Medical Doctor, Historian & Author
Port Arthur, Texas; U.S. Citizen
Position: As of Nov. 1st, 2001, Regional Director of Public
Health; Texas Department of Heath; Between May 2001 - Oct 2001: Interim
Associate Commissioner of Family Health; Texas Department of Health.
Current employed as Executive Director
of Galveston County Health District.
Biological Sciences; University of Texas at Austin; 1979-1983
University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston; 1983-1987
Practice Internship Completion; LSU Moss Regional Hospital; Lake Charles,
Practice Residency Completion; University of Texas San Jacinto Hospital;
Baytown, TX; 1988-1990
(Master of Public Health); University of Texas School of Public Health at
Dr. H. "Mark"
Guidry, a Texan Creole with ancestral roots from Natchitoches and Isle
Brevelle, is a board-certified family physician with extensive knowledge
and experience in promoting the health of communities. In addition to his
professional attributes, he has performed genealogical research on
numerous Louisiana Creole ancestries since 1975. Since that time, he has
written extensively about the Creole culture and about the historic
gens de couleur libre (free people of color) of Louisiana. Dr.
Guidry work is based on his belief that "having a cultural identity and
sense of belonging enhances one's health and well-being."
Resident and Homeowner on Isle Brevelle,
Cane River: 1162 Highway 487; Natchez, La 71456; Member of St.
Augustine's Catholic Church; Melrose, La.
Honors: Family Historian Awards, Grand Family Reunion, Inc
(1981, 1983, 2000); Walter Kemp Finalist for Outstanding Article in
AMERICAN FAMILY PHYSICIAN (1996); Creole Historian and Preservationist
Award, Louisiana Creole Heritage Center (2000); Texas Board of Health
Award (1997); numerous other professional awards and recognitions.
In Publication: Several manuscripts reproduced and distributed
Back to Our Roots (Grand Family
Reunion booklet); Mark Guidry; 1981
History of a Grand Family: An American Tradition;
Mark Guidry, 2000.
Louisiana's Timeless Cane River;
LSU Press, Oct 2002.
Overview of book:
Natchitoches and Louisiana's Timeless Cane River
Guidry authored the chapter on the Creoles of
Isle Brevelle. This chapter explains the long existence of
gens de couleur libre (free people of color) and Creoles of
multi-ethnic and multi-cultural backgrounds - an existence which extends
back to the 1500's with the first French and Spanish settlements in the
New World. In addition, this chapter covers:
origin and early history of the Creole community of Isle Brevelle which
resulted from a fascinating (yet not uncommon) relationship between a
French planter (Claude Thomas Pierre Metoyer) and former slave (Marie
Thereze Coincoin) of colonial Natchitoches
early history of the Creole owners of Melrose, then known as Yucca
character and accomplishments of Nicolas Augustin Metoyer, the Creole
patriarch of the descendants of Isle Brevelle, and the long and
sometimes difficult history of the large painting of Metoyer which now
hangs in St. Augustine Catholic Church
challenges faced by the Creole community during and following the Civil
War as well as the social impact of "Americanization" on the community
of multi-ethnic, multicultural gens de couleur libre (free
people of color) who originated under French and Spanish governance and
finally, after years of cultural dormancy, the resurrection of Creole
cultural awareness on Isle Brevelle and a national recognition of the
diversity of American heritages.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE DETAILS ABOUT THE
For Dr Mark
Guidry's dedication in the interest of preserving our Creole Heritage, we
extend to him all honors along with our appreciation for a job...
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Historians, Jewelers, Musician, & Collector of Drums from Around The
Jerry Leduff is an accomplished Master Percussionist who now plays with a
group called "Orange Lake Drive," a fusion Jazz Group with a focus on
World Music. Jerry's Drum Collection occupies every room in his homes
and includes numerous drums from around the world. His collection is so
extensive that Museums often contract him to display selected samples.
Jerry & Annette also own & operate a jewelry business focusing on custom,
Jerry's latest Album, "Driven" may be purchased by visiting:
You may contact Jerry & Annette at the following Email addresses:
firstname.lastname@example.org (Annette Wecker LeDuff & Jerry LeDuff)
email@example.com (Ajour Ltd Fine Jewelry Design)
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Janet Ravare Colson
Director, Louisiana Creole heritage Center
Sometimes, I think God puts
certain people on this earth to accomplish special tasks. And... I believe
Janet Colson is one of these individuals. Under her steermanship, the
Creole Awareness Movement has become a living entity that has spread
outward from the Cane River/Natchitoches area to the far-flung reaches of
the globe. Assistant Director
The Louisiana Creole Heritage Center was established as part of a
five-year plan initiated by the St. Augustine Historical Society, a
Natchitoches parish based group. The society was formed over 25 years ago
to promote and preserve the Creole culture. Although its initial focus was
the community of Cane River, it has broadened its range to include the
entire state of Louisiana as well as Creole colonies located nation-wide.
This Center is a reality mainly through the efforts of the society's
current president, Mr. Terrel Delphin, along with the assistance of a
number of its members and various NSU personnel. The approval of the
university's governing boards was sought and obtained in the fall of 1997.
Grant monies received from the Governor's Office of Urban Affairs and
Development allowed for the support of a start-up staff whose initial
mission was to assist in the achievement of permanent funding for the
Since its opening in October, 1998, the office has grown from one (1)
part-time employee to one full time person serving as Assistant Director
with a part-time staff of seven (7) workers. A separate
Genealogy Department has been
developed and is housed in Derry, Louisiana. Although the Center is still
seeking permanent funding, it has been able to secure substantial
financial support through various federal, state, and private agencies.
We Salute you Janet!!
For More Details visit:
To Add Your Family Information To The Creole Database, CLICK BELOW
The present staff consists of one full time person serving as Assistant
Director and seven (7) part-time employees. The main office is located on
the campus of Northwestern State University in Room 116 of Kyser Hall. The
Genealogy Department is presently housed in Derry, Louisiana (approx. 15
miles from the University). You may contact staff
members by CLICKING their names.
Current Staff Members:
PLACE OF BIRTH - Lake Charles, La.
DATE OF BIRTH - January 24, 1926
RESIDENCE - Los Angeles, CA
EDUCATION - Sacred Heart High, Lake Charles, La.
Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament
Holy Rosary - 3 years in Galveston, TX
Sisters of the Holy Family
Central High - Galveston, TX
one year to graduation
COLLEGE - Prairie View College, Hemstead, TX 1943-44
Los Angeles Community College 1967 - 71
West Los Angeles Com. College 1978 - Spanish
California State Univ. Dominguez Hills 1978 - 1982
OCCUPATIONS - Secretary to Attorney - 7 years - Amityville, L.I., New
Clerk-typist & Receptionist for State Mental
Hygiene, Los Angeles 66-69
Clerk-typist & Receptionist - State Dept. of
Corrections - Paroles
MARRIED STATUS - Married for 21 years to Valentino J. Ferreira of
One daughter, Aurora Marie Ferreira-Calcote/Watkins
Marion has been a champion for the preservation of Creole culture for
many years. She:
- Sponsored First Metoyer Descendants Family Reunion 1983
- Researched Family Genealogy - 1983 to Present
- Served as Executive Director for International Foundation for
Creole Cultural Society 1989-1995
- Dedicated 23 years to Research of Creole History 1984 - 2005
- Founded the Associates for the Preservation of Creole Cultural
Heritage 2002 (name changed from Foundation to Associates)
Marion also wrote an
outstanding article regarding the history of
Mother Henriette Delille. If you
would like to read this article click this link.
If you would like to contact
Marion. Her email is: Marion Ferreira
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A Look at the
Life of Marie Roque
Born on January 24, 1923;
reared on Cane River. With the exception of about two years in Port
Arthur, Texas, she has lived on Cane River all of her lifetime.
Oldest daughter of the late
Alfred and Louise Jones Llorens, Marie is a direct descendant of the
first Metoyer who settled Isle Brevelle on Cane River, including Nicolas
Augustin Metoyer (died 1863), the founder of St. Augustine Catholic
Married the late Earl Roque
in 1946. They were blessed with four children (Connie, Mike (deceased -
2002), Tommy and Emitte).
Supports and helps in many
political events and initiatives that have improved government and
services for the people of Natchitoches Parish and Louisiana.
Provided service to the
Cane River community via the historic Roque Brothers grocery store which
operated on Cane River from the 1920’s until 1971, and currently in
process of being restored for public tours.
10 grandchildren (Reggie,
Greg, Carla, Chad, Tommy, Todd, Michelle, Tiffany, Emitte and Sean) call
Four great grandchildren –
Sophia, Amber, Bailey and Alexis and two more on the way.
“Momsy”, “Mame”, “Mamma”,
and “Aunt Rea” to many, many other cousins, neighbors, relatives and
Church / School
Lifetime member of St.
Augustine Catholic Church on Isle Brevelle.
Graduated from St. Joseph
Elementary School and received diploma from St. Matthew High School.
She completed courses at Northwestern State University.
Member of Christian Mothers
since 1946; served as president for approximately 15 years.
Member of Parish Council;
president for five years.
Successfully organized a
series of activities commemorating the 200th year anniversary
celebration for St. Augustine Catholic Church (1803 – 2003).
Participated in several
historic reenactments of church and community history, benefiting the
education of youth and the public.
Was an active member of the
former St. Joseph Parent Teacher Association (PTA).
The maker of a wonderful
and welcoming home, being mother to all who enters, offering her
hospitality and her delicious cooking, especially her famous meat pies.
Preserves the goodwill and
history of Cane River through her time, energy and talents.
Collector of clippings,
articles, and other papers that chronicles the life on Cane River and
her enormous extended network of family and friends.
Known as the “Avon
Representative” for 15 years
Employed by Natchitoches
Area Action Association (NAAA) for 20 years, having served as supervisor
of multiple service centers in Natchitoches Parish.
Organized fundraisers and
events that benefited the community and those in greatest need.
Raised funds to support
senior citizen trips to Jefferson, TX, Eunice, LA, Avery Island, LA, to
name a few.
Instrumental in organizing
ground efforts to incorporate Natchez, LA and select its first Mayor.
Featured guest on Chef John
Folse’s National Public Television Show (PBS) – a Taste of Louisiana –
“Our Food Heritage” series.
Known as the “meat pie
Board Member of the St.
Augustine Historical Society; served as president.
Was instrumental in
establishing the Badin-Roque house as one of historical significance.
Serves on the Seniors and
Lawmen Together (S.A.L.T.) Council in Natchitoches Parish.
Rev. Doctor Jasper Brossette (J.B.) Wilson
(B.A., M.Th., D.D.)
Reverend Wilson earned
degrees from Leland College (Baker, LA), Moody Bible College
(Chicago, IL), Southwest Theological Seminary (Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX) and
the United Theological Seminary behind his name. He was in college
(through the years) from 1953 – 1975. In May 1975, he graduated
with a Doctorate of Divinity (D.D.) from the United Theological
Seminary. He received the D.D. the old-fashioned way…he EARNED it. No
honorary…he earned it. I saw him work, pastor churches, be on City
Council, among other things, AND, burn the mid-night oil studying.
loved Cane River and took me often for visits to Cane River so I would
know my people. Sometimes, many didn’t accept me, but daddy always made
me feel comfortable and kept reminding me that I was his baby and I
looked just like my mother, Ruthie.
Very few people in this world enjoy what they
do for a living. But for my Great uncle Robert Alford working with
people whether through business or commuity activism seems to be his
Community activism is said to be designed to enhance or affect
change in the community, and Mr. Alford has definitely enhanced the
lives of past, present, and future Wichitans.
In 1934, Robert Alford was the last child born to James W.
Alford and Lydia Thibideaux Alford in Castel, Oklahoma. Shortly
afterward the family relocated to Clearview, Oklahoma; one of
Oklahomas Historical black township on the families 160 acre
homestead. Robert's parents were entrepreneurs selling vegetables,
eggs, poultry, grain, and beef to the surrounding communities.
Observing these lessons Robert graduated in 1952 and moved to
Wichita, Kansas where he met and married Jewellean Alford in 1955.
In 1970 Robert bought a lighting company where he made and sold
light fixtures to hotels, furniture stores, showrooms and homes. His
light fixtures were also show cased in Ebony magazine. During this
time Robert was one of few African Americans in the country with
their own lighting company.
Robert has also used his leadership and communication skills as
a two term President of the Airport Authority of Wichita, Kansas.
He's also sat on the Wichita, Kansas chamber of commerce and
the board for the Wichita Industral school system. He was also very
instrumental in helping gain historical status for the Wichita,
Kansas African American museum.
Robert has lived a very fulling life, and he has met a lot of
interesting and important people along the way and he is very proud
of his Lafeyette, Louisiana roots and creole heritage and the
lessons his parents taught him.