The Civil War and its aftermath brought great economic devastation and cultural change to the residents of the Cane River region. Tenant farming and sharecropping replaced slavery, exchanging one labor-intensive system for another. After World War II, mechanized farming permanently supplanted the old agricultural practices that depended on human labor in the fields. As a result, many people migrated to urban centers, leaving the fields behind.
This is the complex past that is etched indelibly on the landscape, in the architecture, and in the myriad cultural traditions that have been passed down through generations.