Caddo Parish, Louisiana
|Parish of Caddo|
Caddo Parish Courthouse in Shreveport
Location within the U.S. state of Louisiana
Louisiana's location within the U.S.
|Founded||January 18, 1838|
|Named for||Caddo Native Americans|
|Parish seat (and largest city)||Shreveport|
|o Total||2,430 km2 (937 sq mi)|
|o Land||2,280 km2 (879 sq mi)|
|o Water||150 km2 (58 sq mi)|
|o percentage||16 km2 (6.2 sq mi)|
| o Estimate |
|o Rank||LA: 4th|
|o Density||110/km2 (270/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC-6 (CST)|
|o Summer (DST)||UTC-5 (CDT)|
Caddo Parish (French: Paroisse de Caddo) is a parish located in the northwest corner of the U.S. state of Louisiana. As of the 2010 census, the population was 254,969, making it the fourth-most populous parish in Louisiana. The parish seat is Shreveport, which developed along the Red River.
In 1838, Caddo Parish was created by territory taken from Natchitoches Parish; the legislature named it for the indigenous Caddo Indians who had lived in the area. Most were forced out during Indian Removal in the 1830s.
The parish was initially a center of cotton plantations, developed by planters along the waterways and worked by thousands of enslaved African-American laborers. Shreveport, the parish seat, became a center of government, trade and law.
An armory was constructed in Shreveport before the Civil War. This city served as the state capital after Union forces had seized Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Locals have referred to the armory as "Fort Humbug".
After the Civil War, and particularly after Reconstruction, whites in the parish used violence and intimidation against blacks to suppress Republican voting and re-establish white supremacy. The parishes in northwest Louisiana had a high rate of violence and lynchings. From 1877 through the early 20th century, there were 48 lynchings of African Americans in Caddo Parish; this was the second-highest total in the state after Lafourche Parish, and nearly twice as high as the lowest parishes among the top six. The victims included Jennie Steers, a domestic servant hanged by a white lynch mob in July 1903, for allegedly poisoning the daughter of her employer.
In 1920 the Daughters of the Confederacy, who were memorializing the Civil War, designated the armory as "Fort Turnball". During World War II, the government used it as a mobilization site for men who had been drafted and recruited.
In the early twentieth century, the oil industry developed here, with a concentration of related businesses in Shreveport. Numerous oil wells were constructed across southern Arkansas and northern Louisiana.
As parish seat, Shreveport is the site of the parish courthouse. Caddo Parish comprises the 1st Judicial District. Located downtown on Texas Street, the courthouse contains both civil and criminal courts. The current elected judges are: Ramon Lafitte, Craig O. Marcotte, Michael A. Pitman, Karelia R. Stewart, Robert P. Waddell, Erin Leigh W. Garrett, Katherine C. Dorroh, John Mosely, Jr., Brady O'Callaghan, Ramona Emanuel, Charles G. Tutt, and Roy Brun. The Clerk of Court is Mike Spence. Caddo Parish like all parishes in Louisiana utilizes Justices of the Peace and Constables particularly when civil suits below $5000 or an eviction has been filed.
As of the census of 2010, there were 254,969 people, 119,502 households, and 68,900 families residing in the parish. According to 2012 U.S. Census Bureau estimates, Caddo Parish population was 257,093. The population density was 286 people per square mile (110/km2). There were 108,296 housing units at an average density of 123 per square mile (47/km2). The racial makeup of the parish was 49.1% White, 40.0% Black or African American, 1.2% Native American, 1.8% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 0.82% from other races, and 1.8% from two or more races. 5.4% of the population were Hispanic or Latino.
There were 119,502 households, out of which 30.90% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 42.20% were married couples living together, 19.80% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.70% were non-families. 28.90% of all households were made up of individuals, and 10.50% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.51 and the average family size was 3.11.
In the parish the population was spread out, with 26.80% under the age of 18, 10.20% from 18 to 24, 27.40% from 25 to 44, 22.00% from 45 to 64, and 13.70% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 89.70 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.90 males.
The median income for a household in the parish was $31,467, and the median income for a family was $38,872. Men had a median income of $31,664 versus $22,074 for women. The per capita income for the parish was $17,839. About 17.10% of families and 21.10% of the population were below the poverty line, including 30.80% of those under age 18 and 16.10% of those age 65 or over.
The parish includes some of the poorest areas in the state by ZIP code. Statistics from 2014 show:
The largest employers in the region are:
|1||Caddo Parish Public Schools (CPPS)||9,416|
|2||Willis-Knighton Medical Center||6,732|
|4||LSU Health Shreveport||2,762|
|5||City of Shreveport||2,569|
Since the late 20th century, most conservative whites in Louisiana have shifted into the Republican Party. Politics largely follows ethnic patterns, as most African Americans have supported national Democratic candidates since regaining the power to vote and other civil rights under Democratic national administrations. Some urban liberal whites also vote Democratic. Since 1980, Caddo Parish has voted for the overall national popular vote winner in presidential campaigns. Notably the city of Shreveport is the base for Democratic strength, while surrounding white-majority suburban areas are aligned with the Republican Party.
In 2008, Democrat Barack Obama won 51% of the vote and 55,536 votes in the parish. John McCain trailed with 48% and 52,228 votes. Other candidates received about 1% of the vote. McCain carried the state of Louisiana.
In the U.S. Senate election in 2008, Democrat Mary Landrieu, who survived a hard challenge from Republican John Neely Kennedy, received 58% of the vote in Caddo Parish and 60,558 votes. John Kennedy won 40% of the vote and 41,348 votes. Other candidates received 2% of the vote.
In the 2016 US Senate election, Republican John Neely Kennedy defeated Democrat Foster Campbell in Caddo Parish. Kennedy also won the general statewide election, giving Louisiana two Republican senators.
The Louisiana Department of Public Safety & Corrections operated the Forcht-Wade Correctional Center in Keithville, an unincorporated section of Caddo Parish. As the state succeeded in reducing the number of prisoners, it closed this facility in July 2012.
The Caddo Correctional Center is a full-service parish jail rated at a capacity of 1,500 beds. Constructed in 1994, this facility was designed to successfully manage a large number of inmates with a minimum of personnel. The Caddo Correctional Center is the largest jail in the Ark-La-Tex and the only "direct supervision" facility in the state.
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The 2nd Squadron of the 108th Cavalry Regiment (formerly 1-156 Armor Battalion until September 2006) is headquartered in Shreveport at the armory at the intersection of Stoner Avenue and Youree Drive. This facility was built before the Civil War. This unit has served two tours of duty in Iraq (2004-05 & 2010) as part of the 256th Infantry Brigade of the Louisiana National Guard.