MONROE, LA (KTVE/KARD) — March is Women’s History Month, and a local landmark of Monroe, LA holds much of the history of northern Louisiana and women’s history in the region. Layton Castle is believed to have been designed by Eugenia Stubbs and built in 1910, although the original building dates back to 1814. Eugenia, or “genius,” Stubbs was also the first woman in the Ouachita community to ever vote. The late Carol Layton Parsons later inherited the house and now her daughter Pam Parsons Dupuy continues to run the château to uphold the heritage.
Pam spoke about her mother’s role in keeping the castle thriving.
“She grew up here. Then she went away and met my father in New York, then married and raised us up north. Eventually she moved back here when she was about 70 and worked intermittently in the place, the hallway she restored and painted, adding an entire bookshelf in the library. They also hired archaeologists to come and excavate the wine house.”
Pam’s grandmother, Carol Flower Layton, was a big part of the entertainment industry in the early days in Monroe.
“My grandmother, Carol Flower Layton…she was a dancer and actress and performed in New York for a few years. When I came to visit, the elderly would say, “Your grandmother taught me ballroom dancing.” We have a ballroom upstairs, so Grandma taught a lot of the Monroe people how to ballroom dance.”
Now the castle continues to share its history and stories with the surrounding area by offering guided tours and events at the venue. To find out more about these events, visit laytoncastle.com.