Compliments of Judy Gleason Classen

Raleigh R. Gleason Home, built 1940
1106 Broadway St.
The original house was painted white, and the address was 408 North Broadway Blvd.
The architectural style is Georgian Revival, four over four construction, with hipped roof and brick facade. The building contractor was F. C. McClanahan.

Raleigh R. Gleason purchased the property for the home from the Glass Estate in the late 1930’s. The “Alberta Glass” home next door once occupied a part of this lot but was moved over toward the northeast to allow space for the construction of the Gleason home. At that time the Glass home was occupied by the family of Henry Lester.  On the other side of the Gleason home is the house referred to as the “Palmer House” in Minden Memories. During the 1940’s and early 50’s, the Widow Rathbun and her daughter lived in the Palmer House; later the family of Davidson Brown (son-in-law) moved in.

Raleigh Rogerson Gleason was born Feb. 3, 1903 on his father’s farm about 19 miles north of Minden. He was employed by the American National Bank in Shreveport until the Great Depression when the bank closed.  At that time he moved with his family to Minden and took a position with the Peoples Bank and Trust Company, newly founded by his father, William T. Gleason, where he was employed for over 30 years. At the time of his death on Oct. 24, 1964, he was vice president of the bank and a member of the board. His widow, Zelma Judith Goodwin Gleason, originally of Texarkana, continued to live in the home until about 1979 when she moved to Shreveport.  The home was sold to the George French family.  Zelma died Mar. 16, 1986.

The Raleigh Gleason family belonged to the First Baptist Church and was active in many community affairs. Raleigh, Zelma, and their oldest son Raleigh Jr., are buried in the Gleason family plot in Minden Cemetery, just off Pine Street.

            Billy Gleason & Judy Gleason Claasen, children of Raleigh Gleason


William T. Geason Home
On the SE corner of Elm and Bridwell (324 Elm St.)
The age of the home is unknown. Gleason and his second wife, Annie Lou Craton, moved there about 1922.  He may have been the original owner. Recollections of the home from the 1940’s include a large basement - unusual for Minden homes - and beautiful wood paneling in the living room and master bedroom. Gleason’s property behind the home included a large open pasture with a stable for horses. Many varieties of roses graced the lawns.

William Thomas Gleason was born on a farm in Claiborne Parish in 1868 to a Confederate veteran. His ancestors had arrived in the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1652, and his great grandfather, who fought in the American Revolution, later migrated to Ouachita Parish as one of the original pioneers of the Monroe area. Shortly after the Civil War, William’s father moved the family from Claiborne to Webster Parish near Evergreen.

In 1908 William entered the lumber business in the environs of Cotton Valley and over the next years purchased numerous properties in that part of Webster Parish. Though he had limited education, he was a true entrepreneur of his time, buying up lands of little value on speculation. The first oil well in Webster Parish was drilled on his property and he built one of Minden’s early gas stations. By the 1930s and 40s, William owned a number of commercial properties in downtown Minden which he leased to prominent merchants of the day.  During the Great Depression, when banks were failing, he was able to raise money among other Minden visionaries to found the Peoples Bank and Trust Company, now the Hibernia Bank.

As a philanthropist, he was the benefactor of several small country churches of the area, and donated property to the City of Minden. Called “Mr. Bill” by the townsfolk, he was often seen on the streets of downtown Minden, always dressed in a somewhat worn three piece suit and planter’s hat. William was a member of the First Methodist Church where his funeral was held September 16, 1947. His widow, Annie, continued to live in the home until her death in 1952.  Both Annie and William are buried in the Gleason plot at the Minden Cemetery off Pine Street.

William T. Gleason was characterized by a humble manner and a dry sense of humor.   Once a local solicitor for the Red Cross encountered William outside the Peoples Bank and asked for a contribution.  When William offered a modest amount, the Red Cross volunteer said, "Mr. Bill, you ought to be able to give more than your son Ernest. He gave ten dollars."  To which William replied, "He can afford it, he has a rich daddy."


Sherry, just a couple of other personal thoughts. There was another Gleason family living in Minden in the 1930s through 1950s. The family of Durelle Gleason, nephew of William, lived on Lewisville St.  His children served in WW II and the oldest son, B. D. Gleason, was quite a football hero for Minden High School.

Another son of William, an older brother of Raleigh, was often seen on the Minden Streets.  Ernest Dewey Gleason was twice elected as State Representative from Webster Parish, and was serving at the time of his death. His home was near the Evergreen Community on the homestead of his grandfather.  One of Ernest’s sons, Thomas Dewey Gleason, died in a plane crash while in the Army Air Corps in WW II.  They are buried in the Gleason plot at the Minden Cemetery.

Good luck and best regards, Judy Claassen


      This beautiful picture was taken by Linda Holt Moorehead



       Harol Lynn Turner Thompson, Judy Gleason Claassen, and Billie Jean Green

     PA2762Murrell & Back Street - Compliments of Special Collections Louisiana State University,

    One University Place, Shreveport, La. 71115-2399 (1940)


     Turner Home - There is a grave for Bobby Turner in section A of the Minden City Cemetery born 07 Jan. 1881

     died 19 Jan. 1960; beside him is Camilla born 07 June died 1884 died 16 Mar. 1978. Also in the plot is Goldie

     Jacobs Turner born 11 July 1921 died 14 Oct. 1983 and Robert Berry Turner born 15 Jan. 1921.

      Below is Happy Turner's Boarding House - formerly Ma Baugh's Rooming House. Mrs. Lonnie Baugh operated

     a family type boarding house that served family style meals each day. Later her son, Happy and his wife, Hazel

     Turner operated the business. Salesmen made sure there were in Minden at lunch time so they could go to "Ma's"

     boarding house. The food was always good, and everybody felt welcome. The Turner's daughter, Harol Lynn, who is

     now Mrs. Delmar Thompson, still lives here in this area. The home is currently owned by City Judge John Campbell

     and is located at 501 Fort Avenue. It was built by Ben F. Turner and sold to the Judge by Happy Turner.

     In section B Southwest and West there are markers for Raymond Turner born 04 Oct. 1920 died 17 Oct. 1920; Haroline Turner born 1934 and

    died 1934. Bennie F. Turner born 08 January 1983 died 02 May 1934 and Ollie Turner Baugh born 04 September1887 died 10 January 1965.

    Garden of Memories, Garden of the Good Shepherd, Section 4, row 6 section 4, ro2 6 there are markers for Harold M. Turner born 1911 died 1988 and

    Hazell A born 1911 died 1981. 


             Judy, thank you for for sharing your fantastic history of your family and the pictures of your friends. It must have been fun growing up in those lovely homes.




Historic District In The Snow March 2008

A Rare Look At Homes In The Snow


The New Marker To Tell Our History


2008 Project for New Marker In Academy Park To Tell Our History

Minden, Louisiana Historic Residential District
In 1835 Charles Veeder, German-American born in New York State
built an inn on a hilltop a few miles from Bayou Dorcheat.
Legend has it, the inn was constructed on a salt lick that was
the best deer-hunting site in the region. By 1837, Veeder had
laid out a town in the shape of a parallelogram became the parish seat
of Claiborne parish. Veeder left for California in
appointed in 2008 for future protection and preservation.
August 23, 1924 - April 1, 2006
Beloved music & band director of the Lowe Junior High School
Band 1968-1980. Taught Expanding Horizons program for gifted
children in Webster Parish until retirement in 1989. Member
music, history of Minden & the historic residential district.
Donated by The Min

Ghost Of Home & Garden 2007




Historic Residential Association and Dorcheat Historical Museum Association’s Ghost of Home & Garden

“A Picture Perfect Success”
d to the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. If a picture says a thousand words,on stated, “I knew we had a hit, when weeks before the tour people were calling me  Brown, also stated, “That with out all the help fro