Heart of Louisiana: Louisiana Treasures Museum - FOX 8, WVUE, fox8live.com, weather, app, news, saints

Heart of Louisiana: Louisiana Treasures Museum

Source: Louisiana Treasures Museum via Facebook Source: Louisiana Treasures Museum via Facebook
(WVUE) -

Every week, we introduce you to some of our state’s treasures in the Heart of Louisiana. A few days ago, before the rains began, Dave McNamara took a tour of the Louisiana Treasures Museum near Ponchatoula. That museum became a victim of the flooding. Tonight it sits underwater. But it's worth seeing how it was before this past weekend.

From the highway, the place looks a little unusual with a windmill, an old cabin, an outhouse and even a portable jail in the front yard.

“That was a jail that was pulled by four horses,” said curator Wayne Norwood. “It was built in 1906.”

And when you step inside, you realize why Norwood calls this the Louisiana Treasures Museum.

“Some people come in here and they see my Civil War stuff or stuff from World War One or Two, and boy that's what they’re interested in,” Norwood said. “Others come in they see the bottles, they're interested in the bottles. Some come in and see some of the old cameras.”

Norwood stumbled onto this near lifelong hobby when he was working as a diver for the Tangipahoa Parish Sheriffs Department.

McNamara: “So all of this got started almost 50 years ago with one bottle?”

Norwood: “One bottle.”

McNamara: “It's one of these?”

Norwood: “One of these. I found one of those bottles, and it was strange looking and I got it checked and they said it's from the 1700s. So that started all of this.

The bottles now number more than 3,000 of every size and type. Many of these artifacts come from the remains of communities that no longer exist along the western edge of Lake Pontchartrain. The towns of Frenier, Ruddock and Napton were destroyed a century ago by a hurricane.

“When the wind blows out of the northwest, Lake Pontchartrain will go way, way down, and the lakeshore is exposed, and that's where houses used to be - where the water is at now,” Norwood said. “And I'll hunt those places.

It's likely that some of the items date back a couple of thousand years - the arrow points, the stone tools and pottery pieces of Native Americans.  And dugout canoes. One from an early European settler and one from Native Americans.

“It's a dugout,” Norwood said. “It's 19 foot long, out of a cypress log.”

But Norwood and his wife, Debbie, now face a major setback. Two days after our visit, their museum was inundated by a historic flood.

“Yep, this is our museum,” said Debbie. “This was our museum.”

They’ve posted images on their Facebook page along with the message that Louisiana Treasures Museum is a total loss. No flood insurance. Not in a flood zone.

Copyright 2016 WVUE. All rights reserved.

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • Mayor and city officials provide updates on winter weather

    Mayor and city officials provide updates on winter weather

    FOX 8 photoFOX 8 photo

    MOBILE Users can view the live press conference here. New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu and city officials will update residents on winter weather precautions. The update is scheduled to begin at 3:30 p.m. Expected to be in attendance: Mayor Mitch Landrieu Aaron Miller, Director, NOESEP Chief Michael Harrison, Superintendent, NOPD Chief McConnell, Superintendent, NOFD Dr. Jeffrey Elder, Director, EMS Dani Galloway, Director, DPW Dr. Joseph Kanter, Director, Health Departmen...

    more>>

    MOBILE Users can view the live press conference here. New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu and city officials will update residents on winter weather precautions. The update is scheduled to begin at 3:30 p.m. Expected to be in attendance: Mayor Mitch Landrieu Aaron Miller, Director, NOESEP Chief Michael Harrison, Superintendent, NOPD Chief McConnell, Superintendent, NOFD Dr. Jeffrey Elder, Director, EMS Dani Galloway, Director, DPW Dr. Joseph Kanter, Director, Health Departmen...

    more>>
  • Pelicans winners in five of last six games

    Pelicans winners in five of last six games

    Source: David Grunfeld, NOLA.com | Times-PicayuneSource: David Grunfeld, NOLA.com | Times-Picayune

    With Davis fouled out, Cousins picked up the slack and carried his team to finish.

    more>>

    With Davis fouled out, Cousins picked up the slack and carried his team to finish.

    more>>
  • Jazz Fest announces 2018 lineup

    Jazz Fest announces 2018 lineup

    Official Jazz Fest poster: Fats by Terrance Osborne (Source: art4now.com)Official Jazz Fest poster: Fats by Terrance Osborne (Source: art4now.com)

    Jazz Fest announced  a star-studded lineup for the 2018 music fest.  -insert bands here- Below is a list of acts already confirmed:  -list- The complete lineup can be found here. Copyright 2018 WVUE. All rights reserved. 

    more>>

    Jazz Fest announced  a star-studded lineup for the 2018 music fest.  -insert bands here- Below is a list of acts already confirmed:  -list- The complete lineup can be found here. Copyright 2018 WVUE. All rights reserved. 

    more>>
Powered by Frankly