Eccentric traveler and writer Lafcadio Hearn (1850–1904) became fascinated with local culture during the decade he lived in New Orleans, between 1877 and 1887. He wrote numerous articles for the Item and the Times-Democrat newspapers, as well as “Gombo Zhèbes”: Little Dictionary of Creole Proverbs, in 1885, and Chita: A Memory of Last Island, in 1889, the latter about the devastating 1856 hurricane. His 1885 collection of recipes, La Cuisine Créole, was published the same year as the Christian Woman’s Exchange’s Creole Cookery Book. Although neither cookbook was the first to feature Creole recipes, they, along with a section of Will H. Coleman’s 1885 Historical Sketch Book and Guide to New Orleans and Environs—which contained loving descriptions of Creole cuisine—introduced Creole cooking to a wider audience. The books (the publication of which coincided with the 1884–85 World’s Industrial and Cotton Centennial Exposition, held in what is now Audubon Park) established Creole cuisine as a genuine regional treasure.



Citation 1: 
by Lafcadio Hearn, author
Citation 2: 
New York: W. H. Coleman, 1885
Accession #: 
77-288-RL; gift of Ralph Pons
Pamela D. Arceneaux, Senior Librarian / Rare Books Curator