Norco is a census-designated place (CDP) in St. Charles Parish, Louisiana, United States. The population was 3,579 at the 2000 census. The community is home to a major Shell petroleum refinery. Its name is derived from the New Orleans Refining Company.
By the late 18th century, French and European colonial settlers had established numerous sugar cane plantations. They imported enslaved Africans as laborers. As the sugar cane cultivation was labor-intensive, the concentration of slaves greatly outnumbered the European-Americans in the colony, a circumstance that continued after the Louisiana Purchase by the United States in the early 19th century..
On 8 January 1811, planters were alarmed by the German Coast Uprising led by Charles Deslondes, a free person of color from Haiti (formerly the French colony of Saint-Domingue). It was the largest slave uprising in US history, but resulted in few fatalities among whites. Deslondes and his followers had been influenced by the ideas of the French and Haitian revolutions. In 1809-1810 French-speaking refugees from the Revolution immigrated by the thousands to New Orleans and Louisiana: white planters and their slaves, and free people of color, adding to the Creole, African and free people of color populations.