The Desire line operated as bus service in 1978.
Inbound NOPSI Flxible New Look bus 325, a Streetbus Named Desire-Florida, crosses Saint Ann Street on Decatur Street. Notice the standee window with a billboard promoting WDSU-TV. May 1978.
New Look buses operated across the city in the 1970s. Their air-conditioning was fantastic. The buses skirted the French Quarter, connecting back-of-town neighborhoods with Canal Street, via N. Rampart and Decatur Streets.
Mid-70s bus rides
I rode a lot of NOPSI buses in the mid-1970s. Living in Metairie and attending high school in Gentilly meant several transfers to get home. As a rule, my bus travel went East to West.
Exam days at Brother Martin High School offered opportunities for exploration. Afternoon or early evening bus rides involved getting to Canal Street and City Park Avenue as quickly as possible. Fisnished at 10am? Different story.
Travel to the CBD
Rides home started at either Gentilly Blvd. or Mirabeau Ave. Carrollton to Esplanade to the Veterans started on Gentilly. Cartier to Lake Vista to Lakeshore started on Mirabeau. Those weren’t the only options, though. With some free time, why not pick up the Canal bus closer to the start of its outbound run?
French Quarter Periphery
Step into one of those New Look buses running on the Elysian Fields line. Drop in a quarter, and ride it in. The bus ran down Elysian Fields Avenue to N. Peters Street. From there, a right-turn onto N. Peters. Then that street merged into Decatur Street, than back out to N. Peters again. End of the line at Canal.
Elysian Fields, Desire, and Franklin, along with a few other lines, skirted the Quarter in the 1970s. This is because the City Council declared that full-sized buses operating in the interior of the Quarter were a bad idea. For generations, streetcars rolled inbound on Royal Street, outbound on Bourbon. Buses followed that route after NOPSI discontinued streetcar operation on all but St. Charles and Canal. While streetcars were noisy and slowed down traffic, they didn’t emit diesel fumes. Buses literally gassed out the neighborhood.
There were other arguments for the restrictions, most notably from the Fire Department. Big vehicles in the Quarter make getting to the scene of a fire all that more difficult. So, when the proposal to alter the routes came up, it seemed reasonable to most. After all, most riders of those lines hung on until Canal, anyway.
Below is a sneak peek of this content!Brother Martin High School has a rich history of basketball championships. Basketball Championships Crusader forward Leroy Oliver (1975) goes up over Felton Young of Holy Cross in second-round district play, 1974. Center Rick Robey (1974) looks on, hoping he doesn't have to go for a rebound. (photo courtesy Brother Martin High School) I was reminded of the 1973-74 season yesterday...
Below is a sneak peek of this content!Distaff New Orleans dropped their first issue in February, 1973. Distaff New Orleans In December of 1972, a group of women journalists, writers, and others came together to produce a feminist publication. They dropped the "preview edition" of Distaff, a journal for women. The preview generated sufficient interest (and subscriptions) that the team published their first issue the following February....
Terry in a Tender Mood – T-P Leisure section ad, 28-Jan-1979.
Terry in a Tender Mood
Maison Blanche’s ad on the front page of the Metro Section of the Times-Picayune on 28-January-1979 promotes “Terry in a Tender Mood.” While ads from earlier decades featured drawings from the store’s Art Department, MB used photographs by 1979. I don’t know when this change happened, so if you do, let me know in comments!
Maison Blanche in 1979
Late January often brings chilly weather to New Orleans. This ad presents the feelings we find when marking Imbolc/Canndlemas. We look to warmer weather in many places. Retail therapy brings the promise of fewer layers of clothing! From the ad:
Revealing an unexpected taste for the romantic in dresses, softly subtly feminine. Today’s supple fashion terry takes beautifully to full-blown sleeves, slightly wider tops, gracefully moving skirts, goes to dinner, informal parties, remains cool, calm, collected, all summer. From Melissa Lane, off-white, accented in a new manner with camel, underscores new sleeve interest; sizes 8 to 18. 40.00. Miss MB, all stores. Penny Young uses terry with slenderizing fullness–both top and bottom–refreshing colors: celery or mauve. Sizes 14 1/2 to 24 1/2. 45.00. Better half-sizes, all stores.
You can tell this copy hit the public long before Twitter!
MB Stores in 1979
Maison Blanche operated five stores in 1979. Canal Street remained the flagship. Two stores served Metairie/Jefferson, Airline Village and Clearview Shopping Center. Westside in Gretna enabled west bankers to avoid the bridge, and The Plaza in Lake Forest served Da East.
MB offered parking validation for Canal Street shoppers. While the malls appealed to suburban residents, Canal Street presented a number of shopping opportunities. The store’s buyers placed new merchandise and product lines at Canal. So, they walked out of their offices to the retail floor and watched how those products performed. if a line worked at Canal, move it out to the other stores. I’m sure “Terry in a Tender Mood” didn’t stay at Canal Street only for long.