Split in Two: St. Martin Parish

On May 28, 2009 · 4 Comments

Entering St. Martin Parish, Louisiana
Southern Entrance to St. Martin Parish, Louisiana

St. Martin Parish, Louisiana poses an odd situation. Neighboring Iberia Parish jabs straight through the middle of St. Martin and cleaves it into two completely different portions separated by several miles.

St. Martin Parish Map
SOURCE: Wikipedia, under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation

The St. Martin Parish Clerk of the Court explains that, "In 1868, Iberia Parish was formed from parts of St. Martin and St. Mary Parishes. As a result of this separation, compounded by a surveyor’s error, St. Martin Parish has two non-contiguous parts."

Lake Palourde Viewed from Southern St. Martin Parish, Louisiana
A lakefront view from the southern portion of St. Martin Parish

Many people travel within the northern portion of St. Martin Parish as they drive along Interstate 10 through the heart of Cajun Country in southern Louisiana. That’s an easy journey on a wide-open freeway between New Orleans and Houston. Most people probably don’t even notice. Visiting the southern portion requires a little more effort. Most of it is swampland and there’s only one real road through it. The photographs above were taken at the southern end of that southern portion, approached via the town of Morgan City in neighboring St. Mary Parish.

Being the perfectionist that I am, I felt compelled to experience both chunks of St. Martin Parish in order for this visit to count towards my total.

On May 28, 2009 · 4 Comments

4 Responses to “Split in Two: St. Martin Parish”

  1. Fritz Keppler says:

    Haven’t gone through every article here, but are you aware that there is another exclave in Madison Parish LA, separated by Warren County MS, due to the vagaries of the main channel of the Mississippi River? (Located near the place where the Warren/Claiborne MS county line abuts the LA/MS state line)

    I didn’t get to the southern section of St Martin Parish until well into high school in the early 60’s, when my Dad and I drove down LA 70, at the time surfaced by shell, from Pierre Part to Morgan City, during a crawfishing trip.

    • I’ve seen it on a map, but I’ve not yet had an opportunity to reach it yet. Have you done so? Is it easily accessible?

      • Fritz Keppler says:

        I haven’t made it there yet, and it appears to be inaccessible except by vessel, unfortunately. (If I ever won the lottery big, I’d hire a boat and go down the Mississippi, crossing every line otherwise uncrossable! Same for Chesapeake Bay and the Great Lakes! I can dream, can’t I?)

  2. Fritz Keppler says:

    There is also a small exclave of West Feliciana Parish on the west bank of the Mississippi, accessible via LA 15, completely surrounded by Concordia, Pointe Coupee and Avoyelles Parishes.

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