Scenic Tchefuncte River In Madisonville, Louisiana
Nestled along the strand of the alluring Tchefuncte River is the town of Madisonville LA. It is fishing hot spot for those in and around St. Tammany Parish. Fish the bottom of the river using live worms for blue cats which is a great tasting catfish also known as channel cats. There are also plenty of bass, bream and crappie to catch if you have a boat.
Known for its fresh, seafood cuisine, visitors can sit atop the water while enjoying marinated crab claws from Morton’s, or a famous shrimp Po-boy from the Crabby Shack. Orlando’s is another fine seafood restaurant located to blocks west of the lite at hwy 22 and Main Street. It sits next to a new Thi restaurant.
One of the many nostalgic towns in St. Tammany Parish, Madisonville is a great location, only 40 miles from New Orleans, and just north of Lake Pontchartrain. Named after the President James Madison, this small, friendly town offers a wealth of history as well as amusement.
In or around 1800, Juan Baham established the town, naming it Coquille. He took the town as Florida was being overtaken by the Spanish. When it was integrated into the United States in 1810, the name was changed.
As the town grew, it became a port for bricks and other goods handmade by the villagers. By way of boats, the goods were taken to New Orleans on the Tchefuncte River.
In the mid-1800s, during the Civil War, though New Orleans had fallen to the Union, this town remained tied to confederate control. The ability to carry the goods became too dangerous, so the exporting, which had served as the town’s main source of income, was ended. This caused a great deal of economic trauma to Madisonville as well as the surrounding towns and lasted long after the Civil War ended.
After the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway was built in 1956, the towns of the north shore were once again brought to life. With easier access available to travelers, these small towns were able to make names for themselves through restaurants, hotels, and culture.
In a town as small as this one, some might think there isn’t much to do, however that is not true. This town offers many visitor delights as well as hometown favorites. One of the most famous landmarks in town is the Tchefuncte Lighthouse, which became even more famous when it appeared in the 2008 movie, “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.”
The lighthouse has seen a great deal of damage throughout the years. Almost unrecognizable damaged during the Civil War, it was rebuilt in 1868. Many hurricanes caused damage to this landmark, too. In 1999, it was moved to its current location where it stands as an icon for St Tammany Parish and all of Southeast Louisiana.
This quiet town of Madisonville LA has two museums to offer. The Madisonville Historic Courthouse was built in 1911 and is surrounded by towering oak trees covered in Spanish moss. The entrance of the museum is noted in the National Registry of Historic Places. With a litany of Civil War memorabilia and Indian culture, this museum makes for a peaceful, informative afternoon. The Lake Pontchartrain Basin Maritime Museum is located on Main Street about 2 blocks south of the main stop light in town.
One of the favorite places to visit is the Tchefuncte riverfront. This shoreline hosts the famous annual Madisonville Wooden Boat Festival that takes place every October and features a wooden boat race, car show, food, music and many other lively happenings. One of the historic homes has been turned into the Amite Roasting House where you can get fresh roasted coffee while at the festival. You can also purchase coffee in 1 lb bags straight from the roaster. They have an in house old time roasting machine where they roast their coffee beans daily. Have a cup of coffee and enjoy the view of the river as the boats pass. If you like coffee this is the place to go. You can also enjoy the original old time setting of this historic house across the street from this scenic river.
Pictures Of The Tchefuncte River at Madisonville LA
The Fairview Riverside State Park is just south of Madisonville and runs along side the Tchefuncte River. The park is on the east bank of the river and has a raised wood boardwalk that can be used to fish from. Fairview State Park also has a boat launch on the river. Manatees have been seen at the boat launch and along the boardwalk. There is a manatee sign at the boat launch to inform boaters to watch for them while launching their boat. Manatees have been seen at the mouth of the river where it meets Lake Pontchartrain.
This small town is enriched with history and offers so much for visitors to see and do. An afternoon by the riverbanks, or a quiet afternoon taking pictures of the antiquated historic markers, Madisonville and the Tchefuncte River has something for everyone.