Gibsland Bank & Trust Warns of Phone, Text Scam

Phone and text scams have become much more prevalent recently.  Gibsland Bank & Trust said scammers have spoofed the number, (318) 258-3113, to appear as a call from GBT/Gibsland Bank & Trust. A representative from the bank said that “this is fax line and is not used for voice calls. If you receive a call from this number, please do not answer it.  Remember, GBTBank will NEVER call and ask for information because we already have it.”

Remember This?: Johnny Allen’s Experience

Johnny Allen was born on November 27, 1942, during World War II.  During his teen years, Johnny occasionally got into minor trouble, but nothing too serious.  In 1961, Seattle policemen were investigating a rash of home burglaries in which about $2,500 worth of goods and cash was stolen.  On Tuesday night, May 2, Johnny and three friends were riding around in Seattle having a good time when they were pulled over by a policeman.  Upon speaking with the boys and checking the paperwork on the car, the policeman learned that the car was stolen.  All were arrested.  Johnny and his three friends were transported to the Rainier Vista 4-H Youth Center.  Johnny was a passenger in the car and, with no evidence to prove it was he who stole the car, Johnny was eventually released to his father.  Johnny claimed he had no idea the car was stolen and his father believed him.    

Just three days later, another policeman pulled another car over in Seattle.  Just as before, the policeman learned that the car was stolen.  Just as before, Johnny was a passenger in the stolen car.  All were arrested.  This time, Johnny did not get off so easy.  After spending seven days in Rainier Vista, he was taken to court to face the judge.  The judge considered the fact that Johnny was experienced at being in stolen cars.  The public defender assigned to Johnny’s case put forth a plea bargain to the judge.  The judge suspended Johnny’s two-year sentence provided that he immediately enlist in one of the branches of the military.  Johnny had no desire to join the military, but he had less desire to go to jail.  On May 29, 1961, Johnny joined the U.S. Army’s 101st Airborne and left Seattle on a southbound train for Fort Ord, California. 

The United States had committed itself to stopping the spread of communism in the world.  Just a month prior to Johnny’s arrests, in the height of the Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union, the United States covertly financed and directed the Cuban exiles’ invasion of Cuba at the Bay of Pigs.  The invasion, part of a larger mission to overthrow Fidel Castro, was an utter disaster.  Tensions between the United States and Cuba grew worse seemingly with each passing day.  Both the United States and the Soviet Union continued testing nuclear weapons despite agreements not to do so.  After the Bay of Pigs, Cuba became allied with the Soviet Union.  With tensions flaring in multiple parts of the world, it seemed likely that Johnny would eventually see military action. 

After completing eight weeks of basic training, Johnny was sent to Fort Campbell, Kentucky, the home of the Screaming Eagles Air Assault Division.  From there, Johnny wrote a letter to his father which detailed the challenges he was experiencing: “There’s nothing but physical training and harasement [sic] here for two weeks, then when you go to jump school, that’s when you get hell.  They work you to DEATH, fussing and fighting.” 

In January 1962, after eight months and eight days in the Army, Johnny finally earned his 101st Division Screaming Eagles patch.  Johnny, however, was homesick.  He missed his family.  He missed his girlfriend, Betty Jean, and he missed his guitar.  Johnny knew that he could not get a pass to return home to visit and knew they would be unable to visit him.  His guitar was another matter altogether.  He wrote to his father and pleaded for him to send his guitar, a red Danelectro Silverton electric guitar on which he had scrawled the name Betty Jean after his girlfriend, to the Army base as soon as possible.

Johnny seemed to change once his guitar arrived.  His constant strumming annoyed his fellow soldiers.  They derided him for talking to and even sleeping with his guitar.  Eventually, some of the soldiers in his unit hid his guitar.  After begging and pleading with them, the soldiers finally returned Johnny’s prized guitar.  His superior officers in the Army were displeased at Johnny’s performance as a soldier.  He often abandoned his work details to play the guitar. 

In February 1962, Army Captain Gilbert Batchman sent Johnny for a physical and psychiatric examination.  Captain Batchman concluded that “Individual is unable to conform to military rules and regulations.  Misses bed checks; sleeps while supposed to be working; unsatisfactory duty performance.  Requires excessive supervision at all times.”  The Army brought up proceedings against Johnny to determine his fate in the military.  Johnny declined counsel and submitted no statements or evidence on his own behalf.  Johnny was ultimately given an honorable discharge from the Army.     

The remainder of Johnny’s short life revolved around guitars and music.  He continued to sleep next to and to talk to his guitar.  On September 18, 1970, Johnny’s girlfriend woke up and found that Johnny was unconscious and unresponsive.  Johnny was dead.  With only four years as a mainstream artist, Johnny became one of the most influential electric guitarists in history, and one of the most celebrated musicians of the 20th century. 

In 2019, the post office at 4301 4th Street in Renton Highlands, Washington, which is about a mile from Johnny’s grave, was renamed in Johnny’s honor.  You see, Johnny Allen was the name he was born with but not the name he died with.  Four years after his birth, for reasons that have never been fully explained, Johnny’s parents changed his name to James Marshall.  The post office in Renton Highlands is now known as The James Marshall “Jimi’ Hendrix United States Post Office.   

Source: Steven Roby and Brad Schreiber, Becoming Jimi Hendrix from Southern Crossroads to Psychedelic London, The Untold Story of a Musical Genius (New York: Da Capo Press, 2010), p.9-24.

Parish Sand and Sand Bag Distribution Guidelines

There will be six sand and sand bag distribution points throughout the parish during significant rainfall and/or flooding events. The sites and contact information is as follows:

  1. Arcadia City Hall – Contact City Hall at 263-8456. If after hours the Sheriff’s Office can dispatch out the public works department.
  2. Gibsland Water Department – Contact Gibsland City Hall at 843-6141.
  3. Castor School – Contact Rodney L. Warren at 245-0410.
  4. Ringgold Central Fire Station – Contact Ringgold City Hall at 894-4699.
  5. Shady Grove School – Contact Marvin Peoples at 259-7741.
  6. Saline Fire Station – Contact Mayor Dorothy Satcher.

Sand bags will be limited to 20 per household and will be available during the hours of 7:30 a.m to 3:30 p.m.

Today in History – August 24

410 – The Visigoths under king Alaric I began to pillage Rome.

1200 – King John of England, signer of the first Magna Carta, married Isabella of Angoulême in Angoulême Cathedral.

1215 – Pope Innocent III issued a bill declaring Magna Carta invalid.

1349 – Six thousand Jews were killed in Mainz after being blamed for the bubonic plague.

1482 – The town and castle of Berwick-upon-Tweed was captured from Scotland by an English army.

1662 – The Act of Uniformity required England to accept the Book of Common Prayer.

1682 – William Penn received the area which is now the state of Delaware, and added it to his colony of Pennsylvania.

1781 – American Revolutionary War: A small force of Pennsylvania militia was ambushed and overwhelmed by an American Indian group, which forced George Rogers Clark to abandon his attempt to attack Detroit.

1814 – British troops invaded Washington, D.C. and during the Burning of Washington the White House, the Capitol and many other buildings were set ablaze.

1816 – The Treaty of St. Louis, signed between the United States and various Native American tribes, was signed in St. Louis, Missouri.

1857 – The Panic of 1857 began, which set off one of the most severe economic crises in United States history.

1870 – The Wolseley expedition reached Manitoba to end the Red River Rebellion.

1909 – Workers started pouring concrete for the Panama Canal.

1914 – World War I: The Battle of Cer ended as the first Allied victory in the war.

1932 – Amelia Earhart became the first woman to fly across the United States non-stop (from Los Angeles to Newark, New Jersey).

1933 – The Crescent Limited train derailed in Washington, D.C. after the bridge it was crossing was washed out by the 1933 Chesapeake–Potomac hurricane.

1941 – The Holocaust: Adolf Hitler ordered the cessation of Nazi Germany’s systematic T4 euthanasia program of the mentally ill and the handicapped due to protests, although killings continued for the remainder of the war.

1942 – World War II: The Battle of the Eastern Solomons. Japanese aircraft carrier Ryūjō was sunk with the loss of seven officers and 113 crewmen. The US carrier USS Enterprise was heavily damaged.

1944 – World War II: Allied troops began the attack on Paris.

1949 – The treaty which created the North Atlantic Treaty Organization went into effect.

1950 – Edith Sampson became the first black U.S. delegate to the United Nations.

1954 – The Communist Control Act, which outlawed the American Communist Party, went into effect.

1967 – Led by Abbie Hoffman, the Youth International Party temporarily disrupted trading at the New York Stock Exchange by throwing dollar bills from the viewing gallery, which caused trading to cease as brokers scrambled to grab them.

1970 – Vietnam War protesters bombed Sterling Hall at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, which led to an international manhunt for the perpetrators.

1978 – Bruce Springsteen appeared on the cover of “Rolling Stone.”

1979 – “I Wanna Be Your Lover” by Prince was released. It was his first U.S. hit.

1979 – The Cars performed at New York’s Central Park for an audience of a half million people.

1981 – Mark David Chapman was sentenced to 20 years to life in prison for murdering John Lennon.

1983 – Jerry Lee Lewis’ wife, Shawn, was found dead at the couple’s home in Mississippi. An autopsy revealed she died of a methadone overdose.

1989 – The Who performed Tommy at the Universal Amphitheatre with special guests Steve Winwood, Elton John, Phil Collins, Patti LaBelle and Billy Idol.

1990 – It was ruled by a judge in Reno, NV, that the band Judas Priest was not responsible for the suicides of two youths after they had listened to the band’s music.

1990 – Sinead O’Connor refused to perform if the United States National Anthem was played before her show at the Garden State Arts Plaza in Homdel, NJ, as is custom. A patriotic uproar ensued which led to several radio stations banning her music.

1991 – Mikhail Gorbachev resigned as head of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.

1991 – Ukraine declared itself independent from the Soviet Union.

1992 – Hurricane Andrew made landfall in Homestead, Florida as a Category 5 hurricane, and caused up to $25 billion (1992 USD) in damages.

1995 – Microsoft Windows 95 was released to the public in North America.

1998 – First radio-frequency identification (RFID) human implantation tested in the United Kingdom.

1998 – A Shania Twain concert in Syracuse, NY was halted when lightning hit the ground 40 yards behind the stage. The concert was almost over at the time of the lightning strike.

1998 – Ingrid Pederson came forward claiming to be the half-sister of John Lennon. The delay in information she said was to spare her adopted mother’s feelings.

1999 – Christina Aguilera’s self-titled debut album was released.

2006 – The International Astronomical Union (IAU) redefined the term “planet” such that Pluto is now considered a dwarf planet.

2016 – An earthquake struck Central Italy with a magnitude of 6.2, with aftershocks felt as far as Rome and Florence. Around 300 people were killed.

Bienville Parish Library Joins The Veterans History Project Effort: Tell Us Your Story!

The Veterans History Project: Tell Us Your Story!

In 2000, the United States Congress created the Veterans History Project (VHP) as a part of the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress – the world’s most respected research and cultural institution. The purpose of the Veterans History Project is to collect, preserve, and make accessible the personal accounts of America’s wartime veterans so that future generations may hear directly from veterans and better understand their selfless service. Since its inception, more than 25,000 stories have been submitted to the archive, and more are added every month.

BPL Joins the Veterans History Project!

Beginning in September, the Bienville Parish Library System is answering the call to help collect, preserve, and make accessible to the community the personal accounts of our wartime veterans for future generations. Branch manager, DeYvonne Jones can relate to this project, “My whole family was in service,” Jones says, “when dad was transferred to a base, we all packed up and went with him. It wasn’t easy, but when a parent is in military service, you’re part of the military too!” Jones’s father was a career Army officer serving during WWII, through into the Korean Conflict to finish his service stateside helping train new recruits on the latest heavy artillery. “This project is a great opportunity to share our piece of history and join the stories from hundreds perhaps thousands of service men and women who lived through a time most of us will only read about in books.”

Personal Narratives and Experiences

The Bienville Parish Library staff will be helping local veterans, and the families of veterans record and video interviews, collecting first-person narratives that will bring the most tumultuous times in our history up close and personal. With a 25 to 30-minute video interview recording, library staff will go through the interview questions to help draw out the veteran’s story. “The conversations and memories they are willing to share preserve important pieces of history,” Jones continues, “All these pieces fit together and add to the framework of the American story.”

The Bienville Parish Library’s Role in the Veterans History Project

In addition to helping record and collect first-person narratives, the staff at the Bienville Parish Library will also carefully scan photos, documents, and relevant materials to become part of the Bienville Parish Library’s Genealogical collection. “We will scan letters, photos, and documents and return the originals to the veteran or family member,” Jones explains, “This will greatly expand our library archives and assist other heritage and family lineage experts with their research projects.”

Who can participate?

A veteran who served in the United States Military in any capacity, from WWI through to recent conflicts is eligible to participate, regardless of branch or rank. These interviews will go on to the Veterans History Project/Library of Congress with a copy remaining on the Bienville Parish Library’s server and made available to patrons coming in to do genealogical research. “This will be an ongoing project,” says Jones, “As the word gets out to veterans and their families, we hope they will call and schedule an interview session at any of the five libraries in Bienville Parish. We are looking forward to collecting this important historical information.”

Not Quite Ready?

If a veteran or family member of a veteran is not quite ready to schedule the interview, there is a brochure and a field kit that will be available to take home and read through. “We’ll be here when you’re ready to tell your story,” Jones says. “Feel free to review the information in the brochure and call us with questions.”

For more information, or ask questions about the Veterans History Project and find out more about the Bienville Parish Library’s role in the Veterans History Project, call 318-263-7410. See You at the Library!

Teddy Allen: For those broken in the pile

The receiving line stretched from the open casket past the back door and into the lobby where we signed the guest book. 

Even after two days of a houseful of friends, the mom and dad were not close to being hugged-out. I don’t know what else you do when your child, 25, is gone. Suicide. And there’s the open casket, and you’re at church on the business end of the receiving line. 

I guess you keep accepting hugs, and you hold on. 

And you wish you could turn back the clock. 

We all wish we could turn back the clock on some things. I suppose you never wish it more than at a time exactly as this. 

Who has answers? 

And what do you do? One day a brother and son and teammate are quietly neat, efficient, a good-grades maker, a championship junior golfer, and a young believer. But after one semester at school on a golf scholarship, his room looked like the inside of a clothes-washing machine, his grades reflected indifference, his clubs just idle, old toys. A bad crowd, a bad decision, a bad deal. 

He couldn’t leave the stuff alone. The drugs. He’d have good runs, then a trip to the bad side of town. Nothing he did was out of the ordinary for a guy chasing a lie he’s bought into, hook, line, sinker, future, and life. Stories like this more often than not turn out the same way: somebody gets killed in the end. 

He was sweet. He was gentle. He helped the little-boy golfers on the course where the family lived. Polite to everybody. Lots of friends who reflected most of what he had been before The Big Lie knocked, and he’d answered, and invited him in. 

He was talented. Three years ago, he dusted off the golf clubs, practiced a few days, won the city championship, and flashed all the old promise. No big surprise: he was that good. 

But his problem was worse. And a lot bigger than he was. So, it was never a shock when the shadows would come and he’d be gone again until, at age 25, he was gone for good. 

His parents did all they could. Tens of thousands of dollars invested in the last year alone, getting him help. Loving him soft and loving him tough. Hugging him close, giving him space. Praying and hoping. They never lost hope. But for a tiny window of time, their son did. 

It must be a terrible weariness, the one that hits someone just before they call it quits. The moment when all motivation is gone. To some, it comes after a pink slip or a divorce paper or a dream’s death. Desperation blasted with a kind of veiled self-honesty that must say, “Well, this is the only way left. The only thing right. The only way out.” 

A hopeless, frustrated kind of tired and weary. Hope’s not gone, but it’s lost. And if a piece of it isn’t found quickly enough, a receiving line and a shovel and a lot of tears are just around the corner. 

When they found him in his room, his faithful dog Dice, 14, wouldn’t leave him. Dice would have stayed by him forever. Same as everyone else. But a guy at the end must feel as if he’s taking up space, and always will be. Maybe when hope is lost, the whole system breaks down. 

“His whole life, he was good to everybody but himself.” I heard that time and again on the day of the funeral, the day of the open casket, and the hold-tight-to-the-promises preaching. Heard it from people who loved him, from people scared and hurt by so much of what he’d done, people who knew the beautiful boy inside him but never could push the good deep enough in there to change his heart. 

Why do some of us in the dirty pile of broken people believe just enough to dodge the early darkness, and some of us don’t? No answer fits. But I know there’s a pile. This funeral was proof of that. 

In it is the once used and no longer wanted, the never used and never useful, the cracked and the torn and the misshapen. And I know there’s a guy who wants the pile to stay just as it is, a guy who wants us to feel worthless and hopeless and ashamed. 

But I know there’s another guy too, one who wants us to see grace and mercy and feel a conviction to change, a guy gentle and humble in heart, a man who offers rest for the weary and burdened. He champions the underdog. He loves a comeback story. And he majors in solving the problems of people broken in the pile. 

Contact Teddy at

Arrest Report

August 14

  • Tonio Bennett – Ringgold
    • Operating Vehicle with suspended License; No License Issued
  • Lacarios Lofton – Sibley
    • Operating a Vehicle While Intoxicated – Misdemeanor
    • Driving on Roadway Laned for Traffic
    • Operating Vehicle with Suspended License; No License Issued
  • Dyllan Robinson – Mansfield
    • Operating Vehcile with Suspended License; Other Offenses

August 15

  • Charles Young – Arcadia
    • Illegal Possession of Stolen Things – Felony
    • Driver Must Be Licensed
  • James Robinson II – Shreveport
    • Second Degree Murder – Felony

August 16

  • Kenneth Stevenson, Jr. – No Location Provided
    • Operating Vehicle with Suspended License; No License Issued
    • Maximum Speed Limit (Highways)
    • Possession or Distribution of Drug Paraphernalia – Misdemeanor
    • Possession of Marijuana Over 14 Grams – 2nd Offense – Misdemeanor
  • Cordell Johnson – Houston, Texas
    • Stalking – Misdemeanor
    • Cyberstalking – Misdemeanor

August 19

  • Hannah Ward – Castor
    • Second Degree Battery – Felony
    • Second Degree Kidnapping – Felony

Saline Marathon Runner Places in 2 Races on the Same Day

Saline marathon runner Don Brown had a busy day Saturday.  He ran in two marathons in the same day.

While most of us were enjoying a lazy Saturday morning, by 8:00 a.m. Mr. Brown was on the starting line of the Bucs on the Run 5k.  This marathon was held in support of the Haughton High School and Middle School Cross Country Programs.  25 minutes and 9.22 seconds later, he completed the 5k race and won second place in the 60 and over age group.  Out of the 82 runners who competed, Mr. Brown came in 18th overall.  His pace was 8:05 per mile.  

Later that evening, Mr. Brown ran in the Atomic Two Miler night race in Monroe.  The night race began at 7:30 p.m.  15 minutes 56.07 seconds later, Mr. Brown crossed the finish line and won first place in his age group, Male 70 and over.  His pace was 7:58 per mile and speed was 7.5 miles per her.

Congratulations, Mr. Brown, on two wins in two marathons on the same day!!!

New Arcadia Health Mart Inventory Seized in String of Foreclosures

By Brad Dison

It was business as usual yesterday, August 18, at the New Arcadia Health Mart on Railroad Avenue in Arcadia until sheriff’s deputies arrived with an order to seize the inventory of the pharmacy.  It was just one in a string of store foreclosures owned by the same individual in multiple parishes. 

Ms. Sherry Calep, long time employee of New Arcadia Health Mart said about the seizure, “To all of Arcadia Pharmacy customers, I’m so sorry to inform you that the pharmacy has closed until further notice. If some of you who are our customers will tell some of the elderly who are not on Facebook, I would appreciate it. It’s none of the workers reason we’re closed but it’s all on the Owner. Love you all !! Thank you!!  When Mr. Gene sold the pharmacy, I was really at a loss, but because of the friendly people that I came in contact with, I decided to stay and work there.  My heart is broken. I love each and everyone of our customers.”

The business, New Arcadia Health Mart, is listed under Djapni Estate LLC whose sole registered agent and officer is Dr. Richard Thibaut Feuzing Djapni, a licensed pharmacists, whose registered address is in Monroe.  According to the Louisiana Secretary of State’s website, Djapni Estate LLC’s status is “Not In Good Standing for failure to file Annual Report.”  The last annual report for the company was filed in June of 2020.  Richard Djapni and Djapni Estate LLC owns or has owned several businesses consisting of grocery stories and pharmacies in multiple locations in north and south Louisiana.

Ms. Calep has worked at new Arcadia Health Mart for the past nine years.  She was hired under Gene & Alicia Reeves, whom she described as being the “best bosses anyone could ask for. We were like Family.”  When Dr. Djapni first started in 2020, “things were rocky,” according to Ms. Calep, “but he assured me that things would get better.”

The foreclosure in Arcadia stemmed from a civil suit, First Financial Bank vs. Djapni Estate LLC, New Arcadia Parmacy LLC, Honeycutt LLC, and Richard Thibaut Feuzig Djapni, which was filed in May, 2022.  

Sheriff John Ballance said “Arcadia still has a pharmacy!!! Arcadia Family Pharmacy.”

A representative from Arcadia Family Pharmacy said, “Our team is here to help all patients in Arcadia as we learned this morning that First Financial Bank with the assistance of the Sherriff’s department has closed New Arcadia Pharmacy. A pharmacist from another town was on site simply to secure the medication for public safety at the request of the Louisiana Board of Pharmacy and the Sherriff’s department.  Unfortunately, we have no further information but please call us at 318-263-3948 if there is anything we can do to assist during this transition.”

Holy Moly! Local Artist is Finalist in Art Competition

By Brad Dison

“Holy Moly! This is a surprise.”  That was Elizabeth Morgan’s reaction when she learned that her barn painting entitled “Soul Food” (24×36 oil on linen) was selected for the top 100 finalists in the PleinAir Salon July competition.  The PleinAir Salon competition, presented by PleinAir Magazine, is designed to stimulate artistic growth and help artists elevate quality.

Elizabeth’s painting, “Soul Food,” is also shipping out to Jackson Hole, Wyoming for the “Best of American” National Oil & Acrylic Painters’ Society (NOAPS) show at the Wilcox Gallery.”

Elizabeth often downplays her artistic abilities by saying, “Basically, I paint and draw stuff.”  

Good luck, Elizabeth!!!

Reception Honoring Soon to be Inductee in Southern University Athletic Hall of Fame to be Held Tomorrow

A Reception Honoring Former Arcadia High School Lady Hornets State Champion basketball player Rolanda Monroe will be held Saturday, August 20 at 4:00 pm at the Arcadia Town Hall Council Chambers located at 1819 South Railroad Avenue.  This Fall, Ms. Monroe will be inducted into Southern University’s Athletic Hall of Fame.  Ms. Monroe was born and raised in Arcadia. 

On January 6, 2010, Ms. Monroe became the all-time leading scorer in Southern University women’s basketball history as she scored 15 points to lead the Jaguars over Jackson State University 61-55. 

“Rolanda is a wonderful person I wish I could adopt her as my daughter,” said head coach Sandy Pugh following the game. “It’s awesome that a player I recruited would be able to come here and get a record like that. You always tell recruits that they can come to your school and do some special things but to actually see it is exciting.”

College Highlights:

  • Southwestern Athletic Conference Freshman of the Year (2002, 2003)
  • Named to the All-Southwestern Athletic Conference First Team (2004, 2005)
  • Southwestern Athletic Conference Player of the Year (2004, 2005)

100 Years Ago in Bienville Parish – Bienville Gets New, Modern Cotton Gin

In 1922, cotton may not have still been king but it was still an important local crop.  Farmers still had to contend with boll weevils and caterpillars, the latter of which were significantly worrisome to farmers in this parish in the summer of 1922.  If the cotton crop survived the pests, cotton ginning time was just around the corner. 

The quality of the local cotton gin (short for engine) could mean a lot of difference in the amount of money a farmer’s cotton crop brought.  One hundred years ago, Messrs. Warren and Wise were in the process of installing the most modern of gins, a Murray “four stand gin equipped with super-cleaners,” in the town of Bienville. Cotton from this, the latest type of gin, had previously brought a premium of over $5.00 per bale.

New technological advancements allowed, for the first time in the region, for the ginning and pressing of cotton without the use of steam.  The Murray gin was powered by a 80 horsepower horizontal internal combustion gasoline engine and was equipped with a power hydraulic press.  The gin stand used the teeth of rotating saws to pull the cotton through a series of “ginning ribs”, which pulled the fibers from the seeds which are too large to pass through the ribs. The cleaned seed was then removed from the gin. The seed was reused for planting or was sent to an oil mill to be further processed into cottonseed oil and cottonseed meal. The lint cleaners again used saws and grid bars, this time to separate immature seeds and any remaining foreign matter from the fibers. The bale press then compressed the cotton into bales for storage and shipping.

With Messrs. Warren and Wise’s new gin, the people of Bienville and the surrounding area gained a welcomed advantage in the cotton trade.

Today in History: August 19

1612 – The “Samlesbury witches”, three women from the Lancashire village of Samlesbury, England, were put on trial, accused of practicing witchcraft, one of the most famous witch trials in British history.

1692 – Salem witch trials: In Salem, Province of Massachusetts Bay, five people, one woman and four men, including a clergyman, were executed after being convicted of witchcraft.

1782 – American Revolutionary War: Battle of Blue Licks: The last major engagement of the war, almost ten months after the surrender of the British commander Charles Cornwallis following the Siege of Yorktown.

1812 – War of 1812: American frigate USS Constitution defeated the British frigate HMS Guerriere off the coast of Nova Scotia, Canada earning the nickname “Old Ironsides”.

1839 – The French government announced that Louis Daguerre’s photographic process is a gift “free to the world”.

1848 – California Gold Rush: The New York Herald broke the news to the East Coast of the United States of the gold rush in California (although the rush started in January).

1854 – The First Sioux War began when United States Army soldiers killed Lakota chief Conquering Bear and in return were massacred.

1862 – Dakota War: During an uprising in Minnesota, Lakota warriors decided not to attack heavily defended Fort Ridgely and instead turned to the settlement of New Ulm, killing white settlers along the way.

1909 – The Indianapolis Motor Speedway opened for automobile racing. Wilfred Bourque and his mechanic were killed during the first day’s events.

1934 – The first All-American Soap Box Derby was held in Dayton, Ohio.

1934 – The German referendum of 1934 approved Adolf Hitler’s appointment as head of state with the title of Führer.

1940 – First flight of the B-25 Mitchell medium bomber.

1944 – World War II: Liberation of Paris: Paris, France rose against German occupation with the help of Allied troops.

1953 – Cold War: The CIA and MI6 helped to overthrow the government of Mohammad Mosaddegh in Iran and reinstated the Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi.

1955 – In the Northeast United States, severe flooding caused by Hurricane Diane, claimed 200 lives.

1960 – Cold War: In Moscow, Russia, Soviet Union, downed American U-2 pilot Francis Gary Powers was sentenced to ten years imprisonment by the Soviet Union for espionage.

1960 – Sputnik program: Korabl-Sputnik 2: The Soviet Union launched the satellite with the dogs Belka and Strelka, 40 mice, two rats and a variety of plants.

1964 – The first American tour by the Beatles began in San Francisco, CA. The tour would cover 26 cities.

1964 – Syncom 3, the first geostationary communication satellite, was launched. Two months later, it enabled live coverage of the 1964 Summer Olympics.

1972 – NBC-TV presented The Midnight Special for the first time with John Denver as the first host.

1973 – Rita Coolidge and Kris Kristofferson were married.

1980 – 1,400 people riot in Toronto when Alice Cooper cancelled a show due to illness.

1981 – Gulf of Sidra Incident: United States F-14A Tomcat fighters intercepted and shot down two Libyan Sukhoi Su-22 fighter jets over the Gulf of Sidra.

1991 – Dissolution of the Soviet Union: The August Coup began when Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev was placed under house arrest while on holiday in the town of Foros, Ukraine.

1991 – Crown Heights riot began in Brooklyn, New York.

2004 – Google Inc. had its initial public offering on Nasdaq.

2010 – Operation Iraqi Freedom ended when the last of the United States brigade combat teams crossed the border to Kuwait.

2017 – Tens of thousands of farmed non-native Atlantic salmon were accidentally released into the wild in Washington waters in the 2017 Cypress Island Atlantic salmon pen break.

Parish Library Seeks Veterans, Veterans Families to Record Experiences

The Bienville Parish Library system is about to embark on the Veterans History Project. If you are a Veteran or a family member of a Veteran, please consider sharing your story of your experiences in the U.S. military.

Your story will become an important part of our American Legacy and all video recorded interviews will be sent to be archived with the Library of Congress to become part of their permanent archives and a copy will become part of the Bienville Parish Library Genealogical Collection. We have all the information about the Veterans History Project, and will be ready to schedule your interview beginning September 15th. 


Print this page to work the puzzle. If you are unable to print this page you can download it by clicking “Download” below.

In Cryptoquotes, one letter stands for another. In the example above, Z is used for two E’s, I for the two N’s, etc. Single letters, double letters, apostrophes, the length and formation of the words are all hints. The code letters change with each puzzle.



Previous Cryptoquote solution: “I have learned over the years that when one’s mind is made up, this diminishes fear.” ~ Rosa Parks

Angler’s Perspective: The Good Ole Days

As a kid who was raised in the outdoors of East Texas, my days growing up in Mt. Pleasant were filled with fun, fishing, hunting, and work. A water hose was more than something you watered the garden with; it was a survival tool while we played outside all day. You had freedom as a kid as long as you made it home before the streetlights came on. We were up at sunrise and hated sunsets. Our childhood was spent outside and not inside the house. We lived in the great outdoors and found many ways to entertain ourselves. Today, we’ll go back in time and take a good look at what it was like growing up in the late 60s and early 70s…the good ole days.

Kids of my generation were made and told to get outside and play…and play we did! We played in the ditches, streets, and creeks. We climbed trees for fun and ran barefoot and shirtless daily. Sunscreen did not exist, and we cut the grass barefoot until a parent caught us and made us put on shoes. Our main form of transportation was a bicycle, and we rode our bikes five to ten miles daily. We raced, jump ditches, and ended most of our days by riding our bikes behind the city mosquito fogging truck at dusk as it made its way through town. It’s a miracle we did not die from lung cancer or get run over by a car.

We met at the city swimming pool at least twice a week hoping to get a glimpse of the high school girls sunning and putting on tanning oil. We challenged ourselves to go off the high dive and survive! We peed in the pool because it was convenient while looking around to make sure no one saw us. We played piggyback wars in the water and dove for money at the bottom of the pool. But no one wore a bathing suit…we wore cut-off jeans which I believe are banned at pools today.

Every afternoon we sat under a shade tree listening for the music coming from the ice cream truck as it came within hearing distance. Then we raced into our houses and begged for money and quickly ran back outside just in time to stop the ice cream truck before he got out of sight. We were so out of breath that we could hardly order what we wanted. Some days under that shade tree, we ate watermelon that had been put on ice earlier in the day. But a watermelon feast was not complete without a seed spitting contest, which I excelled at! Just another talent God blessed me with! We made homemade ice cream by turning the handle on a wooden bucket. Yes, it was hard work, but the reward was worth it!

I learned to hunt at the age of 8 by hunting squirrels with my best friend (Kevin) and his dad, who I called Uncle Tracy. Not really related, but for some reason, I always called Kevin’s mom, Aunt Nancy, and his dad, Uncle Tracy. Uncle Tracy was a great squirrel hunter and taught us how to do it the right way. He took the time to not only take us hunting but teach us gun safety as well. He taught us how to stalk squirrels while keeping an eye out for snakes. There were days when Uncle Tracy would go by himself, and I believe it was so he could get his limit. Due to our inability to stalk quietly, Uncle Tracy gave us nicknames…lead foot and stumblebum. Not sure who was which, but I’m pretty sure the names were fitting.

Uncle Tracy was a great teacher as he taught us how to be patient and take a good shot. I learned to shoot with a single shot 410 and I think that’s why I became pretty good with a shotgun later in life. My idea of duck hunting was sneaking up behind the dam on our stock ponds at our ranch and shooting ducks while they were sitting on the water. The problem was after I shot them, I had to wait for the wind to blow the ducks closer to shore so I could retrieve them. But one thing was for certain, I never left behind a single duck no matter how long it took for them to drift to the shore. A good hunter doesn’t condone wanton waste.

Next week, I’ll go into more detail about my youth and how my generation was shaped by the time we spent in the great outdoors. Till then, good luck, good fishing, and don’t forget your sunscreen!

Steve Graf – Owner/Co-Host Hook’N Up & Track’N Down Show & Tackle Talk Live

Reception Honoring Former Arcadia Lady Hornets State Champion; Soon to be Inductee in Southern University Athletic Hall of Fame

A Reception Honoring Former Arcadia High School Lady Hornets State Champion basketball player Rolanda Monroe will be held Saturday, August 20 at 4:00 pm at the Arcadia Town Hall Council Chambers located at 1819 South Railroad Avenue.  This Fall, Ms. Monroe will be inducted into Southern University’s Athletic Hall of Fame.  Ms. Monroe was born and raised in Arcadia. 

On January 6, 2010, Ms. Monroe became the all-time leading scorer in Southern University women’s basketball history as she scored 15 points to lead the Jaguars over Jackson State University 61-55. 

“Rolanda is a wonderful person I wish I could adopt her as my daughter,” said head coach Sandy Pugh following the game. “It’s awesome that a player I recruited would be able to come here and get a record like that. You always tell recruits that they can come to your school and do some special things but to actually see it is exciting.”

College Highlights:

  • Southwestern Athletic Conference Freshman of the Year (2002, 2003)
  • Named to the All-Southwestern Athletic Conference First Team (2004, 2005)
  • Southwestern Athletic Conference Player of the Year (2004, 2005)

United Way Partners with Entergy to Distribute Bill Credits

United Way of Northwest Louisiana (UWNWLA) has partnered with Entergy Louisiana to offer utility bill payment assistance to qualifying residential customers in Bienville, Bossier, Claiborne, Natchitoches, Red River, Sabine, and Webster parishes. Qualifying Entergy Louisiana electric customers in these parishes can apply for a one-time $150 credit on their utility bill beginning August 17 at 9 a.m.

To qualify, customers must be Entergy electric customers and have a total household income not exceeding 250% of the federal poverty level, which equates to $69,000 for a family of four.

The utility bill payment assistance is part of $10 million in shareholder donations previously announced by Entergy Corporation, with approximately $4.4 million being allocated to United Ways across Louisiana for the benefit of Entergy’s Louisiana customers.

“We know these are difficult times for our communities,” said Phillip May, Entergy Louisiana president and CEO. “We want to ensure we’re doing everything we can to lessen the burden our customers may be facing when they receive their bills.”

This emergency assistance will serve individuals and families identified as ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed). UWNWLA, in partnership with the Louisiana Association of United Ways, releases a study every two years on the financial hardship of ALICE families across UWNWLA’s ten-parish service area (Caddo, Bossier, Webster, Bienville, Claiborne, Winn, Red River, Desoto, Natchitoches, and Sabine parishes). The latest report, released in 2020, revealed that 55 percent of individuals in Northwest Louisiana qualify as ALICE or households living in poverty.

“By partnering with Entergy, we can assist ALICE families who often do not qualify for other assistance programs,” said UWNWLA president and CEO LaToria Thomas. “Forging partnerships help us to ensure these funds go where they’re needed the most.”

For more information on eligibility requirements and to apply when applications open, please visit

For questions, please email

Entergy customers are also encouraged to visit for the most up-to-date information on bill assistance.