Magnolia Plantation At Cane River Creole National Historical Park To Reopen

Magnolia Plantation at Cane River Creole National Historical Park will reopen to the public on Saturday/NPS file

Cane River Creole National Historical Park will reopen the Magnolia Plantation on Saturday following an almost six-month closure due to road repair work. The Magnolia Plantation grounds and outbuildings will be open daily from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Park staff will conduct tours of the grounds Wednesday through Sunday at 2:30 p.m. 

The Cane River region of Louisiana has a rich tradition of community celebrations and gatherings. A celebration of the plantation’s reopening will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday. There will be games and activities for children of all ages on the grounds. At the plantation store, free snacks like ones that once could be purchased at the store will be available while supplies last. Two guided tours of the grounds and outbuildings will be offered during the day at 11:30 a.m. and the park’s regular daily tour at 2:30 p.m.

Participants are encouraged to dress appropriately for weather and walking conditions. Pack a lunch and drinks and enjoy a picnic at the outdoor picnic tables. Magnolia Plantation is located at 5549 Highway 119, Derry/ Cloutierville, Louisiana. 

According to the National Park Service, the “Magnolia Plantation was established by Ambrose LeComte II (or LeCompte) and his wife Julia Buard in 1835. However, Magnolia Plantation’s early history is rooted in colonial Louisiana. In the 1750s, Jean Baptiste LeComte I received a French-era land grant on Cane River, laying the foundation for a cotton plantation unrivaled in the region. Two-hundred-and-thirty-five enslaved persons, housed in 70 cabins, cultivated cotton and other crops. As many as 24 of the Magnolia Plantation cabins were two-room brick structures, accommodating a family or group in each of the two rooms. In 1852, Ambrose’s daughter Atala and son-in-law Matthew Hertzog took over operation of Magnolia. By 1860, the family owned more enslaved people and produced more cotton on over 6,000 acres, then anyone in the parish.”

After the Civil War and through the 1960s, Magnolia Plantation maintained a successful farming operation, according to the Park Service.

The grounds of Oakland and Magnolia plantations are open daily from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Nearly 80 original plantation buildings remain, many open for self-guided tours Wednesdays through Sundays, including several that are historically furnished. Park staff conducts tours of the plantation grounds daily Wednesday through Sunday. In addition, the park offers tours on the NPS App. The Oakland Main House is open for self-guided tours from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. The Magnolia Main House is privately owned and not open to the public.

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