Dominique Mercier, a free person of color, started a shoe business at the corner of Dauphine and Bienville Streets sometime before the Civil War. After the war, Mercier demolished the one-story shop and built a larger structure to house his business, which had grown to include a full line of men’s and boys' clothing. His sons, Joseph A., Jen L., and William J., took over the store in the late 1870s and officially changed the name to D. Mercier’s Sons in 1883. One of the largest men’s clothiers and furnishers in the city, D. Mercier’s Sons sold clothing, hats, and shoes at very affordable prices. The Mercier family also ran a real estate investment business and owned a large amount of property along Dauphine Street. 

D. Mercier’s Sons sign

ca. 1880; brass

by Levy Co. (New York)

The Historic New Orleans Collection, bequest of Boyd Cruise, 1989.79.225