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Louisiana: A Trip Down Ancestry Lane

We left Mrs. Hooker's house and were on our way to Charenton, Louisiana. This is where my grandfather was born in the house that his grandfather built in this tiny little town. On the way there, we happened to drive through Longville. Pat let us know that my grandfather's family moved to Longville after leaving Charenton and that her parents actually met there at the post office. My grandfather's father (Pop) worked for Long-Bell Lumber Company and moved there to work.

While looking for the post office, we stopped off at a little church that looked historic. Turns out, back in the time when my grandfather's family lived there, it was the town meeting hall.

When a fire destroyed the Long-Bell Lumber Co in 1921, my grandfather's family moved to Lufkin, TX where Long-Bell opened another location. This building was turned into a church.

This was what it looked like as it was being built and when my grandfather lived there.

Now it is used for weddings and Sunday school classes.

We finally found the post office and took Pat's picture there then hit the road again. We were getting hungry and stopped off in Iowa, Louisiana, at Rabideaux Sausage Kitchen for some amazing home-cooked food then it was on to the Forest Inn in Charenton. After a long drive and huge, late lunch we opted to have a couple of drinks at the hotel bar and call it a night.

The next morning we got some terrible news. Marsha's son passed away unexpectedly earlier that morning. This meant that our trip would be cut short and we needed to alter plans to get her back to Austin that day. She insisted that we had come this far and we should still go to the homesite and cemetery as planned but then leave town after instead of spending another night.

We drove the few miles to Charenton and came to the house where my grandfather was born.

Sometime around 1850, Frederick Wolford arrived from Bavaria, Germany, through the port of New Orleans and eventually into Charenton. He married Marie Felicianne Mora and they had eight children. One of those children was Anatole Jules Wolford who later married Louise Ada Bienvenu. These were my grandfather's grandparents and Anatole built this house for his family to live in. My grandfather's father, Anatole Joseph Wolford married Agnes Alacoque FItzpatrick and several of their children, including my grandfather, were born in this house.


One of the neighbors, Connie, who is a descendant of Marie Felicianne Mora, came by for a quick chat.

Across the street is a house they call Seven Oaks. Only six of the seven oaks are still left standing.

Next door to it was the old post office.

Next door to my grandfather's house was the old store they used to run.

I peaked my head inside and I wonder if he built in those shelves just like my grandfather built in everything in the house he would build many years later.

From there we drove the block down to the cemetery behind the Catholic church. There we found the headstone for Frederick Wolford, the first of our family to arrive from Germany.

We also found the graves of both sets of Grandad's grandparents and we spread some of his ashes at each one.

Pop's parents


Mimi's parents


I wish we could have taken our time and stayed longer as we might have been able to go inside the house but we had to get Marsha back home as soon as we could. We previously planned to stop in Beaumont and see our cousin, Shirley (her father was my grandfather's brother, Chester). She planned to cater lunch the next day but with our time crunch, we were still able to stop by for an hour or so on our way through town.




After leaving Shirley's we dropped Pat off at her house in Houston and the three of us continued on to Austin so that Marsha could start the process of arrangements for her son. Mom and I stayed in a hotel near her condo and then made our way home a day early the next day.

Posted by zihuatcat 17:58 Archived in USA Tagged mom louisiana charenton

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