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Territory of Orleans

Territory of Orleans
the United States



Flag of Orleans Territory

Flag of the United States

Government Organized incorporated territory
 •  1804–1812 William C. C. Claiborne
 •  1804–1807 James Brown
 •  1807–1811 Thomas Bolling Robertson
 •  Established October 1, 1804
 •  Statehood April 30, 1812

The Territory of Orleans or Orleans Territory was an

  • The Political Graveyard Secretaries of Orleans Territory

External links

  • Julien Vernet, Strangers on Their Native Soil: Opposition to United States' Governance in Louisiana's Orleans Territory, 1803-1809. Jackson, MS: University Press of Mississippi, 2013.

Further reading


See also

Judges of the Superior Court were Joshua Lewis (1807–1813), and Francois Xavier Martin (1810–1813).

There were two Territorial Secretaries, James Brown (1804–1807) and Thomas B. Robertson (1807–1811). Daniel Clark became the first Territorial Delegate to the U.S. Congress, in December 1806. Judge Dominic Augustin Hall was the U.S. District Judge of the Territory.

William C. C. Claiborne was appointed Governor of the Orleans Territory; he held this position throughout the territorial period. Later he became the first Governor of the state of Louisiana.

Leaders and representatives

  1. ^ "An Act erecting Louisiana into two territories and providing for the temporary government thereof"
  2. ^ "An Act for the admission of the state of Louisiana into the Union, and to extend the laws of the United States to the said state"
  3. ^ U.S. District Courts of Louisiana, Legislative history, Federal Judicial Center.
  4. ^ Stat. 708, "An Act to enlarge the limits of the state of Louisiana"

The Orleans Territory was the site of the largest slave revolt in American history, the 1811 German Coast Uprising.

The Florida Parishes on the east side of the Mississippi River were not included in Orleans Territory at this time, as they were in the Spanish territory of West Florida until they were formally annexed on April 14, 1812.[4] The western boundary with Spanish Texas was not fully defined until the Adams–Onís Treaty in 1819. A strip of land known as the Sabine Free State just east of the Sabine River served as a neutral ground buffer area from about 1807 until 1819.

On April 10, 1805, the Territorial Legislature organized 12 counties (starting from the southeast corner moving west and north): Orleans County, LaFourche County, German Coast, Acadia County, Iberville County, Attakapas County, Pointe Coupée County, Opelousas County, Rapides County, Concordia County, Natchitoches County, and Ouachita County.

The United States District Court for the District of Orleans—the only time Congress has ever provided a territory with a United States district court equal in its authority and jurisdiction to those of the states.[3] Congress also established the Superior Court for the Territory of Orleans whose three judges were the top territorial court.

In 1804, all of the Louisiana Purchase south of the 33rd parallel became the Orleans Territory, and the remainder became the District of Louisiana. (The District of Louisiana was later renamed the Louisiana Territory; and still later, when the Orleans Territory became the State of Louisiana, the Louisiana Territory was renamed the Missouri Territory.)



  • History 1
  • Leaders and representatives 2
  • See also 3
  • Footnotes 4
  • Further reading 5
  • External links 6

. State of Louisiana as the Union when it was admitted to the [2] until April 30, 1812,[1]

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