Celebrating Over 50 Years of Faith, Family, & Food
FAITH, FAMILY, & FRIENDS
Lake Claiborne - The Port au Prince Story
In 1946, Buck Prince and Ruth Gantt were married and borrowed $800 from his sister, Janie, to open their country grocery store on the White Lighting Road in Claiborne Parish. The business served not only as a grocery store, but also as home for them and their five children. As the family grew, they added additional rooms on the back of the “store” and gas pumps outside for their loyal customers. In the 60’s, there was talk of a future lake that would be built near their country store, and Buck was thrilled that part of their pasture land would forever be submerged under the lake. He was an avid fisherman and a good businessman as well. He immediately saw the potential for a store and that would be located on the banks of the lake. In the early 60’s, he convinced Ruth that they should build a new store on the side of Highway 146 on what was to become “BEAUTIFUL LAKE CLAIBORNE”.
Fishermen would come to buy their supplies in the store, and would ask if we served breakfast or lunch. Buck soon realized that 1) He could offer home cooked food for a good price 2) That he could get Ruth to cook it and 3) That the business could grow as well. Soon Mom and the kids were cooking hamburgers and french-fries in addition to early morning breakfast for fishermen. It wasn’t long until the grocery shelves were removed and the tables took their place.
On April1 of 2009, Miss Ruth re-opened a newly remodeled Port-Au-Prince and her daughter Joan and son in law, Jerry operated the business until 2012. In the summer of 2012 Miss Ruth’s son, Danny, purchased the business from his mom. His son, Daniel took over the management of the restaurant and he ran it until the fall of 2014. Miss Ruth passed away on August 29th, 2014 - just three days after her 86th birthday. The next week, Joan and Jerry came back to manage the original business once again. They are currently operating the business which is now open Thursday through Saturday from 5 – 9 p.m.
The waiters and waitresses are primarily grandchildren and all of the workers are considered “family”. The restaurant has been featured in Southern Living Magazine and was selected as the “Best Catfish Shack” in Louisiana according to the Louisiana Life Magazine. We serve pond raised catfish and home cut french-fries as well as homemade pies and cakes.