May 25, 2007
During much of the nineteenth century, Bayou Bartholomew, which begins in Jefferson County and runs some 359 miles through five other counties before entering Louisiana, was the major waterway for transportation through the interior Delta. With the introduction of the steamboat in the middle of the century, the world’s longest bayou became the major thoroughfare for the transportation of cotton. When timber became the major industry near the end of the century, steamboat traffic rapidly declined. Shown in this 1905 photo is the Handy, one of the last steamboats to navigate the bayou.