COPYRIGHT 2020 © PRESERVATION ALLIANCE OF LAFAYETTE
This neighborhood was initially created for middle income families during the decades immediately following the completion of railroad service through Lafayette. The period of historic significance for this neighborhood is between the years of 1906 and 1968. It comprises all of 1902 Nickerson Addition subdivision, as well as parts of 1903 Parkerson Addition, 1880 McComb Addition, and 1915 Lee Addition. It also includes the neighborhood situated between Park Ave, Mudd Avenue, East Simcoe Street and Moss Street which was never formally developed into a subdivision. The boundaries include over 80% historic structures, most of which were built between c. 1928 and c. 1940. The neighborhood exemplifies two distinct periods of Lafayette’s cultural, economic and social heritage. It began as a middle-income neighborhood addressing the needs of Lafayette’s residential demand as it grew from an agricultural town to a regional hub for commerce and material transportation. It also codifies the cultural changes occurring 60 years later, brought about by technological advancements such as central air conditioning, demographic shifts resulting from the Civil Rights Movement in 1954 and the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Toward the end of this neighborhood’s period of historic significance, integration of schools and new building technologies enticed many White families who could afford a new house, to move south of downtown into school districts that were less racially diverse with new centrally air conditioned, brick-faced, Midcentury Ranch style homes. Within a decade, Nickerson-Parkerson became a cohesive Black neighborhood. Today, with its close proximity to a reviving downtown, it has become a sought-after, racially diverse, mixed-age community.