The Fortier Plantation Home
The Cornerstone Chemical Company Fortier Complex, formerly American Cyanamid followed by Cytec Industries, Inc., is located on a former sugar cane and rice plantation site. The Fortier Complex is located on the west bank of the Mississippi River above New Orleans on 800 acres of land. The plant was built in 1952 and dedicated in 1954 to produce Acrylonitrile, Ammonia, Sulfuric Acid and many other petrochemical products.
The plantation was originally acquired by Eugene Fortier, a planter, in the 1780's through a land grant from the Spanish government. Apparently, Eugene inherited the plantation from his father and, in 1839, the property was sold at auction. Little is known about the plantation until Jan. 23, 1882, when Mr. Theodore Soniat sold the plantation, then known as Orange Grove, to his son-in-law, Francois Eugene Fortier and his eldest son Amedee. In 1893, Amedee became the sole owner. Edmond Fortier, the brother of Amedee, apparently became the last owner of the plantation in 1900.
In 1786, Eugene, after having cleared and planted his land, built his home. The house was sturdily constructed with cypress from the surrounding swamp lands and was fashioned on the style of a West Indies home, with balcony completely surrounding the house. It remained standing until the year 1922. It was known as Orange Grove because of the many orange trees planted thereon and later became known as the Nineteen Mile Point.
There is little information to be found about Orange Grove but there is some similarity to other homes found along the banks of the Mississippi. There are several pictures of the home which were presented to Cyanamid by the Fortier family.
History by: Carl Toups
Pen & Ink Rendered By: Joe Schexnayder - 12/86
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