has a Mardi Gras Parade held two Saturdays before Mardi Gras. Festivals include the Springfest, held on the last Saturday in April, and the Octoberfest, held on the first Saturday in October. Denham Springs is the largest area of commercial and residential development in Livingston Parish, and the only parish municipality classified as a city.[1]




The area has been known as Amite Springs, Hill's Springs, and Denham Springs.[2]

The original land claims of John Noblet and Alexander Hogue form what is now the older section of Denham Springs, including the first residential and business districts. In 1828, William Denham, a Wilkinson County, Miss. native, married Mercy Hogue, the daughter of Alexander Hogue, and three months later purchased the 640 acres (2.6 km2) originally claimed by his father-in-law.[2] Denham purchased the land and a slave for $1,350.[1]

A popular belief, supported by previously published histories, is that William Denham discovered the mineral springs on his property and that a health resort quickly grew up there. This belief defies logic, however, considering the number of springs which may be found in this area even today, and the length of time that elapsed before Denham arrived on the scene. No doubt Hogue and other early residents of the area depended on the springs for drinking water.[2]

It is in the 1850s that Amite Springs becomes synonymous with the area that is now Denham Springs.[1]

On May 1, 1855, Denham sold the Hogue tract to Stamaty Covas of New Orleans for $3,050, and Denham eventually moved to Baton Rouge and to Texas.[1] Apparently during the time Covas owned the Hogue-Denham tract, and before the Civil War, a health resort did flourish at Amite Springs as the hamlet was known at that time. Several newspaper articles and advertisements survive to this day to describe the hotel and the facilities which it offered.[2]

An article in the Baton Rouge Daily Comet,on June 25, 1856, notes that a bridge of boats had been formed at Benton's Ferry over the Amite River to facilitate travel to Amite Springs. Benton's Ferry was the name of the post office which was established near Amite Springs on January 25, 1856 and named for Robert Benton, its first postmaster and also the operator of the ferry across the Amite.[3]

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