Regular meetings of the Society are held in the months of January, March, May, July, and September at 7:00 p.m. in the meeting room of the St. John the Baptist Parish Library, 2920 Highway 51, LaPlace, Louisiana.  Any changes in the meeting date or place are listed in the Schedule of Meetings and Special Events.  The October meeting is our annual Oktoberfest dinner at a location to be announced.  



Upcoming Schedule of Meetings and Special Events:

        Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Speaker: Jessica Schexnayder

Topic: "Fragile Grounds - Louisiana's Endangered Cemeteries"  

Fragile Grounds compiles stories and photographs of endangered cemeteries throughout Louisiana's coastal zone and beyond. These burial places link the fragile land to the frailty of the state's threatened community structures. The book highlights the state's vibrant diversity by showing its unique burial customs and traditions, while it also identifies the urgent need for ongoing documentation of cultural elements at risk.

Cemeteries associated with the culturally rich communities of Louisiana reflect the history and global settlement patterns of the state. Yet many are endangered due to recurring natural and man-made events. Nearly 80 percent of the nation's coastal land loss occurs in Louisiana. Coastal erosion, sinking land, flooding, storm surge, and sea-level rise have led to an inland migration that threatens to unravel the fabric of Louisiana and, by association, hastens the demise of its burial places.

As people are forced inland, migrants abandon, neglect, or often overlook cemeteries as part of the cultural landscape. In terms of erosion, when the land goes, the cemetery goes with it. Cemeteries fall prey to inland and coastal flooding. As cities grow outward, urban sprawl takes over the landscape. Cemeteries lose out to forces such as expansion, eminent domain, and urban neglect. Not only do cemeteries give comfort for the living, but they also serve as a vital link to the past. Once lost, that past cannot be recovered.

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Speaker: Warren Perrin

Topic: "Acadian Reunifications in the 20th Century"

In May of 2016, the Acadian Museum acquired a unique piece of history—a diary and large scrapbook assembled by Corinne Broussard during the historic 1930 visit to Grand-Pré by Cajuns. The Louisiana delegation, made up of 25 Evangeline Girls accompanied by 12 men, three of them priests, was led by Sen. Dudley J. LeBlanc.  They embarked upon this epic journey to commemorate the 175th anniversary of the Acadian Deportation. In recognition of her French language skills, outgoing personality and charm, Broussard was elected to be the group's spokesperson.  Broussard gave several public addresses in French and a radio interview in Halifax, also in French.   It is believed that this was the first group of Cajuns to make the pilgrimage back to their ancestral lands in Nova Scotia since the Acadian Deportation and named by LeBlanc the First Official Pilgrimage of Louisiana Acadians to Grand-Pré, Nova Scotia. 


May 26, 2020

Speaker: Celeste LeBlanc Norris

Topic: "Cajun By Blood" 

Author of book about life of Pierre Thibodeaux

July 28, 2020  

Speaker: Anne Harmon Brett

Topic: The Disease

Vacherie native & resident, Anne Harmon Brett grew up with 2 parents who contracted Hansen's Disease and were residents at Carville, at the time a place for all citizens who were quarantined with diagnosed cases of leprosy.  Anne's father was from Texas but her mother was also a Vacherie native and remarkably they met, married and had children.   Eventually a cure for leprosy was discovered and her parents were able to move to Vacherie and Mr Harmon was able to operate a very successful photography business for many years.  A journalist along with her father's own notes and journal entries, Anne has recently published a book entitled "The Disease" and will share her story with us.

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Speaker: Jay Schexnaydre

Topic: "ABCs of Louisiana Surnames"

An interesting look into 26 Louisiana families and their origins.

Saturday, October 2020 (Date TBD)

Speaker: Rhonda Roederer

Topic: "TBD"

Oktoberfest Dinner





Directions to the St. John the Baptist Parish Library


Send Comments or Questions to webmaster.