History is an evolving story. Here at The Historic New Orleans Collection, we gather, research, and share artifacts from New Orleans’ many stories, weaving together the people, places, and events that connect us to the city. First Draft gives readers inside access to our vast institutional holdings and staff expertise in a fresh and dynamic way. Read the latest stories below, or scroll down to browse by theme.

March 5, 2021
By Mark Cave, senior historian

The first case of COVID-19 in Louisiana was diagnosed on March 9, 2020. As part of its efforts to record this transformative period in our region's history, THNOC is sharing the personal stories of three local leaders from the frontline.




March 4, 2021
By Libby Neidenbach, visitor services trainer

By appealing to the highest court in the land, the men behind Plessy v. Ferguson sought to halt the rolling back of major civil rights gains Black people achieved during Reconstruction. Their defeat in 1896 marked the end of an era of radical Black activism in New Orleans that began with the Civil War.




March 2, 2021
By Kendric Perkins, education specialist

The streetcar protest of 1867 is one of the few cases in which African Americans during Reconstruction successfully voiced their dissatisfaction to government officials in the South.




February 24, 2021
By Eric Seiferth, curator/historian

After the Civil War, benevolent associations flourished in New Orleans's Black community, and so did their impact on life in the city.




February 18, 2021
By: Jessica Dorman, director of publications

Three new books from THNOC give different viewpoints of the infamous Mechanics' Institute massacre.




February 9, 2021
By Melissa Carrier, Eli A. Haddow, and Keely Merritt

COVID-19 may have canceled parades for 2021, but it couldn't erase Mardi Gras entirely. Creativity flourished around the Crescent City in the form of a new tradition: house floats.




February 2, 2021
By Eli A. Haddow, marketing associate

Using archival sources, the creators of Monumental were able to tell the forgotten story of a Black politician in a new way.




January 31, 2021
By THNOC's Visitor Services Department

The food of south Louisiana has as many stories as it has flavors. We look into the backstories of some famous dishes, some of which may be surprising.




January 20, 2021
By Libby Neidenbach, visitor services trainer

Local circumstances—and tragedies—shaped Black New Orleanians’ successful struggle for the vote, but their fight had far-reaching consequences.




January 19, 2021
By Eli A. Haddow, marketing associate

After the Union liberated New Orleans, Black activists fought for civil liberties and basic human rights.






 

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