Nothing is more enlightening than educating yourself on the most fascinating Louisiana facts.
This US State promises an exciting look into a colorful history, hidden cultural gems, rich culture, food, jazz music, charm, mystery, and lively and vibrant Mardi Gras parades.
Not forgetting the abundant number of alligators and pelicans, of course!
This post aims to entice you with the most intriguing, fun, and interesting facts about Louisiana, from information about the state’s name, food, climate, and so much more to entice just about any particular interest.
By reading on, you can explore an encyclopedia of Louisianan knowledge, from terrifying ghost stories, centuries-old cemeteries, fascinating historical facts, heartbreaking events, early origins, and captivating information about this unique US state.
26 Louisiana Facts: Fun Facts About Louisiana To Read Now
1. Louisiana Is Named After A King
The name “Louisiana” was given in honor of the great King Louis XIV when the land was claimed for France in 1682, even though the first Europeans to arrive in Louisiana were the Spanish, reaching many points in the area with its numerous early Spanish expeditions.
France had almost complete control over the land for over a decade. Louisiana changed ownership numerous times before becoming a US territory in 1803 for $15 million (more like $233 million today!).
It became the 18th state to join the USA in 1812. Mississippi, Texas, and Arkansas border the state.
Read next: Fun Facts About Arkansas
2. Jazz Was Born In Louisiana
One of the most musically exciting facts about Louisiana is that it is honored to be recognized as the Jazz capital of the US.
While I cannot pinpoint precisely where it all began, I do know that it began in New Orleans.
One of the most hair-raising Louisiana facts is that some believe that Jazz grew out of a voodoo drumming ritual in the 1800’s.
I guess this eerie fact doesn’t really bother real jazz enthusiasts too much, as it is crystal clear how the soul of Jazz comes alive in the streets of New Orleans time and time again.
Read next: Weekend In New Orleans
3. Creole Cuisine Is Louisiana’s Style Of Cooking
Louisiana facts are full of exciting pieces of history, such as the origin of Creole cuisine in New Orleans hundreds of years ago.
Creole cuisine combines various cultures, including French, Spanish, Caribbean, and West African influences, to name a few.
New Orleans is home to several Creole restaurants, promising numerous rich, deliciously flavorful Creole dishes such as:
- Crawfish Boil
- King Cake
- Red Beans and Rice
4. Louisiana Is Nicknamed The Pelican State
The nickname of the state, “The Pelican State,” comes from the plentiful amount of the eastern brown pelicans that used to inhabit the state’s Gulf coast.
The bird, also known as the official state bird, was listed as endangered in 1970 due to a typically used pesticide affecting the birds’ reproductive abilities. Today, the numbers are up owing to ongoing, successful retrieval programs.
You may also hear Louisiana referred to as The Sugar State, The Bayou State, and The Creole State, or even The Child of Mississippi.
The state’s motto is simply and elegantly worded as “Union, justice and confidence.”
5. The State Of Louisiana Is Physically Shaped As The Letter L
“L” for Louisiana, as any first grader will be able to tell you. This would definitely be on the list of fun facts about Louisiana, so grab a map and take a look.
The state’s shape resembles the shape of the capital letter “L” or a boot, depending on how creative your imagination can get.
You may just be able to get a smile out of your teenager, demonstrating this fun, amusing fact.
6. There Are No Counties In Louisiana
One of the lesser-known Louisiana facts is that it is the only state in the US that has parishes, 64 of them, to be precise.
Parishes are local governments identical to what would otherwise be known as counties in the other American states.
7. Louisiana Houses The Largest Alligator Population Worldwide
It is undoubtedly deemed one of the scarier Louisiana facts that this state is home to around 2 million alligators in the coastal marshes, bayous, and swamps.
As if this isn’t terrifying enough, the state also retains approximately 300,000 of these toothy beasts in alligator farms across the state.
And no, people don’t ride them to work, as wildly believed by some. The alligator industry brings in a whopping $57 million yearly, mainly from selling alligator meat and hide.
8. Louisiana Is Prone To Hurricanes
Due to its subtropical climate and location on the Gulf of Mexico, Louisiana is subject to unfortunate catastrophes such as hurricanes, tropical storms, and flooding.
Mild winters are alternated with hot and humid summer temperatures, resulting in frequent thunderstorms that occur as often as 60 times a year.
Hurricane Katrina, a category three hurricane, hit Louisiana in 2005. This devastation sadly left more than 2 million people trapped, homeless, or displaced.
Hurricane Katrina caused disastrous flooding and the loss of many lives. This deadly hurricane will remain one of US history’s most painful Louisiana facts.
9. Louisiana Has No Official Language
As a historically rich, vibrant, and culturally diverse US state, it is no surprise that Louisiana does not have an official language.
Several languages are spoken in Louisiana, namely:
10. Louisiana Has Some Crazy Laws
Some of the most interesting facts about Louisiana are their super weird laws.
The state’s laws are unique as they are based on French Civil Law, derived from the Napoleonic code, making them somewhat out of the ordinary, such as:
- It is illegal to lie in Louisiana. Lying is called “false swearing”. You may not make promises without keeping them.
- An adult must accompany minors if they intend to play coin-operated foosball.
- You may only feed your hogs some garbage if you have cooked it first and in your own house!
- Stealing someone’s alligator amounts to up to 10 years in prison.
- Horses may not be tied to trees on public highways.
- It is illegal to shoot lasers at the police.
- No reptiles are allowed within 600 ft of a Mardi Gras Parade.
- Playing games on neutral ground is illegal unless it is a designated playground.
- In New Orleans (a city in Louisiana), riding a bicycle with only one hand on the bars is illegal.
- Engaging in any rituals that entail drinking your or anyone else’s urine is illegal.
- Mardi Gras beads are not permitted to be thrown from a window that is three stories up.
11. There Are Over 400 Festivals In Louisiana Annually
No list of Louisiana facts would be complete without mentioning the world-famous Mardi Gras Parade held in New Orleans every January to February since 1838.
Mardi Gras is the French term meaning “Fat Tuesday.” It is a big carnival and festival of celebration leading up to the beginning of Lent.
Adding to this, it is no wonder that the state hosts more festivals than days in a calendar year. Some of the most exciting and anticipated festivals include:
- Louisiana Crawfish Festival
- New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival
- Ponchatoula Strawberry Festival
- Breaux Bridge Crawfish Festival
- Louisiana Peach Festival
- Louisiana Pirate Festival
- Essence festival
- French Quarter Festival
- Red River Balloon Rally
- Boucherie and Balloon Festival
- Natchitoches Christmas Festival
Louisianans certainly do know how to “laissez les bons temps rouler,” as they say in French, meaning “let the good times roll.”
12. The Sazerac Cocktail Was Invented In Louisiana
One of the most thirst-quenching (excuse the pun) Louisiana facts is that the first-ever cocktail was invented in this state.
Invented by Antoine Amedie Peychaud in New Orleans in 1850, the Sazerac is an elegant mixture of cognac, bitters, and sugar.
It is commonly served after dinner and best enjoyed straight up. You’re welcome.
13. Hot Sauce Was Invented In Louisiana
Louisiana fun facts also reveal that the state is well known for its hot sauce. The world-famous brand Tabasco, has been produced in the state for over five generations.
Made from vinegar, salt, and Tabasco peppers, this hot sauce is ideal for sprinkling over oysters or adding to a Bloody Mary cocktail.
14. Many Famous People Are Associated With Louisiana
Louisiana is no stranger to plenty of popular and well-known faces. The state boasts an array of famous actors, singers, authors, comedians, and sports personalities.
- Reese Witherspoon- Actress
- Jared Leto – Actor
- Tyler Perry- Actor
- Ellen DeGeneres- Comedian and Talk show host
- Lil Wayne – Rapper and Singer
- Britney Spears- Singer
- Harry Connick Jr. – Singer
- Louis Armstrong- Trumpet player
- Hank Williams Jr. -Singer
- Randy Jackson- American Idol Judge
- Aeneas Williams- Pro Football Player
- Willard Brown- Baseball Player
- Karl Malone – Basketball Player
- Anne Rice- Author of the Vampire Chronicles series
15. New Orleans Cemeteries Are Above Ground
One of the odder Louisiana fun facts is that many of the older New Orleans cemeteries were constructed above the ground.
New Orleans is below sea level and on historical swamp lands.
Hundreds of years ago, it was noted that the cemeteries were prone to flooding and displacement due to the high water table. Thus, the need for above-ground tombs was established.
16. Urban Legends Run Wild In Louisiana
The Grunch are rumored to be half-human and half-monster figures lurking deep in the woods just off the old dirt road, Grunch Road.
Don’t get out of your car if you see an injured goat…it is a clever plan to lure you into the woods to have your blood sucked and drained by The Grunch.
The Rougarou is a werewolf-like creature, half human, half wolf, haunting the swamps and bayous of Louisiana.
This terrifying creature casts spells on humans that last 101 days and is always eyeing out the next victim.
Don’t say you haven’t been warned …
17. Louisiana Boasts The Largest Swamp In The US
The Atchafalaya basin in Louisiana is the most extensive wetland swamp in the United States.
It is astonishingly more extensive than the Everglades in Florida at approximately a million acres.
The basin contains crayfish, alligators, and a vast nesting number of bald eagles.
Read next: 6 Epic National Parks in Louisiana
18. Turducken Was Invented In Louisianan Kitchens
Of all the tasty meats made known in Louisiana, the turducken has got to be on the delicious list of Louisiana facts regarding foods and delicacies.
As the name subtly suggests, a “turducken” is a mixture of turkey, duck, and chicken. A deboned chicken is stuck inside a deboned duck and into a deboned turkey.
Give it a try. It sounds rather appetizing!
19. Louisiana Hosts The First Opera In The United States
One of the more elegant fun facts about Louisiana lies in the title of the state being the first state to house an opera.
“Sylvain” was performed in May 1796 at the Theatre de la Rue Saint Pierre. It was a compilation by André Grétry.
20. Nicolas Cage Has A Strange Connection To Louisiana
The well-known actor Nicolas Cage owns a peculiar pyramid-shaped tomb in New Orleans.
Nicolas never explained why this land was purchased in one of the state’s most popular cemeteries.
Some think that this is a possible connection with the Illuminati. Others think that Nicolas Cage is immortal and that it is at this tomb that he will regenerate himself.
Our guess is as good as yours…
21. Numerous Movies Were Produced In Louisiana
In the name of Louisiana facts, you may be curious to know which well-known movies were filmed in the state.
Several exciting and action-packed movies were produced in Louisiana, namely:
- Fight Club
- The Butler
- The Apostle
- Skeleton Key
- Crazy in Alabama
Read next: Fun Facts About Alabama
22. There Are Haunted Houses in Louisiana
One of the most petrifying Louisianan facts lies within the walls of LaLaurie Mansion.
Considered the most haunted house in Louisiana, it was once home to Madame LaLaurie, a New Orleans socialite in the early 1800s.
It is said that enslaved people were held in this house for experimentation and torturing purposes. It is now a popular place of interest on New Orleans city ghost tours.
23. The State Capitol Of Louisiana Is The Tallest US Building
Consisting of 34 floors and reaching 450 feet tall, the Louisiana Capitol building is the tallest Capitol in the United States.
This Capitol is located in downtown Baton Rouge and was completed in 1930, replacing the old state Capitol.
24. A Voodoo Queen Once Lived In New Orleans
Marie Laveau, the controversial “Voodoo Queen Of New Orleans,” was a hairdresser by day and a voodoo priestess by night.
She led many spiritual ceremonies in her lifetime. She died in 1881, and her tomb remains one of the most visited tombs in New Orleans.
25. Modern-Day Vampires Live In New Orleans
Louisiana undoubtedly has an ancient past of vampire legends and the lot.
However, a real-life community of modern-day vampires still resides in the state today. They identify as vampires and consume blood from consenting humans, generally called “donors.”
It is (freakily) presumed that there are more than 50 active vampire-committed members in New Orleans.
26. Louisiana Created The First Millionaire in America
Madam CJ Walker (1867-1919) was born in Delta, Louisiana.
She became the first female self-made millionaire in America by making her fortune developing and selling a sought-after range of cosmetics, especially for Black women.
Quick Fun Facts About Louisiana
Driskill Mountain is the highest point in Louisiana at 535 feet above sea level. Still, it is the third-lowest of any state in the Union.
Louisiana has the largest Native American population in the southern states, with nothing less than eighteen tribes.
While the brown pelican is the state bird, the magnolia is the state flower, and the bald cypress is the state tree.
Louisiana is famous for its Creole cuisine, which is a mix of European, African, and pre-Columbian American traditions.
That’s it for today! I sincerely hope you had a good time reading these fun facts about Louisiana! Wanna help me out? Be sure to share this article on your social media. Oh, and if you know some fun Louisiana facts, please drop them in the comment section below. I’d love to hear from you!
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