Run, Ride, Watch, Enjoy on Louisiana's Swamp Road
HISTORY TIMELINE on the MANCHAC GREENWAY
- 4,000 - 3,500 years before present – The underpinnings of the Isthmus
of Manchac and a half-size Lake Pontchartrain are created
as the Mississippi River’s Cocodrie and St. Bernard
deltas builds eastward though the future River Parishes
and southeast Louisiana.
- 2,500 - 2,000 years before present - Lake Maurepas begins to form.
- 800 BC – 1400 – Indians of the archaeological Woodland Period occupy the banks of Bayou Jasmine for 2,200 years (near the site of the future Ruddock and excavations for I-55).
- 1699 – After Pierre Lemoyne d’Iberville explored the lower Mississippi River to solidify the French king’s claim to the entire river valley, he travels through Pass Mancac back to his ship in Mississippi Sound.
- 1699 – 1803 – Pass Manchac became an important thoroughfare for colonial exploration and settlement and as an international boundary between France, Britain and Spain.
- 1803 – The Louisiana purchase makes the southern half of the Isthmus of Manchac part of the United States. The northern half of the isthmus remains in the hands of Spanish West Florida.
- 1847-1927- Crevasses at Bonnet Carre, Nita
Plantation and elsewhere deliver huge quantities
of Mississippi River water and sediments to
Lake Maurepas and the southern end of the
- 1858-60 – Construction of the New Orleans, Jackson and Great Northern
Railroad is completed through the Isthmus of Manchac.
- 1862 – Confederate batteries on the north sides of North Pass and Pass
Manchac are taken by Federal troops who establish Fort Stephens on the main pass.
- 1863 – The Civil War conflict destroys the railroad bridge and lighthouse at
- 1840 –1915 - Communities of Frenier, Ruddock, Galva, Akers, Strader, Wagram,
Owl Bayou, Sharkey and Jena populate along the western shore of Lake
Pontchartrain, some located at railroad watering stops. Most grow produce for the city.
- September 29, 1915 - A hurricane from the West Indies tracked across Grand Isle and Lake Pontchartrain and killed 275 people, the great majority on the western shore of the lake. It had the highest winds and the lowest barometric pressure ever recorded for any hurricane up to that time and today would be rated as a strong Category 4. The flooded, destroyed and salt-poisoned land on the Manchac Isthmus eventually healed, however, several small communities up and down the isthmus were gone forever.
- 1927 – Components of the New Orleans West End to Hammond Lakeshore
Highway are installed – the Jefferson Parish shore was paved, piles were driven
across the lake-end of the Bonnet Carre Spillway and the road from
Laplace to Ponchatoula on the Isthmus of Manchac was completed.
- 1934 – Middendorf’s Seafood and Fried Chicken Restaurant was established at Akers.
- 1960 – U.S. 51 was completed.
- September 13, 1974 – The Manchac Bridge Disaster
- 1979 – With the opening of the Manchac Swamp Bridge, one of the world’s longest over water, Interstate 55 was completed.
- 2016 – The Manchac Greenway was established by the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development with the installation of designating signs along the roadway.
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