About

History

The Louisiana National Guard has a long, proud history of protecting the State of Louisiana, the country, and the world.

Visit the Louisiana Military History Museum to walk through 300 years of Louisiana military stories, equipment, photos and records. This free museum is located at Jackson Barracks in the heart of New Orleans.

Louisiana Military Timeline

1600s

The earliest European settlers began to organize civilian militias to protect their growing towns and cities.

1700s

Slowly, the militias became more organized in the Louisiana territory, uniting to help French and Spanish troops keep the peace.

1779

Organized militia operations brought the future capital of Baton Rouge under colonial control.

1813

Louisiana’s newly-formed General Assembly created the state force that became the foundation for today’s National Guard.

1860s

At the start of the Civil War, Louisiana’s militia consisted of five divisions whose members served in every parish in the state. During the war, 982 military companies were formed in Louisiana.

Under federal control during reconstruction, Louisiana’s militias were called on to maintain peace throughout the state.

1870s

At the end of Reconstruction, Louisiana regained state control of its Guard troops.

1898

During the War with Spain, members of the Louisiana Volunteer Artillery were called into federal service.

1903

The United States Congress passed the Militia Act, which organized the country’s assortment of state militias and officially established their dual federal-state mission.

1916

The National Guard was born, placing state militias under federal control as a division of the U.S. Army.

Several divisions of the Louisiana National Guard were called into federal duty along the border with Mexico.

1917

After only a couple of months at home, Louisiana National Guard units were called for overseas service during World War I.

1920

The Louisiana National Guard began reorganizing its operations to better complete its missions.

1941-1945

During World War II, National Guard troops were among the first on the front lines in Europe.

The Louisiana National Guard made tremendous contributions to the war effort, with several divisions earning Battle Honors.

1950

Following another postwar re-organization, Louisiana National Guard troops were deployed to the Korean conflict.

1990-91

During the Operation Desert Storm in Iraq, 17 Louisiana National Guard units mobilized, including nine serving directly on the front lines.

2004-today

Louisiana National Guard units continue to play a major role in Iraq and Afghanistan.

In 2005, a series of devastating hurricanes struck the Gulf Coast of the United States. Louisiana National Guard troops were active immediately after the storms conducting extensive rescue, clean up and rebuilding operations, saving lives and property.