Crowley, Louisiana

Crowley, Louisiana

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Crowley is a city in and the parish seat of Acadia Parish
Acadia Parish, Louisiana
Acadia Parish is a parish located in the U.S. state of Louisiana. The parish seat is Crowley. According to the 2010 census, the population of Acadia Parish is 61,773. The parish was founded from parts of St...

, Louisiana
Louisiana is a state located in the southern region of the United States of America. Its capital is Baton Rouge and largest city is New Orleans. Louisiana is the only state in the U.S. with political subdivisions termed parishes, which are local governments equivalent to counties...

, United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

. The population was 14,225 at the 2000 census. The city is noted for its annual International Rice Festival
International Rice Festival
The International Rice Festival is an annual festival held during the third weekend in October in Crowley, Louisiana, celebrating rice. The event is Louisiana's oldest agricultural festival, and one of the state's largest...

. Crowley has the nickname of "Rice Capital of America", because at one time it was a major center for rice harvesting and milling. Today, Crowley still has a number of rice mills and rice is the main crop of many local farmers. In addition, in recent years, crawfish farming has become increasingly popular.

Crowley is the home of Mastertrak Studios. The studio that is now Mastertrak was founded by J. D. "Jay" Miller in 1955 and has hosted such notable recording artists as Paul Simon
Paul Simon
Paul Frederic Simon is an American singer-songwriter and guitarist.Simon is best known for his success, beginning in 1965, as part of the duo Simon & Garfunkel, with musical partner Art Garfunkel. Simon wrote most of the pair's songs, including three that reached number one on the US singles...

 and John Fogerty
John Fogerty
John Cameron Fogerty is an American rock singer, songwriter, and guitarist, best known for his time with the swamp rock/roots rock band Creedence Clearwater Revival and as a #1 solo recording artist. Fogerty has a rare distinction of being named on Rolling Stone magazine's list of 100 Greatest...

. The studio is known for producing Swamp blues
Swamp blues
Swamp blues, sometimes the Excello sound, is a sub-genre of blues music and a variation of Louisiana blues that developed around Baton Rouge in the 1950s and which reached a peak of popularity in the 1960s. It generally has a slow tempo and incorporates influences from other genres of music,...

 music, as well as segregationist music of the 1960s.

The Crowley High School "Fighting Gents" were State Division 3A Champs in the 1989 football season and had a 8-2 regular season. Crowley is also the home of Notre Dame High School. Notre Dame is a parish-wide Catholic school whose football program has won 4 state championships and numerous District Champion titles.

Crowley is the principal city of the Crowley Micropolitan Statistical Area, which includes all of Acadia Parish. It is also part of the larger Lafayette
Lafayette, Louisiana
Lafayette is a city in and the parish seat of Lafayette Parish, Louisiana, United States, on the Vermilion River. The population was 120,623 at the 2010 census...

Acadiana, or The Heart of Acadiana, is the official name given to the French Louisiana region that is home to a large Francophone population. Of the 64 parishes that make up Louisiana, 22 named parishes and other parishes of similar cultural environment, make up the intrastate...

 Combined Statistical Area
Lafayette-Acadiana combined statistical area
The Lafayette-Acadiana Combined Statistical Area is made up of six parishes in the Acadiana region of southern Louisiana. The statistical area consists of the Lafayette Metropolitan Statistical Area and four micropolitan statistical areas - Abbeville, Crowley, New Iberia, and Opelousas-Eunice...

. The town is named after Pat Crowley


Crowley is located at 30°12′49"N 92°22′25"W (30.213618, -92.373695) and has an elevation of 20 feet (6.1 m).

According to the United States Census Bureau
United States Census Bureau
The United States Census Bureau is the government agency that is responsible for the United States Census. It also gathers other national demographic and economic data...

, the city has a total area of 4.9 square miles (12.7 km²), all of it land.


Crowley was founded in 1886 by C.C. Duson
Curley Duson
Cornelius C. Duson, [b. August 31, 1846] was a legendary Louisiana lawman. He was the sheriff of St. Landry Parish, Louisiana from 1874 to 1888. During his career, he was known for his dogged determination....

 and W.W. Duson. Incorporated in 1887, W.W. Duson, General Manager of Southwest Louisiana Land Company, platted and developed Crowley. W.W. Duson's daughter, Maime Duson, married P.L. Lawrence, who founded the First National Bank of Crowley. The 10 story building was once the tallest building between Houston and New Orleans. They lived with their three children, P.L. Jr., Pattee, and Jack at 219 East 2nd Street. The house is now on the historic register.

In the early 20th century, oil discoveries in Acadia Parish brought oil companies into the area looking to do business. Lafayette's Oil Center was initially planned for Crowley but the undocumented rumor is that the Lawrence family discouraged it. Another local rumor has it that The University of Louisiana at Lafayette
University of Louisiana at Lafayette
The University of Louisiana at Lafayette, or UL Lafayette, is a coeducational, public research university located in Lafayette, Louisiana, in the heart of Acadiana...

 was first offered to Crowley as well. The descendants of W.W. Duson owned much of Crowley and the surrounding land. P.L. Lawrence often walked about town and intended to keep Crowley as such a town.

The town was named after Pat Crowley, an Irish
Irish people
The Irish people are an ethnic group who originate in Ireland, an island in northwestern Europe. Ireland has been populated for around 9,000 years , with the Irish people's earliest ancestors recorded having legends of being descended from groups such as the Nemedians, Fomorians, Fir Bolg, Tuatha...

 railroad man who brought the railroad depot to W.W. Duson's land. Members of the Holland family, who are descendants of founder W.W. Duson, still live in Crowley today.


As of the census
A census is the procedure of systematically acquiring and recording information about the members of a given population. It is a regularly occurring and official count of a particular population. The term is used mostly in connection with national population and housing censuses; other common...

of 2000, there were 14,225 people, 5,294 households, and 3,668 families residing in the city. The population density
Population density
Population density is a measurement of population per unit area or unit volume. It is frequently applied to living organisms, and particularly to humans...

 was 2,895.1 people per square mile (1,118.6/km²). There were 5,904 housing units at an average density of 1,201.6 per square mile (464.3/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 67.83% White, 30.98% African American, 0.15% Native American, 0.29% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.23% from other races
Race (United States Census)
Race and ethnicity in the United States Census, as defined by the Federal Office of Management and Budget and the United States Census Bureau, are self-identification data items in which residents choose the race or races with which they most closely identify, and indicate whether or not they are...

, and 0.51% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.10% of the population.

There were 5,294 households, out of which 34.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.4% were married couples
Marriage is a social union or legal contract between people that creates kinship. It is an institution in which interpersonal relationships, usually intimate and sexual, are acknowledged in a variety of ways, depending on the culture or subculture in which it is found...

 living together, 20.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.7% were non-families. 26.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.59 and the average family size was 3.13.

In the city the population was spread out with 28.5% under the age of 18, 9.8% from 18 to 24, 25.9% from 25 to 44, 20.3% from 45 to 64, and 15.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 89.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 83.3 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $24,495, and the median income for a family was $28,180. Males had a median income of $27,684 versus $19,706 for females. The per capita income
Per capita income
Per capita income or income per person is a measure of mean income within an economic aggregate, such as a country or city. It is calculated by taking a measure of all sources of income in the aggregate and dividing it by the total population...

 for the city was $13,734. About 24.3% of families and 28.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 36.1% of those under age 18 and 22.6% of those age 65 or over.

Notable people from Crowley

  • John Breaux
    John Breaux
    John Berlinger Breaux is a former United States senator from Louisiana who served from 1987 until 2005. He was also a member of the United States House of Representatives from 1972 to 1987. He was considered one of the more conservative national legislators from the Democratic Party...

    , former US Senator
    United States Senate
    The United States Senate is the upper house of the bicameral legislature of the United States, and together with the United States House of Representatives comprises the United States Congress. The composition and powers of the Senate are established in Article One of the U.S. Constitution. Each...

     and before that a Representative
    United States House of Representatives
    The United States House of Representatives is one of the two Houses of the United States Congress, the bicameral legislature which also includes the Senate.The composition and powers of the House are established in Article One of the Constitution...

  • Jack Brooks
    Jack Brooks (politician)
    Jack Bascom Brooks is a retired Democratic politician from the U.S. state of Texas, who served for more than 40 years in the U.S. House of Representatives. He was defeated for reelection in the 1994 election...

    , member of the United States House of Representatives
    United States House of Representatives
    The United States House of Representatives is one of the two Houses of the United States Congress, the bicameral legislature which also includes the Senate.The composition and powers of the House are established in Article One of the Constitution...

     from Texas
    Texas is the second largest U.S. state by both area and population, and the largest state by area in the contiguous United States.The name, based on the Caddo word "Tejas" meaning "friends" or "allies", was applied by the Spanish to the Caddo themselves and to the region of their settlement in...

     from 1953 to 1995 and Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee
    United States House Committee on the Judiciary
    The U.S. House Committee on the Judiciary, also called the House Judiciary Committee, is a standing committee of the United States House of Representatives. It is charged with overseeing the administration of justice within the federal courts, administrative agencies and Federal law enforcement...

     from 1989 to 1995, born in Crowley
  • Tommy Casanova
    Tommy Casanova
    Thomas Henry "Tommy" Casanova, III is an ophthalmologist in Crowley, Louisiana, and a former American football player and politician. He played football for the LSU Tigers and the Cincinnati Bengals...

    , four-time All-Pro Cincinnati Bengals
    Cincinnati Bengals
    The Cincinnati Bengals are a professional football team based in Cincinnati, Ohio. They are members of the AFC's North Division in the National Football League . The Bengals began play in 1968 as an expansion team in the American Football League , and joined the NFL in 1970 in the AFL-NFL...

     defensive back/punt returner from 1972–1977
  • Edwin Edwards
    Edwin Edwards
    Edwin Washington Edwards served as the Governor of Louisiana for four terms , twice as many terms as any other Louisiana chief executive has served. Edwards was also Louisiana's first Roman Catholic governor in the 20th century...

    , former governor of Louisiana, U.S. representative, and state senator
  • Paul B. Freeland
    Paul B. Freeland
    Paul Butterfield Freeland was a Presbyterian minister, historian, philanthropist, and genealogist from Crowley, the seat of Acadia Parish in south Louisiana, United States....

    , Presbyterian minister, genealogist, philanthropist, historian of Acadia Parish
  • Jim Gueno
    Jim Gueno
    -Career:Gueno was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in the ninth round of the 1976 NFL Draft and played with the team for five seasons. He played at the collegiate level at Tulane University.-References:...

    , Green Bay Packers linebacker from 1976–1980
  • Allen C. Gremillion
    Allen C. Gremillion
    Allen C. Gremillion was an attorney from Crowley, Louisiana, who served as a Democrat in the Louisiana House of Representatives from 1964 until his death....

    , state representative, 1964–1971
  • Winsor Harmon
    Winsor Harmon
    Winsor Harmon aka Winsor Dewey Harmon III, , is an American actor best known for his role as Thorne Forrester on the American soap opera The Bold and the Beautiful. He took over the role from Jeff Trachta in December 1996.-Career:Harmon portrayed Del Henry on the program All My Children from 1994...

    , soap opera actor born on the day of the John F. Kennedy assassination
    John F. Kennedy assassination
    John Fitzgerald Kennedy, the thirty-fifth President of the United States, was assassinated at 12:30 p.m. Central Standard Time on Friday, November 22, 1963, in Dealey Plaza, Dallas, Texas...

  • Chris John
    Chris John
    Christopher Charles "Chris" John is American politician who was a Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1997 to 2005, representing Louisiana's 7th congressional district.-Early life:...

    , former Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives
    United States House of Representatives
    The United States House of Representatives is one of the two Houses of the United States Congress, the bicameral legislature which also includes the Senate.The composition and powers of the House are established in Article One of the Constitution...

     and the Louisiana House of Representatives
  • John N. John, III, state representative, 1972–1983
  • Edward "Kidd" Jordan
    Kidd Jordan
    Edward "Kidd" Jordan is an American jazz saxophonist and music educator from New Orleans, Louisiana....

    , jazz saxophonist, composer, and educator
  • Victoria Reggie Kennedy
    Victoria Reggie Kennedy
    Victoria Reggie "Vicki" Kennedy is an American lawyer and the widow of U.S. Senator Ted Kennedy.-Early life and education:...

    , native of Crowley, wife of the late Senator Edward M. Kennedy
  • Rose Wilder Lane
    Rose Wilder Lane
    Rose Wilder Lane was an American journalist, travel writer, novelist, and political theorist...

    , daughter of famed American Children's author Laura Ingalls Wilder
    Laura Ingalls Wilder
    Laura Elizabeth Ingalls Wilder was an American author who wrote the Little House series of books based on her childhood in a pioneer family...

     and one of the founders of the American libertarian movement, attended high school in Crowley
  • Gil Pinac
    Gil Pinac
    Gillis James Pinac, known as Gil Pinac is a former 12-year Democratic member of the Louisiana House of Representatives from Crowley, the seat of Acadia Parish...

    , member of the Crowley City Council (1987–1996), Alderman-at-Large & Mayor Pro-tempore; member of the Louisiana State House of Representatives (1996–2008); candidate for Louisiana Public Service Commission
    Louisiana Public Service Commission
    Louisiana Public Service Commission is an independent regulatory agency which manages public utilities and motor carriers in Louisiana. The commission has five elected members chosen in single-member districts for staggered six-year terms...

  • Edmund Reggie
    Edmund Reggie
    Edmund M. Reggie, Sr. , is a Democratic politician and former city judge from Louisiana. Reggie is originally from the rice-growing city of Crowley, the seat of Acadia Parish, but resides in Lafayette. He still claims that he maintains the record of being the youngest person to serve as a judge in...

    , former Crowley judge; father-in-law of Edward Kennedy
  • Orlando Thomas
    Orlando Thomas
    Orlando Thomas is a former defensive back who played in the NFL from 1995 until 2001. He played his entire career with the Minnesota Vikings....

    , Minnesota Vikings defensive back from 1995–2001
  • Johnny Rebel
    Johnny Rebel (singer)
    Johnny Rebel is the pseudonym of Cajun country musician Clifford Joseph Trahan , also known as Pee Wee Trahan. Trahan has used this pseudonym most notably on racist recordings issued in the 1960s on J. D. "Jay" Miller's Reb Rebel label of Crowley, Louisiana...

    , singer of anti-African-American songs

External links