Wednesday, January 30, 2019

"Notice Of Intention To Sell Bonds For New Jail Being Published"

The March 19, 1936 issue of the Bossier Banner announced plans for bonds for a new jail to be published.

“The Bossier Parish Police Jury this week begins the publication of its intention to issue bonds to defray the cost of constructing a new Parish Jail, to be erected in Benton at a cost of between $18,000 and $24,000. The initial step in this matter was taken by the jury at its meeting, held Tuesday of last week, when the Parish Health Officer, Dr. C. H. Irion, informed the jurors that the present jail has become so unsanitary that he would condemn it at once, unless steps to remedy the condition existing are taken.”
Dr. C.H. Irion; Scanland collection, 0000.004.013
“The jury plans to allot a half mill of its ad valorem tax, for four years to pay for the new jail.”

“Since the jury’s action became known citizens of Bossier City, who favor removal of the parish seat to the city, have voiced their objections to the building of a jail at this time. They hope to secure the delay of construction until such time as a vote on the renewal proposition can be had. This course of action was decided on at a meeting of the newly organized Association of Commerce, held Monday night, at the Bossier City Town Hall.”

“A committee of ten, named at the time by Homer T. Cox, president of the association, headed by J. M. Emmons, called on the Mayor, Tom Hickman, and succeeded in getting him to summon the Town Council into a special session, at which meeting the use of the Bossier Jail was extended to the parish, with the stipulation that the parish defray cost of food and medical attention for its prisoners.”

Mayor Thomas Hickman; Stella Stokes collection, 1997.042.055
“At present it looks as though the jury will continue with its plans to erect a new jail in Benton. Members have pointed out that no vote on the removal proposition can be had until after a special act of the Legislature has been passed and the Police Jury has called for such a vote. Meanwhile the citizens of Bossier City plan to push for a vote on the matter, with the provision that the parish seat be moved, if and when a new court house becomes necessary.”

Even in 1936 the question of the location of the parish seat of Bossier was still an issue. It was not until 1969 that Bossier Citizens voted to build a new court house. Find out more about all the court houses that Bossier has had by visiting the Bossier Parish Libraries History Center.

By: Ann Middleton

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