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By Max Hebert, ‘25 


Every town has a story. This statement is especially true when it comes to my hometown of Breaux Bridge, Louisiana. The culture of my town has always been apparent to me; its presence is suffocating in a pleasant sort of way. I am very aware that most other places have been stripped of their culture and become indistinguishable from other places close to their area of origin, but this hasn’t happened yet to Breaux Bridge.

I wanted to find out the circumstances that led to the founding of my town and how the town’s social environment led to the culture we have today. I have seen these strange monuments throughout my town. One in my town’s park seems to be a soldier while another one by the bayou is a stone picture of a giant snake. Through my research, I learned that the soldier is a statue commemorating a group of Breaux Bridge veterans who were hand selected to become part of the U.S. Army’s Elite Force, also known as the Green Berets. After rigorous training, this small but capable force proclaimed their home to be Breaux Bridge until their detachment on September 1st, 1972. 

The stone inscription of a snake is based on a Chitimacha legend. The legend says that a giant snake that is miles long was an enemy of the Chitimacha tribe. Eventually, the warriors of the Chitimacha tribe fought and killed the snake. According to legend, the Bayou Teche was formed when the giant snake’s body landed on the ground after its defeat. In the Chitimacha language, “Bayou Teche” means “snake bayou.” 

In preparation for making a podcast about Breaux Bridge, I have listened to podcasts about other towns to learn how the podcasters strung together talking segments and interview segments to develop a story. I discovered ways to turn academic research into a personal story someone might want to hear. Another thing I did to prepare for my podcast about my hometown was to collect sounds of the environment. One sound that I knew had to be part of my podcast was the sounds of cicadas during the nights in Breaux Bridge. Some other sounds that I am thinking about recording are the sounds of the cars passing through the main intersection of the town, the serene breeze of midday Breaux Bridge, and the sound of people talking to each other at the local restaurants of Breaux Bridge. 

One thing about the podcast preparation that interests me is finding people to interview. The first person who I decided to interview is my History and Geography teacher, Dr. Lane Nevils. Breaux Bridge is unique when it comes to how it developed because unlike most towns and even civilizations, my town developed on both sides of a river, or in this case a bayou. I know that Doctor Nevils would be able to give me insight about how many civilizations used water sources to develop. Doctor Nevils can probably also give me insight on the heredity of the settlers of Louisiana and Breaux Bridge. I remember that the Acadians, which are one of the first settlers of Louisiana, were originally part of a Canadian settlement in Canada and were forcefully moved out of Canada and eventually moved into modern-day Louisiana. Another person I can interview is a historian of Breaux Bridge. I could ask him to clarify some things that I am not sure about. 

The direction I currently expect to take in my podcast is to talk about the story of Breaux Bridge’s founding in an entertaining manner. However, it is very possible that I could find a more unique direction to go in when I start to collect stories and research more subtopics. In a recent field trip to KRVS Radio Acadie, I learned that the stories one collects from interview subjects are what really determine the final story that the podcast tells. Stay tuned to hear the story of Breaux Bridge, which I’ll be submitting to the National Public Radio Student Podcast Challenge in April.