City of Covington marks bicentennial on Fourth - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports

City of Covington marks bicentennial on Fourth

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From the right stand fifth-, sixth- and seventh-generation descendents of the city's founder, John Wharton Collins From the right stand fifth-, sixth- and seventh-generation descendents of the city's founder, John Wharton Collins
Covington, La. -

It's not just America's birthday, it's also Covington's bicentennial birthday.

John Wharton Collins founded what was then the town of Wharton, in his name, but it was changed to Covington two years later in 1815, after a military leader. And his son changed the spelling of his last name. However, Collin's memory lives on in the layout of the city he designed and in his bloodline.

"He would be my great, great, great, great-grandfather," said Tom Collens IV.

There are generations of Collens who are proud of their heritage. "I'm proud of my ancestor. He did a great thing. It certainly came out well and it's a beautiful city that's getting more beautiful all the time," said Tom Collens III.

The fifth-, sixth- and seventh-generation descendents of Covington's founding father attended Thursday's bicentennial celebration. Though not all of them still live in Covington, they each wanted to return for the day's events.

"Something always brings us back here. This is always where we'll be from, this is always home," said Tom Collens IV.

They're always reminded of their heritage when they drive by City Hall. John Wharton Collins is buried right across the street.

The city's roots spread wide and deep into the hearts of those proud to be lifelong residents there. It's explained in the city's official song, "In Love Again with Covington", adopted in 1992.

Highlighted with a celebration, residents know the love of Covington will be preserved and passed on generation to generation.

The city held celebrations Thursday at Bogue Falaya Park. It included a reenactment of historical events, lots of food and music, and the opening of a time capsule that was sealed 50 years ago. The celebration continues until dusk.

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