Guided tours

THNOC offers a variety of guided tours. Self-guided walking tours are available via THNOC's free French Quarter Tours app, which is compatible with both iOS and Android devices.

Details about field trips and school experiences are available on THNOC's Education webpage. For groups larger than 10 people or if you have questions, please contact or call (504) 598-7145.


Portrait of an unkonwn manUnknown Sitters: Bring Your Imagination

Wednesdays and Thursdays at 11:30 a.m., Sundays at 12:30 p.m.
520 Royal Street, 1st Floor
Admission $5, free for members
Advance registration encouraged


Drawn from the holdings of HNOC, the subjects of the 26 portraits in the exhibition Unknown Sitters are unidentified in the historical record. On this 30-minute tour, visitors will learn about the process of analyzing historical portraits and then connect the imagined stories of the Unknown Sitters to their own.

Tour guide gestures towards artifacts in THNOC's French Quarter History galleriesNew Orleans Mosaic: Tour of the French Quarter History Galleries

Friday–Sunday, 11:30 a.m.
520 Royal Street, 3rd floor
Admission $5, free for members
Advance registration encouraged


Join us for a 35-minute guided tour of our French Quarter History Galleries, featuring historic objects and images from the Historic New Orleans Collection's holdings that explore more than 300 of years of French Quarter history. From fascinating stories about immigrant communities, artists, and musicians, to the city's complex legacies of slavery and civil rights, immerse yourself in the many facets of New Orleans's oldest neighborhood.

Organ Room in Seignouret-Brulatour buildingOrgan demonstrations

Wednesday–Sunday, 11 a.m.
Barbara S. Beckman Music Room, 520 Royal Street
Free admission and no RSVP required

Join THNOC staff for a short program exploring the history of the beautifully restored Aeolian residential player pipe organ. Listen to a musical demonstration and discover the significance of this rare and technologically advanced musical instrument.

In the early 20th century, having a player organ in the home was a luxury reserved for the most opulent residences, allowing the owner to have access to recorded music before radios and phonographs were commonplace. Tobacco magnate William Ratcliffe Irby remodeled the property at 520 Royal Street—now part of THNOC’s exhibition center—to serve as his personal residence starting in 1918. In the process he installed a player organ in the entry room to his lavish third-floor apartment. The instrument, built by the Aeolian Company of New York, is one of a handful that has survived to this day in its original location and in working condition, after a meticulous restoration by the Holtkamp Organ Company.

Group tours
Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–4 p.m.
Groups of five or more should contact, or call (504) 598-7145.

School groups
THNOC welcomes schoolchildren of all ages. Customized field trips—which could include guided tours, special lectures, or guided visits to the research center—can bring the region’s history to life for students. Field trips are available free of charge, but reservations are required, regardless of a group's size. Please complete a field trip request form or email to make arrangements. Additional resources are available on THNOC's Education webpage. 

Tours for THNOC members
Visit the membership page for information on curator-led tours of regional historical sites and private, guided tours of The Historic New Orleans Collection included in selected membership packages.