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Facts about Louisiana

History | Symbols | Interesting Facts | Famous People

Statehood:  April 30, 1812, the 18th state

Capital:  Baton Rouge

Total Area:  31st among states, 135,382 sq km (52,271 sq mi)

Water Area:  15,760 sq km (6,085 sq mi)

Highest Point:  Driskill Mountain, 163 m (535 ft)

Total Population:   25th among states
2010 census -  4,533,372

Population Density in 2010:  104.9 people per sq mi

Distribution in 2000:  72.6% Urban, 27.4% Rural

Gross State Product - $213.6 billion (2010)
Personal income per Capita - $35,507 (2009)

Largest cities in 2010: 
New Orleans:  343,829
Baton Rouge:  229,493
Shreveport:  199,311

  • The first Tarzan movie was filmed in Louisiana in 1917.
  • Louisiana was named in honor of King Louis XIV.
  • Parts of the Mississippi River delta plain near New Orleans lie below sea level.

  • Mardi Gras is a celebration that is known world wide.  It is an ancient custom that originated in southern Europe.  It celebrates food and fun just before the 40 days of Lent: a Catholic time of prayer and sacrifice. This custom was brought to Louisiana by the French.

  • More than one-half of the species of birds in North America are resident in Louisiana or spend a portion of their migration there.

  • Louisiana is among the top ten states in the production of sugar cane (2nd), sweet potatoes (2nd), rice (3rd), cotton (5th) and pecans (5th).

  • On January 8, 1815, a large British force stormed New Orleans, but was thrown back by forces commanded by Major General Andrew Jackson.

  • Louisiana has the greatest concentration of crude oil refineries, natural gas processing plants and petrochemical production facilities in the Western Hemisphere.

  • Louisiana is the nation's largest handler of grain for export to world markets. More than 40 percent of the U.S. grain exports move through Louisiana ports.

  • Because of its many bays and sounds, Louisiana has the longest coastline (15,000 miles) of any state and 41 percent of the nation's wetlands.

  • The town of Jean Lafitte was once a hideaway for pirates.

  • Louisiana is the only state with a large population of Cajuns, descendants of the Acadians who were driven out of Canada in the 1700s because they wouldn't pledge allegiance to the King of England.