Mission Statement

The Bayou Pigeon Heritage Association is organized as a 501 c (3) non-profit corporation for the purposes of saving the St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church Complex from abandonment and demolition by the Catholic Diocese of Baton Rouge and for preserving and using the said Complex for the preservation, promotion, perpetuation, education and enhancement of the past and present living histories, culture, heritage and folk life of the Swamp Cajuns of Bayou Pigeon, Iberville Parish, and Louisiana.

The story of Bayou Pigeon
starts with The Atchafalaya Basin

It was the Atchafalaya Basin that created the true Cajun swamp culture. The primary pursuit in the interior of the basin became centered around natural resource exploitation.

Fisherman and trappers valued their independence and self-sufficiency. the rugged and isolation of the basin added to that independence. No roads penetrated to the edges of until late 1920’s. The inhabitants could live there at no cost and no government intrusion.

Commercial Fishing and trapping were the primary way of making a living the basin prior to WWII.

On the east side of the Atchafalaya Basin. Four primary area were occupied by the Cajuns, Pierre part being the largest, followed by Bayou Pigeon, Belle River / The Godel and Lower Lake Verrett (4-mile Bayou) area.

An economy based on hunting and fishing became the way of making a living. The primary resources were freshwater fish, crabs, and pelts. Secondary resources were frogs, alligators, turtles. Moss picking and harvesting cypress were also prominent as was harvesting wild game, ducks, deer’s, and squirrel hunting for the kitchen table. These occupations required little startup expenses and were quickly mastered.

This treasure of historical information is presented to preserve a culture that has passed gradually with the hope that this and future generations will appreciate the story of "Bayou Pigeon, Louisiana - Spirit of the Atchafalaya."



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