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Bossier’s Progress


In its August 2, 1956 issue The Bossier Banner-Progress reflected on its pride in Bossier Parish by running the following article:

“There is striking evidence that Benton, Bossier’s parish seat is far from a sleepy village that depends upon its existence by the circumstance of being the parish seat. The great expansion in private and public building and other events prove that there is far more in Bossier’s capital municipality than the mere existence of a court house and the necessary functions of government to keep it ‘alive’.”

“The rapid building of homes and the opening of new subdivisions, the oil and gas development activities that virtually surround Benton, the installation of a sewerage disposal system and expansion of the water system; the recent enactment of Representative Stinson’s bill to permit the creation of a Metropolitan Planning Commission, reveal that Benton is in for a growth that not only befits Bossier Parish but is in accord with the growth of other municipalities of the parish, Haughton, Bossier City and Plain Dealing.”

“The Planning Commission can be created by joint action of the town council and the police jury and will be empowered to have certain supervision over areas extending five miles from the municipal limits which are liable to annexation in the reasonable future. While imposing no hardships on such areas, the commission can guarantee compliance with modern standards of building construction, subdivision layouts and certain sanitation rules over areas that will, within a reasonable time, become part of the town. It can impose no taxes nor abuse its authority over such areas which can not have any practical annexation value. The Planning Commission legislation offered by Mr. Stinson, passed by the Legislature and signed by the governor is only permissive. It is similar to that now in effect in Bossier City, Shreveport and elsewhere, and in accord with the general municipal planning program that has received [a] national study of experts.”

“But singling out Benton alone at this time might appear as an oversight to other areas and municipalities. Haughton, likewise is enjoying expansion and progress. Last year it inaugurated its own water system and it is now in operation, and more recently the town got a new dial telephone system. Plain Dealing is scheduled to get a dial system as soon as work can be carried out and the additional power lines to that area and the completion of the Miller’s Bluff Bridge have added much to its importance. But that already has been [a] topic of generous publicity and editorials.”

“Bustling Bossier City is marching ahead. Last week the citizens of that fast growing town approved $3,750,000 for public improvements which include a separate water system, water and sewerage expansion, drainage improvements, more parks and playgrounds, better streets and street lighting and a new municipal building.”

“All over Bossier the signs of industrial and municipal progress are many. And along with these are the rapid building of homes and new churches or additions to old, which prove that in Bossier Parish, the better things of life are not forgotten amid material progress.”


Ann Middleton is Director of the Bossier Parish Library Historical Center. She can be reached at (318) 746-7717 or by e-mail at amiddlet@state.lib.la.us

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Sean Green is managing editor of the Bossier Press-Tribune.