Bayou Terrebonne
Waterlife Museum

Bourgeois & Associates, Inc. donated and installed a complete Siemens Fire Safety fire detection and voice evacuation system to the Bayou Terrebonne Waterlife Museum.  The company performs annual inspections and any required maintenance at no charge. 

Bourgeois & Associates, Inc. donated and installed a complete fire alarm and detection system to the International Rig Museum in Morgan City, Louisiana.  The company performs annual inspection and any required maintenance at no charge.




As a member of the Houma-Terrebonne Chamber of Commerce, Bourgeois & Associates, Inc. participates in the Partners in Education program.  Bourgeois & Associates, Inc. and Broadmoor Elementary School have been “Partners in Education” for several years.  The company is involved with Broadmoor students:

  • Provides cash donation for special programs

  • Furnished bus transportation and tours of the International Rig Museum

  • Furnished bus transportation and tour of the Bayou Terrebonne Waterlife Museum and Downtown Historical District Walking Tour.

  • Roger Bourgeois presents seminars during National Fire Prevention Week and provides banners and literature on home fire safety to the Broadmoor students.

Bourgeois & Associates, Inc. has been an active supporter of Nicholls State University in Thibodaux, Louisiana.  Roger Bourgeois attended Nicholls in the early sixties, and firmly believes he has a college education because of getting a start at the local affordable University.

  • Bourgeois & Associates, Inc. has sponsored an endowed scholarship in Mechanical Technology at the University.

  • Bourgeois & Associates, Inc. has supported the Nicholls Free Enterprise Program for many years.  Roger Bourgeois serves on the Board of Directors of the Free Enterprise Week Program, and has been a sponsor each year.  Each year, 50-60 local high school students are housed at the University and participate in a week long program on free enterprise.
  • Roger Bourgeois is a member of the Nicholls State University Foundation, and actively supports programs of the John Folse Culinary Institute located at the University.

Bourgeois & Associates, Inc. has supported MacDonell United Methodist Children’s Services, Inc. for several years through monetary and in-kind donations.



Louisiana Decoys

(Charles and Jean Frank Exhibit)

The Decoy Carving Exhibit displays typical tools of the Cajun Decoy Carver.  One of the most prolific of Carvers was Dewey Pertuit of Raceland, LA, who carved thousands of Ring Neck decoys.  A dozen of hunting decoys sold for $18.00 – $36.00 a dozen during the 1950’s.  Most Louisiana decoys were carved of Cypress Root, or Tupelo Gum.  Few Louisiana Carvers identified their decoys in any distinctive fashion.  “Distinctive carving style” is the only method of identifying most of these decoys.


Until the 1960’s, the basic carving tools consisted of hatchet, draw-knife, rasp, and pocket-knife.  Two man cross cut saws were used to fell the Tupelo Gum trees.  The lower 3’-0” - 4’-0” of the Tupelo tree, cut during late spring, is useable for carving.  It has very little grain, making it excellent for carving.  The wood of the Tupelo Gum is light, soft, and closed grain, but very strong.


The Louisiana Decoy exhibit was made possible by Mr. Charles W. Frank, and his wife Jean, of New Orleans.  Charles Frank is an avid photographer, bird watcher, outdoorsman, and is responsible for cataloging and photographing the decoys of many of South Louisiana’s decoy carvers.  He has authored four books on Louisiana Decoys.


He has donated numerous decoys, the award winning alligator photo, and other photographs, as well as the 100 year old dugout pirogue.  Other donors are credited for their individual donations, secured and coordinated by Mr. Frank.


Cajun Tool Shed®

(Roger and Carolyn Bourgeois Exhibit)

Roger Bourgeois, originally from Raceland, Louisiana, has collected tools for 50 years.  He was first introduced to tools on Christmas Day, 1949, when he received a child’s carpenter tool box.  He still has the tool box, and many of the original tools.  He is an avid collector of vintage wood working tools, decoys, Cajun artifacts, fire fighting collectibles, and ice-man collectibles.  He always wanted a way of sharing his passion with the public.


Roger and his wife Carolyn have donated the display cases, antique tools, and other artifacts presented in the Cajun Tool Shed®, in addition to several decoys in the Louisiana Decoys Exhibit. 


Native American Indian
Artifacts Exhibit


The Native American Indian Artifacts Exhibit was made possible by Ms. Connie Townsend, who is responsible for design of the exhibit.  The exhibit consists of very old Indian artifacts and maps of the Southeastern part of the original Louisiana Territory.  The existing Louisiana Parishes were not yet defined as we know them today.



Call (985) 873-6545 for information on operating hours or Folklife activities



A Project of the
Houma Downtown
Development Corporation




Louisiana Decoys







Cajun Tool Shed®


Man has an affinity with wood.  Mankind has used wood to supplement his hands, and improve living conditions.  The ways and methods of working wood cannot be addressed here in great detail, but some of the more common methods are:         

                    •  Felling 
                    •  Chiseling

                    •  Shaping

                    •  Planing

                    •  Turning

                    •  Carving 

The cajun craftsman used all of these methods to harvest the great stands of 1,000 year old cypress, that are non-existent today.  Unfortunately, much of this area’s cypress was logged excessively during the late 1800’s, when the industrial revolution made machinery available which could overcome the challenges of removing 8’-0” diameter trees from the Louisiana swamps. 

Twentieth century power tools have taken the place of hand tools, but affinity between man and wood has remained.


The Cajun Tool Shed® exhibit showcases wood working tools that were in general use during the late 1800’s and early 1900’s.  Tools of this era were built to withstand heavy use, as opposed to the “throw away” world of today.

It is interesting to note how very little basic hand tools, such as the hand saw, plane, chisel, and hammer, have changed since their original invention.  Only basic hand tools were used to create the various types of joinery displayed.  Timber framers created mortise and tenon joints, keyed scarf joints, and other joints used in post and beam type construction.  The pattern maker used select woods in building wood patterns (used for casting of cast-iron machinery parts), such as those ondisplay at the Cajun Tool Shed®.

Many of the tools are named after the particular trade that used an adaptation of a generic tool for their particular trade.  Carriage Maker’s Spokeshave, Coffin Maker’s Plane, Ship Builder’s Lipped Adze, Cooper’s Adze, and Cooper’s Chamfering Knife are examples of such names, and are

displayed in the exhibit.

Old time craftsmen had no hesitation about creating new tools for a particular task.  Each of his tools was but an extension of himself.

Folklife Culture Center Exhibits

1.      100 Year Old Dugout Pirogue

2.      Boat Building Tools

3.      Boring and Measuring Tools

4.      Wood Joints and Patterns

5.      Planes and Drawing Knives

6.      Specialty Tools

7.      c 1945 Carpenter Tool Chest

8.      Iceman Tools

9.      Louisiana Decoys

10.    Louisiana Alligator Photo

11.    Folklife Craft Room

12.    Native American Indian Artifacts Exhibit


·         Design and Arrangement of the Native American Indian Artifacts Exhibit

by Connie Townsend


Conceptual Design and Arrangement of Cajun Tool Shed® Exhibit and Louisiana Decoys Exhibit by Roger Bourgeois