Location: Moreauville, LA
Contact: Brian Davis, Louisiana Trust for Historic Preservation; 318-267-5220
The History: In 1856, newlyweds Dr. Eugene Albert Amet and Palmire Lucie Boyer departed their native France and settled in the Avoyelles Parish of Moreauville, where her family built them a modest home. Over time, the house expanded along with their family. Eventually, one of the Amets’ three children, Marie, inherited the house and raised seven children there with her husband, Dr. Tobie Lucien Lougarre; he became the town’s first mayor in 1904. The home remained in the family for more than 100 years in total.
Shown: The 3,576-square-foot home holds five bedrooms and three baths. Outside, it is wrapped with original cypress clapboards. The gingerbread trim was added in the late 1800s and the dormers circa 1930.
Why save it? The Amet-Lougarre house is one of the few surviving antebellum structures in Avoyelles Parish. Renovations spanning decades added key details without much being taken away. The house retains original wavy window glass, period doors and hardware, several fireplace mantels, thick crown and baseboard moldings, and even two lightning rods. Pine and oak floors, beadboard wainscoting, and gingerbread trim were likely added in the late 1800s or early 1900s.
Shown: A first-floor bedroom has oak floorboards from the early 1900s, with the even older originals likely preserved beneath them.
What it needs: The new owner will work with the Louisiana Trust for Historic Preservation to get the house up to modern standards while paying respect to its history. The buyer will want to put in all-new systems, and the roof needs to be replaced; the time-warp kitchen and three bathrooms need fresh fixtures and finishes. Preservation tax credits may be available to defray costs. It’s no short order, but with some TLC the right owner can both restore the home and guarantee its status as a cornerstone of the community’s history and culture.
Shown: The roomy kitchen, a 1979 addition, has a good layout to work with and an adjacent laundry room.
Original interior double doors offer a sight line from inside the front door to the kitchen addition.
Flash back to 1979, when the children living in the house carved their names in the living room’s wood mantel shelf.
19th Century Stairs
The staircase was added in the late 1800s, when the second floor was finished. The turned newel post, balustrade, and wainscoting are all original.
Ornate trim, including this late-1800s flatsawn railing, wraps the front porch. The original 1856 porch would have had simple straight balusters.
Around the Back
Two doors on the back porch lead into the kitchen and living room.
The entry features original double doors with sidelights and a transom. Two of the three first-floor bedrooms are entered from either side of the foyer, with two more bedrooms located upstairs.
An image dated around 1900 shows Marie Volcy Amet Lougarre, who inherited the house from her father, on her front porch. Gingerbread trim was added in the late 1800s. Three dormers were yet to come; they were added around 1930.
Thanks to: Brian Davis, Louisiana Trust for Historic Preservation; 318-267-5220
Charming cottage in central Louisiana!