Destrehan Plantation - A Louisiana Legacy
Located just 30 minutes from Downtown New Orleans and 10 minutes away from the Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport, no trip to this area would be complete without a visit to Destrehan Plantation. Established in 1787, Destrehan Plantation is the oldest documented plantation home in the Lower Mississippi Valley.
Costumed historical interpreters share the stories of the Destrehan family and the enslaved. who lived on the plantation. Destrehan Plantation's history is associated with many notable people and events. Visitors can gaze upon an original document signed by Thomas Jefferson and James Madison. The "Jefferson Document," dated 1804, assigned the plantation owner, Jean Noel Destrehan, and a handful of other men to the Orleans Territorial Council. This council's main purpose eased the cultural transition of the Orleans Territory into American representative democracy. In 1811 one of the largest slave revolts, known as the German coast Uprising, passed through the land. One of the three tribunals for this revolt was held on the gallery of Destrehan Plantation. During the Civil War, the Union Army seized the plantation and established the Rost Home Colony. This Freeman's Bureau taught newly freed enslaved various trades so they could transition into a self-sufficient life. Guests can view the 1811 Slave REvolt Exhibit and the Rost Home Colony Exhibit in the Miller-Haydel Museum.
The plantation offers a period craft demonstration daily. Demonstrations include:
- Bousillage construction
- Indigo Dyeing
- African-American herbal remedies
- Historical carpentry, art and history of the tignon
- 18th and 19th Century Fashion
- Quilting and weaving.
Destrehan Plantation also hosts some of the areas most popular events like the Annual Fall Festival, which draws artists and craft vendors throughout the country. The event also offers delicious Creole and Cajun food, antiques, live music and special activities for the children.
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