In usage in the United States, a bayou (/
The word was first used by the English in Louisiana and is thought to originate from the Choctaw word "bayuk", which means "small stream". The first settlements of Bayou Teche, and other bayous, were by the Cajuns, and that is why bayous are associated with Cajun culture.
An alternative spelling, "buyou", has also been used, as in "Pine Buyou", used in a description by Congress in 1833 of Arkansas Territory.
Bayou Country is most closely associated with Cajun and Creole cultural groups native to the Gulf Coast region generally stretching from Houston, Texas, to Mobile, Alabama, and picking back up in South Florida around the Everglades with its center in New Orleans, Louisiana.
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