New Iberia, Louisiana was founded in 1779 by Spanish colonists who arrived via the Bayou Teche, ending up in what is now called Spanish Lake. The town underwent many name changes based on the nationality of the settlers, from the Spanish who called it Nueva Iberia, the French who referred to it as Nouvelle Iberie, and English settlers’ version of New Town. Once the U.S. Government established a post office in 1814, the town was officially recognized as New Iberia.
Average temperatures for New Iberia range from the mid-60s during the winter months to the mid-90s during summer. Rainfall averages 4.8 inches per month but can vary greatly due to tropical systems and the threat of hurricanes from June-December. New Iberia is located in the south-central portion of the state South of Lafayette between Lake Charles and Baton Rouge, on the south-western edge of the Atchafalaya Basin.
New Iberia is home to the famous Tabasco sauce, produced on Avery Island, Shadows-on-the-Teche plantation home, Jungle Gardens (bird sanctuary and garden also located on Avery Island), and the historically infamous salt dome at Jefferson Island which collapsed in 1980.
Notable individuals from New Iberia include Paul Fleming (founder of P.F. Chang’s), author James Lee Burke, artist George Rodrigue, and former Governor Kathleen Blanco,
New Iberia is the home of the Sugar Cane Festival every September to celebrate the sugar cane harvest, World Championship Gumbo Cookoff, and the Cajun Hot Sauce Festival.