The Decorative Arts of the Gulf South (DAGS) research project at The Historic New Orleans Collection catalogs historic objects made or used in Louisiana, Mississippi, or Alabama dating from the 18th century to 1865. Its discoveries about Gulf South material culture are available in a free online database hosted DAGS interns photographing an antique wallpaper fragmentby the Louisiana Digital Library and managed by THNOC staff. The database contains images and descriptions of thousands of historic decorative arts, such as furniture, ceramics, textiles, paintings, and silver, plus a wide array of more unusual and everyday pieces.

The material world of the 18th and 19th century Gulf South reflects the wide variety of people who lived and interacted there, including Native tribes like the Natchez, Chitimacha, and Choctaw; free men and women of color; enslaved people; French and Spanish colonizers; German and Irish immigrants; and migrants from more northern United States. Although the artifacts documented by DAGS are all located in the Gulf South, many were manufactured elsewhere. Gulf South residents were active in a global economy, using the Mississippi River and Gulf of Mexico to trade with cities throughout the Americas and across the Atlantic Ocean.

If you have questions about DAGS or would like to suggest a potential fieldwork site, contact DAGS project manager Sarah Duggan at (504) 556-7668 or