Planter's Banner

St. Mary Parish

Founded in 1836, the Planters’ Banner / Bannière des habitans was a bilingual English-French newspaper published in Franklin, the seat of St. Mary Parish, Louisiana. Its place of publication is sometimes given as Attakapas County, one of the twelve counties of the Territory of Orleans, from which St. Mary Parish was formed in 1811. In the antebellum period, this part of Louisiana was known for its large sugar plantations. It later became a center of the state’s oyster and shrimp industries.

The Banner was briefly edited by Jeremiah Cosden, Nicholas Kelly, and William C. Dwight before coming under the management of Robert Wilson, who edited it from 1838 to 1848. In politics, it supported the Whig Party and its platform of internal improvements. Articles on steamboat navigation, canals, banking, and public lands are common. International news included reports on unrest in the Republic of Texas and Canada and Indian hostilities in Florida and the western territories.

The Banner was a “family” paper, carrying fiction, poetry, essays, and humorous anecdotes. In 1842, it was renamed the Planter’s Banner, and Louisiana Agriculturist, but reverted in 1849 to the Planter’s Banner when it came under the ownership of Daniel Dennett, a native of Maine who became one of the leading promoters of southwest Louisiana. Dennett moved the paper to nearby New Iberia in 1871 because of financial difficulties. Publication ended the following year.