Houma, Louisiana
Houma icon is a city in and the parish seat
County seat
A county seat is an administrative center, or seat of government, for a county or civil parish. The term is primarily used in the United States....

 of Terrebonne Parish
Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana
Terrebonne Parish is a parish located in the U.S. state of Louisiana. The parish seat is Houma. Its population was 111,860...

, Louisiana
Louisiana is a state located in the southern region of the United States of America. Its capital is Baton Rouge and largest city is New Orleans. Louisiana is the only state in the U.S. with political subdivisions termed parishes, which are local governments equivalent to counties...

, and the largest principal city of the Houma–Bayou Cane
Bayou Cane, Louisiana
Bayou Cane is a census-designated place in Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana, United States. The population was 17,046 at the 2000 census.Bayou Cane is a principal city of the Houma–Bayou Cane–Thibodaux Metropolitan Statistical Area, which includes all of Terrebonne and Lafourche...

Thibodaux, Louisiana
Thibodaux is a small city in and the parish seat of Lafourche Parish, Louisiana, United States, along the banks of Bayou Lafourche in the northwestern part of the parish. The population was 14,431 at the 2000 census. Thibodaux is a principal city of the Houma–Bayou Cane–Thibodaux...

 Metropolitan Statistical Area
Houma-Bayou Cane-Thibodaux Metropolitan Area
The Houma-Bayou Cane-Thibodaux Metropolitan Statistical Area is a metropolitan area in the Acadiana region of southern Louisiana that covers two parishes - Lafourche and Terrebonne...

. The city's powers of government have been absorbed by the parish
Parish (subnational entity)
A parish is an administrative division used by several countries. In the British Isles it is known as a civil parish to distinguish it from the ecclesiastical parish.-External links:* Editorial in The Guardian, 2011-05-16....

, which is now run by the Terrebonne Parish Consolidated Government. The population was 32,393 at the 2000 census. There are many unincorporated areas adjacent to the city of Houma; the largest, Bayou Cane
Bayou Cane, Louisiana
Bayou Cane is a census-designated place in Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana, United States. The population was 17,046 at the 2000 census.Bayou Cane is a principal city of the Houma–Bayou Cane–Thibodaux Metropolitan Statistical Area, which includes all of Terrebonne and Lafourche...

, is an urbanized area commonly referred to by locals as Houma. But, it is not included in the 2000 census count, and is in fact a separate census-designated place
Census-designated place
A census-designated place is a concentration of population identified by the United States Census Bureau for statistical purposes. CDPs are delineated for each decennial census as the statistical counterparts of incorporated places such as cities, towns and villages...

. The name Houma derives from the Houmas Indian
Houma Tribe
The Houma people are a Native America tribe. They belong to the United Houma Nation, a state recognized tribe in Louisiana. They primarily live in East and West Feliciana, and Pointe Coupee Parishes, about 100 miles north of the town of Houma named for them, west of the mouth of the Mississippi...

 tribe, which is not recognized by the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs.

Civil War

In 1862, four Union soldiers en route by wagon from New Orleans
New Orleans, Louisiana
New Orleans is a major United States port and the largest city and metropolitan area in the state of Louisiana. The New Orleans metropolitan area has a population of 1,235,650 as of 2009, the 46th largest in the USA. The New Orleans – Metairie – Bogalusa combined statistical area has a population...

 to Houma were ambushed by several armed citizens. Two of the Union men were killed, and the other two were seriously wounded. In retaliation, Union officers brought 400 Union troops into Houma, where they began a wholesale arrest of the citizenry. In his 1963 book, the historian
A historian is a person who studies and writes about the past and is regarded as an authority on it. Historians are concerned with the continuous, methodical narrative and research of past events as relating to the human race; as well as the study of all history in time. If the individual is...

 John D. Winters
John D. Winters
John David Winters was a historian at Louisiana Tech University in Ruston, Louisiana, best known for his definitive and award-winning study, The Civil War in Louisiana, still in print, published in 1963 and released in paperback in 1991.-Background:Winters was born to John David Winters, Sr...

 describes the events:

"The investigation of the murders lasted several days but failed to reveal the guilty parties. To frighten the citizens, the home of a Doctor Jennings was burned, two other houses were torn down, and the home and slave quarters of an outlying plantation
A plantation is a long artificially established forest, farm or estate, where crops are grown for sale, often in distant markets rather than for local on-site consumption...

 were burned. The soldiers next began to seize sheep, cattle, mules, wagons, and saddle horses. Negroes began to desert their masters and to flock to the protection of the troops. The frightened citizens had no means of resistance, and many found it hard to stand by and see their country despoiled by a few hundred troops."


Houma is located at 29°35′15"N 90°42′58"W (29.587614, -90.716108) and has an elevation of 10 feet (3 m). BY SQ

According to the United States Census Bureau
United States Census Bureau
The United States Census Bureau is the government agency that is responsible for the United States Census. It also gathers other national demographic and economic data...

, the city has a total area of 14.2 square miles (36.8 km²), of which 14 square miles (36.3 km²) is land and 0.1 square mile (0.258998811 km²) (0.92%) is water.


As of the census
A census is the procedure of systematically acquiring and recording information about the members of a given population. It is a regularly occurring and official count of a particular population. The term is used mostly in connection with national population and housing censuses; other common...

of 2010, there were 125,929 people, 10,634 households, and 16,283 families residing in the city. The population density
Population density
Population density is a measurement of population per unit area or unit volume. It is frequently applied to living organisms, and particularly to humans...

 was 2,308.5 people per square mile (891.4/km²). There were 12,514 housing units at an average density of 891.8 per square mile (344.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 67.46% White, 26.12% African American, 3.45% Native American, 0.71% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.68% from other races
Race (United States Census)
Race and ethnicity in the United States Census, as defined by the Federal Office of Management and Budget and the United States Census Bureau, are self-identification data items in which residents choose the race or races with which they most closely identify, and indicate whether or not they are...

, and 1.57% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.76% of the population.

There were 11,634 households out of which 35.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.5% were married couples
Marriage is a social union or legal contract between people that creates kinship. It is an institution in which interpersonal relationships, usually intimate and sexual, are acknowledged in a variety of ways, depending on the culture or subculture in which it is found...

 living together, 16.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.8% were non-families. 24.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.72 and the average family size was 3.24.

In the city the population was spread out with 27.9% under the age of 18, 9.8% from 18 to 24, 29.2% from 25 to 44, 20.8% from 45 to 64, and 12.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 94.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.2 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $34,471, and the median income for a family was $40,679. Males had a median income of $35,897 versus $22,202 for females. The per capita income
Per capita income
Per capita income or income per person is a measure of mean income within an economic aggregate, such as a country or city. It is calculated by taking a measure of all sources of income in the aggregate and dividing it by the total population...

 for the city was $17,720. About 16.4% of families and 20.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 30.7% of those under age 18 and 17.3% of those age 65 or over.


Houma and the surrounding communities are steeped in Cajun
Cajuns are an ethnic group mainly living in the U.S. state of Louisiana, consisting of the descendants of Acadian exiles...

 tradition and culture. The area is famous for its food, fishing, swamps, music, and hospitality. Houma is also known for its Mardi Gras
Mardi Gras
The terms "Mardi Gras" , "Mardi Gras season", and "Carnival season", in English, refer to events of the Carnival celebrations, beginning on or after Epiphany and culminating on the day before Ash Wednesday...

 festivities. Downtown Houma has been listed as a significant historic district
Historic district
A historic district or heritage district is a section of a city which contains older buildings considered valuable for historical or architectural reasons. In some countries, historic districts receive legal protection from development....

 on the National Register of Historic Places
National Register of Historic Places
The National Register of Historic Places is the United States government's official list of districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects deemed worthy of preservation...

. It offers a downtown walking tour and attractions such as the Bayou Terrebonne Waterlife Museum, the Folklife Culture Center, the Regional Military Museum, Southdown Plantation, the Houma-Terrebonne Civic Center, monuments to local armed forces, and local eateries.

Although Houma is quickly changing, many residents in the surrounding communities continue to make their living as their ancestors did. They are shrimp
Shrimp are swimming, decapod crustaceans classified in the infraorder Caridea, found widely around the world in both fresh and salt water. Adult shrimp are filter feeding benthic animals living close to the bottom. They can live in schools and can swim rapidly backwards. Shrimp are an important...

ers, oyster
The word oyster is used as a common name for a number of distinct groups of bivalve molluscs which live in marine or brackish habitats. The valves are highly calcified....

men, crab
True crabs are decapod crustaceans of the infraorder Brachyura, which typically have a very short projecting "tail" , or where the reduced abdomen is entirely hidden under the thorax...

bers, fish
Fish are a paraphyletic group of organisms that consist of all gill-bearing aquatic vertebrate animals that lack limbs with digits. Included in this definition are the living hagfish, lampreys, and cartilaginous and bony fish, as well as various extinct related groups...

ermen, and trappers, although more are beginning to work in occupations of the oil industry and ship building. Many long-standing traditions and lifestyles remain as part of the area's rich cultural history. Houma is also the headquarters of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux
Roman Catholic Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux
The Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux is a Roman Catholic diocese in southeastern Louisiana. It comprises Terrebonne and Lafourche Parishes, the eastern part of St. Mary Parish including Morgan City, and Grand Isle in Jefferson Parish. The diocese was created on June 5, 1977, and was previously part of...

, and home to Louisiana's second-oldest high school, Terrebonne High School
Terrebonne High School
Terrebonne High School is a secondary school in Houma, Louisiana, United States.It is a part of the Terrebonne Parish School District.It has been in existence since 1908, and houses grades 10-12; freshmen attend Houma Junior High School. It is the second oldest accredited high school in the state...

. The area's largest shopping center is Southland Mall
Southland Mall (Houma, Louisiana)
Southland Mall is a one-level enclosed shopping mall located in Houma, Louisiana, at the intersection of Bayou Gardens Boulevard and West Park Avenue. The mall services the Houma-Thibodaux area in southeast Louisiana....


In popular culture

  • Houma and the surrounding area are the setting for the fictional Swamp Thing
    Swamp Thing
    Swamp Thing, a fictional character, is a plant elemental in the created by Len Wein and Berni Wrightson. He first appeared in House of Secrets #92 in a stand-alone horror story set in the early 20th century . The Swamp Thing then returned in his own series, set in the contemporary world and in...

    comic book
    Comic book
    A comic book or comicbook is a magazine made up of comics, narrative artwork in the form of separate panels that represent individual scenes, often accompanied by dialog as well as including...

    s, the 1994 V. C. Andrews book Ruby, and the 2005 film The Skeleton Key
    The Skeleton Key
    The Skeleton Key is a 2005 American supernatural horror film starring Kate Hudson, Gena Rowlands, John Hurt, Peter Sarsgaard, and Joy Bryant. The film focuses on a young hospice nurse who acquires a job at a Terrebonne Parish plantation home, and becomes entangled in a mystery involving the house,...

    (which was not filmed in Houma or Terrebonne Parish).
  • The 1996 film The Apostle was partially filmed in Terrebonne Parish.
  • The 1999 films Crazy in Alabama
    Crazy in Alabama
    Crazy in Alabama is a 1999 comedy-drama film directed by Antonio Banderas, written by Mark Childress , and starring Melanie Griffith as an abused wife who heads to California to become a movie star while her nephew back in Alabama has to deal with a racially-motivated murder involving a corrupt...

    , Fight Club
    Fight Club (film)
    Fight Club is a 1999 American film based on the 1996 novel of the same name by Chuck Palahniuk. The film was directed by David Fincher and stars Edward Norton, Brad Pitt and Helena Bonham Carter. Norton plays the unnamed protagonist, an "everyman" who is discontented with his white-collar job...

    and A Lesson Before Dying
    A Lesson Before Dying (film)
    A Lesson Before Dying is a television film released in 1999 adapted from the Ernest J. Gaines novel of the same title.-Cast and characters:* Don Cheadle – Grant Wiggins* Cicely Tyson – Tante Lou* Mekhi Phifer – Jefferson* Elaine Russell – Miss Emma...

    were partially filmed in Houma. Many wetlands shots in the IMAX production Hurricane on the Bayou were filmed in the area.
  • The HBO documentary The Recruiter
    The Recruiter (2008 film)
    The Recruiter is a 2008 award-winning documentary film directed by Edet Belzberg.One of every four high school graduates cannot pass the basic military entrance exam. Couple that with high obesity and rise of criminal records means there is a much lower chance of getting military recruits. Despite...

    , followed the life of an Army recruiter and several of his recruits from Houma.

Mass media

The local newspaper is The Courier
The Courier (Houma, Louisiana)
The Houma Courier is a newspaper published daily in Houma, Louisiana, United States, covering Terrebonne Parish. It is a part of the New York Times Regional Newspaper Group. It is sometimes simply referred to as "The Courier". The paper is published by Miles Forrest and the paper's Executive...

It was founded in 1878 as Le Courrier de Houma by French-born Lafayette Bernard Filhucan Bazet. It first published in four-page, half-French half-English editions. Sold to The New York Times Company
The New York Times Company
The New York Times Company is an American media company best known as the publisher of its namesake, The New York Times. Arthur Ochs Sulzberger, Jr. has served as Chairman of the Board since 1997. It is headquartered in Midtown Manhattan, New York City....

 in 1980, it is now part of the New York Times Regional Newspaper Group.

The Tri-Parish Times is also located in Houma. The newspaper is a weekly publication with a website updated daily. It serves the Terrebonne, Lafourche and St. Mary parishes. Owned by the Guidry Group, Inc., it has provided local news for almost 10 years.

The area's only local broadcast TV station KFOL-CD is located in Houma. KFOL, also known as HTV, produces a weeknight newscast, followed by local phone calls and guests. Other shows include Sportsman's Paradise and One on One. KFOL broadcasts in digital on channel 30.1.

The statewide TV network LCN-TV produces original Louisiana programming which showcases Louisiana's entertainment, culture, talent and industry. LCN-TV is delivered to all media distributors. Debuted in 2007, LCN-TV continues to produce Louisiana TV shows for the U.S.


Houma is served by Houma-Terrebonne Airport
Houma-Terrebonne Airport
Houma-Terrebonne Airport is a public airport located three miles southeast of the central business district of Houma, a city in Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana, United States. It is owned by the Houma-Terrebonne Airport Commission....

, located 3 miles southeast of the central business district.

Notable natives and residents

  • Tab Benoit
    Tab Benoit
    Tab Benoit is an American blues guitarist, musician and singer. He plays a style that is a combination of blues styles, primarily Delta blues. He plays a Fender Telecaster electric guitar and writes his own musical compositions. Benoit graduated from Vandebilt Catholic High School in Houma,...

    , Blues musician and co-star of the IMAX
    IMAX is a motion picture film format and a set of proprietary cinema projection standards created by the Canadian company IMAX Corporation. IMAX has the capacity to record and display images of far greater size and resolution than conventional film systems...

     movie feature Hurricane on the Bayou
    Hurricane on the Bayou
    Hurricane on the Bayou is a 2008 documentary film that focuses on the wetlands of Louisiana before and after Hurricane Katrina.Hurricane on the Bayou is both a documentary of Hurricane Katrina's effects and a call to restore Louisiana's wetlands, rebuild New Orleans, and honor the culture of the city...

  • Joe Burks
    Joe Burks
    Joe Burks is a former center in the National Football League. He played with the Milwaukee Badgers during the 1926 NFL season.-References:...

    , professional athlete
  • Richie Cunningham
    Richie Cunningham (football player)
    Richard Anthony "Richie" Cunningham is a former All-Pro National Football League placekicker who played for the Dallas Cowboys, the Carolina Panthers, and the Jacksonville Jaguars during the late 1990s and early 2000s...

    , professional athlete
  • Gordon Dove
    Gordon Dove (Louisiana politician)
    Gordon Earl Dove, Sr. , is a businessman from Houma, Louisiana, who is a Republican member of the Louisiana House of Representatives from District 52 in Terrebonne and Lafourche parishes.-Background:...

     (born 1957), state representative
    Louisiana State Legislature
    The Louisiana State Legislature is the state legislature of the U.S. state of Louisiana. It is bicameral body, comprising the lower house, the Louisiana House of Representatives with 105 representatives, and the upper house, the Louisiana Senate with 39 senators...

  • Claude B. Duval
    Claude B. Duval
    Claude Berwick Duval, I , was a Houma, Louisiana, attorney and a conservative Democratic state senator from Terrebonne and St. Mary parishes, having served from 1968 to 1980...

     (1914–1986), former member of the Louisiana State Senate
    Louisiana State Legislature
    The Louisiana State Legislature is the state legislature of the U.S. state of Louisiana. It is bicameral body, comprising the lower house, the Louisiana House of Representatives with 105 representatives, and the upper house, the Louisiana Senate with 39 senators...

  • Allen J. Ellender
    Allen J. Ellender
    Allen Joseph Ellender was a popular U.S. senator from Houma, Louisiana , who served from 1937 until his death. He was a Democrat who was originally allied with the legendary Huey Pierce Long, Jr.. As Senator he compiled a generally conservative record, voting 77% of the time with the Conservative...

     (1890–1972), former president pro tempore
    President pro tempore of the United States Senate
    The President pro tempore is the second-highest-ranking official of the United States Senate. The United States Constitution states that the Vice President of the United States is the President of the Senate and the highest-ranking official of the Senate despite not being a member of the body...

     and Democratic U.S. Senator
  • Hal Haydel
    Hal Haydel
    Hal Haydel is a former Major League Baseball pitcher. Haydel signed with the Milwaukee Braves as a free agent in 1962. Later that year, he was drafted in the First-Year Player Draft by the Houston Colt .45s. The following year, he was traded along with Dick LeMay and Merritt Ranew to the Chicago...

    , professional athlete
  • Cyril and Libbye Hellier
    Cyril and Libbye Hellier
    Cyril and Libbye Hellier are identical twins and American operatic sopranos. Natives of Houma, Louisiana, they are the great-grandchildren of the Confederate Colonel John Henry Hellier....

    , operatic sopranos.
  • Melvin Johnson
    Melvin Johnson
    Melvin Maynard Johnson Jr. was an American designer of firearms, lawyer, and US Marine Corps officer.Born into an affluent Boston, Massachusetts family, he was commissioned into the Marine Corps Reserve in 1933 as a Second Lieutenant and completed Harvard Law school in 1934...

    , designer of firearms
  • Troy Johnson
    Troy Johnson
    Troy Johnson is an American gospel and soul singer. He got his first break with a track on the Blame it on Rio soundtrack in 1984, and signed to Motown Records, where he released his first album. He scored a hit in 1986 with "It's You", which peaked at #65 on Billboard's Hot R&B Singles chart....

    , an American gospel and soul singer
  • Frank Lewis, professional athlete
  • Jesse Marcel, U.S. Army major who was involved in the Roswell UFO incident
    Roswell UFO incident
    The Roswell UFO Incident was the recovery of an object that crashed in the general vicinity of Roswell, New Mexico, in June or July 1947, allegedly an extra-terrestrial spacecraft and its alien occupants. Since the late 1970s the incident has been the subject of intense controversy and of...

  • Jay Pennison
    Jay Pennison
    Jay Leslie Pennison is a former professional American football center who played in the United States Football League and the National Football League .-Early years:...

    , professional athlete
  • Clarence Verdin
    Clarence Verdin
    Clarence Verdin is a former American football wide receiver who played for nine seasons in the National Football League from 1986 to 1994, six of those with the Indianapolis Colts. During his time with the Colts, he was famous for his end-zone celebration known as "The Verdance". He was selected...

    , professional athlete
  • Wally Whitehurst
    Wally Whitehurst
    Walter Richard Whitehurst is a former right-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball who played from to with the New York Mets, San Diego Padres and New York Yankees...

    , professional athlete
  • Tramon Williams
    Tramon Williams
    Tramon Vernell Williams is an American football cornerback for the Green Bay Packers of the National Football League...

    , professional athlete

External links

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