Current Projects

Mapping the Basin

Historians Jason Theriot and Jacob Gautreaux have embarked on research project to document culturally important places in the Atchafalaya Basin that have been lost to time. With a generous grant from the Atchafalaya National Heritage Area, the history team will integrate images, maps, text, and video interview clips into an ArcGIS Story Map project. By “Mapping the Basin,” the project intends to preserve the location and stories of these lost communities and the people who just two generations ago called the Basin home.

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A History of Spring Branch, Texas (1850-1950)

Settled by German immigrants in 1848, the Spring Branch community along the Upper Buffalo Bayou in Harris County, Texas, has a storied past. For a hundred years, this farming community—roughly 10 miles west of Houston--prospered and maintained its unique German-American culture and rural society along the banks of the bayous in Harris County. The community is home to the oldest church in the county. Today, very little remains of this once-bustling agricultural community. Since 1950, the neighborhood has been transformed into a suburban landscape with shopping strips, busy streets, and modern homes. The Spring Branch Historical and Heritage Foundation has commissioned historian Jason Theriot to research and document the story of the families and community of Spring Branch.

Gene Campbell Life Story Video Series

History of the Oyster Bayou Hunting Club

 Introducing the Gene Campbell Life Story Video series. Gene is a legendary waterfowl outfitter, owner and operator of the Oyster Bayou Hunting Club in Anahuac, Texas, just an hour drive east of Houston. Historian Jason Theriot documents Gene's amazing story over several hunting seasons in this video biography series. This is a story of family and friendships and generational relationships with hunters who have been a part of this 50-year history of one of the primo outfitters on the Texas Gulf Coast. Follow Gene and his team of professional hunting guides as they take us on a journey through the coastal prairies and marshes of southeast Texas for a hunting experience of a lifetime. The traditions run deep in this hunting club. Gene has dedicated his entire career to not only entertaining customers at his lodge and in the duck blind, but he has also maintained the native vegetation and waterfowl habitat through seed propagation and soil/water management. In doing so, Gene and his team have preserved the rich habitat that first attracted hunters to the famous Barrow Ranch, run by Joe Lagow, nearly a century ago. That legacy lives on through the Oyster Bayou Hunting Club.

History of Sun Oil Gulf Coast Division

This new company history tells the story of Sun Oil Co.'s Gulf Coast Division and the people who led it from the 1950s to the 1990s. This story follows the career of Jim McCormick, a geologist from Rhode Island, who joined Sun's geophysical group in Beaumont, TX in 1953. He led a group of innovative oil men throughout the 1960s and '70s into the unchartered waters of the offshore Gulf of Mexico. Sun Oil, which had a long E&P history along the Texas and Louisiana Gulf Coast, was a pioneering firm in the offshore industry. McCormick climbed the ladder and become company president in the 1980s, leading the newly created Oryx Energy in the deepwater GOM.

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From beaumont to Deepwater cover 10.4

Frenchie: The Story of the French-Speaking Cajuns of World War II

Following nearly 20 years of research, Jason Theriot’s new book will document the role of the French-speaking Cajuns of World War II. With their bilingual skills, these young Cajuns from south Louisiana served as translators and interpreters, and proved to be an invaluable asset to the military overseas. Their wartime experiences forged a renewed since of pride in their culture and heritage. Click here to read the article "Cajun 'Frenchies' helped win the war"  in the Baton Rouge Advocate, Nov. 2019. For a related story in the Daily Iberian from Aug. 2019, click here. David McNamara featured a story on the "Frenchie Cajuns" in his Feb. 2020 "Heart of Louisiana" series on Fox 8 WVUE in New Orleans. Click here to see the clip. Below are video presentations about the “Frenchie” book project, including the full interview with Jason Theriot and Dave McNamara at the National World War II Museum's new Hilliard Research Library.

Click here to listen to the Frenchie Podcast.
Click Here to Watch the Replay of the Virtual Presentation “Frenchie” presented by the Historic New Orleans Collection (Jan. 2021)
Click here for a Newspaper Interview “Calling All Frenchies,”
Click here for the Frenchie Podcast Review in Country Roads Magazine (2021).
Click Here to read an article on the Frenchies from
Click here to watch the Cajun-Acadian WWII Commemoration at the WWII Museum
Click here to download the list of the Kaplan Highschool WWII Oral History Project

Oilfield Energy Center Hall of Fame Interviews

The Oilfield Energy Center (OEC), formerly the Offshore Energy Center, recognizes the pioneering achievements of those men and women who revolutionized the oil and gas industry, particularly in the development of offshore technologies. Since 1998, the OEC has inducted more than 150 of these individuals into its Hall of Fame. For the last several years, Jason Theriot has been conducting oral history interviews with these pioneers. He is currently working with the OEC to digitize its valuable collection of video interviews and to make these stories available to a broader audience. Below are video vignettes from the Offshore Pioneer interviews: Larry Baker, Sr., Alden "Doc" LaBorde, Joe Foster, Paul "Red" Adair,      Griff Lee, Dana Larsen, Bruce Collipp, Don Vardeman, Robert Palmer...and more to come...

Click here for more on the OEC's Hall of Fame. Several of these pioneers were involved in designing, constructing, launching, and erecting some of the largest offshore platforms ever built. The shipyards and fabrication centers in south Louisiana produced the lion's share of these structures and vessels for the offshore industry. Click here to read a historical essay on the history of the "fab yards" and shipyards near Morgan City, LA. The Bayou Teche region is also home to the pioneer shipbuilders of  aluminum crewboats. Norman McCall, considered by many to be THE pioneer of the aluminum crewboat designs, has a legacy in this part of Cajun Country. For an interview with Norman McCall and Jason Theriot, click here.  I also had the pleasure of interviewing the father of the Tension Leg Platform (TLP), Buck Curtis. Click here for my interview with Buck Curtis.