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 on both iPhone and Android devices.

Details on field trips and school experiences are available on THNOC's Education webpage. If you have any questions, please email or call (504) 598-7145.

photo of Williams Residence with courtyard

Williams Residence Tour

Not available at this time

Built in 1889 and restored by General L. Kemper and Leila Williams in the 1940s, this Italianate, two-story townhouse is now a house museum that reflects the elegant, mid-20th-century lifestyle of the owners. Tucked away behind the Merieult House at the end of a classic French Quarter courtyard, the Williams Residence is filled with antiques and other objets d’art collected by the couple in their wide travels. The Williamses moved into the house in 1946 and lived there until 1964. During those years the couple collected materials that eventually formed the basis of The Historic New Orleans Collection. Established as a museum in 1973, the Williams Residence is the only French Quarter house open to the public with original furnishings. The tour includes a walk through the Williamses’ lush French Quarter courtyards. The tour lasts approximately one hour.

While we are unable to host in-person tours, we are happy to present a series of short videos exploring some of our favorite highlights and curiosities from the Williams Residence.

Go on a virtual tour of the Williams Residence now.

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, fresh off a meticulous restoration by the Holtkamp Organ Company.

photo of snow on courtyard at THNOC

Holiday Home and Courtyard Tours
Not available at this time
Visit the festively decorated residence and courtyard of General L. Kemper and Leila Williams, founders of The Historic New Orleans Collection. 


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.