We head to the lakefront this week to continue our look at local university mascots. The University of New Orleans, which celebrates its 60th anniversary this year, originally was known as Louisiana State University in New Orleans, or LSUNO.
Its earliest mascot was a version of the LSU tiger. In 1965, a student vote was held to pick a new mascot. The choices were: Dolphins, Mariners, Privateers, Panthers, Marlins, Pelicans, Cajuns, Tigers, Ospreys and Seagulls. The winner, the panther, was revealed in the Feb. 6, 1965 issue of the student newspaper The Driftwood.
One week later, an article explained that student dissatisfaction led to a petition calling for another election. Among the objections were that the university should have a mascot that reflected the history of New Orleans.
With the fall semester upon us, we'll take the next few weeks to look at the history of the mascots and symbols of some local universities.
Two more rounds of voting were held, with students asked to choose between the Dolphins or the Privateers, the latter of which won. According to the UNO website, a privateer is a "pirate who was pardoned by the government and then commissioned to hunt down and dispose of other pirates."
Lafitte the Instigator, a costumed mascot named for the famous pirate Jean Lafitte, was introduced in 1983. In 2013, a redesigned privateer figure and logo were introduced. They were accompanied by a new costumed mascot named Captain Bruno.