LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - A Lake Charles woman is asking the public to help her chronicle the history of Lake Charles from 1950 to present.
Jessica Hutchings, an author and researcher, is the head of McNeese State University's reference department.
Hutchings helped gather and research images of Lake Charles in the 2011 book, Lake Charles, published in the Images of America series by Arcadia Publishing. The book included a brief history of the city from its incorporation in 1867 to current day, in addition to the photographs.
Hutchings told KPLC that a new series, also by Arcadia Publishing, called Images of Modern America, in which Lake Charles will be included, will span the city's history from 1950 to present. As with the previous book, Hutchings is gathering photos and information to help weave together the story of Lake Charles' past.
"This will include industry, infrastructure changes that happened, civil rights, diversification of the workforce and sports," Hutchings said, adding that she would also like to include notable people, festivals and scenes around the city.
Hutchings is asking anyone with color photographs that would be appropriate for the book, to send them to email@example.com.
"If you have color photograph that would be appropriate to include in the book, I would love to see it and speak with you. If it seems like a good fit, I will borrow your photo, have the McNeese archivist scan it into my collection, and I will return your photo to you. You will receive acknowledgement in the book that I used your photo. If you do not have a photo, but you know of interesting stories to tell or people that I should contact, please let me know," she said.
Hutchings, an Oklahoma native, has lived in Lake Charles for eight years. She said in the time that she has been in the area, she has fallen in love with Southwest Louisiana's history.
"And it's going to be interesting to see what all I can collect," she said.
The deadline for the book is August 2014.
The book will not be released until 2015.