The Drew family and their part in our rich Louisiana history, will be the subject of the April 11th, 2011, Dorcheat Historical Association Museum’s “Night For The Museum”. Drew White, Richard Carey and Judge Harmon Drew will present a presentation of their family that dates back to the 1820s in our area.
European Settlement would begin in earnest a few years after Freeman and Curtis when the first settlers came to Webster Parish, following the waters of Dorcheat Bayou. The first settlement would occur in 1822, when Newitt Drew came to Louisiana from Middle Tennessee. Drew's trade was that of a gunsmith. He settled at the head of Lake Bistineau and a small settlement that would be called Overton named after the presiding judge for the area. This area soon grew up around him and his grist mill at the confluence of Cooley Creek and Dorcheat Bayou. By 1835, Overton would become the seat of Claiborne Parish. River commerce drove the community’s economy and soon warehouses and docks spread for nearly a mile along the Bayou.
However, the unhealthy location of the Overton settlement proved to be its demise as repeated outbreaks of Swamp or Yellow Fever devastated the population. By the late 1840s almost all residential presence at Overton had vanished and the business trade disappeared by the mid 1850s. Today nothing remains of this former parish seat, but a few graves in a cemetery atop a hill, isolated among gravel pits along Dorcheat Bayou.
Don’t miss your chance to hear about one of Minden’s most interesting families. Event will be held at Christopher’s, 615 Main St., Minden, La. Doors will open at 5:30 p.m., with first come, first serve seating. This program will draw a large crowd so lawn chairs are recommended to insure a seat. Program begins at 6:00 p.m., admission is free with potluck desserts and snacks welcome. For more information contact Schelley Brown at 318-377-3002 or visit www.museuminminden.blogspot.com to sign up for the museum email blast. You can also find the museum on Facebook. To learn more about Webster Parish’s rich history visit the Dorcheat Historical Association Museum located at 116 Pearl Street in Minden. Museum hours; closed on Monday, Tuesday-Friday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. (closed from 1-2 for lunch), Saturday 10 a.m.-noon. Also open for special tours and rental by appointment.