The American Cyclopædia (1879)/Baton Rouge
BATON ROUGE, a city, capital of the parish of East Baton Rouge, La., and formerly of the state, situated on a bluff on the E. bank of the Mississippi, 129 m. above New Orleans; pop. in 1870, 6,498, of whom 3,356 were colored. It was one of the first French settlements, said to have been the site of an old Indian village. It is in the midst of a large district devoted to the cultivation of sugar and cotton. The town is well built, contains a national arsenal and barracks, a military hospital, and the state penitentiary and deaf and dumb asylum. It is the seat of the Louisiana state university, which in 1871 had 18 instructors, 184 students, and a library of 7,000 volumes, and of Baton Rouge college. It has one weekly and two daily newspapers and a monthly periodical. In the civil war Baton Rouge was occupied by federal troops shortly after the capture of New Orleans. On Aug. 5, 1862, Gen. Williams was attacked there by the confederate Gen. Breckenridge, and fell, gallantly fighting, at the moment of victory; the ram Arkansas, on the co-operation of which the assailants had counted, having broken her engine and proved a failure.