Ferchaud, Jean Baptiste. | Tulane University Special Collections
Name: Ferchaud, Jean Baptiste.
Historical Note: French-born Jean Baptiste Ferchaud (1816-1893), originally named Jean Baptiste de Ferchault, owned the 11,500-acre Maison Magnolia Plantation in St. James Parish, Louisiana. Crops grown included rice, sugar cane, tobacco, flowers and fruit. Cypress trees were also cut and shipped to New Orleans. After the Civil War, his remaining holdings were composed of a part of the former plantation, which he called Elina Plantation. He and his wife had twenty-one children, nine of whom lived. His diary portrays a wide range of aspects of plantation life, and includes comments about climatic conditions, crop production, African American slaves and other laborers, the Mississippi River, the LaBranche Crevasse, river boats, the actions of racially-motivated vigilante groups, and the social life of the region.