Though he was world famous for his jazz photography, Herman Leonard didn’t visit the birthplace of jazz until he was almost 70. And then he fell in love. Leonard spent much of his life in places like New York, Paris and San Francisco taking iconic…
Thursday, August 17, 2017
Wednesday, August 16, 2017
Fat City popped up seemingly overnight in the 1970s. To the chagrin of those in the parish who want to redevelop the district, its remnants and memory linger on. The area near Lakeside Mall was Jefferson Parish’s answer to the French Quarter. The …
Tuesday, August 15, 2017
The impact Hale and Lindy Boggs had on Louisiana politics is outmatched only by the influence the couple had on national politics. In 1940, Hale Boggs was elected to the House of Representatives at age 26. The Democrat lost his re-election bid in …
Monday, August 14, 2017
Even before the Civil War, African Americans looked to each other for community support and fellowship through their social aid and pleasure clubs.
Sunday, August 13, 2017
Audubon Park housed collections of animals as early as 1893. But it wasn’t until 20 years later the zoo as New Orleanians know it began to take shape. In 1924, the park regained 50 acres between Magazine Street and the levee that had been used as …
Saturday, August 12, 2017
There was a time when New Orleans was more famous for burlesque on Bourbon Street than for its music or food.
Friday, August 11, 2017
Depending on who you ask, the Democratic Landrieu family has either created a lasting legacy or an overgrown political dynasty.
Thursday, August 10, 2017
Fires, floods, competition and legislation have conspired against the New Orleans Fair Grounds Race Course, but the track has withstood those assaults for more than 165 years. Today, the Fair Grounds is the 3rd oldest thoroughbred race track in th…
Wednesday, August 09, 2017
The Southern anthem Dixie had its roots in New York, but its legs and longevity are thanks in part to New Orleans publisher Philip P. Werlein.
Tuesday, August 08, 2017
Flamboyant as his paintings and photographs, George Dureau gained worldwide acclaim for his depictions of the human figure in all of forms. Dureau was born in Midcity and lived much of his adult life as a major character the French Quarter. Dureau…
Monday, August 07, 2017
The Ernest N. Morial Convention Center has continually expanded, renovated and reinvented itself since opening in 1984. Though slowed down by Hurricane Katrina and the economic recession, the center hosted almost 1 million visitors in 2015. Its ec…
Sunday, August 06, 2017
During Edgar Degas’ brief stint in New Orleans, the artist opinion of the city changed dramatically. He was originally bored by the city and expected to do nothing productive while here. But by the time he had left, he had painted his first great …
Saturday, August 05, 2017
Friday, August 04, 2017
“The oyster was an animal worthy of New Orleans, as mysterious and private and beautiful as the city itself.”
Thursday, August 03, 2017
Equally frightening and fascinating, the story of the Axeman murders stands out in a city of ghost stories. In 1918 and 1919 the Axeman terrorized the city, killing at least five people and seriously injuring at least seven others with an axe or a…
Wednesday, August 02, 2017
Maj. Gen. Andrew Jackson’s defeat of the British in the Battle of New Orleans likely won him the presidency. The Tennessee native rushed to New Orleans’ aid when he learned the British planned to attack the city. “Old Hickory” rounded up a group o…
Tuesday, August 01, 2017
Surrealist photographer Clarence John Laughlin took ghostly images from his imagination and out of the corners of his eyes and put them on photographic paper. Known as the first American Surrealist photographer, Laughlin spent most of his life in …
Monday, July 31, 2017
There may be no place more closely associated with the river steamboat than New Orleans. The boats didn’t originate in the city, but they altered the city’s trajectory by making trade upriver possible. Before the steamboat, boats had to be rowed, …
Sunday, July 30, 2017
Placed on street corners to guide walkers and carriages more than 100 years ago, New Orleans’ blue on white street tiles keep the city physically tied to its past.
Saturday, July 29, 2017
The New Orleans’ piano sound is instantly recognizable by its funky and rhythmic syncopated sound, even back to the days of Louis Gottschalk and Jelly Roll Morton. Each player since has included their own flourishes that have made their sound dist…
Friday, July 28, 2017
City officials made grand plans to celebrate New Orleans’ 200th birthday in 1918 and honor the city’s founder, Jean-Baptiste Le Moyne, Sieur de Bienville.
Maybe because no one in New Orleans can stay down for long, the blues in the city are a minor, but important, note in the city’s musical history. Even the blues produced in the city are considered by some to be “cheerful” because of the predominan…
Thursday, July 27, 2017
Kate Chopin was a feminist in a place and time that wasn’t ready for feminism. Her 1899 novel, “The Awakening,” was a failure until it was republished in the 1970s to worldwide acclaim.
Wednesday, July 26, 2017
“Throw me something Mister!” has been the call of parade goers for decades, but it hasn’t always been so. Early carnival krewes might bestow candy or fancy trinkets on favored ladies and friends, but the general crowd was more likely to get doused…
Tuesday, July 25, 2017
Whether to escape the heat or something else, New Orleanians have long flocked to movie theaters. The first films were shown at West End amusement park in 1896 as an exhibition. Soon after, William T. Rock purchased the exclusive rights to show mo…
Monday, July 24, 2017
A symbol that has represented purity, royalty and the trinity, the fleur-de-lis, now represents New Orleans.
Sunday, July 23, 2017
With its shady oaks and meandering bayou, what is now City Park attracted people long before the city was created. The oak-lined bank of Bayou Metairie – an ancient tributary of the Mississippi River — now the lagoon alongside City Park Avenue, fi…
Saturday, July 22, 2017
Native Americans in New Orleans and Louisiana played a pivotal role in the creation of the Crescent City.
Friday, July 21, 2017
Algiers rose opposite the Mississippi River from the French Quarter soon after the city’s founding. The area served New Orleans as a plantation, slaughterhouse, powder storage and slave-holding quarters before being developed into its own town in …
Thursday, July 20, 2017
While many people across the United States thought Dorothy Dix lived in their hometown, Dix for years wrote from her adopted hometown of New Orleans. Dix was a pseudonym for Elizabeth Meriwether Gilmer, who in the 1940s, was one of the most widely…
Wednesday, July 19, 2017
Big Chief Allison “Tootie” Montana oversaw the change of the Mardi Gras Indians from a violent culture to a revered heritage.
Tuesday, July 18, 2017
For those who can’t make it to every second-line parade or Mardi Gras Indians event, there’s the Backstreet Cultural Museum. The museum in the Treme, located in an unassuming former funeral home, offers a close look the bright colors and intricaci…
Monday, July 17, 2017
Dooky Chase’s legacy in Creole cuisine may only be eclipsed by its role in the civil rights movement.
Sunday, July 16, 2017
More than his TV shows, or his signature “Bam!” Emeril Lagasse credits New Orleans for much of his success. Dick and Ella Brennan hired the brash Fall River, Massachusetts, native to succeed Paul Prudhomme as head chef at Commander’s Palace.
Saturday, July 15, 2017
The Dew Drop was where it was at. For 25 years, local musicians were either at the Dew Drop or on their way to its “Groove Room.”
Friday, July 14, 2017
On Sept. 25, 2006, Saints player Steve Gleason blocked a punt that symbolized the city’s rebirth after Katrina.
Thursday, July 13, 2017
In 1991, the nation watched as Louisiana residents chose between the klansman, David Duke, and the crook, Edwin Edwards.
Wednesday, July 12, 2017
Tuesday, July 11, 2017
The crash of Pan Am Flight 759 left physical and emotional scars on the region that still linger. The most tragic and fatal crash in the U.S. that year, and in fact one of the most deadly airplane crashes in U.S. history, the crash killed 146 peop…
Monday, July 10, 2017
Preservation Hall was created as a space for musicians to play jazz in an era dominated by rock and roll. The effort was so successful that the Preservation Hall Jazz Band now plays with today’s top rock stars.
Sunday, July 09, 2017
Visions became reality during the 1984 Louisiana World Exposition in New Orleans: A gondola crossed the river; a monorail moved people around the city; and a Wonderwall featuring an eclectic mix of architecture greeted visitors. The fair, held 100…
Saturday, July 08, 2017
The French of Nouvelle Orleans did not welcome their Spanish rulers with open arms when the Louisiana territory was ceded to Spain in 1762. Yet, over time, the Spanish government made great improvements to the city and the territory, firmly establ…
Friday, July 07, 2017
New Orleans was practically an island until bridges were built over Lake Pontchartrain in the 20th Century.
Thursday, July 06, 2017
Like the city of her birth, Anne Rice’s vampires are flawed, elegant and timeless. Rice’s “Interview with the Vampire,” celebrated the city’s rougher edges and mysterious past.
Wednesday, July 05, 2017
Long before Katrina, a break in the Mississippi River levee called Sauve’s Crevasse inundated the city with floodwater for weeks.
Tuesday, July 04, 2017
Monday, July 03, 2017
WWOZ was created to showcase New Orleans’ unique musical heritage and soon became a part of that legacy itself. The community radio station was the idea of brothers Jerry and Walter Brock. While the two secured the 90.7 frequency in 1976, it would…
Sunday, July 02, 2017
Many of the city’s first freestanding wooden homes perished in the fires of 1788 and 1794. The Creole and American influenced townhouses that were built in their place remain the dominant building type in the French Quarter.