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A History of Love Grown and Lost Along the Mississippi River
Poche Plantation Historic Bed and Breakfast and RV Park and Resort is exceptional for both its architecture and the families who have resided here. Architecturally, it is unusual. Although it is a raised plantation house like so many others in the region its design was influenced by the Victorian Renaissance Revival style while most plantation homes were influenced by the Greek revival style.

The history of the Poché Plantation is a story of two families, the family of Judge Felix Pierre Poché and the family of Judge Henry and Adele Himel, who, between them, lived here for over 70 years. The home hosted families that shared common histories of respected military men and legal scholars, strong women who loved them, and the devotion and respect for the river upon which they built their lives. The rooms inside the home give vivid recollections from the history of both of the homes most distinguished families.

Judge Felix Pierre Poché built the home in 1867. This land was the site of a 160-acre sugar cane plantation for many years before this house was built. Poché maintained the plantation as his main residence until 1892 when he moved to New Orleans La. Thereafter, it served as his summer residence until 1892 when he sold the property to Judge Henry Himel.

Felix Pierre Poché was an accomplished attorney, Louisiana Supreme Court Justice, and co-founder of the American Bar Association. He was a man distinguished in his lifetime for accomplishments in courtrooms and on battlefields. He was recognized again upon the discovery of his famous diary and it's detailed description of the world of a Confederate in Louisiana during the Civil War. Judge Poché wrote his Civil War diary in French. The diary which has been translated and published has long been an important resource for Civil War scholars. It is exceptional because there are only a handful of Confederate diaries describing the Civil War in print.

Poché Plantation would play host to stories of love and tragedy that spanned two families and over a century. Visit Poché Plantation Bed and Breakfast and RV Park and Resort to hear all the rich history and stories, in the house where it all happened so many years ago.

Poché Plantation in 2006 was home to evacuees from the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina and Rita. The home provided shelter for over 300 evacuees fleeing the flood. Poché Plantation was able to secure additional acres in 2004, 2005 and 2006 to bring Poché Plantation grounds up to a standard that compliments a plantation mansion of its size. The property is now encircled by white picked fence with custom built columns with reverse caps.

The future is bright for Poché Plantation with all of its camping and B&B accreditations awarded and its accommodations provides getaways for city dwellers seeking relaxation. We are between Gonzales and Laplace Louisiana and less than an hour from  New Orleans and Baton Rouge Louisiana. History continues to be written at Poché Plantation B&B and Class A Motor Coach Park and Resort and we welcome you to be a part of it.

Different Opinions Vary Locally on the Man:

Others have a different opinion of Felix Poché and his endeavors. Locals speculate to this date that Felix was a spy for the North during the civil war. Very little except imagination might lead one to this type of thinking.

Felix served as a confederate and resided in the South with southern traditions, traveled and had many friends and contacts in the North. And some folk tales take stabs at Felix for such behavior during war times. Felix did indeed write occurrences of day to day war in French. Some say it was so Southerners not so educated in French writings could not tell what Felix was recording with his writings.

Gossip also points to the fact that in the last days of the civil war, or rather the last few months of the war, the area known by all was devastated and people generally had no funds or commerce to support lavish expenditures. While others tried desperately to get a foot hold on what the war dealt them, Felix was off building his mansion. People could not understand, even with the education and the practice of law, how could Felix be so fortunate. Fireplace mantels of great value were stolen and pillaged from famous plantation homes prior to burning most of them and yet Felix seemed to have mantels everywhere in his new mansion and was able to acquire such lavish items at a time when commerce for such items was deemed impossible.

Locals began to speculate with wild gossip and some say Felix would not be happy in his mansion. In fact, Felix did not stay in Poché very much after the main home was completed and with in a short period was away from Poché Plantation more then here. Felix soon sold the plantation home and grounds and found comfort elsewhere.

More speculation arose when Felix's hidden accounts of the Civil War day by day goings on was uncovered and published almost 20 years ago. These now famous writings were hidden in Poché Plantation Home attic and then translated into English and published. Many wonder why these writings were hidden when Felix, as one can easily tell by his writings, was very detailed in wanting to accurately detail the accounts of each day on these pages. Felix never missed one day in his entire entries, a dedication that leads speculators again to wonder why Felix would devote so much effort and dedication to this task, and then write it in a form where most local men could not read it.

In 2005, while undertaking a re-wiring construction project, the present owners found many pieces of marble and granite mantels that could be from almost any famous Plantation home and mirror ones used in Poché Plantation’s two parlors that exist today. Now this was a stickler for these gossip speculators, but yet it goes unanswered still. Why did Felix have all these broken, now priceless carved mantels hidden under the Judge’s Cottage? The Judge’s Cottage was the only building on the property during the war and exists today in basically the same form as it did then. Why were these treasures even under and well hidden under this building constructed in 1830?

Felix was also an accomplished lawyer as previously stated. Most locals today as well as then, don’t hold lawyers as any kind of Saint, and as a Judge, leads one to wonder if Felix Poché might have well needed to be judged himself.

The facts may never be known but the interesting thing is that, it could be…

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