The president of the Shreveport domiciled company was Albert Leonard. P.J. Prezevant and others were principals in the company, and may have owned interest in the property.
Huron Land Co. attempted to diversify the crops grown on the plantation. It is said that the company was responsible for having Dr. Seaman Knapp do some agricultural consulting on the farm. Seaman Knapp was born in 1833 in New York State. His father was a farmer and a physician. Knapp grew up working on the family farm. He became the leading expert in agricultural research and was responsible for innovative programs such as Future Farmers of America.
Knapp came to Louisiana to help develop farming, and encouraged a number of his friends from the Middle West, who were interested in newer methods of farming, to come to Louisiana.
Many of the newcomers decided to settle in southwest Louisiana. It is not known when he visited the Huron Plantation or how long he stayed. As a result of Dr. Knapp and the Huron Land Co. families such as the Watkin’s, Roy’s and the Romagosa’s began to work and settle in the area. Some came as overseers of the plantation and later bought parts of the farm and their descendents still live on the acreage purchased.
Records of all previous occupants of the home are not available, but it is known that one of overseers of the plantation was Alcide Bonin, a direct descendent of Antoine Bonin. Antoine came to Point Coupe Parish from Mobile, Louisiana, and eventually settled in Acadiana. He married Magdeline Prevot in 1779. Sam Bonin, a son of Alcide, was born in the plantation home.
The area still bears the name of the company – Huron. The diversification and increased production of farm crops and the shipping of lumber were the reasons for construction of the Teche Railroad.
In 1894, the Teche Railroad was constructed, connecting Huron with Carencro, Arnaudville, Breaux Bridge and other communities.
Plans and right-of-ways for the railroad were done while the Lastrapes owned the property.
With the need to raise capital, the Huron Plantation began selling off 100 acre tracts of farmland.
In the early 1900’s, Huron Land Company began acquiring properties in north Louisiana and other states, with the purpose of developing minerals, mostly petroleum.
The Huron Land Company sold the beautiful house and the remaining 6782 acres to Marshall Billeaud Jr. In 1904, Billeaud paid $51,500 of which five thousand dollars was paid in cash, and the rest was promised in seven yearly installments.
In January 1939, during the height of the financial depression, Martial Billeaud III sold approximately 128 acres of land which included the house, a sugar cane derrick, and farm equipment to Fabio Halphen. The sale was made subject to a farm tenancy lease on the a one-third share system, existing in favor of Cleopha Miller and other tenants.
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