Evangeline Parish, Louisiana

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Evangeline Parish (French: Paroisse d'Évangéline) is a parish located in the U.S. state of Louisiana. The parish seat is Ville Platte. As of 2000, the parish's population was 35,434.

Contents

History

The parish was created out of lands formerly belonging to St. clements parish in 1901. The area was originally settled by French, German, Spanish and English people. The majority were French, former soldiers from Port Toulouse, and generations born there were originally called Mealose. The major families were Fontenot, LaToure, Guillory, Lafleur, and Smith. The Mealose developed a culture that was a mixture of all the ethnic groups living in the area. A few Acadians settled the area, but outsiders mistakenly labeled all the white French people as Cajuns.

The parish was named Evangeline in honor of the Acadian people who lived further south; their history had been commemorated in Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's narrative poem, Evangeline. Evangeline Parish was immortalized in the Randy Newman song "Louisiana 1927", in which he described the Great Mississippi Flood which covered it with six feet of water.

Geography

The parish has a total area of 680 square miles (1,761.2 km2), of which 15 square miles (38.8 km2) (2.26%) is water.

Major highways

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