French Settlement Louisiana Acadiana Cajun Country T-Shirt
Acadia Parish coined Acadiana was settled by the French in southern Louisiana's bayous, wetlands, swamplands near the Calcasieu River, Atchafalaya Basin, and the Mississippi River Delta and in adjacent parishes. Acadiana is home to several Native American tribes, including among others the Chitimacha, Houma, Tunica-Biloxi, Attakapas, and Coushatta. The region also boasts a large population of Creoles, descendants of the region's original "Old World" settlers who arrived in Louisiana before and after the Acadian immigration. Acadiana also is home to other ethnic groups, including Anglo-Americans, who came into the region in increasing numbers beginning notably with the Louisiana Purchase of 1803. Acadiana is also unusual for the South because a majority of its people are Roman Catholic, in contrast to the surrounding regions. The 22 parishes defined by the Louisiana legislature are Acadia, Ascension, Assumption, Avoyelles, Calcasieu, Cameron, Evangeline, Iberia, Iberville, Jefferson Davis, Lafayette, Lafourche, Pointe Coupee, St. Charles, St. James, St. John The Baptist, St. Landry, St. Martin, St. Mary, Terrebonne, Vermilion, and West Baton Rouge. The largest metropolitan areas in Acadiana are Lafayette, Lake Charles, and Houma-Thibodaux. Other large cities and towns within Acadiana are Abbeville, Berwick, Breaux Bridge, Broussard, Carencro, Crowley, Donaldsonville, Erath, Eunice, Franklin, Gonzales, Jeanerette, Jennings, Kaplan, Marksville, New Roads, Morgan City, New Iberia, Opelousas, Patterson, Plaquemine, Port Allen, Rayne, Scott, St. Gabriel, St. Martinville, Sulphur, Ville Platte, and Youngsville.