|THE RIVER ROAD MUSEUM, NORCO presents the story the lower
Mississippi delta region's transition from an economy of indigo, sugar and cypress to home
of some of the world's most technologically advanced industries.
The German farmers of the 18th century supplied vegetables to the settlers of the Isle of Orleans, or New Orleans, 20 miles down river. French and Anglo-American sugar plantations of the 19th century gave way to sugar co-ops and cypress lumbering. Hundreds of years of immigration -French, Italian, Creole and Acadian, African and West Indian-have created one of the most complex and diverse cultures in North America.
The Museum celebrates eighty years, of growth and prosperity for the petrochemical industry. In 1916, the first crude oil receiving dock and refinery was built along the banks of the Mississippi River on the sugar cane fields of the former Good Hope Plantation. First called the New Orleans Refining Company, or N-O-R-C-O, the plant soon became Shell Oil. Today, after decades of growth, struggle, and innovation, Shell Norco, as well as Norco Refining, a division of Motiva Enterprises, LLC, is an industry leader along the River Road.
While the products may have changed, the lower Mississippi River is still a port to the, world for grain harvested in America's heartland, building materials such as cement, locally refined molasses, and petrochemical products from jet fuel to epoxy resins.