a southern US state on the Gulf of Mexico, also known as the Pelican State. It consists mainly of flat land and is separated from the state of Mississippi by the Mississippi River. The largest city is New Orleans and the capital city is Baton Rouge. It was part of the Louisiana Purchase, became a state in 1837, and was one of the Confederate States. Louisiana is known for its Cajun culture. The state produces oil, gas, salt, rice and sugar.