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Welcome to Shreveport-Bossier City

Barksdale AFB Welcome to Shreceport-Bossier City

 

This northwest part of Louisiana likes to bill itself as “Louisiana’s Other Side,” meaning that the flavor of life in Shreveport-Bossier City is “a little Cajun,” like much of the southern part of the state, and “a little Texas,” like the big state just to the west. So, it’s a mix of diverse and exotic food tastes, wildly different music styles and a relaxed attitude.

Caddo and Bossier parishes fill the corner of northwest Louisiana, with Arkansas to the north and Texas to the west. Bossier (pronounced BOH-zher) City, the main urban center in Bossier Parish, snugs up against Shreveport in Caddo Parish, with only the Red River between them. Together, Shreveport and Bossier City make up a metropolitan area of some 447,000 and serve as a three-state cultural and commercial center for the Ark-La-Tex: southwestern Arkansas, northwestern Louisiana and eastern Texas.

Living in the Shreveport-Bossier City metro area means enjoying a low cost of living, low taxes, mild climate, top-rated health care, good jobs, positive business and educational opportunities, and numerous entertainment options. A comfortable, exciting lifestyle is possible here.

Riverboat casinos, jazz, sports — major, minor and collegiate — Mardi Gras, horse racing, the Louisiana Boardwalk, superb eating, fine opera and symphony programs, rodeo and water sports: This is the kind of place where you can afford to do it all.

Welcome to Shreveport-Bossier City

Barksdale AFB Welcome to Shreceport-Bossier City

 

This northwest part of Louisiana likes to bill itself as “Louisiana’s Other Side,” meaning that the flavor of life in Shreveport-Bossier City is “a little Cajun,” like much of the southern part of the state, and “a little Texas,” like the big state just to the west. So, it’s a mix of diverse and exotic food tastes, wildly different music styles and a relaxed attitude.

Caddo and Bossier parishes fill the corner of northwest Louisiana, with Arkansas to the north and Texas to the west. Bossier (pronounced BOH-zher) City, the main urban center in Bossier Parish, snugs up against Shreveport in Caddo Parish, with only the Red River between them. Together, Shreveport and Bossier City make up a metropolitan area of some 447,000 and serve as a three-state cultural and commercial center for the Ark-La-Tex: southwestern Arkansas, northwestern Louisiana and eastern Texas.

Living in the Shreveport-Bossier City metro area means enjoying a low cost of living, low taxes, mild climate, top-rated health care, good jobs, positive business and educational opportunities, and numerous entertainment options. A comfortable, exciting lifestyle is possible here.

Riverboat casinos, jazz, sports — major, minor and collegiate — Mardi Gras, horse racing, the Louisiana Boardwalk, superb eating, fine opera and symphony programs, rodeo and water sports: This is the kind of place where you can afford to do it all.

History

Barksdale AFB Welcome History

 

The Caddo Indians, related to the Wichita and the Pawnee, were in the Shreveport-Bossier area first. The Caddos tangled with Europeans in 1542 when Hernando de Soto’s expedition attacked them. Then, after missionaries arrived, the tribe was decimated by smallpox. Later, other missionaries carrying other diseases created worse epidemics, diminishing the Caddo population to a bare 1,000. In July 1835, the few remaining Caddo Indians sold most of their land to the United States, and in 1859, they were forcibly relocated by the U.S. government to an Indian reservation in Oklahoma territory.

Shreveport got its name from steamboat captain Henry Miller Shreve. Because he had successfully pioneered steamboat navigation on the Red River of the North and the Ohio and Mississippi rivers, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers hired him in 1833 to clear the Red River of the South of a 165-mile-long continuous pile of limbs, brush and logs called the Great Raft. It clogged the river and blocked boat traffic. Using a specially modified riverboat plus four other steamboats and about 160 men, Shreve cleared the river, opening the region for commercial development.

The cleared river led to the formation of the Shreve Town Company in 1836, a group of investors — Shreve was one — aiming to develop a new community at the intersection of the Red River and the Texas Trail, an overland trading route into Texas. The community created by the Shreve Town Co. was incorporated as the town of Shreveport in 1839 and the city of Shreveport in 1871. Shreveport originally consisted of 64 city blocks intersected by eight streets running west from the Red River, and eight streets running south from Cross Bayou. Today, this 64-block area is Shreveport’s central business district and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Because of its location on the Red River, Shreveport quickly became a center for steamboat commerce, moving cotton and other agricultural crops grown in the South to major markets on the East Coast. Shreveport also became a center for rebellion during the American Civil War and was headquarters for the Trans-Mississippi Department of the Confederate Army. Shreveport briefly became the capital of Louisiana when Baton Rouge was overrun by the Union Army, and served as capital of the Confederacy after Richmond fell. Confederate soldiers from Shreveport did not give up their fight until June 1865, two months after Gen. Robert E. Lee surrendered to Gen. Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox in April.

For many years during the second half of the 19th century, Shreveport profited by being a transportation hub for riverboat traffic. When that mode of transportation became obsolete and trains connected east and west, Shreveport turned into a central transportation nexus for trains. With the coming of the Interstate highway system, Shreveport became a center for commercial trucking, and now, in the 21st century, huge amounts of commodities move in and out of Shreveport-Bossier City every day via boat, train, truck and airplane.

Bossier City, smaller than Shreveport and separated from it by the Red River, was originally called Cane’s Landing after one of the Shreve Town Co. founders, who had a plantation on the east side of the Red. In the early 1900s, it was renamed Bossier City for Pierre Evariste John-Baptiste Bossier, a noted figure in the state’s early history. It was the site of Fort Smith, a major Confederate stronghold in the Civil War, and a memorial park now commemorates that site. After World War II, the city’s population grew rapidly as industries expanded. Barksdale Air Force Base, established on 22,000 acres of cotton fields at the edge of Bossier City in the early 1930s as the result of concerted action by Shreveport community leaders, is a major source of revenue and employment for the Shreveport-Bossier City region.

History

Barksdale AFB Welcome History

 

The Caddo Indians, related to the Wichita and the Pawnee, were in the Shreveport-Bossier area first. The Caddos tangled with Europeans in 1542 when Hernando de Soto’s expedition attacked them. Then, after missionaries arrived, the tribe was decimated by smallpox. Later, other missionaries carrying other diseases created worse epidemics, diminishing the Caddo population to a bare 1,000. In July 1835, the few remaining Caddo Indians sold most of their land to the United States, and in 1859, they were forcibly relocated by the U.S. government to an Indian reservation in Oklahoma territory.

Shreveport got its name from steamboat captain Henry Miller Shreve. Because he had successfully pioneered steamboat navigation on the Red River of the North and the Ohio and Mississippi rivers, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers hired him in 1833 to clear the Red River of the South of a 165-mile-long continuous pile of limbs, brush and logs called the Great Raft. It clogged the river and blocked boat traffic. Using a specially modified riverboat plus four other steamboats and about 160 men, Shreve cleared the river, opening the region for commercial development.

The cleared river led to the formation of the Shreve Town Company in 1836, a group of investors — Shreve was one — aiming to develop a new community at the intersection of the Red River and the Texas Trail, an overland trading route into Texas. The community created by the Shreve Town Co. was incorporated as the town of Shreveport in 1839 and the city of Shreveport in 1871. Shreveport originally consisted of 64 city blocks intersected by eight streets running west from the Red River, and eight streets running south from Cross Bayou. Today, this 64-block area is Shreveport’s central business district and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Because of its location on the Red River, Shreveport quickly became a center for steamboat commerce, moving cotton and other agricultural crops grown in the South to major markets on the East Coast. Shreveport also became a center for rebellion during the American Civil War and was headquarters for the Trans-Mississippi Department of the Confederate Army. Shreveport briefly became the capital of Louisiana when Baton Rouge was overrun by the Union Army, and served as capital of the Confederacy after Richmond fell. Confederate soldiers from Shreveport did not give up their fight until June 1865, two months after Gen. Robert E. Lee surrendered to Gen. Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox in April.

For many years during the second half of the 19th century, Shreveport profited by being a transportation hub for riverboat traffic. When that mode of transportation became obsolete and trains connected east and west, Shreveport turned into a central transportation nexus for trains. With the coming of the Interstate highway system, Shreveport became a center for commercial trucking, and now, in the 21st century, huge amounts of commodities move in and out of Shreveport-Bossier City every day via boat, train, truck and airplane.

Bossier City, smaller than Shreveport and separated from it by the Red River, was originally called Cane’s Landing after one of the Shreve Town Co. founders, who had a plantation on the east side of the Red. In the early 1900s, it was renamed Bossier City for Pierre Evariste John-Baptiste Bossier, a noted figure in the state’s early history. It was the site of Fort Smith, a major Confederate stronghold in the Civil War, and a memorial park now commemorates that site. After World War II, the city’s population grew rapidly as industries expanded. Barksdale Air Force Base, established on 22,000 acres of cotton fields at the edge of Bossier City in the early 1930s as the result of concerted action by Shreveport community leaders, is a major source of revenue and employment for the Shreveport-Bossier City region.

Weather and Climate

Barksdale AFB Welcome Weather and Climate

 

Louisiana is categorized as having a humid subtropical climate: damp and hot. Because the Gulf of Mexico moderates the extremes in the southern part of the state, northern Louisiana is both hotter in summer and cooler in winter than along the coast. Hot summers range from 72 to 93 degrees, with winters ranging between 36-degree lows to 57-degree highs. May is usually the wettest month, with 5 or more inches of rain; August is driest, with less than 3 inches on average. High humidity makes 90-degree temperatures difficult to tolerate in comfort, so modern air conditioning is a blessing all around, especially for anyone just moving to the region.

Local Hazards

Every second counts in a disaster so planning and preparation can be lifesavers.

The Louisiana Governor’s Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness leads and supports the state and its citizens in preparation for, response to and recovery from all emergencies and disasters. The organization’s website gives families, businesses and public safety professionals valuable information and resources regarding various emergency scenarios. The website provides information on creating an emergency plan and emergency kit, pet preparedness and evacuation. For more information about disaster preparedness, visit http://gohsep.la.gov.

Shreveport-Bossier can experience big storms any time of year. Tornadoes are more likely in spring, severe thunderstorms occur all summer, and stormy, wet fallout from hurricanes and tropical storms is likely in summer and fall.

The following are considered significant hazards in Louisiana.

Hurricanes

Hurricanes and severe sea storms often batter the Louisiana coast, creating massive destruction. Shreveport-Bossier is far enough north and inland that the high winds and waves don’t reach it directly. However, when such huge sea storms lash southern Louisiana, the northern part of the state can receive torrential rains and daunting storm conditions. With extra-heavy rains, consider flash floods and prepare accordingly. Stay alert; keep track of conditions; have a family plan everyone knows; stock emergency food, water and equipment; have a high-ground place to go; and evacuate if officials tell you to do so.

Sun Exposure

Some exposure to sunlight is good, even healthy, but too much can be dangerous. Broad-spectrum ultraviolet (UV) radiation, listed as a known carcinogen by the National Institute of Environmental Health Science, can cause blistering sunburns, as well as long-term problems like skin cancer, cataracts and immune suppression. Overexposure also causes wrinkling and premature aging of the skin.

Cloud cover reduces UV levels, but not completely. Depending on the thickness of the cloud cover, you can still burn on a cold and dim day, so be prepared with sunglasses, sunscreen, long-sleeved garments, wide-brimmed hats and a parasol.

Thunderstorms

While more likely at certain times of year, thunderstorms can happen anytime. A severe thunderstorm can knock out power, bring high winds, lightning, flash floods and hail, and turn into a twister in seconds. Pay attention to storm warnings. Remember the rule: “When thunder roars, head indoors.” Once inside, avoid electrical appliances and plumbing fixtures, and use only a cordless telephone in an emergency. Unplug your desktop computer. Do the same with other plugged-in electronics or use surge protectors. The National Weather Service recommends following the 30/30 Rule: People should seek shelter if the “Flash-to-Bang” delay — length of time in seconds from the sight of the lightning flash to the arrival of its subsequent thunder — is 30 seconds or less, and remain under cover for 30 minutes after the final thunderclap.

For more safety information, visit the National Weather Service’s website at www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov.

Tornadoes

Shreveport-Bossier City is on the edge of Tornado Alley, the track of tornado activity from the Gulf of Mexico north through the Great Plains. Because tornadoes often accompany thunderstorms, pay close attention to changing weather conditions when there is a severe thunderstorm watch or warning.

Tornadoes can develop quickly, with minimal warning, so it is important to have a plan in place before they occur. If a tornado watch is issued, weather conditions favor the formation of tornadoes, such as during a severe thunderstorm. A tornado warning is issued when a tornado funnel is sighted or indicated by weather radar. You should take shelter immediately during a tornado warning.

Know where the safest place of shelter is in your home — a basement, or an inside room on the lowest floor (like a closet or bathroom) if your home does not have a basement. Avoid windows and get under something sturdy, like a heavy table, and cover your body with a blanket or mattress to protect yourself from flying debris.

For more information on tornado preparedness, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at www.cdc.gov or visit http://emergency.cdc.gov/disasters/tornadoes/prepared.asp for information on how to develop an emergency plan.

Weather and Climate

Barksdale AFB Welcome Weather and Climate

 

Louisiana is categorized as having a humid subtropical climate: damp and hot. Because the Gulf of Mexico moderates the extremes in the southern part of the state, northern Louisiana is both hotter in summer and cooler in winter than along the coast. Hot summers range from 72 to 93 degrees, with winters ranging between 36-degree lows to 57-degree highs. May is usually the wettest month, with 5 or more inches of rain; August is driest, with less than 3 inches on average. High humidity makes 90-degree temperatures difficult to tolerate in comfort, so modern air conditioning is a blessing all around, especially for anyone just moving to the region.

Local Hazards

Every second counts in a disaster so planning and preparation can be lifesavers.

The Louisiana Governor’s Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness leads and supports the state and its citizens in preparation for, response to and recovery from all emergencies and disasters. The organization’s website gives families, businesses and public safety professionals valuable information and resources regarding various emergency scenarios. The website provides information on creating an emergency plan and emergency kit, pet preparedness and evacuation. For more information about disaster preparedness, visit http://gohsep.la.gov.

Shreveport-Bossier can experience big storms any time of year. Tornadoes are more likely in spring, severe thunderstorms occur all summer, and stormy, wet fallout from hurricanes and tropical storms is likely in summer and fall.

The following are considered significant hazards in Louisiana.

Hurricanes

Hurricanes and severe sea storms often batter the Louisiana coast, creating massive destruction. Shreveport-Bossier is far enough north and inland that the high winds and waves don’t reach it directly. However, when such huge sea storms lash southern Louisiana, the northern part of the state can receive torrential rains and daunting storm conditions. With extra-heavy rains, consider flash floods and prepare accordingly. Stay alert; keep track of conditions; have a family plan everyone knows; stock emergency food, water and equipment; have a high-ground place to go; and evacuate if officials tell you to do so.

Sun Exposure

Some exposure to sunlight is good, even healthy, but too much can be dangerous. Broad-spectrum ultraviolet (UV) radiation, listed as a known carcinogen by the National Institute of Environmental Health Science, can cause blistering sunburns, as well as long-term problems like skin cancer, cataracts and immune suppression. Overexposure also causes wrinkling and premature aging of the skin.

Cloud cover reduces UV levels, but not completely. Depending on the thickness of the cloud cover, you can still burn on a cold and dim day, so be prepared with sunglasses, sunscreen, long-sleeved garments, wide-brimmed hats and a parasol.

Thunderstorms

While more likely at certain times of year, thunderstorms can happen anytime. A severe thunderstorm can knock out power, bring high winds, lightning, flash floods and hail, and turn into a twister in seconds. Pay attention to storm warnings. Remember the rule: “When thunder roars, head indoors.” Once inside, avoid electrical appliances and plumbing fixtures, and use only a cordless telephone in an emergency. Unplug your desktop computer. Do the same with other plugged-in electronics or use surge protectors. The National Weather Service recommends following the 30/30 Rule: People should seek shelter if the “Flash-to-Bang” delay — length of time in seconds from the sight of the lightning flash to the arrival of its subsequent thunder — is 30 seconds or less, and remain under cover for 30 minutes after the final thunderclap.

For more safety information, visit the National Weather Service’s website at www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov.

Tornadoes

Shreveport-Bossier City is on the edge of Tornado Alley, the track of tornado activity from the Gulf of Mexico north through the Great Plains. Because tornadoes often accompany thunderstorms, pay close attention to changing weather conditions when there is a severe thunderstorm watch or warning.

Tornadoes can develop quickly, with minimal warning, so it is important to have a plan in place before they occur. If a tornado watch is issued, weather conditions favor the formation of tornadoes, such as during a severe thunderstorm. A tornado warning is issued when a tornado funnel is sighted or indicated by weather radar. You should take shelter immediately during a tornado warning.

Know where the safest place of shelter is in your home — a basement, or an inside room on the lowest floor (like a closet or bathroom) if your home does not have a basement. Avoid windows and get under something sturdy, like a heavy table, and cover your body with a blanket or mattress to protect yourself from flying debris.

For more information on tornado preparedness, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at www.cdc.gov or visit http://emergency.cdc.gov/disasters/tornadoes/prepared.asp for information on how to develop an emergency plan.

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