Shreveport, Louisiana

August 2006

 

 

My Great Aunt Doris' house at 5305 South Lakeshore Drive in Shreveport, La.

The beautiful Cross Lake in Shreveport, Louisiana.

 

The old boat house, now the home of spiders, egrets and ducks.

 

My dad used to tell me there's alligators in Cross Lake, while we were water skiing!

 

I call these "swamp trees."

 

Beautiful foliage!!  So lush and so green....

 

The front lawn, where my family would play croquet and I hunted for many Easter eggs.

 

A view of the back bedroom and deck of my great aunt Doris' house.

 

I used to love to sit in this covered patio and soak up the humidity, play with my great aunt's giant hat box of costume jewelry and watch for ducks.

 

The steps leading to the kitchen with an old cast iron stove, tons of fridge magnets and millions of nick-nacks. I used to be terrified of the carport. My father would send me down to the carport to get drinks out of the extra fridge and I would have to wade through cob webs and past huge spiders to get his Dr. Peppers.

 

The long driveway leading to the house with the sign "Lan Y Dwfr" (By the Lake in Welsh) over the entrance.

 

Three beautiful acres... right next door to the famous Smith's Cross Lake Inn and Restaurant. I remember the starched white table clothes, servers in tuxes, giant lobster tank and Mr. Tims singing happy birthday in a deep baritone to my great aunt.

 

When I was little, I could feed the ducks for hours!

 

Chris checking for alligators.

 

Red River

A beautiful, little, white egret.

 

An old, run down ferry boat.

 

A beautiful old ferry boat... those were the days! I can picture Huck Finn...

 

A bizarre sort of open flow anti-flooding device.

 

Old train tracks and an electricity generating mill.

 

A beautiful, blue heron.

 

Chris and I took a ferry boat tour of the Red River.

 

We passed through many small canals.

 

Another blue heron.

 

Chris even got to drive the boat.

 

Nina had to drive the boat in between the columns of an old bridge!

 

Chris posing for a photo and Nina focused on not sinking the boat!

 

Yet another abandoned ferry boat.

 

A particularly nice egret photo (if we do say so ourselves...).

 

An egret in flight... not a bad photo either!

 

A photo of the river-front, casino hotel, Sam's Town, where we stayed. We played the penny slots for all of 20 minutes. Nina was amazed that they bring you free drinks while you play!

 

Yet another, ferry boat designed casino.

 

And one more fake ferry boat casino.

 

The wheels are all for show.

 

A scenic railroad bridge

 

A lovely river water fountain in downtown Shreveport, except for the fact that it smelled.

 

Homer: The childhood home of my Great Aunt Doris Knighton and Grandmother Martha Jane Knighton

The courthouse in Homer, Louisiana, sits in the middle of the square.

 

The original, old store fronts surrounding the square. Doris and Martha's father, Ruben, ran a general merchandise store on  a corner of the square.

 

The Ford Museum in Homer has a great model of an old time general store (maybe some of the artifacts are from the Knighton family store...).

 

The Ford Museum located in the historic and beautiful Hotel Clairborne.

 

This may have been my family's general store. It's hard to say, since it caught on fire when my great aunt was a teenager.

 

Or it might have been this building? The store was on a corner.

 

A close up of the colonial style courthouse.

 

The side view.

 

Gilgal

The Gilgal Cemetery, next to the Gilgal Baptist church, in the middle of nowhere Louisiana.

 

Several of my ancestors, the Knightons, were buried here.

 

It's a beautiful old cemetery.

 

The Baptist church next to the cemetery.

 

The gravesite of my great aunt, Doris Knighton Peters, in the Forest Park cemetery in Shreveport. She is buried with her second husband Ray Williams.

 

Shreveport's historic homes

Chris and I drove and walked around old town Shreveport viewing old Southern mansions.

 

Nina loves old Victorians!!

 

This was one of Nina's favorite Victorians.

 

A rather pink Colonial style mansion.

 

A beautiful old bungalow style home.

 

Very fancy!

 

Reminds me of every governor's mansion I've ever seen!!

 

Beautiful... I love the wrap around porch!

 

Drive-thru daiquiris

The highlight of the trip..... The random discovery of Louisiana's own "Cajun Daiquiris"!!

 

Cajun Daiquiris offers a variety of frozen drinks including Sex on the Beach, Cajun Ice Tea and the Funky Monkey. They pour the drinks out of giant containers, just like the slurpy machines at the 7/11.

 

At the drive-thru Cajun Daiquiris, the rule is.... as long as the straw stays taped to the lid of the container, it's not considered an open container by the Louisiana State Police!!!! You're good to go...... Only in Louisiana!!