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New Orleans is a consolidated city-parish located along the Mississippi River in the southeastern region of the U.S. state of Louisiana. With a tabulated population of 383,997 in 2020, it is the most populous city in Louisiana. Serving as a major port, New Orleans is considered an economic and commercial hub for the broader Gulf Coast region of the United States.
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New Orleans is world-renowned for its distinctive music, Creole cuisine, unique dialects, and its annual celebrations and festivals, most notably Mardi Gras. The historic heart of the city is the French Quarter, known for its French and Spanish Creole architecture and vibrant nightlife along Bourbon Street. The city has been described as the "most unique" in the United States, owing in large part to its cross-cultural and multilingual heritage. Additionally, New Orleans has increasingly been known as "Hollywood South" due to its prominent role in the film industry and in pop culture.Founded in 1718 by French colonists, New Orleans was once the territorial capital of French Louisiana before becoming part of the United States in the Louisiana Purchase of 1803. New Orleans in 1840 was the third-most populous city in the United States, and it was the largest city in the American South from the Antebellum era until after World War II. The city has historically been very vulnerable to flooding, due to its high rainfall, low lying elevation, poor natural drainage, and proximity to multiple bodies of water. State and federal authorities have installed a complex system of levees and drainage pumps in an effort to protect the city.New Orleans was severely affected by Hurricane Katrina in August 2005, which flooded more than 80% of the city, killed more than 1,800 people, and displaced thousands of residents, causing a population decline of over 50%. Since Katrina, major redevelopment efforts have led to a rebound in the city's population. Concerns about gentrification, new residents buying property in formerly closely knit communities, and displacement of longtime residents have been expressed.The city and Orleans Parish (French: paroisse d'Orléans) are coterminous. As of 2017, Orleans Parish is the third most-populous parish in Louisiana, behind East Baton Rouge Parish and neighboring Jefferson Parish. The city and parish are bounded by St. Tammany Parish and Lake Pontchartrain to the north, St. Bernard Parish and Lake Borgne to the east, Plaquemines Parish to the south, and Jefferson Parish to the south and west.
The city anchors the larger Greater New Orleans metropolitan area, which had a population of 1,271,845 in 2020. Since 2020, Greater New Orleans was the most populous metropolitan statistical area in Louisiana and the 46th-most populous MSA in the United States.
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Jefferson Parish (French: Paroisse de Jefferson; Spanish: Parroquia de Jefferson) is a parish in the U.S. state of Louisiana. As of the 2020 U.S. census, the population was 440,781. The parish seat is Gretna. Jefferson Parish is included in the Greater New Orleans area.
LaPlace ( lə-PLAHSS) is a census-designated place (CDP) in St. John the Baptist Parish, Louisiana, United States, situated along the east bank of the Mississippi River, in the New Orleans metropolitan area. In 2020, it had a population of 28,841.LaPlace is the southern terminus of Interstate 55, where it joins with Interstate 10, and of US 51, where it terminates at the junction with US 61. LaPlace is located 25 miles (40 km) west of New Orleans.
Mandeville is a city in St. Tammany Parish, Louisiana, United States. The population was 11,560 at the 2010 U.S. census, and 13,192 at the 2020 United States census. Mandeville is located on the north shore of Lake Pontchartrain, south of Interstate 12. It is across the lake from the city of New Orleans and its south shore suburbs. It is part of the New Orleans–Metairie–Kenner metropolitan area.
The Cajuns (; Louisiana French: les Cadiens), also known as Acadians (Louisiana French: les Acadiens), are an ethnic group mainly living in the U.S. state of Louisiana. They also live in the Canadian maritimes provinces consisting in part of the descendants of the original Acadian exiles—French-speakers from Acadia (L'Acadie) in what are now the Maritimes of Eastern Canada. In Louisiana, Acadian and Cajun are often used as broad cultural terms without reference to actual descent from the deported Acadians. Historically, Louisianians of Acadian descent were also considered to be Louisiana Creoles, although Cajun and Creole are often portrayed as separate identities today. Most Cajuns are of French descent. The Cajuns make up a significant portion of south Louisiana's population and have had an enormous impact on the state's culture.While Lower Louisiana had been settled by French colonists since the late 17th century, the Cajuns trace their roots to the influx of Acadian settlers after the Great Expulsion from their homeland during the French and British hostilities prior to the Seven Years' War (1756 to 1763). The Acadia region to which modern Cajuns trace their origin consisted largely of what are now Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island plus parts of eastern Quebec and northern Maine. Since their establishment in Louisiana, the Cajuns have become famous for their unique French dialect, Louisiana French (also called "Cajun French", although the dialect predates the Acadians' arrival in Louisiana), and have developed a vibrant culture including folkways, music, and cuisine. The Acadiana region is heavily associated with them.