Solving Research Problems with a Louisiana Maps
– If you have started your family research, you might have experienced trouble with trying to identify Louisiana city borders and names that have changed over the course of time. This can make it difficult to understand where your ancestors’ information is kept.
Because Louisiana historic maps were usually commissioned by the parish seat, they often display information about the parish, including town names. Reading a Louisiana map from the time period you are researching can help tremendously in solving these problems by leading you to the correct town records. It can also give you other leads, such as the location of city directories or old post offices in Louisiana.
Choosing the Best Louisiana Map – If you have a large source of maps to choose from, try starting with the area where your ancestors resided and looking for the maps with the most detail. You can determine a lot by seeing if the area was still rural or more developed, and how far it was to the nearest city. This can shed light on your family’s lifestyle and occupation. Were they farmers who lived in the country, or merchants who traveled often to a nearby city? A map can give you an idea of what occupations were possible.
There are large Louisiana map collections in both university libraries and public libraries. There are also several map collections in historical and genealogical societies, as well as private collections and archives. The French Quarter is home to the Historic New Orleans Collection, which includes the d’Auberville-Bouligny Family Papers and the Bouligny Family Papers. Those collections include maps and large amounts of documentation about the Spanish and French colonial times.
There is information found in the maps that cannot be found elsewhere. For example, the Claude Perrin Victor Papers and the Pierre Clement de Laussat Papers are particularly full of useful information. Antebellum era maps can also give researchers insights into transportation methods and population growth across Louisiana. Every piece of property in the French Quarter is listed in the Vieux Carr Survey. Photographs, drawings, and property title chains are included. The Historic New Orleans Collection also includes many of those documents.
Original survey plats, field notes, and maps of Louisiana that were made by early surveyors working for the United States can be found in Baton Rouge at the State Land Office, which is in the State Land and Natural Resources Building. The clerk of courts office in each parish courthouse may also hold plat maps, which list land ownership.