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History: Haughton of long ago


At one time Haughton had a newspaper, hotels, a livery stable, saw mills and two saloons.  In its October 20, 1932 issue the Bossier Banner editor related the partial contents of an early newspaper titled the Bossier Democrat.

“Spread before the writer is a torn sheet of the Bossier Democrat of date July 23, 1887.  The Democrat, at that time, was published in Haughton by Messrs. E. C. Drew and P. B. Holt.  It was then in its third year and its motto was ‘Fear no man and render justice to all men.’  Page one of the sheet shows that it was a patent outside paper, its two outside pages, one and four, being printed by some big publishing house and forwarded to the Haughton office…usually by express during those days.”

“Turning to page two there is much more of interest to present-day residents of Bossier Parish.”

“Published proceedings of the Parish Union of Bossier Parish showed that Elias Skannal was its president and that John Heifner was its vice-president, and presided over the meeting. A brief extract from the proceedings [is shown here].”

“As stated, the sheet is torn, and it can’t be learned from the proceedings how many local unions there were in the parish, but it is to be seen there were at least four: Haughton, Cottage Grove, Rocky Mount and Chalybeate Springs.”

“This was forty-five years ago and the parish seat here in Bossier at that time was at Bellevue.  Court was held then for two weeks, sometimes for three weeks—if there were a number of criminal cases to be tried.  There appears a jury list showing eighty names of residents of the parish—fifty to serve the first week of the August term of Bossier District Court and the remaining thirty to serve the second week’.”

“Someone writing from Ash Point, a former South Bossier post office, merely signed M. E. L., tagged his contribution ‘Ward One Chips’.”  One of his paragraphs reads: ‘Mr. E. S. Dortch, worthy police juror from this ward, and his most estimable family are visiting in Shreveport this week, as guests of Mr. and Mrs. A. H. Burns’.”

“Two professional cards are shown.  One was that of Dr. Paul Lawrence, then a resident of Haughton, as he is today.  The other card was of the law firm of Lowry & Vance, of Bellevue.  J. A. W. Lowry and W. W. Vance, both long since deceased, but fondly remembered by many residents of Bossier Parish.”

“Mr. Henry Bodenheimer, of Shreveport, at that time conducted aa general merchandise business in Haughton, as did G. R. Abercrombie.”

“There are two saw mill advertisements, and the plants, located in Haughton, were owned and operated by J. S. Williams and McClanahan & Sandidge.”

A card in the Democrat shows that Warren Wart was a contractor and builder located in Haughton.”

Please read next week’s column to discover the contents of the June 30, 1886 Bossier Democrat.

Old newspaper articles are fascinating.  Visit the Bossier Parish Library Historical Center to read more.

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.