New Era is located on the western edge of Concordia
Parish on SR 129. While today New Era is a sparsely populated rural
area, at one time it was a small town on the Black River that hosted a
landing for river boats. Until the levee was built, about 55 years
ago, imprints on the banks were visible; indentations made from the
many steamboats that landed there to load and discharge passengers and
The Dale House - Oldest House in Concordia
This side, which now faces the street,
is actually the back of the house.
The other side faces
the river, which was the "main road" when the house was built.
The house pictured above is located in New
Era, about a mile West of Dewey Cemetery, and directly across road from
Dale Cemetery. Built in about 1850, the house is about 800
square feet, and is located right on the river about 50 yards or less
from the present levee. Originally a store and post office, the house
was later occupied for several generations by the DALE family.
Like many houses built in the south at the
time, the Dale house was constructed of Cypress, and it originally sat
on Cypress logs. Today the pilings are of concrete, and the green
asbestos-type sidingcovers the original Cypress. The back porch was enclosed to make a small dining room, and indoor plumbing was added.
Originally the Dale family lived on Pleasant
Cottage Plantation, located on the State Road that goes to Acme, about
a mile or so off of the road from Monterrey to New Era. According
to family stories, Pleasant Cottage burned in about 1855, and the
Dales moved into, and continued to operate, the "store." The Dale family
is in possession of one of the old ledgers showing the sale of seed, etc.,
to farmers, on credit. William Dale (1804-1872) owned a steamboat
The Kate Dale that ran the Black River from Mississippi down to
The Dale Family ca. 1897
ROBERT MAURICE DALE and ISABELLE BURT DALE
Young boys on the left: tallest,
CLEVELAND M. DALE.
Next tallest: SAMUEL ERNEST DALE;
Child in Isabelle's lap: CHARLES
CALVIN DALE, b Jan, 1892.
(Others are unidentified)
Robert Maurice Dale served in the CSA during
the War Between the States, and later as the postmaster of New Era.
L to R:
CHARLES CALVIN DALE proudly displaying
his mother ISABEL BURT DALE,
his sister JULIA DALE HEIDMAN,
seated on the steps that led up to
the post office part of the old house...
a room separated from
the main house by a breezeway.
Visible are the cypress steps, and the
pillars on which the house was built.
(Photo ca. 1920)
Eventually, the Dale house was occupied by
Cleveland Dale's widow, VIRGINIA HARPER DALE MCCANN, who lived there
from her marriage, at about age 17, until shortly after her 94th
birthday, in 1996. The house is currently occupied by her son.
Plans are in effect to restore the house.