DISCOVER THE STORY

Get involved with the history of Claiborne Parish by visiting our many outstanding exhibits.

THE FIRST FLOOR FEATURES EXHIBITS RELATING TO THE FOLLOWING TOPICS:

Native Americans--Caddo Indians, The Louisiana Purchase, Early Pioneers, George Green Circa 1860s Log Cabin, Blacksmith Shop,

Homer National Bank, Claiborne Parish Courthouse,  Claiborne Cotton Industry, "Black Gold" Oil Boom Days, Vintage and Antique Textiles,

"Iron Horse" L&NW Railroad Relics, Rosa Wilder Blackman doll collection, Vintage and Antique Musical Items.

*DOUBLE CLICK ON THE THE SLIDE DECK TO OPEN GALLERY.

A Caddo brave is paddling an 18-foot flat-bottom dugout canoe, found in North Louisiana in the Sabine River.

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A Caddo maiden is wearing clothing made from animal hides.

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A display showcases many Indian artifacts.

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A Caddo brave is paddling an 18-foot flat-bottom dugout canoe, found in North Louisiana in the Sabine River.

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Native Americans 

 

     Northwest Louisiana was home to Native Americans for hundreds of years before the advent of European settlers. The group to occupy our area during recent historic times were members of the Kadohadacho (Caddo) Confederation. Their villages were located in the fertile valleys of the Red River and its tributaries, where farming and hunting provided their means of sustenance. In 1835 the elders of the Caddo Nation met near the present site of Shreveport and sold their tribal lands to the United States for $80,000.

A migration map which illustrates the 2 waves of migration to North Louisiana.

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These were the typical construction tools during the "pioneer days."

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Whiskey Stills were used to make "White Lightning."

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A migration map which illustrates the 2 waves of migration to North Louisiana.

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Early Pioneers

 

     A cabin built circa 1860 by the forebearers of Mr. George W. Green is featured. It is a typical one-room dwelling constructed by early settlers with one large room and a loft. The rustic cabin contains many artifacts such as candle molds, quilts, handmade furniture, a spinning wheel, butter churns, a rifle over the fireplace, and much more.

Transportation Route Map of late 1800s shows stagecoach, railway, and military routes. Some are old Indian trails.

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This poster discusses a brief history of the L&NW Railroad.

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Ticket stubs and schedules are artifacts of the early days of the L&NW Railroad.

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Transportation Route Map of late 1800s shows stagecoach, railway, and military routes. Some are old Indian trails.

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L&NW Railroad

 

     The Louisiana and North West Railroad (L&NW) runs once a day from Gibsland, Louisiana to McNeil, Arkansas. The "Coming of the Railroad" in 1887 gave the Hill Country a jump-start toward recovery from the devastation of the Civil War. The L&NW kept the small rural communities of Claiborne Parish connected with the outside world, transporting timber and crude oil to larger commercial centers in the nation.

This Oil Boom Mural shows a "Roughneck" taking a break.

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Oilfield workers wore safety helmets like this one.

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These oil field tools and oil cans are from the early 1900s.

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This Oil Boom Mural shows a "Roughneck" taking a break.

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The Oil Boom


 

     The 20th century brought profound social and economic changes to Claiborne Parish. The catalyst for change was the discovery of oil in the region- first in Homer in 1918, then in Haynesville in 1921, and finally in Lisbon in 1936. Local residents were overwhelmed by the material needs of newcomers who flocked to their locations. Shacks, tents, and lean-tos were erected on every vacant lot to provide lodging for workers and other seekers of wealth.

This old trunk contains vintage clothing.

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This foot-pedaled loom dates back to 1830.

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This vacuum cleaner, circa 1911, works by pumping the handle.

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This old trunk contains vintage clothing.

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Textile Room

     Early pioneers made their own garments and the skills to weave, sew, knit, crochet, and tat were passed down with the generations from mother to child.

     The textile room displays a wide range of artifacts relating to these skills:  a spinning wheel, a loom, and three antique sewing machines.  A Superior vacuum cleaner made by the Lanning-Stone Company in 1911 is also featured. 

     Delicate hand-made quilts and garments of the 1800s illustrate how art can be interwoven with necessity.        An armoire contains beautiful examples of of knitting,  crocheting, and tatting as well as sewing notions and patterns.  An assortment of stylist hats adds to the room's art enriched nature.