I came across a postcard of Canal Street from the 1940s. It includes many recognizable department stores such as D.H. Holmes and Maison Blanche, but also one I wasn’t familiar with: Maison Maurice. What can you tell me about it?
Maison Maurice was located at 811 Canal St. next to the former D.H. Holmes department store. The three-story building was home to other retailers before Maison Maurice opened there in 1925 as a millinery shop selling women’s hats. Maison Maurice was part of a chain established by Maurice Mendl in Paris and New York.
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“The Maison Maurice is coming to New Orleans from Fifth Avenue in New York where they operate the greatest millinery store in the country,” developer Laurel Fellman said in a June 30, 1921 New Orleans Item-Tribune story. A newspaper ad for the Canal Street store’s Aug. 27, 1925 grand opening called it the “South’s greatest millinery centre.” The store later expanded its offerings to include other items of women’s clothing.
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The store underwent renovations in 1947. A newspaper ad touted its reopening with a “new atmosphere of charm and elegance, under the diamond-cool glitter of twin chandeliers.” Maison Maurice went out of business two years later in December 1950. In 1951, it was replaced by Mangel’s, a national retailer that also sold women’s apparel and had a second location at 829 Canal St. Mangel’s went out of business in the 1980s. The former home of Maison Maurice became a men’s shoe store for the adjoining D.H. Holmes. The building has been home to a number of businesses since D.H. Holmes closed in 1989.
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