Natchitoches is a beautiful, historically-rich town with abundant culture and economic opportunities. There are so many things that go into making a town successful, but without a high standard of quality of life, who would want to live there?

With a strong local government and infrastructure, the leaders of Natchitoches ensure that the town is always moving forward, and finding ways to make the city even better than it is today. Thanks to Northwestern State University (NSU), Natchitoches is lucky to have a population teeming with college-age adults ready to join the workforce and grow local, state and national businesses.  NSU is also home to many talented students in both the arts and athletics.

We also have a very engaged Chamber of Commerce, dedicated to important quality of life standards such as education reform, community advancement and economic development, as well as providing resources and support to all community and business endeavors.


History

Natchitoches has over three centuries of rich history, having celebrated the first TriCentennial in the Louisiana Purchase in 2014, and each piece of history contributes to the thriving and beautiful city that stands today.

Oldest settlement

The city of Natchitoches traces its history to the first permanent French colonial settlement. Established in 1714 by Louis Juchereau de St. Denis, the settlement was close to the Natchitoches Indian village on the Red River.  As expected of a settlement on a river with such fertile land, trade and agriculture shaped the town’s beginning

As the Louisiana territory became Spanish and eventually American, the town’s location shifted to Front Street, which was slightly south of its original location. The ever-changing Red River left Natchitoches, protecting it from 20th century development. Caring citizens recognized the importance of this accidental legacy and preserved the history and architecture.  The rich history of influence by Spanish, French and Native cultures has left an indelible mark on this small town in Louisiana that shares many cultural nuances with cousins in south Louisiana.

Historic Filming Location

Even before Louisiana’s excellent tax incentives incurred explosive growth in the filming industry the area’s beautiful locations and intriguing stories made Natchitoches the setting in many Hollywood hits such as Steel Magnolias, The Horse Soldiers, and The Man In The Moon.

Home to a National Heritage and Historic Landmark District

We are also home to the Cane River National Heritage Area, one of only two such National Heritage Areas in Louisiana.  Additionally, downtown Natchitoches is home to a 33-block National Landmark Historic District and boasts more Bed and Breakfasts than any other Louisiana town outside New Orleans.


Northwestern State University

NSU is a highly regarded regional university founded in 1884 as the Louisiana Normal College.  Carrying forward that tradition today, the University produces a multitude of excellent graduates in highly regarded programs of excellence such as Education, Computer Information Systems, Business, Accounting, Industrial Engineering Technology and Electrical Engineering Technology.  Additionally, NSU brings collegiate athletics to our town, with highly competitive teams in football, track and field, soccer, tennis, volleyball, basketball, baseball and softball.  For those that enjoy a different art form, the NSU Symphony and theater programs provide amazing talent just around the corner in the highly regarded College of Performing Arts (CAPA).