La Salle Parish Data
La Salle Parish Neighbors
Welcome to La Salle Parish!
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About La Salle Parish...
LaSalle Parish long has been associated with the timber and oil industries. The industries are so steeped into the parish’s history that festivals celebrating what they have meant to residents have been and are still held.
Settlers began arriving around the area now known as Jena around 1802. Originally known as Hemp’s Creek, the name was changed to Jena in 1871 because postal rules decreed that “creek” or “bayou” couldn’t be part of a post office name. The town was named after another Jena in Illinois.
In 1893, the Urania Lumber Co. was founded by Henry Hardtner, the man who is hailed as the father of reforestation. Hardtner knew that the practice of clear-cutting Louisiana’s forests was leaving nothing for future generations, so he began practicing reforestation.
Olla was incorporated in 1899, and in 1938, the Olla oil fields were established. LaSalle Parish’s other incorporated town, Tullos, was established in 1893 at a point where a railroad company was operating. The parish was founded by an act of the Louisiana Legislature in 1910.
1788: Eden Methodist Church, located on La. Highway 8 west of Jena and founded in 1788, is said to be the oldest Methodist church west of the Mississippi River and south of the Mason-Dixon Line.
1890: A military high school opens near Olla. The school burned in 1899 and closed.
1893: Sulphur Springs was a popular resort near what became Olla. Many people flocked to the area to spend the summer there. The resort no longer exists.
1913: Urania sawmill owner Henry Hardtner advocated the idea of restocking cut timber land with new trees – making him the “Father of Modern Reforestation.” The idea soon spread across the South.
1918: Lula V. Coleman – wife of Dr. J.A. Coleman – became the parish’s first female deputy sheriff and is believed to have been the first female deputy sheriff in the United States. Coleman also served as Jena’s – and Louisiana’s – first female mayor.
1920: Lula Coleman was named mayor of Jena, the first female mayor in Louisiana.
1935: Henry Hardtner, founder of Urania Lumber Co. and a pioneer in reforestation, is killed in an car accident near Baton Rouge.
1945: During World War II – from January 1945 to May 1945 – German prisoners, captured in North Africa, lived in a POW camp in Whitehall. The camp’s water tank can still be seen at the intersection of U.S. Highway 84 and La. Highway 460.
The parish has a total area of 662 square miles, of which 624 square miles is land and 39 square miles (5.82%) is water. The population recorded in the 1910 Federal Census was 9,402. The 2010 census recorded 14,093 residents in the Parish.
Neigboring parishes are Caldwell Parish (north),Catahoula Parish (east), Avoyelles Parish (south), Rapides Parish (southwest), Grant Parish (west), and Winn Parish (northwest). Communities in the parish include Jena, Midway, Summerville, Olla, Trout, Tullos, and Urania.
La Salle Parish Records
Birth Records - The Louisiana State office maintains records for 100 years after the date of birth. Birth records are considered confidential for the first 100 years. For current information on who may obtain a birth record as well as how to submit a request visit the Office of Public Health, Vital Records Registry website or write to them at PO Box 60630, New Orleans, LA 70160.
Birth records older than 100 years are available through the Louisiana State Archives, 3851 Essen Lane, Baton Rouge, LA 70809. (225) 922-1000.
Death Records - The Louisiana State office maintains records for 100 years after the date of death. Death records are considered confidential for the first 100 years. For current information on who may obtain a death record as well as how to submit a request visit the Office of Public Health, Vital Records Registry website or write to them at PO Box 60630, New Orleans, LA 70160.
Death records older than 100 years are available through the Louisiana State Archives, 3851 Essen Lane, Baton Rouge, LA 70809. (225) 922-1000.
Marriage Records - For current information on how to submit a request for a certified copy of an Orleans Parish marriage record less than 50 years old, see the Louisiana Office of Public Health Director, Vital Records and Statistics website or write to PO Box 60630, New Orleans, LA 70160.
Marriage records over 50 years are stored by the Louisiana State Archives, 3851 Essen Lane, Baton Rouge, LA 70809. (225) 922-1000.
Divorce Records - To obtain current information on how to submit a request for a certified copy of divorce records contact the Clerk of Court. For the address of the parish Clerk of Court visit the La Salle Parish Important Addresses page.