Maison Blanche Advertising 1905

Maison Blanche Advertising 1905

Maison Blanche advertising in the 1905 Jambalaya,

maison blanche advertising

Maison Blanche Advertising

Ad for Maison Blanche in the 1905 edition of Jambalaya, Tulane University’s yearbook. Maison Blanche opened in the Mercier Building, at the corner of Canal and Dauphine Streets, in 1897. Simon J. Shwartz, Isidore Newman’s son-in-law, created the Maison Blanche concept. He convinced his father-in-law to invest in the store. While there were other businesses besides Shwartz’s dry goods store in the Mercier Building, he managed to acquire the entire building. The illustration in this ad first appeared in The Daily Picayune on the store’s opening day in 1897.

The Newmans and Maison Blanche

maison blanche advertising

The Mercier Building, late 1890s

S. J. Shwartz was the youngest son of merchant Abraham Shwartz. A. Shwartz and Son started as a wholesale company on Chartres Street. When Abraham got the opportunity to open a retail store on Canal Street, he jumped on it. Unfortunately, the store, located in the 700 block, burned out in 1892. Simon moved A. Shwartz and Son to the Mercier building. The family split with Simon, however. They moved the store back to the 700 block. Simon changed the name of his store to S. J. Shwartz and Company. Simon had married into the Newman family. So, when he planned to convert his store into the “department store” concept he’d seen in Cincinnati and New York, Simon turned to Newman. Isidore invested in Simon. You can just hear the conversation: “I’ll invest in your idea, if you hire my son and brother-in-law.”

Simon did just that, The original management team of MB was Shwartz, Hartwig (Hart) Newman, and Gus Schulhoefer. Schulhoefer left MB early on, for health reasons. Hart Newman was a banker/investor, like his father. He preferred finance to retail. So, Newman desired an exit from MB as well. Shwartz then reached out to Marks Isaacs, a well-known local retailer. He brought Isaacs in as a partner. MB’s holding company became Shwartz and Isaacs Company, Limited.

Departures October 1913 #TrainThursday

Departures October 1913 #TrainThursday

Railroad Departures October 1913 to Mobile, New York, and Dallas.

departures october 1913departures October 1913

departures october 1913

Departures October 1913

Three ads in The Daily Picayune on October 21, 1913 entice New Orleanians to points East, North and West. The Louisville and Nashville (L&N) offers an excursion train to a conference in Mobile. Southern Railway promotes their daily service to New York City. Texas and Pacific wants New Orleans to go to the Dallas Fair. None of the trains were air-conditioned at this time. So, when the weather cooled in the Fall, New Orleans went on adventures.

$4.45 to Mobile

Departures October 1913

L&N Terminal, Canal Street, 1910

Those traveling to the “Account Southern Commercial Congress” in late October, 1913, could take an excursion train. L&N’s route out of New Orleans curves around Lake Pontchartrain, like US Highway 90. The trains crossed the river at the Rigolets Pass, then headed to the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The railroad turned north at Mobile. L&N built their station at the end of Canal Street in 1902. So, it was still relatively new in 1913. Prior to the Canal Street station, L&N trains used the old Pontchartrain Railroad station at Elysian Fields and Chartres.

Short Route — Perfect Service

Traveling North? Southern Railway’s New York & New Orleans Limited offered service to Birmingham, Washington and New York. In 1925, Southern re-branded their NYC train the Crescent Limited. Other Southern trains traveled to Cincinnati. That route became the Queen and Crescent Limited in 1926. Southern’s trains operated from Press Street Station prior to 1908, and Terminal Station from 1908 until 1954.

“Greatest Annual Fair in All America”

For $18.35 round trip, New Orleans experienced a “liberal education” at the Dallas Fair. While boasting that the Fair was a “financial failure for years” might not sound like an appealing way to get folks up to Dallas, it served as a teaser. The Texas and Pacific Railroad served New Orleans and Central Louisiana, connecting the state with Dallas and points west.

Tickets

All three railroads maintained ticket offices in the first-floor row of storefronts at the St. Charles Hotel, which stood in the 200 block of St. Charles Avenue.

 

 

Maison Blanche World War I

Maison Blanche World War I

Advertising for Maison Blanche World War I focused on readiness.

maison blanche world war I

Maison Blanche World War I

Two ads in the Times-Picayune, 24-August-1917, illustrate the targeting of Maison Blanche World War I. The smaller ad ran on page two, whereas the large ad ran on the back page of the fourteen-page edition. The smaller ad suggests buying your man a sweater, as he packs to leave for boot camp at Leon Springs in Texas. The larger ad offers the shopper discounts on a wide spectrum of items, from note paper to women’s shoes to various men’s items.

Entering the War

maison blanche world war I

By the time of Maison Blanche World War I, Europe entered its third year of total war. The United States joined the war, on the side of France and the United Kingdom, on April 6, 1917. Money, goods,, and supplies traveled across the Atlantic almost immediately. American troops arrived in Europe in the summer of 1918. The summer of 1917 was that wartime period where excited young men joined up to defend their families. They went off to boot camp, returning home on leave in spiffy uniforms. Anxiety over trench warfare and the horrid conditions on the Western Front were distant.

Wives and mothers prepared for war with two approaches. First, they purchased clothing and supplies for the menfolk. While the Army provided the basics, there were always things soldiers needed and wanted. Second, the women prepared for rationing and other belt-tightening moves. Maison Blanche World War I recognized this. Instead of tantalizing the shopper with a new dress, fancy shoes, or furniture upgrades, we see a lot of practical items on sale.The department stores focused on page one and page two of the newspaper. With only fourteen pages in the edition, there was no full-page ad for MB in one section, Holmes in the next. Readers caught the latest news, turned the page, then spotted store ads. More extravagant sales and shopping came to New Orleans in the aftermath of the war.

Cotton Exchange Building

Cotton Exchange Building

The original Cotton Exchange Building was the setting for an Edgar Degas painting.

cotton exchange building

Cotton Exchange Building

Photo postcard of the Cotton Exchange Building, on the uptown/lake side of the corner of Carondelet and Gravier Streets, in the CBD. A group of cotton factors founded the New Orleans Cotton Exchange in 1871. They built this building in 1881. Structural deficiencies appeared in this Second Empire structure in the 1910s, and by 1916, the city deemed it unsafe. Therefore, the Exchange demolished the building. They built the structure that stands on the corner today. The original building featured lavish interiors and offices for the factors. Edgar Degas painted a scene set in a cotton factor’s office in the Exchange building in 1873. Postcard by the V.O. Hammon Publishing Company.

Exchange operations

The Cotton Exchange entered the scene after the Southern Rebellion and the abolition of enslavement. So, cotton factors recognized the changes coming to the industry during Reconstruction and beyond. They leveraged technology such as the telegraph to gather data important to cotton growing. The Exchange also implemented futures trading. Col. Henry G. Hester, the Exchange’s Secretary, brought practices from the Chicago Board of Trade to New Orleans. These modernization techniques enabled factors to stabilize prices as growers addressed the challenges of employing workers rather than enslaving them.

Loss of the building

The Cotton Exchange transitioned the industry into the 20th Century. While the building was an attractive landmark, the building presented problems. The building’s structure weakened. The city forced the closure of the building in 1916. World War I and other factors enabled the Exchange to delay action. In 1920, they built a new building on the corner. Unlike the elaborate design of the original, architects Favrot and Livaudais built a much more modest replacement.

The Cotton Exchange sold the second building in 1962. The entity closed in 1964. The building became downtown office space, and is now a hotel.

Mayfair Witches

In Anne Rice’s novel, The Witching Hour, the Mayfair family are the primary characters. This fictional wealthy family had numerous business interests and holdings in New Orleans. So, Rice installed the Mayfair businesses in the building at Carondelet and Gravier in her stories.

Streetcar Operations 1913

Streetcar Operations 1913

Streetcar operations on S. Carrollton Avenue in 1913 weren’t all that different than they are today.

streetcar operations

Streetcar Operations 1913

New Orleans Railway and Light Company (NORwy&Lt) #383, outbound on St. Charles Avenue, 1913. Workers surround the car as they do street repairs. The streetcar heads to Carrollton Station as it ends a run on the Prytania line. NORwy&Lt #383 is a single-truck, Ford, Bacon, and Davis (FB&D) streetcar. So these streetcars dominated street rail in New Orleans from 1894, through the 1920s. One FB&D streetcar remains, NORTA #29, the “sand car.” If you see a streetcar running on the St. Charles line that doesn’t look like the classic arch-roofs, it’s likely #29.

The photographer of this image is unidentified, possibly a file photo owned by NOPSI.

Ford, Bacon, and Davis

NORwy&Lt #383 took to the streets in 1894. Both the New Orleans and Carrollton Railroad (NO&CRR) and the New Orleans City Railroad (NOCRR) purchased FB&D streetcars. Ford, Bacon, and Davis was an engineering firm. The streetcar operators hired them to help improve the city’s streetcar operations. Electrification required a number of changes. So, as the engineers worked on the system as a whole, they learned a lot about running streetcars here. They designed a single-truck streetcar that would work in all neighborhoods.

So, by 1913, the date of this photo, FB&Ds operated in New Orleans for almost twenty years. That’s nothing for a streetcar, of course. They’re built for 70+ years of operation.

Operating Companies

Electrification presented a number of challenges for the streetcar companies. The costs of generating power and running wires along the streetcar routes bankrupted the companies. The city stepped in, helping to re-organize the system. They formed a holding company, New Orleans Traction Company, in 1897 that combined the existing operators. That evolved into a second incarnation of the New Orleans City Railroad Company in 1899. Yet another re-org took place in 1905, when the New Orleans Railway and Light Company took over. By 1922, that company became New Orleans Public Service, Incorporated (NOPSI). NOPSI exists to this day, as Entergy New Orleans. Entergy gave up streetcar operations in 1983, when they turned the transit system over to the New Orleans Regional Transit Authority.

Leland University

The large building in the background is Leland University. It was founded in 1870 as Leland College, a school of higher learning for free Black men. The school sustained serious damage in the hurricane of 1915, and moved to Baker, Louisiana.

Jesuit High School 1913

Jesuit High School 1913

Jesuit High School first opened on Baronne Street, next to the church.

jesuit high school

Jesuit High School

Photo from the 1913 edition of The Picayune’s Guide to New Orleans, published by The New Orleans Picayune newspaper. The Church of the Immaculate Conception stands next to the College of the Immaculate Conception, in the 100 block of Baronne Street. The Society of Jesus, better known as the Jesuits, ran the parish and the college. Additionally, they ran a high school program in the same building. In 1926, the Jesuits moved the high school to a new building in Mid-City. Jesuit High School, New Orleans, occupies the lake side of the corner of S. Carrollton Avenue and Banks Street.

The Society of Jesus in New Orleans

While the Capuchins ran the original parish of St. Louis in the Vieux Carré, the Jesuits purchased a tract of land in Faubourg Ste. Marie, in 1727. They administered the parish in that neighborhood. The Anglo-Irish referred to the neighborhood as “The American Sector.” The order constructed the church seen in this photo in the 1840s. It opened in 1850. The school was founded in 1847, and began operation in 1849.

College and High School

The Jesuits taught both high school and college classes on Baronne Street in the 19th Century. In 1911, they moved the college further Uptown, on St. Charles Avenue. The order re-organized the college. It became Loyola University of the South, now Loyola University of New Orleans. They changed the name of the high school when the college left Baronne Street.

With neither college nor high school occupying the building at Baronne and Common, the order demolished the school building seen here. They leased the corner to developers. An 18-story office building replaced the school. Unfortunately, construction of the Pere Marquette Building severely damaged the foundation of the church. Driving piles for the building shook the block. The Jesuits dis-assembled the church. They dedicated a new church, built in the same architectural style of the original, in 1930.

The office building is now the Renaissance New Orleans Pere Marquette Hotel.