Author: Seale Paterson

Nostalgia: Monkey Business on Canal

Image provided courtesy of The Historic New Orleans Collection, Charles L. Franck Photographers, 1979.325.5047 The Brass Rail opened at 1316 Canal St. in 1934. Taking its name from the brightly polished brass rail running along the mahogany bar, the Brass…

Nostalgia: Biff! Bang!

Image appears courtesy of The Historic New Orleans Collection, Gift of Waldemar S. Nelson, 2003.0182.120 In 1918, the New Orleans Elks organized a two-day 4th of July fundraiser for the Navy Relief Society. The Wild West-themed celebration was called Biff!…

Nostalgia: Furniture Fame

Abraham Mintz left Russia to escape religious persecution, arriving in New Orleans in 1910 with only $3 and unable to speak the English language.  His first job was on the riverfront, carrying bananas for 25 cents a day. He moved…

Angelo Brocato

Angelo Brocato immigrated to New Orleans from Sicily in the early 1900s, following a long apprenticeship at an ice cream and pastries parlor in Paloma. He opened his own shop in the French Quarter, introducing New Orleans to Italian-style ice…

Nostalgia: Straw Hat Day

Straw Hat Day – the day designated for men to switch from winter hats to the straw hats of spring and summer – quietly started in New Orleans in the late 1910s.  But in April of 1922, Mayor Andrew McShane…

Nostalgia: Baron Fazzio’s Bowling Fascination

In 1941, Dom Fazzio opened Fazzio’s Bowling Alley, located at 1301 N. Rampart St. His tongue-in-cheek comment was that he loved bowling so much that he wanted to be sure he’d always have an alley at the ready. Known as…

Nostalgia: The Doubloon Debut

The day modern doubloons debuted in New Orleans the newspaper foresaw the future, telling readers to hang on to them as they were sure to be collectors’ items. It was March 1, 1960, and the Rex Organization had 80,000 to…

Nostalgia: Arts History

Max Simon Rau opened M. S. Rau Antiques in 1912 at 719 Royal St.; 19 years later, he moved to a larger space at 630 Royal St., and the business has been located there ever since. Two expansions occurred in…

Nostalgia: Charles L. Franck

The Charles L. Franck, Commercial Photographer studio window, decorated for Christmas. The rights to all the Franck…

Nostalgia: Gloriously Happy

The news of the end of the first World War reached New Orleans early on the morning of November 11, 1918. The celebrations of Armistice Day began at 3:30 a.m. on the riverfront, when the Dock Board heard the news…

Nostalgia: Business of Death

  Ambrose Leitz immigrated to New Orleans from Germany and opened a cabinet shop in 1854. Rudimentary medical care and yellow fever led to high mortality rates in the 19th century, so Leitz soon turned to making coffins. Success in…

Nostalgia: Belleville to Ellawohl to Christian Brothers

What is now the home of Christian Brothers School in City Park started out as Belleville, a five-bedroom home built in 1909 by liquor distributer Fred Bertrand. Ten years later, William Harding McFadden, an oilman and philanthropist, bought it for…

Nostalgia: Roar in the Water

Sigmund Odenheimer, who immigrated from Germany in 1880, had an impressive career in New Orleans, leaving a legacy that still has an impact today. He was the president of Lane Cotton Mills from 1886-1945 as well as the first president…

Nostalgia: From Vienna to Menefee’s and Beyond

The Vienna Garden Restaurant opened in 1924 at 1101 N. Rampart St. Owned and operated by Matt and Margaret Franichevich, who resided on the top floors with their family, it was purported to be the city’s first steak house. Creole…

Nostalgia

Dixiana Bakery opened in 1931 under the ownership of Dan Rousseve. Located at the corner of N. Broad and Bruxelles streets, Dixiana quickly established itself as a popular place for doughnuts, French bread and other pastries. The fruit cake was…

Nostalgia: Print in Paint

The Canal Branch of the New Orleans Public Library, located at 2940 Canal St. at the corner of S. Gayoso Street, opened in 1911. Funded by the Carnegie Corporation, it was an active part of the neighborhood, serving a few…

Nostalgia: Movie Magic Memories

  The growing accessibility of automobiles after World War II changed American culture in many ways, including the rapid growth of the drive-in movie theater industry. Starting with the first one in 1940, by 1960 the Greater New Orleans area…

Nostalgia: The Boston Club

  The Boston Club, founded in 1841, is the oldest social club in New Orleans and the third oldest in the United States. The club has long abandoned the card game it was named after, but remains an exclusive private…

Nostalgia: The Meal-a-Minit Era

The Meal-A-Minit at 1717 Canal St. opened in 1951. This location was probably the most successful of the chain. It had a complete retail pastry department as well as a large parking lot with both food and cocktail service to…

Nostalgia: Hope Haven

  Located on Barataria Drive in Marrero, the Hope Haven campus of ornate Spanish Colonial Revival-style buildings catches the eye of almost every passerby. Hope Haven was first envisioned by Father Peter Wynhoven, a Dutch transplant to the Archdiocese of…

Nostalgia: Bali Ha’i

Bali Ha’i at Pontchartrain Beach was the creation of Harry Batt Sr., who had developed a great appreciation for Asian culture and food on his many travels. The restaurant was first called the Pontchartrain Beach Comber when it opened in…

Nostalgia: The World’s Champion Speed Contest

The Speed Derby of 1941, billed as the World’s Champion Speed Contest by Creator and Master of Ceremony King Brady, opened on July 31 in the Municipal Auditorium. The main event consisted of 50 men and women, in 22 couples…

No Beer Goggles Needed

What is now known as the Falstaff Brewery Building on Gravier Street near South Broad Street was originally built in 1911 by the National Brewing Company. Ownership changed hands a few times over the following 25 years until St. Louis-based…

Pool Pleasures

  After City Park opened a swimming pool in 1924, Audubon Park decided to build one, too. Funds mostly came from private and corporate donations and an “advertisers fair” held at the park, which featured a children’s bathing beauty contest,…

Nostalgia: New Orleans Lawn Tennis Club

Founded in 1876, the New Orleans Lawn Tennis Club is the oldest tennis club in the United States. The founding members were mostly English, working in the cotton business in New Orleans. Over their first decade as a club, they…