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In 2010, the center of population of Louisiana was located in Pointe Coupee Parish, in the city of New Roads.
Point Coupee is the oldest settlement on the lower Mississippi, having been made by some wandering Canadian trappers as early as 1708. Bienville established this place as a military post, before the commencement of New Orleans. The fort was moved in 1722 to an area near the present St. Francisville Ferry landing.
After several floods, Governor Luis de Unzaga in 1772 moved the European settlement to a new post, the so-called Post Unzaga. Recently, historians Cazorla and Polo, from the Louis de Unzaga Historical Society research team, using satellite remote sensing techniques and comparative plans from the General Archive of the Indies, have managed to locate the position of the Unzaga post, which included, along with it, a parish. Unfortunately after the slave rebellion of 1795 this settlement was left uninhabited.
Pointe Coupee Parish (originally and recently, informally pronounced pwahnt coo-pay) was organized by European Americans in 1805 as part of the Territory of Orleans (statehood for Louisiana followed in 1812). It was originally called Pointe Coupee County, and was one of the original 12 counties of the Territory of Orleans. It was renamed as Pointe Coupee Parish in 1816. The original Pointe Coupee Parish included parts of present-day Iberville and West Baton Rouge Parishes. There were minor boundary adjustments with neighboring parishes up through 1852, when its boundaries stabilized.
In 2008, Pointe Coupee was one of the communities that suffered the most damage by Hurricane Gustav.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the parish has a total area of 591 square miles (1,530 km2), of which 557 square miles (1,440 km2) is land and 33 square miles (85 km2) (5.6%) is water. The land consists mainly of prairies and backswamp.
Pointe Coupee Parish has 498.98 miles of highways within its borders.
There were 8,397 households, out of which 35.20% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.70% were married couples living together, 15.30% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.50% were non-families. 23.40% of all households were made up of individuals, and 11.10% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.67 and the average family size was 3.17.
In the parish the population was spread out, with 27.30% under the age of 18, 8.80% from 18 to 24, 27.00% from 25 to 44, 23.10% from 45 to 64, and 13.90% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females, there were 94.40 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.70 males.
The median income for a household in the parish was $30,618, and the median income for a family was $36,625. Males had a median income of $35,022 versus $20,759 for females. The per capita income for the parish was $15,387, ranking 23rd out of 64 parishes. About 18.70% of families and 23.10% of the population were below the poverty line, including 30.20% of those under age 18 and 23.90% are the age of 65 and older.
Nan Ya Plastics Corporation America has a large plant near Batchelor. Another large employer is NRG / Big Cajun 1 & 2 power plants near New Roads. The parish's economy is heavily reliant upon agriculture, with sugar cane being one of the main cash crops.
As of 2014 the sole secondary school operated by the parish school board is Livonia High School, serving grades 7 through 12. Pointe Coupee Central High School was closed down in 2014. Current public schools include Stem Magnet Academy, Valverda Elemtary, Rougon, Rosenwald, and Upper Pointe Coupee Elementary.
Brian J. Costello, native and lifelong resident of New Roads, Pointe Coupee Parish, is a noted humanitarian, author of more than two dozen books on local, Louisiana, European and religious studies and is a Knight of the Imperial Teutonic, St. Lazarus and Nobility of the Holy Roman Empire Orders.
Emmitt Douglas (1926-1981) - president of the Louisiana NAACP from 1966 to 1981, resided in New Roads from 1949 to 1981
Gwendolyn Midlo Hall, historian, did extensive research and writing about slavery in Louisiana, having discovered important documentation of the slave trade and individual slaves that provided new understanding of African-American history in Louisiana, including the specific ethnic origins in various African cultures of many slaves
Prior to 2008, Pointe Coupee Parish was a Democratic stronghold in presidential elections, only failing to back the party's candidates four times between 1912 & 2004 even as the Solid South became a Republican stronghold at the presidential level. Since then, it has swung to primarily support Republican Party candidates, with Donald Trump winning the county by a margin of over seventeen points in the most recent presidential election of 2016. However, the substantial African-American minority has kept the Republican swing less pronounced compared to many other rural counties throughout the South.