It is thought that this building was constructed between 1820 and 1847. When the present owners of Ducournau Square undertook to rescue a historic building that was totally without restoration, they embarked on an impressive pioneer project. Acquiring the Ducournau building in the Historic District in January 1977, they immediately started demolition of interior areas damaged by an earlier fire and began rebuilding, retaining much of the old while adding contemporary features. Shops were to occupy the lower floors and a town house, the upper story.
The Ducournau Building, in which the Town House is located, stands on a portion of an 1818 land grant made to Joseph Tauzin, who came from France in 1776 and married Marie Chamard in 1791. In 1819, Aaron Coe and Bernard Leonard bought the property. It is thought that the building was constructed between 1820 and 1847, for in 1820 Francois LaFonte purchased the property and carried on a business there until 1847, living upstairs over the first-floor business.
LaFonte left his interest in the business and building to his partner Alfred Daugerot. There followed a succession of owners: Daugerot’s widow Adele (1852), F. Edward Cloutier and Pierre Lestan Prudhomme (1857), Victor Durand (1863), M. H. Carver (1869), John W. Cockerham (1878), and J. A. Ducournau (1881). The building’s iron nameplate came from a New Orleans store that Ducournau owned. Robert Smith and James Hearron acquired the property in 1974, the present owners in 1977.
Walking through wooden gates and down a carriageway, visitors find themselves in an Old World brick-paved courtyard. Behind dividing iron fencing, is Hana – Japanese Sushi and full service bar, originally part of a carriage house. All the ironwork, including the fountain, was made at Starlight Plantation shop. The spikes atop the fencing are teeth from a mechanical cotton picker.