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The idea of building a town at the junction of the Red River and the Texas Trail was thought to be foolish one, since a huge, natural log jam, measuring approximately one hundred eighty miles in length, prevented traffic on the Red River. It was Captain Henry Miller Shreve, who commanded the US Army Corps of Engineers, who cleared the huge log jam, making the Red River navigable for the first time. The town of Shreveport came about in 1836 as the result of the efforts of a company organized specifically for the purpose of building a town in that location. The company and the town would be named in Mister Shreve’s honor. It was called Shreve’s Town. In time the river traffic showed up; it was incorporated in 1839 as the city of Shreveport. The city became a center of river commerce.

During the Civil War, Shreveport served as the headquarters of the Trans-Mississippi Department of the Confederate Army. Due to its remoteness from the eastern action, combat continued in the Trans-Mississippi theater for several month’s after the war officially ended. At the fall of the Confederacy, Jefferson Davis (former president of the Confederate States of America) attempted to flee to Shreveport. It was this action that makes Shreveport the last capital of the Confederate States of America, though it was only for a very short time!

Blues guitarist, singer and songwriter, Huddie Ledbetter (aka Leadbelly) spent much of his time in Shreveport.

Louisiana Hayride was a very popular radio show that featured many big names of its day (1948 to 1960), including Hank Williams and a very young, Elvis Presley. Louisiana Hayride was broadcast from Shreveport.

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