Abandoned Baton Rouge's 3rd Birthday Giveaway
Red Stick Revisited

Should Old Acquaintance Be Forgot

Hi everybody, amd Merry Christmas! We're not allowed to say that up here in New York City, where there is a War On Christmas! Just kidding! It's been far too long since I last posted, so here is a long-planned update on your favorite ABR sites, a la at the end of movies when it's like, 




The following post sat idling in draft form probably a year ago or more, as I added a note here and a photo there. I never got to take all the hoped-for photos before moving, but here we are. If anyone wants to supply missing shots and/or more information, I'll be happy to credit you.

But don't think of it as an epilogue for a dead blog; only one that is mostly dead. Consider this also a call for suggestions: I need more curious abandoned sites to feature on ABR. I'll be back in town briefly in April and would love to shoot photos for future posts.


Comparatively few of the structures covered in this blog have been demolished. Only the most historic one was: The Turkish Baths! Just kidding, it's probably not the most historic site, but the former gym and spa is mourned, though not as bitterly as the geodesic dome, demolished before my arrival to town.

Here's two views from the last days of old Romano's Pack & Save, after that, err, accidental fire caused extensive damage.



... and just after it got leveled (note the sign still stands):




Mitiellos, subject of the first Abandoned Baton Rouge post, got more boarded up, as did the adjacent supermarket. When I needed to have heel tips put on my vintage wedding shoes, I patronized the business' new location, which may be the first time a company got business from someone because they were a fan of its abandoned previous location. As I recall, the new place looked like they retained some of the original shoe cubbies and signage.

Atlas Optical never was abandoned, though it still looks it. But they changed the fonts and replaced the giant old Diana Prince-esque model eyeglass frames. 


The new frames (above) don't look any more modern, just less cool. I wonder what they did with the former ones (below):


AAA Cleaners, however, became a bit more cool:



You can see more wheat paste poster art on two other abandoned sites nearby on Government Street: LoBianco's Gro and the Shell station (sorry to not have photos-- anyone?). According to the lively comment thread in the post about the pink grocery, old Joe LoBianco still lived on the premises until his death in April 2009.

The Lincoln Theater was purchased earlier this year to house the African American Hall of fame. 

Over on Florida, the former Louisiana Office Supply moved elsewhere and something else moved in, at the car repair shop that was very much in disrepair post-Gustav has been totally refurbished with a new auto-repair occupant, and UPT Restaurant/ club now appears to be in use as a garage or storage.

At the Book Exchange bookstore/ head shop / waterbed lifestyle supply shoppe, they cleared out brush and rubble at the front & a Dumpster appeared, and then stayed.



A school is right across the way (which I shot when bieng refurb'd, but am too lazy to dig on an external hard drive for the pics) so hopefully this structure will not lurk so sketchily nearby for much longer. Has anything new happened here in the half-year I've been gone?

A downtown building revealed by commenters to be a former school called EBRATS has been fondly and regretfully lamented by those who knew it.

A former tiny Government Street gas station is now a Little Caesarsyou know, because there wasn't enough fake pizza in the area, with a Dominos two minutes away in one direction and a Pizza Hut two minutes in the other direction.

AA Insurance has also become a pizza place. Husband and I went there fairly regularly in our last months in town and are extremely glad to now have better options.

Winn Dixie is now a Piggly Wiggly. (Now it just has to change over to a Publix to achieve the Southern supermarket trifecta.)

The Cortana Mall store formerly occupied by Steve and Barry's is back as a local campus for Virginia College, according to one recent commenter.

The houses from the controversial State Street post, as of the time of my departure, were completely overhauled and lookin' good. Residents will still have to step around a pile of crusties asking for spare change on the way out to their cars, though.




And to revisit one of my favorite sites from the blog, the Bellemont, it's been purchased. An intriguing comment appeared on the post very recently:

Incredible stories ya'll. Thanks for sharing them. I am working on a movie which is shooting At the Bellemont now and the mystery of this place led me to research it's history. The majority of the rooms are boarded up now but our production had to gain access to run power to the generator. Two weeks ago while at lunch, I decided to explore a few of the rooms that weren't boarded up and came across a room that had an old straw cowboy hat, some boxes and a family Bible stuck between the seat cushions. I thumbed through it and there were notes, names, marraige and child birth dates. I had to know to whom it belonged so I researched the mans name but came up with nothing. I researched his sons name and found only a Nevada church membership registry. I called the church and left a voice mail regarding the matter. Two weeks later and I received a phone call from the mans son. He lives in Nevada but no longer attends that church as he lives 500 miles away. The church had contacted him with my number and today he called me. Tomorrow is our last day of shooting here so thankfully I was able to remove the boards and retrieve the Bible. I am shipping the old Bible to him tomorrow. I'll never forget this place. It's a terrific location and I hope to return some day.

Posted by: Everett Byrom III | December 21, 2010 at 10:47 PM

I followed up with Everett, who told me the shows being shot there are Dragon Eyes and Flypaper.




Here's a building at 501 Government Street that I think got it right. It used to be a weird antique store that had kind of a loose definition of antiques (like, I remember a modern-era used unfinished wooden bookcase among the merchandise). Now it's the local HQ for Teach for America. I wish there were more like this example, creative repurposings of older structures that retain some of the original flavor.

With that, allow me to wish y'all a happy new year.



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Avia Dimattia

It was nice to see a picture of the I. M. Causey's store (the one that is now the HQ for Teach America). I used to shop there frequently for furniture and such. They always had very unique items. I am trying to find a picture of my Father-in-Law's shoe shop that was on the corner of Terrace and Joe Delpit Drive (formerly East Blvd.). He had a very unique neon sign above the store (V Dimattia Shoe Store). If you have any pictures, I would appreciate having a copy. Would like to print out a b&w for my husband. The building has been closed for many years and I believe they have taken the sign down.

Thanks so much,

Avia Dimattia


These are infrastructure that are way forgotten. They have been an institution but due to the fast phase of time, they didn't survived. I mean, they should be given importance because memories were built in it. It has been a witness of many lives and surely this is worth to keep. Thanks a lot for posting such photos to remind us of our so-called old acquaintances. More power.


I own a shop on Highland Road at Kenilworth Parkway that used to be an old service station. I assume the building is from the 1950s, but I (or the landlord) don't have any pictures to prove it. I'd like to find a picture of what the place looked like when it was still a service station. If anyone reading this blog has any pics of this area from long ago, I'd love to see them.


I'm curious about what became of the old Greenway Billiards on Greenwell Springs road.

Here's some old footage: http://pool.bz/variety-pool-videos/3649-old-footage-greenway-billiards-baton-rouge-la-circa-1980-a.html

The place was as dank and stereotypically seedy a pool hall as one could find in Baton Rouge. It was also a place that had some of the best players in town, the state, and the whole country for that matter. I've heard that it closed down, but still sits idle out there. Would appreciate a photo or two and some info on what happened to the place if you happen to hear. Thanks.

Colleen Kane

Reggie, thanks for the tip, I will look into this! Interesting to see the old Super 8 footage, too.


The billiards hall is now a sleazy nightclub/pool hall. It might actually still be called Greenway Billiards; I'm not sure. I would not recommend visiting it or attempting to photograph it at night or by yourself - the area has become extremely dangerous. I live a few blocks away and I don't even like pulling in the parking lot to turn around! I hear gunshots from the area on a regular basis, if that tells you anything...

Vibram Five Fingers

Reggie, thanks for the tip, I will look into this! Interesting to see the old Super 8 footage, too.

ecco shoes

the local HQ for Teach for America

Make Roux

With regards to you post about the Bellemont Hotel (it was creepy in the 90s, BTW!)... many of us associate it with the gunning down of an infamous local character by the name of Barry Seal. Seal was a drug-runner for the Medillin cartel and had been sentenced to serving supervised probation at the Salvation Army halfway house on Airline Hwy. This light sentence was in exchange for some form of cooperation on Seal's part. I'm not sure of the additional details, as they never came to pass. Anyway, some of the hotel's coffee shop patrons witnessed Seal being shot in his car in the parking lot at the halfway house. You might considering covering it on your blog, if the site happens to be in existence today.

Air Max 2010

I am glad it was appropriately punished. I don't work in a big agency, i am an independent, so I don't have any insight into how agencies bill, but I know how I do it, and there is no padding there, so for others to muddy that up is pretty irritating indee

vibram five fingers

According to the lively comment thread in the post about the pink grocery, old Joe LoBianco still lived on the premises until his death in April 2009.

North Face Coupons

The article is worth reading,Thank you very much! I will keep your new articles.


Regarding the Bellmont Hotel and the Barry Seals murder: Barry Seals was shot from a balcony of The Jay Motel just north of the Salvation Army store and his murder had nothing to do with the Bellmont Hotel in any way shape or form. The Jay Motel was later sold and became The Pines Motel and has been sold again and is now operating under yet another name.

Ray Ban Aviator

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Emily Sargent

The song has never been forgotten. It lingers to my mind when the high school party ended with this song. It was the most unforgettable yet the most dramatic time of the party.

Hannah Noel

The song, Should Old Acquaintance Be Forgot, is very memorable to me. I cannot forget the song. During our high school party, a very close friend of mine died. It was due to an accident. The song marks to all of us who were there singing.


I stayed at the pines motel only to find out later it was used by the drug cartel to assassinate Barry seals.

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