Louisiana under royal control

The Natchez Indian war ruined the Company of the Indies and sowed fatal doubt among its shareholders. In 1731, Louis XV agreed to annul the Company's privileges and to retake control of the colony, declaring it a free-trade area.

Royal order returning trade rights with Louisiana and Illinois to the crown
CAOM,  A23, f° 23 Bienville, "the father of Louisiana", who had been the colony's military commander for nearly thirty years, became governor in 1732. Not counting the Indian tribes—who numbered around 35,000, in spite of losses due to internecine war, sickness and drink—the colony's population was fairly small: about three thousand French and Creole colonists and five thousand black slaves. Bienville's task was a hard one. He had to negotiate peace with the Indian tribes, re-establish confidence among the colonists, and protect Louisiana against the English and the Spanish. He managed to achieve two of these three goals, but completely failed in what had been up to then his strong point: dealing with the Indians.
Royal order returning trade rights with Louisiana and Illinois to the crown
CAOM, A23, f° 23

His successor, the Marquis de Vaudreuil, was appointed in 1743. Capable and refined, Vaudreuil did a better job of it before being named governor of Canada in 1752. It was under Bienville that the colony expanded its military outposts (such as La Balise, at the mouth of the Mississippi) and created others, in particular the forts on the Tombigbee and Wabash Rivers.

Callot, Vue générale et plan de La Balise en 1733, poste avancé sur la passe orientale du delta du Mississippi
CAOM, DFC Louisiane 6A/115
Callot, Vue générale et plan de La Balise en 1733, poste avancé sur la passe orientale du delta du Mississippi
CAOM, DFC Louisiane 6A/115