Baton Rouge, Louisiana


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Baton Rouge Business Signs

Areas along the Mississippi, Comite, and Amite rivers (which include the modern day city of Baton Rouge) have been inhabited for an extremely long time.  In fact, according to the Louisiana Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism, in conjunction with the scientific journal Southeastern Archeology, the area was inhabited anywhere from 8000 BC to as early as 4500 BC, which is more than a thousand years before the pyramids of Egypt were even begun!

Europeans first came to the region, however, in 1699, when French explorer Sieur d’Iberville led an expedition up the Mississippi River.  D’Iberville saw “a reddish cypress pole festooned with carcasses.”  This pole marked the boundary between the hunting grounds of the Houma and Bayou Goula tribes.  The French called the pole and area surrounding it ‘le baton rouge’, or ‘the red stick.’  The Native American name for the area was Istrouma, though.  The first European settlement in the Baton Rouge area was a French military outpost built in 1719.  Baton Rouge wouldn’t be officially incorporated until January 16th, 1817.

Today, according to a 2013 US census estimate, the population of Baton Rouge is 229,426.  This makes it the second largest city in the state of Louisiana.  (Baton Rouge serves as the state’s capital as well.)  It is ranked as the 93rd most populous city in the country.  The Baton Rouge metropolitan area has a population of 820,159, which makes it the 69th most populous metropolitan area in the United States.

Do you own a small business in the Baton Rouge area?  Thinking about it?  These resources may prove useful to you:

Apply for a Business License in Baton Rouge

Checklist for Starting a New Business (in Baton Rouge)

Baton Rouge Area Chamber (of Commerce)

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