Allen Parish Genealogy

 Neighboring Parishes

  Jeff Davis

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Welcome to Allen Parish Genealogy

Allen Parish was part of the Opelousas County after the Louisiana Territory was established in 1803. In 1807, the territory was divided into parishes and Allen was part of St. Landry Parish. Allen remained part of St. Landry Parish until 1840 when Calcasieu Parish was carved from the very large St. Landry Parish. In 1870, Cameron Parish was carved from Calcasieu Parish and also gained a piece of Vermillion Parish. Calcasieu remained the same until 1912 when it was divided into four parishes, including Allen Parish. I am establishing this line of information for those of you who may be researching ancestors. You will need to look at the Calcasieu and St. Landry Parish Archives as well as the Allen Parish Archives.

Allen Parish was named for the Confederate governor Henry Watkins Allen. He was the Confederate governor of Louisiana for one year between 1864 - 1865 during the Civil War. Allen Parish was part of the prairie country where the Attakapas Indians, also known as the Atakapa, made their home. As the European settlers began to arrive in Opelousas County when the Louisiana Territory was opened for settlement, some began to move into the Allen Parish area. The towns of Oberlin, Kinder, Reeves and Oakdale were established before Allen Parish became an official parish. Luther Hall was Governor of Louisiana in 1912 when Allen was established as a parish. He appointed five men to an interim police jury from the communities of Oberlin, Kinder, Reeves and Oakdale.

Oberlin is Allen Parish’s oldest settlement, incorporated in February 1900. It’s the parish’s seat of government and is named for Oberlin, Ohio, home of its first settlers. Oakdale was originally known as Bay and then as Dunnsville. It later became Oakdale allegedly because a team of surveyors were ovserved large oak trees in the area. Elizabeth, founded in 1906, was named for the daughter of a man who had built a mill in the area. The town once was owned by a lumber company. In 1964, the town was incorporated by Gov. Jimmie H. Davis. Kinder takes its name from a general store that once was operated by James Kinder.

As of the census of 2000, there were 25,440 people, 8,102 households, and 5,930 families residing in the parish. The population density was 33/mi. There were 9,157 housing units at an average density of 12/mi. The racial makeup of the parish was 71.90% White, 24.60% African American, 1.72% Native American, 0.57% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.24% from other races, and 0.96% from two or more races. 4.50% of the population were Hispanic of any race.
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  © 2004-2014 Allen Parish web page by Bryant W. Walker Page last updated on Saturday, 28-Sep-2013 03:59:19 EDT.