By James Catano. Little-known even in their home state, the Croatians of Lower Plaquemines Parish have used grit and determination to build an oystering industry that has made Louisiana famous. Follow the lives of four figures who embody the 150-year Croatian experience in Louisiana and share in the history of this unique tight-knit community.

The Croatians of Lower Plaquemines parish have used grit and determination to build an oystering industry that has made Louisiana famous. Little-known even in their home state, the history of the tight-knit Croatian-American community is portrayed in this documentary through the lives of four figures who embody the 150-year Croatian experience in Louisiana: George Barisich, Domenica Cibilich, John Tesvich, and Pete Vujnovich. Seen at work on the water, in home movies, at social gatherings and in interviews in their homes, these figures put an immediate and compelling face on a people who have endured economic privation, hurricanes, loss of their homes, oil spills, and the never-ending toil of a watery farming existence. As their stories unfold, it becomes clear that these individuals offer a premier example of the American dream—and of the drama that lies behind this quintessentially American saga.

An Enduring Legacy: Louisiana’s Croatian-Americans

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Production Funding

REEL SOUTH is a co-production of UNC-TV, South Carolina ETV, and the Southern Documentary Fund (SDF) with major funding provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
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CREDITS

Director

James V. Catano

Producer
James V. Catano

Associate Producer
Carolyn Ware

Executive Producer
Jason Viso, Clay Fourrier

Director of Photography
Gerard Byrne

First Camera
Gerard Byrne

Second Camera
Shenid Bhayroo
Ben Pelhan
Jordy Wax
Dustin Zemel

Sound
Gerard Byne

Editor
Dustin Zemel

Assistant Editor
Gerard Byrne
Rebecca Matthews

Music
Dustin Zemel

Additional Images Provided By:
George Barisich
Joseph Barisich
Domenica Cibilich
Ford Motor Company Collection
Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division
Louisiana Public Broadcasting
National Archives at College Park, Maryland
National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration
Nedo Tesvich
John Tesvich
United States Coast Guard
United States Environmental Protection Agency
Pete Vujnovich, Jr
Carolyn Ware

Special Thanks
George Barisich
Domenica Cibilich
John Tesvich
Pete Vujnovich, Jr

And all of the members of the Croatian Community who have been so generous and open over the years

Additional Thanks
Al Godoy
Glen Pitre

Michelle A. Masse’

Beth and Michael Goodwin
Doris Masse’, Esq.

Professor Alan Nadel
and his students at the University of Kentucky

Louisiana State University

Working Class Studies Association

For LPB:
President & CEO: Beth Courtney
Executives in Charge: Jason Viso, Clay Fourrier
Donald "D.Ray!" Washington: Production Engineer/Editor

Copyright 2015, James V. Catano. All Rights Reserved