Breaux Bridge’s unique nickname phone book

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BREAUX BRIDGE, La. (KLFY)—Acadiana is known for its French-Cajun heritage and the role it plays in our culture.

Breaux Bridge is home to a unique tradition hidden between the pages of a book.

These days if you want to call a friend, more people turn to their cell phone. Today you can just pull up your contacts, click the number and call… but what about the days before technology?

In Acadiana, you will find a city that is keeping this old tradition alive, but with a twist.

In Breaux Bridge, you’ll find names like Popet Guidry, T-boy LeBlanc, Corn Cobb Castle, and these nicknames which makes one of the many traditions in the city so unique.

The Breaux Bridge phone book began in 1949 after the days of the operator phased out.

“The industry grows and you get away from the PBX board and you lose that little personal touch because could talk to Mrs. Hilda anytime.” Said Burton Guidry, “If you were lonesome and wanted to talk, she’d pick up the phone and hold a conversation with you.”

Burton Guidry, also known as Burt, worked with the local phone company Century Tel for nearly 40-years.

“They were looking for temporary help so I said that’s great. I had gotten married and I took the temporary job that lasted 36 years and six months.”

Guidry said the company was bought out in the late 60’s and but the old owner had one request, that the phone book remain the same.

“In the process of making the sale it was agreed upon that the phonebook would remain like they were and have the options to carry on the nicknames and it’s been done ever since.”

Now if you look in the phone book today, you will still see the nicknames.

“Alfrod and I said why is his name High Pockets? He was the tallest guy in the class so his pockets higher than anybody else because you know he was tall.”- Burton Guidry

Guidry said names are examples of the French-Cajun heritage of the area.

“There’s a lot of tradition in Cajun people and I think nicknames was just a way to make it personal, friendlier.”

The personal interaction may have faded according to Guidry, but the Friendly, unique culture of Breaux Bridge still remains.

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