From Hayward's 1854 Gazetteer:  "This state became a territorial member of the Federal Union in the year 1803, under peculiar circumstances. It had been successively the property of certain French adventurers, of the crown of France, of the government of Spain, and again of the French, by whom it was sold to the United States for $15,000,000.  One of the conditions of the transfer required the United States to liquidate all claims of American citizens upon France, on account of commercial spoliations prior to the year 1800 — an obligation which, after the lapse of nearly half a century, has not been fulfilled.  Within 20 years after the discovery, in 1663, of the River Mississippi, the territory was explored by La Salle, who, in honor of Louis XIV., called it by the name it now bears. The first settlements were made at about the commencement of the 18th century ; and in 1731, the proprietors relinquished their jurisdiction to the king, who ceded it to Spain, in 1762. It was reconveyed to France in 1800; and, at the period of its sale to the United States, three years thereafter, the province embraced all the country west of the Mississippi, reaching to the Texan boundaries.  It was admitted as an independent state, and its limits specially defined, in 1812. The city of New Orleans, near the mouth of the Mississippi, is celebrated in history for its defence, under General Jackson, against an attack of the British sea and land forces, commanded by General Packenham, on the 8th of January, 1815, wherein the invaders were signally defeated."