Winn Parish was officially created by the state legislature in 1851 from bordering parishes of Rapides, Natchitoches, and Catahoula. Official organization was completed in 1852. In 1869 Winn Parish gave up part of its original area for the formation of another parish, Grant. Winnfield, the parish seat since its organization is located in the geographical center of the parish. The parish was named after Walter O. Winn, the representative who sponsored the legislation to establish the parish.
Beginning around 1900, Winn Parish attracted many lumber companies, creating towns and logging camp communities. The growing, manufacturing and marketing of timber, in all its forms, is still one of the principal occupations in the parish. Arclin also operates a medium sized facility where resin is manufactured and Jeld-Wen operates a medium sized facility where windows and doors are manufactured. The parish’s location in Central Louisiana offers markets and direct access to industrial and commercial centers. The major transportation roads through Winn Parish are US Highways 84 and 167, which connect to I49 and I20, respectively.
The Kisatchie is Louisiana’s only National Forest with over 604,000 acres of public lands. The forest has a lot to offer visitors and residents of Winn Parish, such as 355 miles of trails for hiking, camping, mountain biking, horseback riding, or ORV riding. Other recreational opportunities include four lakes, an 8700-acre wilderness, and dozens of camping sites. The forest also provides opportunities for hunting and fishing, sightseeing and nature study. Winn Parish also has Gum Springs Campground and Picnic Area, it’s a fun place to camp for the whole family. Gravel Creek flows through this area and there are several marked hiking trails. The campground has 16 campsites with grills and fire rings. Saline Bayou is a designated National Scenic River. This meandering bayou supports a wide variety of wildlife and plant species, and offers a rare opportunity to experience a range of nearly undisturbed ecosystems ranging from upland pine forest to cypress tupelo swamp. Saline Bayou is believed to support more than seventy kinds of fish and is home to a variety of popular game animals. Saline Lake is located on the Natchitoches/Winn Parish border 12 miles northeast of the town of Natchitoches, LA., Saline Lake encompasses 8,400 acres. Red River comes through a part of Winn Parish located in St. Maurice. Click here to get directions to that facility. In addition to the outdoor recreations, Winn Parish has many annual events, such as the Winn Parish Fair & Rodeo is held the first weekend in October, the Louisiana Forest Festival is held the fourth weekend in April, “Uncle Earl’s” Hog Dog Trials is held the fourth full weekend in March, Winnfield Christmas Parade is held the first Friday before the first Saturday in December, and Krewe of Kingfish Mardi Gras Parade is held on the Saturday before Fat Tuesday.
Winn Parish School System has 7 public elementary, junior high, and senior high schools. There are no private or parochial schools, but some neighboring parishes have them. There are 11 colleges and universities within a 2 hour drive and the Huey P. Long Technical College is located within the parish.
Area Square Miles: 950.6 Congressional District: 5 Supreme Court District: 4 Court of Appeal: Circuit: 2 District: 2 Public Service Commission District: 5 State Board of Elementary & Secondary Education District: 4 Senate District: 29, 31, 35 House of Representative District: 13, 22 Judicial District: 8 2010 Population Census: 15,313
Atlanta, Calvin, Dodson, Sikes, and Winnfield
Bienville, Caldwell, Grant, Jackson, LaSalle, and Natchitoches