In the February 11, 1932 issue of The Bossier Banner the paper reported that a Haughton reader had written in to offer an explanation of the origins of some old Bossier Parish names.
“We noticed in a recent issue of the Banner a story in which our Mr. J. P. Kent, Sr., inquires about the name of Red Chute Hill, and we would say, for the information of our new citizenship, that the country and all farms throughout this section originally were named at the time of their settlement.”
“The airport, or Barksdale Field, was Graball plantation. Foster was all land east of the Minden Road, or as it was then known, the Shed Road, so called because of a shed, seven miles long, built over the roadway to keep it as dry as possible. A fee was charged for the use of this shed road, also for crossing numerous bridges and ferries, which were very common before the days of improved roads, bridges and levees.”
“In traveling over the road one would pay a dime to cross the bridge, go into the store nearby (where a complete stock of choice liquors was the main stock in trade) and spend another dime for a drink. As one traveled on, the routine was repeated at the next ‘puddle’”
“But, getting back to the question of names: When one begins to talk of Red Chute it is well to think of how many times it changes its name. Up in Arkansas, and for a short distance in North Bossier, the stream is called Bodcau. Between that point and the paved road it is known as Duck Pond and Alligator Pond. At the point where it flows under the pavement it is called Red Chute; hence the name of Red Chute Hill, so known as far back as the memory of the oldest citizen can recall.”
“At the crossing of the Haughton-Koran Road the hill nearby is Goat Hill. Further on, at the point of crossing the Elm Grove-Haughton-Benton road the hill is Indian Hill. The stream then adopts Swan Lake as its name, later on changing to Blue Hole and later, after joining Bistineau, it forms Loggy Bayou, which empties its waters into Red River.”
“Why all this changing of names, or adoption of aliases? The pond was at one time as heavily infested with alligators as most bodies of water are with frogs; Swan Lake was once a bird refuge; Blue Hole derives its name from the fact that it was of an unknown depth in olden times. Log drifts in the bayou from Lake Bistineau to the river had to be cleaned out when this stream was opened for boating, hence the name of Loggy Bayou, and, as for Red Chute, I really do not know why it was so designated.”
To find out more about the fascinating origins of other places in Bossier Parish, be sure to visit the Bossier Parish Library Historical Center.
Ann Middleton is Director of the Bossier Parish Library Historical Center. She can be reached at (318) 746-7717 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org