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The Mighty Atchafalaya River

The Atchafalaya River at Simmesport

 

Simmesport is a small town of some 2,200 people. It lies in the middle of the state at the southeastern corner of Avoyelles Parish. The area was settled by Bennet B Simmes sometime before 1834. It wasn’t until 1840 that the post office began to call the area Simmes’ Port. The dominate feature of Simmesport is the Atchafalaya River (Choctaw for “long river”) which begins a few miles north of Simmesport and flows all the way to the Gulf of Mexico. Near the Gulf of Mexico the river forms the Atchafalaya basin which is the largest wetland swamp cropped-tracksbanner.jpgin the United States. Louisiana Highway 1 and the Kansas City Southern rail line also pass through the center of the town. Since it’s inception, Simmesport has always relied on the river for commerce and for food. Even today there is a strong commercial fishing industry in Simmesport. Here is a link to a Brief History of Simmesport written by Mrs. Hazel Barr. Simmesport is in an ideal location for business and manufacturing. Situated in the middle of the state, Simmesport has Louisiana Highway 1 running through it, the Kansas City Southern rail line, and is right on the banks of the Atchafalaya River. The Mississippi River can be accessed via the Old River Locks only 9 miles away. Simmesport also has an The Old River Lock inflow channel facing the Mississippi Rivereconomic development area that is run by the Avoyelles Parish Port Commission. The port commission has an area for loading and unloading barges and hundreds of acres of land ready for development by business and industries.

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Simmesport is ripe for business development and has a city government that is receptive to new and innovative business ideas. The town is home to hard-working people who embrace new ideas and people. French culture permeates the small town and that warm and friendly attitude invites cooperation¬† and a willingness to help.¬† The Atchafalaya River has always been the centerpiece of business for Simmesport. To this day the fishing industry remains strong here. However, Simmesport also offers high-speed internet access along with it’s highway access and major rail line service.

The residents of Simmesport are proud, welcoming people. We invite you to visit for any reason and stay a few days. If you are interested in business development, please contact us by phone or e-mail and the town government will do all it can to help you.

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