I found the above photo in a 1950 newspaper article. After doing a little research, I found that back in 1920, Mr. Haas was the coach of the Monroe Elks and their opening game was held at Forsythe Park on May 23, 1920. I would venture to guess it was taken that day. Baseball was … Continue reading The Monroe Elks Baseball Team – 1920
Here is a treasure! A new document just digitized for our collection is almost 120 years old! It is a rare Ouachita Parish high School handbook published in 1904. In it you will find a history of the school, the School Board members, faculty, a list of alumni and even the course listing for each … Continue reading 1904 Ouachita Parish High School Catalogue
Last week, a hint popped up on my Ancestry tree I have created for Sidney and Annie Saunders' son Willie. It stated there was a birth record in New Orleans for Wm. L. Saunders, born March 27, 1874, son of S.W. and Annie "Loving". Close. Very close. I sent off a request to the State … Continue reading Willie’s Birth Certificate?
How about this little pamphlet listing some of the industries in West Monroe in the 1950's? Here you will find information and photos of Bancroft Bag, the Union Oil Mill and Monroe Sand and Gravel, to name a few. https://louisianadigitallibrary.org/islandora/object/oplib-orv%3A114
Back in May, 1945 Ouachita Parish High School's seniors had a newsletter called the Ouachita Lion. It served as a sort of yearbook since the yearbook wasn't publishing during WWII. On one of the pages of the May, 1945 issue, they paid tribute to what they called "Gold Star Honor Roll". Basically, alumni of OPHS … Continue reading A List of Ouachita Parish High School Alumni Who Fell During War
Here is a fairly new brochure (historically speaking) we just had to digitize due to it's uniqueness! It was a guide to African-American owned businesses in Monroe produced in the 1980's. It was put together by the Top Gun Boy Scout troop. You can look at it here: https://louisianadigitallibrary.org/islandora/object/oplib-orv%3A113
I honestly don't know what to think about what I just read. This is going to take some digesting. I have been chasing rabbits (as I like to say) and the rabbit I have been chasing is William C. Hardin, Annie Saunders' second husband. This week, I found a transcription of his will on Ancestry. … Continue reading An Unexpected Breakthrough in the Saga of Sidney and Annie Saunders
Wednesday, my boss found a map of Ouachita Parish pasted in the front cover of one of our Peters Funeral Home Records books. It appears to be hand drawn and shows all the little communities that were here in the early 20th century. Did you know where Breard Springs was? I didn't either, but it … Continue reading Map of the Small Communities of Ouachita Parish
Every October, Ms. Antley posts nightly stories about local graves in North Louisiana. I look forward to her posts every October! They are well researched and interestingly written. This post is about a local victim of the Jonestown Massacre. I was the librarian she mentions in this post. It was very moving for me and an honor to have a hand in finding Miss Willis’ grave again.
November 18, 1978 is one horrifying date in world history. It will forever be marred by the remembrance of Jim Jones and the demise of the residents of his “Jonestown” settlement in Guyana. His followers had joined him in hopes for a better future, instead they had no future. In that day, he convinced over 900 people to willingly drink poison (or in some cases—force feed it to their children). Days later, the U.S. and Guyanese government took over the brutal task of identifying the dead and returning them home.
Initially, the United States had felt it was best to dig a mass grave and bury them there but Guyana officials refused to entertain that idea. This tragedy may have taken place in their soil but they did not want the burials or bad energy left behind.
Jones had followers from all over the United States. In fact, he had…
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Last year, the Ouachita Parish Public Library’s Genealogy and Special Collections Department applied for and won a Rebirth Public Library grant* from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Our project was to create a virtual cemetery tour of some of the burials in Hasley cemetery, West Monroe. The fruits of that labor are now available to the public. … Continue reading HISTORIC HASLEY: Secrets From The Grave