Fort St. Jean Baptiste, Natchitoches

#4 of 14 in Things to do in Natchitoches
Historic Site · Tourist Spot
Fort St. Jean Baptiste State Historic Site, or Fort des Natchitoches, in Natchitoches, Louisiana, USA, is a replica of an early French fort based upon the original blueprints of 1716 by Sieur Charles Claude Dutisné and company. The settlement which became the town of Natchitoches was founded in 1714 by French Canadian Louis Antoine Juchereau de St. Denis as the first permanent European settlement in the lands later encompassed by the Louisiana Purchase. In 1722, Juchereau de St. Denis in 1722 became commandant of Fort St. Jean Baptiste des Natchitoches. The fort was devised as a trading and military outpost to counter any Spanish incursions into French territory. Soon it became a center of economic significance, particularly with neighboring Caddo tribes.After 1764, Fort St. Jean was abandoned, with the transfer of Louisiana (New France) to Spain. It was rebuilt, but its actual location is unknown.Today Fort St. Jean Baptiste State Historic Site is a point of interest within the Cane River National Heritage Area. It is also host to living history re-enactments of what Life in the fort was like in the 1750s
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Fort St. Jean Baptiste reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
167 reviews
  • This fort was an excellent exhibit! We were thankful that they were open. We had never been to a french fort before and it was very different than the Spanish forts we have toured. The folks there...  more »
  • This place was a great stop for our weekend get away! Listen Up: PAY UP for the guided tour. It is so worth it. Here is a pic of our guide and he had so much knowledge of the period history. He could....  more »
  • Fort St. Jean Baptiste was a very cool visit. The tour guides were great and we got to see all around the fort. The indoor museum was really cool too. Bug spray may be needed, but it should be mostly fine.
  • It’s historic and will take you into a new decade. Plenty of room for large families to enjoy and it’s not far from the hotel on second street that is brand new!

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