Louisiana is a state located in the southern region of the United States of America. Louisiana is the 31st largest and the 25th most populous of the 50 states. Its capital is Baton Rouge and largest city is New Orleans. Louisiana is the only state with political subdivisions termed parishes, which are local governments equivalent to counties.
Tourism is the second most important industry. Vibrant New Orleans preserves its Creole heritage in the architecture and foods of the French Quarter.
In New Orleans - It is illegal to practice voodoo in the city limits.
Bodies continue to be retrieved as residents return to their houses. Some families have complained that the initial search for the dead was not thorough.
Louisiana now counts 1,075 bodies among the dead from Hurricane Katrina.
Agriculture: Seafood, cotton, soybeans, cattle, sugarcane, poultry and eggs, dairy products, rice.
Industry: Chemical products, petroleum and coal products, food processing, transportation equipment, paper products, tourism.
Almost fifty years later, Louisiana became one of a list of states that formally seceded from the Union and, for two months afterward and before joining the Confederate Union, Louisiana flew the flag of an independent nation.
Louisiana's official flag was adopted in 1912, one hundred years after Louisiana became a state. The flag has a blue background (symbolizing truth) with a white pelican mother feeding her three chicks in a nest (the pelican is an old symbol of protection - an old legend tells of a mother pelican tearing flesh from herself to feed her young; this pelican represents the state protecting the people and their land).
From 1815 to 1861, Louisiana was one of the most prosperous states in the South, producing sugar and cotton on its rich alluvial lands and grazing hogs and cattle in the wooded hills of the north and on the prairies of the southwest. Yeoman farmers and New Orleans workers far outnumbered the wealthy planters but the planters, whose slaves made up almost half the population, dominated Louisiana politically and economically.
On April 30, 1803, representatives of the United States and Napoleonic France conclude negotiations for the Louisiana Purchase, a massive land sale that doubles the size of the young American republic. What was known as Louisiana Territory comprised most of modern-day United States between the Mississippi and the Rocky Mountains
The earliest reference to Mardi Gras "Carnival" appears in a 1781 report to the Spanish colonial governing body. That year, the Perseverance Benevolent & Mutual Aid Association was the first of hundreds of clubs and carnival organizations formed in New Orleans.
By the late 1830s, New Orleans held street processions of maskers with carriages and horseback riders to celebrate Mardi Gras.
The state has been governed under 10 different flags beginning in 1541 with Hernando de Soto's claim of the region for Spain. La Salle later claimed it for Bourbon France and over the years Louisiana was at one time or another subject to the Union Jack of Great Britain, the Tricolor of Napoleon, the Lone Star flag of the Republic of West Florida and the fifteen stars and stripes of the United States. At the outbreak of the Civil War, Louisiana became an independent republic for six weeks before joining the Confederacy.