Francis Bickham was the first settler to buy land in the area in 1843.
Benjamin R. Bickham bought land in the Blanchard area in the later 1840’s.
He owned land along what is now Blanchard-Furrh Road and Cross Lake, with
the section facing Cross Lake serving as Bickham’s Landing.
Named in honor of 1904-1908 Louisiana
Governor Newton Crane Blanchard, the town of Blanchard
was established in about 1896, when the Kansas City
Southern Railroad came through the area. Following the
railroad tracks, which travel southeast to northwest,
the Arkansas Land Company surveyed and set up the land.
Businesses and stores were built mainly on the east side
of the railroad tracks.
buildings all faced the railroad, and the streets fail
to run in the cardinal directions. The town had stores,
a grist mill, a cotton gin, a doctor’s office, and a
blacksmith’s shop on the main street, which is now
Louisiana Highway 173.
A stock pen and loading ramp were located
along the railroad tracks to help with the shipment of
The depot burned in 1933, but the train
continued through the area until World War II.
A passenger train system ran from Blanchard to
Shreveport, where most shopping was done. The train was
beneficial as the roads were often impassable. The first
blacktop road to be laid was between Blanchard to
Shreveport. W. P. A. labor built the Latex Road and the
Pine Hill Road in the 1930’s. The latter connected the
Texas border and the Old Mooringsport Road.
The first post office was housed in Will
Morgan’s store with Melvin Barnes serving as the first
postmaster. R. V. McKneely later housed the post office
in his store. Kathryn Doggett later served as the
postmistress until J. E. Jamar succeeded her. The
present post office was built in 1956 with Effie Bickham
serving as the postmistress.
A telephone was installed in
1908 in E. L. McCain’s Store.
9 Blanchard gained a telephone exchanged in April
Gas lighting was used from 1905 until 1930, when
electricity was introduced to the eastern part of the
city; it was not introduced to the west side of the city
In about 1950 street lights were installed by the local
churches and businesses.
Cisterns and wells served the town’s water supply until
the municipal water system was finished in 1967 with
water now coming from
Shreveport. The Pine Hills Water System
pulls water from three wells located on the Dixie Road
and serves the area north of Old Mooringsport Road.
The Blanchard Library opened in 1934 in
the Community House, which was built at the corner of
Alexander and Attaway Streets in the 1930s.
The one-room Pine Hills School building became the
Blanchard Library in 1950.
The town was incorporated after the
Kiwanis Club gathered enough names on a petition. In
Governor Jimmie Davis
designated 640 acres as
Keith Jackson, originally from Many, Louisiana, served
as the first mayor. The first traffic light was
installed in 1962.
In July 1983 the parish’s first fire
district, Fire District No. 1, was established in
Early on Blanchard was home to a handful
of sawmills. One was located on the Blanchard-Shreveport
Road, another was on the Pine Hills Road, a third on the
Blanchard-Furrh Road, and a fourth about four miles east
About one-fourth mile north of the
present Bostwick and Blanchard-Shreveport roads was the
Danville settlement, begun by Dan Monroe. He operated
the store in Danville, and the community also had a
cotton gin and a post office. Had Monroe not died, it is
possible that Blanchard would have grown up there
instead of at its present location.
Cynthia Attaway and H. T. Lyles deeded
four acres to the Pine Hill Methodist Church with
one-half acre being reserved for the four-room Pine Hill
School, which already stood. The churches of various
denominations used the school for their church meetings.
The one-room school, which has an undetermined
construction date, now serves as the Blanchard Library
and is located on Pine Hill Road. The brick Blanchard
Elementary School was built in 1950 and is in use today.
As a high school was never built in Blanchard, students
in the 1930’s and 1940’s were sent first to Mooringsport
High School and later to Fair Park High School in
Shreveport. Today students attend Northwood High School,
which serves much of North Caddo Parish.
The Castle Springs, Hickory Grove, and
Russell Schools also served the Blanchard vicinity. A
one-room school was built in Blanchard prior to 1900,
but another room was later added to it. In about 1915 a
new four-room school was built; this structure was
served by gas lights and a cistern. Early on, students
walked to school or rode a horse. Some were fortunate
enough to travel by covered wagon. School buses were not
used until 1924. A cafeteria and auditorium were added
in 1933. In 1949 a new brick school began operation.
Blanchard Elementary School, Donnie
Bickham Middle School, and Northwood High School serve
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