Lock offers Spring Speaker Series

Staff reports

Plaquemine Lock State Historic Site kicks off the spring with a Spring Speaker Series highlighting one of the industries that help transform Iberville Parish in the 20th century, along with the history of saving and making Plaquemine Lock into a State Historic Site.  The series will be held on Saturday mornings, March 10, 17 and 24 from 10 a.m. to noon.    

The series kicks off on March 10 with James “Fry” Hymel discussing the history of the oil industry in Iberville Parish.  Hymel, his father and father-in-law all worked for Shell Oil Company in the White Castle area.  His book, The Impact of Oil on Iberville Parish, was published last year.     

2012 marks the 30th Anniversary of the opening of the Plaquemine Lock as a State Historic Site. In recognition, former Lieutenant Governor and lifelong Plaquemine resident Bobby Freeman will speak about his role in turning the Plaquemine Lock into a tourist attraction on March 17. 

The series wraps up on March 24 with Joyce Hebert, the president of the Friends of the Plaquemine Lock.  Hebert will talk about Plaquemine Lock after it closed until the present and future plans for the area.  Her husband, the later Gary Hebert saved the lock and Bayou Plaquemine in the early 1970s.  

For more information about the Spring Speakers Series please call 687-7158 or toll free 1-877-987-7158. Plaquemine Lock SHS is located off of LA 1 in historic downtown Plaquemine 13 miles south of Baton Rouge and 19 miles north of Donaldsonville.  Visit to learn more about the site and Louisiana State Parks