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The Buttons Bank of Saint Francisville

The sleepy town of St. Francisville is what it is thanks to dead people.

In the 1700's a group of monks built a church on the bank of the Mississippi River across from where the town sits today.

Their choice of location was poor. Every time the river rose their land flooded and the dead popped right out of the ground.

They began crossing the river to the high dry bluffs on the other side and soon a settlement took hold around the graveyard. It would be named after their order's patron saint: Saint Francis.

The Visitor's Center has a self-guided tour that will take you all of an hour or two to champion.

Of everything, find the old town bank.

Today it's a boutique that specializes in antique buttons.

I had no idea that buttons were this much of a collectible. The owner sources them from all over the country and handcrafts them into bracelets and other jewelry.

My favorite was the perfume buttons. Ladies would soak a small center area of the button in their perfume - a critical mask in an era lacking deodorant and dry shampoo.


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