Southdown Plantation

Southdown Plantation (HM2M88)

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N 29° 35.375', W 90° 44.427'

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The estate that sugar built

Southdown Plantation was more than a grand mansion. With its own railroad system, refinery, sugar house, and company store, it was once a small town in itself—an enterprise that formed the root of Houma's sugar industry. W.J.Minor built the first sugar mill here in 1846, one of 86 mills that operated in Terrebonne Parish during the industry's boom years.Photo Points1 - Molasses TanksMolasses, a by product of sugar refining, was used to make rum.2 - Company StorePlantation managers paid workers in scrip or tokens redeemable at the company store.3 - Overseer's House 4 - Workers CabinsBefore and after the Civil War, Southdown laborers lived on site.5 - Railroad Bridge to Mill The plantation owned 16 locomotives. with 26 miles of track. Tracks cross the bayou here.6 - Storage Warehouse7 - Little Bayou BlackSouthdown owned 26 barges, towed by steamboats, which picked up cane grown along the bayous.8 - Sugarcane FieldsThe plantation once incorporated 8.000 acres of cane fields.9 - Mill and RefineryThe mill operated 24 hours a day during the grinding season. The refinery could produce as much as 40 million pounds of granulated sugar in a year.10 - Mill Yard Crane Hoist11 - Pecan

Pecan trees provided shade, but also nuts for making Louisiana's famous sweet confection - pralines.12 - Main HouseUsing bricks fired here, W.J. Minor built the first floor of the Greek-Revival mansion about 1858-1859.
Photo Captions
View of the mansion's dining room today. In 1893, Henry Minor built the mansion's second floor and added the stained glass panels featuring sugarcane leaves.During WWII managers hired women to keep the refinery running. Sugarcane operations ended here in 1975.In the early 1900s workers could redeem these Southdown tokens for milk at the company store. Labor laws prevent this type of payment today.
HM NumberHM2M88
Placed ByHouma Area Convention and Visitors Bureau and Discover Houma
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Friday, October 25th, 2019 at 8:03pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)15R E 718848 N 3275440
Decimal Degrees29.58958333, -90.74045000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 29° 35.375', W 90° 44.427'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds29° 35' 22.5" N, 90° 44' 25.62" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling North
Closest Postal AddressAt or near , ,
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