NOLA History Guy Podcast 4-May-2019 – Streetcars and Spoons

NOLA History Guy Podcast 4-May-2019 – Streetcars and Spoons

Talking green streetcars and Benjamin Butler in NOLA History Guy Podcast 4-May-2019.

NOLA History Guy Podcast 4-May-2019

NOPSI 865, rounding the turn from S. Carrollton Avenue to St. Charles Avenue in 1960

NOLA History Guy Podcast 4-May-2019

Two segments this week. We talk about our pick of the week from Today in New Orleans History. Then we “unpack” a photo from 1960.

May 1, 1862

NOLA History Guy Podcast 4-May-2019

top of the broadside printing of Butler’s proclamation of martial law and occupation, 1-May-1862

While the United States Navy compelled the surrender of New Orleans on 25-May-1862, it was the Army that did the heavy lifting from there. Major General Benjamin Butler, USA, issued a proclamation on 1-May-1862, announcing that New Orleans was under the control of the federal government. He also declared martial law.

The rebels lost the war on the night of 24-25 April, 1862. While many people died and much was destroyed before the formal armistice, it was all over when New Orleans returned to Union control. Farragut forced the rebels to retreat north of the city. Butler came over from Ship Island with his invading force and moved in. Once martial law was established, most of the occupying force moved North as well, in pursuit of the rebels.

“Spoons”

Butler was pretty much an awful person. He had a massive ego. To be fair, so did Farragut and Porter. All three commanders claimed credit for the victory in New Orleans. It’s hard to say who was the worst in this respect, but Butler received the most disparagement. The Lost Cause mythos plays out locally, portraying Butler as a venal man and petty thief. The “spoons” legend is an example. Butler and the USA had orderly procedures for occupying New Orleans. They confiscated gold and silver from residents. Butler didn’t pocket spoons, he sent his troops to loot entire houses!

Inauguration Day

May 1st is Inauguration Day in New Orleans. Two notable 1-May inaugurations were in 1978, when Ernest Nathan “Dutch” Morial officially became the city’s first African-American mayor. Last year, 2018, Latoya Cantrell became the city’s first woman mayor. It’s important to note that 1-May was set as inauguration day by the charter changes of 1954. As much as grumpy liberals who hate Mitch Landrieu want to slander him, he didn’t engineer a way to stay around through the city’s Tricentennial.

NOPSI 865, 1960

Our photo this week is of NOPSI 865, a vintage-1923 arch roof streetcar. This “Charley car” turns from S. Carrollton Avenue to St. Charles Avenue, on an inbound run. We unpack the photo in NOLA History Guy Podcast 4-May-2019.

The Times-Picayune/NOLA.com

I’m working on a long-form pod about Da Paper, now that it looks like John Georges is going to vaporize it. That will go up in 2-3 weeks. Working on preserving the memories of the “digital” years.

Support NOLA History Guy on Patreon! 

 

NOLA History Guy Podcast 27-April-2019 Southern Rebellion

NOLA History Guy Podcast 27-April-2019 Southern Rebellion

The best of “Today in New Orleans History” for this week, and unpacking a photo on this week’s NOLA History Guy Podcast 27-April-2019.

NOLA History Guy Podcast 27-April-2019

Two short segments today on NOLA History Guy Podcast 27-April-2019. Take a moment from your Festing and check them out.

Rebel Surrender, 25-April-1862.

NOLA History Guy Podcast 27-April-2019

“Panoramic View of New Orleans-Federal Fleet at Anchor in the River, ca. 1862.” – Illustration from Campfires and Battlefields by Rossiter, Johnson, et al. (New York, 1894)

Our pick from Today in New Orleans History’s entries this week is April 25th, the capture of New Orleans.

Flag-Officer David Farragut, United States Navy commanded the Union blockade squadron charged with invading New Orleans. In April, 1862, he took that squadron, into the Mississippi River, via Southwest Pass. A squadron of mortar vessels under the command of Captain Donald Porter followed Farragut. The invading force pounded Fort St. Jackson and Fort St. Phillip. These forts were the main defenses below the city. German and Irish soldiers in the rebel army mutinied on the night of April 24th. Farragut led his ships to that side of the river. Thirteen Union vessels passed the forts. The city woke up to Union guns aimed at the city. Farragut compelled the surrender of the city the following day. Major General Benjamin Butler arrived and occupied the city on May 1, 1862.

The loss of New Orleans demonstrated the abject incompetence of the rebel government. New Orleans was the largest port in the rebel states.

Unpacking a Photo – Pontchartrain Beach

NOLA History Guy Podcast 27-April-2019

Pontchartrain Beach by Jane Brewster

Another event in Campanella’s “Today in New Orleans History” this week was the inaugural run of the Zephyr coaster at Pontchartrain Beach. The Milneburg location of the amusement park opened in April, 1939. On 23-April-1939, the park’s premier attraction, the Zephyr, opened. The wooden roller coaster operated until the park closed in 1983.

Our image for this pod is a Jane Brewster print of the main entrance of Da Beach, in the 1950s. A GM “Old Looks” bus ends its run at the beach. The Beach is fifteen or twenty years old at this time. The Zephyr coaster is visible on the right. Riders entered the coaster via an Art Deco station. They boarded one of the two trains and rode up that first section. Jane shows¬† a train as it reaches the top. Riders would hold their hands over their heads, at least for that first downhill pass. The coaster took riders over several hills, then made a sweeping turn, returning to the station via a series of small bumps behind the large hills.

Independent Booksellers Day

New Orleans During the Civil War Facebook Group

Pontchartrain Beach Podcast from 2016

Last week’s podcast

NOLA History Guy Podcast 20-April-2019 Unpacking Bayou St. John

NOLA History Guy Podcast 20-April-2019 Unpacking Bayou St. John

NOLA History Guy Podcast 20-April-2019 – Unpacking Bayou St. John.

NOLA History Guy Podcast 20-April-2019

Aerial view of the city, with Bayou St. John in the foreground.

NOLA History Guy Podcast 20-April-2019

NOLA History Guy Podcast 20-April-2019

Elmer’s Candy Truck. Undated, likely 1950s.

Happy Easter! Happy Elmer’s Gold Brick Eggs. The Elmer’s truck is from Pop Evans’ fun group, New Orleans “Black” in the Day on Facebook. Elmer’s Gold Brick was more of a year-round candy. Now, the egg-shaped version is an Easter treat.

So, there’s a group on the Book of Face, “The New Orleans Culture.” I enjoy the people and the posts, and share a good bit there. This is in addition to sharing at Ain’t There No More. While I don’t like posting unattributed photos, I want to talk about this one. If you know the photographer, please let me know, so I can get proper permission! Before the photo unpack, we’ll do the best of “Today in New Orleans History” for this week.

The Greater New Orleans Bridge Opens

NOLA History Guy Podcast 20-April-2019

Construction progresses on the Greater New Orleans Bridge 1-February-1957 (photographer unknown)

The Greater New Orleans Bridge opened to vehicular traffic on 15-April-1958. The Mississippi River Bridge Authority took bids for a new bridge across the river in 1957. They accepted one in November of that year. By the next spring, the Huey P. Long Bridge in Jefferson was no longer the only bridge crossing in the metro New Orleans Area. While the Huey had lanes for cars, its main role was as a railroad bridge. The GNO Bridge connected Algiers and Gretna residents with downtown New Orleans. The single-span bridge required “traffic controls” by the 1970s. MRBA police blocked traffic in the mornings at various choke points. They opened one route to the bridge at a time, in 10-15 minute intervals. This created a more-orderly flow in the mornings.

These traffic controls annoyed commuters. The state funded construction of a second span in 1984. The current incarnation of Da Bridge is named the Crescent City Connection.

Today in New Orleans History 15-April-2019

Unpacking the Bayou

We continue photo segments on NOLA History Guy Podcast 20-April-2019. Street-level photos of Bayou St. John inspire artists and writers alike. Bayou Bridge crosses at Esplanade Avenue. Magnolia Bridge (visible in this photo) crosses in front of Cabrini High School. While Magnolia appears to be a bridge to nowhere, the streetcar used to pass by on Moss Street. Therefore, folks could take the Esplanade line, get off at the bridge, and then walk across to homes in the City Park neighborhood.

Trees envelope Pitot House, on the left side of the bayou. Our Lady of the Rosary, on Esplanade Avenue, stands just outside the frame on the left. This photo shows the church’s backyard.

Down the Bayou

The second turn, on the other side of Magnolia bridge, offers a last bit of waterway. BSJ ends just out of frame on the right. The bayou leads the way to Parkway Bakery, on Hagan Street. The Faubourg St. John neighborhood flows from Esplanade, to Orleans Avenue (more or less) on the left side.

 

Last Week’s NOLA History Guy Podcast

NOLA History Guy Podcast 6-April-2019 – K-Doe and Signs

NOLA History Guy Podcast 6-April-2019 – K-Doe and Signs

NOLA History Guy Podcast 6-April-2019

NOLA History Guy Podcast 6-April-2019

Ernie K-Doe at Jazz Fest, 1996 (photo by Masahiro Sumori)

NOLA History Guy Podcast 6-April-2019

I need to do the pods more, so we’ll be dropping “short-form” eps weekly. The long-form pods are fun, but they take time. That means they’re less frequent, therefore fewer eps. So, let’s do shorter, under half an hour pods, and do them weekly.

We’ll do two ten-ish minute segments. One will be a book update, or an “Emma Fick” snippet. Possibly we’ll “unpack” a photo, going into some details on what’s visible. There’s a lot of little subjects. They make good blog posts. So, these are audio blog posts. When I do a talk, it’s usually for an hour or so, and I’ll put together forty to fifty images/maps as visuals. Each slide takes a couple of minutes tops. Therefore, a lot of details in a photo or on a map get blown over.

Book Update

NOLA History Guy Podcast 6-April-2019

Fading Signs in the Warehouse District (Edward Branley photo)

The pod introduce the next book, “Fading Signs of New Orleans.” The book features “ghost ads” and other old signs around town. It’s an incredibly fun project, and my friends say it’s incredibly important, from a preservation perspective. I agree.

Today in New Orleans History

Catherine Campanella presents “Today in New Orleans History” on Facebook, and at NewOrleansPast.com. One or two strike me each week. They resonate on a personal level. The new format here features one of these a week that works for me.

This week, that’s Campanella’s entry for April 3rd. On April 3, 1961, Ernie K-Doe’s song, “Mother in Law” broke onto the Billboard R&B chart. That brought back some memories for me.

Show Notes

The train going by was a Norfolk Southern freight. The Amtrak Crescent passed by on time this morning as well.

Music: Intro – “Talking ‘Bout New Orleans” by The Meters. Break – “West End Blues” by Louis Armstrong and His Hot 5.

Sponsor: NOLA History Guy 6-April-2019, sponsored by Art In The Bend arts market, on Saturday 20-April-2019. Location is Nuance, 728 Dublin Street in the Riverbend.

St. Augustine Catholic Church in the Treme – Podcast!

St. Augustine Catholic Church in the Treme – Podcast!

St. Augustine Catholic Church

st. augustine catholic church

St. Augustine Church, from Snippets of New Orleans, by Emma Fick (Edward Branley photo)

St. Augustine Catholic Church – Podcast!

NOLA History Guy Podcast this week is a “snippet” – a short presentation on an illustration from Emma Fick’s book, Snippets of New Orleans. So, we chose Emma’s illustration of St. Augustine Catholic Church for this week While there are three “St. Augustines” in New Orleans, this is the oldest.

Bishop Blanc dedicated St. Augustine Catholic Church October 9, 1842. Therefore, it is to this day, the spiritual nexus for Creoles of Color who are Catholic.

Faubourg Treme

st. augustine catholic church

Faubourg Treme, including “Divo Augustino R.C” Church, Robinson Atlas (courtesy New Orleans Notarial Archives)

The Treme neighborhood dates back to the Morand Plantation. Claude Treme bought the land in 1792. So, shortly after this transaction, the city built the Carondelet Canal, which connected the French Quarter with Lake Pontchartrain by water, via Bayou St. John. The canal’s business opportunities attracted commercial and light industrial ventures along its banks. Residential neighborhoods grew out on either side of the canal. This area attracted a number of free people of color, who spoke French and identified more closely with the French-Spanish Creoles of the Vieux Carre’ than the Anglo-Irish in the “American Sector.”

These Creoles of Color bought lots in Treme and built homes. By the 1830s, their numbers were large enough that they went to then-Bishop (later Archbishop) Antoine Blanc, and petitioned him to create a Catholic parish for their neighborhood. Bishop Blanc agreed. Therefore, the community began work to raise money and build their own church, so they didn’t have to walk down to St. Louis Cathedral to go to Mass.

St. Augustine Catholic Church (Infrogmation photo)

The neighborhood built their church on land donated by the Ursuline Sisters. So, the nuns asked that the church be named in honor of St. Augustine of Hippo, one of their order’s patrons.

The Tomb of the Unknown Slave

st. augustine catholic church

Tomb of the Unknown Slave (Infrogmation photo)

Snippets of New Orleans

st. augustine catholic

Snippets of New Oleans by Emma Fick (Edward Branley photo)

You can buy Emma’s wonderful book at all of the usual suspects, including Octavia Books.

Trusted Talents

st. augustine catholic

NOLA History Guy Podcast is sponsored this week by Elysian Fields Press, publishers of Edward J. Branley’s latest novel, Trusted Talents.

Snippets of New Orleans by Emma Fick – Podcast!

Snippets of New Orleans by Emma Fick – Podcast!

Snippets of New Orleans by Emma Fick

Snippets of New Orleans

Our Review this week: Snippets of New Orleans by Emma Fick

Snippets of New Orleans by Emma Fick

Snippets of New Orleans

The back cover

We’ve got a book review for you this week, a fun title on New Orleans by artist, historian, and illustrator, Emma Fick. Snippets of New Orleans is a wonderful illustrated primer on New Orleans history and culture. Emma’s book covers a lot of ground. So, it’s a great book for local and visitor alike. I see it as a great book to give someone before they come to New Orleans for the first time. It will really build up excitement.

The Basics

Snippets of New Orleans

Emma’s map of New Orleans

Emma starts with the basics of navigating New Orleans. It’s important to understand uptown/downtown and lakebound/riverbound, since the cardinal compass points of North, South, East, and West have so little real meaning here. She leads with this, giving us some solid directions and explanations right as you open the book.

The French Quarter

Snippets of New Orleans

French Quarter Street Signs

Lots of excellent detail here, as we wander around places, people, and things that strike the author. The “Spanish street signs” that explain how the street names were pronounced during the Spanish Colonial period are a particular favorite of mine when walking through the Quarter.

Common Themes Across Neighborhoods

Snippets of New Orleans

Corner Stores

Corner grocery stores were once ubiquitous across the city. You can usually tell a house or building that used to be a neighborhood grocery because the corner facing the street corner is “cut off” a bit. We will definitely be coming back to this topic in a future pod.

Buy the book!

Snippets of New Orleans

The Network

You’ve got several options for buying Emma’s book. So, if you don’t mind, go buy it at a bookstore, like Blue Cypress Books (like I did), or Octavia Books! Support the Indies, they’re an important part of the community. If you’re not local, you can buy the book through Octavia’s website. While we encourage the locals, we know many prefer Amazon, of course #primeJunkies.

I’m proud to be included in Emma’s Network! We had a lot of fun exploring Faubourg St. John together, as she took notes for inspiration.

Snippets of New Orleans

French Truck Coffee and Blue Dot Donuts at Wakin’ Bakin’ on Banks and Alexander in Mid-City

And let’s not forget Wakin’ Bakin’, my regular morning haunt. While you listen, you can hear New Orleans flowing by you as you listen to the pod,