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1651 National Bank of Commerce Building 
New Orleans 12, Louisiana 


Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 59-151 an 
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New Orleans East, idee 

Copyright, 1959 

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Dedicated to men of vision, 
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SIGNATURE OF ST. MAXENT, first owner of the plantation, “... to a point 
called Chef Menteur...’ Document, in collection of Missouri Historical Soctety, 
is dated April 20, 1778. It is a recognizance for exchange of slaves with Auguste 
and Pierre Choutean. 


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eAuthor’s Preface 

This little endeavor came about by accident. The author was di- 
rected to prepare a summary of the history of the Maxent-Lafon-de- 
Clouet-Michoud-deMontluzin tract to accompany a development pros- 
pectus being prepared for its new owner, New Orleans East, Inc. He 
assumed that a comprehensive study was desired and plunged with zeal 
into the voluminous sources available on the broad sweep of history of 
this area. 

However, upon producing this material, it turned out that only a 
one-page summary of past ownership was desired. The deed had been 
done. Upon examining it, enough enthusiasm was generated by officials 
of New Orleans East, Inc., to proceed with a limited publication of the 
fuller treatment. 

The author is beholden to many for encouragement and assistance: 
Mr. James J. Coleman, Mr. Herbert Waguespack, Mr. Robert Atkinson, 
Mr. John Seeley, all of New Orleans East, Inc.; Mrs. Rosa Oliver and 
Mr. C. E. Frampton of the Louisiana State Museum; Miss Margaret 
Ruckert, Mr. John Hall Jacobs, and Mrs. Sue Baughman of the New 
Orleans Public Library; Dr. Garland Taylor, formerly Head of Libraries, 
Tulane University; Mr. Leonard Huber, collector, author, his collaborator, 
along with Warren Ogden, on the book, “Tales of the Miussisstppr’, 
published in 1955; to Mr. Samuel Wilson, Jr., a walking compendium, 
encyclopedia, and living archive on anything about the New Orleans area, 
and our outstanding architectural historian; to Dr. Vergil Bedsole, Head, 
Department of Archives, Louisiana State University; to Mr. Albert Lieu- 
taud and to Mr. Harold Leisure who have helped him find many treasures 
for his private collection; to Mr. Charles van Ravenswaay and Miss 
Dorothy Brockhoff of the Missouri Historical Society, St. Louis. 

The author also wishes to acknowledge the permission of the 
Louisiana Landmarks Society to use several engravings from “Lowsstana 
Purchase’, published in 1953; and to thank Mr. Russel H. Riley of 
Harland Bartholomew and Associates, for his assistance. 


Appreciation is expressed to Mrs. Frances Jacobs for making the 
index; and to Colonel R. E. E. deMontluzin for information about his 
ownership of the property. 

He is especially indebted to Mr. Donald R. Ellegood, director of the 
Louisiana State University Press, for permission to quote the definition of 
“Chef Menteur” from one of the Press’ publications; and to Mrs. Joseph 
G. Quinn, Jr., sister of the late Dr. Caroline Burson, author of “The 
Stewardship of Don Esteban Miro’, a monumental book on the history of 
the colonial period of Louisiana. Interesting sidelights on the career of 
St. Maxent are contained in this book, and the gracious permission to refer 
to it is deeply appreciated. He is grateful to Mr. Edmund F. Hughes, 
General Superintendent, Sewerage & Water Board, and his staff for infor- 
mation about the early drainage of New Orleans. And finally, to the 
inimitable John Chase, author and cartoonist, for his invaluable sugges- 
tions, and for his flattering Foreword. A second edition of Mr. Chase’s 
delightful and informative ‘Frenchmen, Desire, Good Children, and 
Other Streets of New Orleans!’’, is being prepared for release at Christ- 

New Orleans, September, 1959. 


The Meaning of 
Chef Menteur 

The name Chef Menteur was first applied in 1763 to a tract of 
land lying at the confluence of Bayou Gentilly, or Sauvage, and Chef 
Menteur Pass in Orleans Parish. Here are situated the ruins of Fort 
Macomb, which was originally named Chef Menteur. Across from Fort 
Macomb on the other side of the pass, is Chef Menteur, a station on 
the Louisville and Nashville Railroad. 

Charles Gayarré thus explains the origin of Chef Menteur: 

“What the Choctaws were most conspicuous for was their hatred 
of falsehoods and their love of truth. Tradition relates that one of their 
chiefs became so addicted to the vice of lying that in disgust they drove 
him away from their territory. In the now Parish of Orleans, back of 
Gentilly, there is a tract of land, in the shape of an isthmus projecting 
itself into Lake Pontchartrain, not far from the Rigolets, and terminating 
in what is called Point-aux-Herbes, or Herb Point. It was there that 
the exiled Choctaw chief retired with his family and a few adherents 
neat a bayou which discharges itself into the lake. From that circum- 
stance the tract of land received and still retains the appellation of Chef 
Menteur, or ‘Lying Chief’.” 

N. Bossu gives a different version of the story. ‘Though they 
(Choctaws) are barbarous and ferocious,’’ he says, “it is necessary, in 
order to gain their confidence, to take great care to keep your promises 
to them, without which they treat you with the greatest contempt, proudly 
telling you that you are a liar, an epithet which the Indians have given 
to the present governor, whom they call ‘Oulabe’ Mingo’ i.e., ‘the lying 

As Bossu made the foregoing assertion at the fort of Tombigbee 
on September 30, 1759, the Choctaws must have been referring to Baron 
de Kerlérec, who was governor of Louisiana from 1753 to 1763. ‘“‘Oulabe’ 


Mingo”, which Bossu renders by “le Chef Menteur’, is intended for 
Choctaw “holabi miko’, “‘liar-chief’. The Choctaw for “lying chief’’ is 
“miko holabi’’. Ialeské-Chata, indeed, renders Chef Menteur by ‘‘Mingo- 

Bossu’s explanation of the origin of Chef Menteur is more convinc- 
ing than Gayarre’s. What connection, however, there was between 
Kerlérec’s standing with the savages and any particular locality in Lou- 
isiana is far from being clear. 

From: Louisiana-French 
by William A. Read, Ph.D. | 
Louisiana State University Press, 


THE NEW ORLEANS STORY began in 1699 with Iberville on 
the Mississippi Gulf Coast, and continued with Bienville and the founding 
of New Orleans in 1718. The story began French, became Spanish for 
a while, blended into Creole and never has become a// American. 

The physical city’s beginning was a little colonial town, with dozens 
and dozens of neighboring plantations just beyond its commons. Time 
passed. The colonial town grew into a city, and all of those neighbors— 
including the commons itself—became neighborhoods of one vast New 
Orleans comprising 365 square miles. 

Each of these neighbors, as it joined the city, brought in with it not 
empty acres alone, but people—and stories and legends of other people 
it had known before. Thus, each came in with its history! It is this 
blending that has brought the rich flavor and spicy seasoning to the 
fascinating New Orleans Story. 

The Faubourg deMontluzin, last neighbor to become an active 
neighborhood, is certainly not last in the number of its acres. Not with 
32,000 of them! And its contribution to the New Orleans Story, as Ray 
Samuel unfolds it in the following pages, is similarly substantial. The 
accounts of St. Maxent, Lafon and Michoud are notable acquisitions to 
the New Orleans Story, and Mr. Samuel has performed a most com- 
mendable introduction to them here. I knew something about Lafon, 
whom I consider foremost among 19th century city planners of New 
Orleans, but about all I knew about Michoud was that most of the time 
his name had been spelled wrong. As for St. Maxent, I wasn’t even sure 
how to spell him. 


. to a point called Chef Menteur” will prove interesting to 
everybody interested in New Orleans. It has interested me. 

Speaking of Chef Menteur, however, I find myself sharing Dr. 
Reed’s unenthusiasm for both Bossu and Gayarré’s explanations of this 
curious placename. In fact, I would throw out the testimonies of both 
in favor of much more convincing circumstantial evidence that Chef 
Menteur means simply Chief Deceiver. The stream is a tidal estuary of 
Lake Borgne and the open gulf, and its current deceptively flows back 
and forth with the tide. It flows fast, too; sometimes six knots or more. 


To Bienville and the French-Canadian coureurs de bois who traveled these 
passes between the inner and outer lakes for years in birchbark and dugout 
canoes, such a current was decidedly a factor. There were several lesser 
passes with this deceptive current, but here was the chief one—the Chef 

Add to this all the other definitive names given by these practical 
woodsmen—Long Point, Grassy Point, Alligator Point, Shell Point, Little 
Lake, Big Island, Heron Bay. Such names are simply landmarks; they 
were characteristics of the localities. Even the Rigolets means ‘‘the drains” 
of the inner lakes. 

Chef Menteur is part of this pattern. It is surely a name as old as 
the others. Perhaps many a night Bienville and his companions camped 
on its banks, when the current was against them. Perhaps, indeed, this 
founder of New Orleans was thus an itinerant settler on these lands of 
New Orleans East, Inc., before he ever founded the city—on these very 
lands that are last to be settled! 

It’s very possible. I’m sure Ray Samuel will agree. 

August, 1959 


loa point called 
Chef Menteur ...” 

Bor every house 1s builded by 
some man, but he that built all 

things is God.” 


a Bee lawyer, there is perhaps nothing more deadly than the lay- 
man’s careless words. To a layman, there is likewise nothing duller than 
a lawyer’s involved rhetoric. 

Yet, even the layman will admit that, buried beneath the lawyer’s 
mountain of fly specks, an interesting story is often hiding. All the 
layman needs are patience and perserverance to find it. 

So, when a stroke of a pen on a three-page document changed the 
name of Faubourg deMontluzin to New Orleans East, Inc., all it took 
were the aforesaid patience and perserverance on the part of a party of the 
third part, plus a small amount of romantic imagination, to make all ot 
it absorbing to somebody other than lawyers and the parties represented. 

Viz., i.e., and to wit: 

Before the Superior Council of the Colony of Louisiana, one day 
early in March, 1763, there stood a soldier of the King, Gilbert Antoine 
de St. Maxent, successful merchant of New Orleans, partner in the firm of 
St. Maxent and Lacléde. With a magnificent flourish, typical of the 
long line of French aristocrats from which he came, Sieur de St. Maxent 
handed a document to Governor Louis de Kerlérec. 

“I beg your excellency,’”’ he said, “to consider my petition for a 
grant from the Royal Domain, as I humbly set forth.’’ 

Royal grants of land in the colony were issued to such well-placed 
men of high-born French parentage, soldiers and others who had served 
their King well in the New World. St. Maxent had already received 

Talia et 

land; this time he desired a certain tract near the capital of New Orleans. 

Governor Kerlérec was a controversial figure in Louisiana history. 
A naval captain, veteran of many years of conflict at sea, with battle 
scars to prove his valor, he did not find the transition from quarter deck 
to governor's seat very easy. He would probably have been a good ad- 
ministrator, but he made too many enemies. He was accused, recalled to 
Paris and thrown into the Bastille, before being exonerated. 

He was near the end of his régime on the day Sieur de St. Maxent 
stood before him. The governor picked up the document and examined it. 

“The tract of land . . . petitioned for at the place 
called Chantilly (Gentilly) . . . from the boundary 
of the tract you have just granted M. du Fossat, to 
a point called Chef Menteur . . . which property I, 
Gilbert Antoine de St. Maxent, shall employ as a 

As with such petitions before the Superior Council, this one of St. 
Maxent was taken under advisement, with the 18th century equivalent 
of “don’t call us, we'll call you”. 

On March 10, St. Maxent stood once again before Governor Kerlérec. 
The petition had been granted. But not without a few if’s, and’s, and 

First, within a year, St. Maxent must put the land to use as stated; 
that is, a plantation would have to sprout. Second, when Monsieur du 
Fossat would bring the roadway across his property to the border of 
St. Maxent’s, the latter must continue it all the way to “said point’, Chef 
Menteur, or as far as he may be able to go. Or else the King got it all » 
back. Also, the trees were reserved for building or repairing the royal 

These conditions being of little concern to the wealthy aristocrat, 
he agreed, and the patent was issued. 

Thus came into being for the first time, this single tract covering 
some 34,500 acres, which was to pass down through nearly two centuries 
almost intact. 

The location was an unusual one. Interestingly, mention of it by 
the early colonist antedates the founding of New Orleans. That is, it 
was a landmark of early explorations before the French had gotten around 
to establishing the capital of the colony at the familar bend in the Mis- 
sissippi River. 

Louis de Phélypeaux, royal Minister of Marine, is perhaps the un- 
sung hero of it all. It was he and his family who interested themselves 
in doing something about the mighty territory which La Salle had 
added to the royal domains on his voyage of discovery from Canada to 
the mouth of the Mississippi in 1683. 

Louis de Phélypeaux’ title was Count de Pontchartrain. Despite 
romantic assumptions that he was motivated by empire-building for his 
King, it is plain fact that his interest in exploiting Louisiana was one of 
extreme defensive tactics. From the East Coast, traders from British 
Charleston were pushing into the back country, and by 1698, their pack- 
horses had penetrated to the Mississippi. The English were actually 
claiming Carolina ‘‘from sea to sea’, including the Mississippi Valley. 

Thus, Iberville’s expedition to find the mouth of the Mississippi 
and to build a fort there—coupled with Cadillac’s founding of Detroit 
and protecting that flank from the English—were purely defensive mea- 
sures to hold the French colony. 

The Court’s choice of Pierre le Moyne, Sieur d’Iberville was fortui- 
tous. He was the most distinguished colonial soldier of the New World, 
son of a Quebec family of the petty nobility. He became the first colon- 
ial to be commissioned in the French Navy, and distinguished himself 
in a naval engagement against the English on Hudson’s Bay. At the 
age of 38 when chosen to lead the expedition to Louisiana, he walked 
with a limp from an old leg wound. 

Iberville selected his 17-year-old brother, Jean Baptiste leMoyne, 
Sieur de Bienville, and the Sieur de Sauvole as his chief lieutenants. The 
three ships of the expedition reached the gulf coast in January of 1699. 

Examining the coast, Iberville moved on with his ships until Febru- 
ary, when they anchored at Ship Island. Here he switched to smaller 
boats. On February 27, two long-boats set out from the ships, carrying 
Iberville, Bienville, Sauvole, and 50 men. They entered the mouth of 
the Mississippi on March 2, and the next day being Mardi Gras, they 
camped at a bayou which was named for the religious holiday, and it re- 
mains Bayou Mardi Gras on maps to this day. 

The expedition pushed on against the current, scanning the banks 
and making occasional friendly contacts with the Indians. They went 
beyond the present site of Baton Rouge, to a spot near Tunica Bend, 
before turning back. Below Baton Rouge, they stopped at the small 
outflow of the Mississippi called by the Indians ‘‘Manchac’, said to 
signify a “back entrance”. This is exactly what it was, a short cut to the 

etek eee 

Gulf, and Iberville decided to explore it. He sent Bienville and Sauvole 
back the way they had come, down the river, to rejoin the vessels at 
Ship Island. 

The Manchac later became known as Bayou Iberville, and was fin- 
ally closed by General Andrew Jackson as a defensive measure. Out the 
Manchac went Iberville, coming to the two large lakes. He named them 
for the Phélypeaux family. The larger, he called Pontchartrain; the 
smaller, Maurepas, for the Count de Pontchartrain’s son and successor 
as Minister of Marine, Jerome de Phélypeaux, Count de Maurepas. 

Although Iberville had instructions to build a fort on the Mississippi, 
he realized the danger from flooding and decided the first establishment 
should be on safer, more accessible ground. As he skirted the shore of 
Lake Pontchartrain, he almost selected a spot on its northern shore; but 
he sailed on out the Rigolets, and rejoined the ships, giving orders to 
start construction of the fort at Biloxi. Placing Sauvole in charge, with 
Bienville as second in command, Iberville sailed back to France for 

In his brother’s absence, Bienville explored the coastal area, gain- 
ing knowledge of the country and making friends with the natives. He 
had been ordered to explore the shores of Lake Pontchartrain. 

Bienville was a name-giver, too, but some of his were practical, 
names which could be of use to later explorers. After hunting “‘fifty 
wild animales”, buffalo and deer, at Bay St. Louis, he and his party 
continued on until they came to a pass which was covered with herons. 
Bienville named it ‘‘Passe-aux-Herons’’. Leaving the “sea”, they were 
directed by Indian guides to enter an inlet, arriving at a camping place 
on a small island which he named ‘‘Isle-aux-Pois’’—because they left on 
the island a sack of peas! 

They broke camp early the next morning to avoid the stinging gnats 
and “‘maringouins’’, mosquitoes. Soon they entered Lake Pontchartrain by 
means of a “‘creek’’. So many shells did they discover that they named 
the entrance to the lake, “Point-aux-Coquilles’’. 

Now we quote an eye-witness account: ‘“‘After one enters this water 
course and sails upward for a league and a half from the entrance, he 
finds at his left a point called Pointe-aux-Herbes; here we sheltered 
our long-boats . . .” 

A grassy point it was, and Pointe-aux-Herbes it still is on maps of 
the Lake Pontchartrain region, including “. . . Chef Menteur Land’, the 
point so easily identifiable. 

Gey es 

Remember, this was 1699. It was not until 20 years later that Bien- 
ville was finally ordered to move the seat of government from the 
Gulf coast to a point on the banks of the Mississippi, at a place of his 
own choosing. He remembered a location on a bend, observed by Iber- 
ville on their first exploration of the river in 1699, which had a con- 
venient outlet at its rear, flowing into Lake Pontchartrain. This bayou 
Bienville had named for himself, St. John. A short portage, well-worn 
by Indians, linked the head of the bayou with the river's bank. Ideal 

In 1718, Bienville sent a detachment of fifty artisans to clear the 
bank on the Mississippi for a new capital. The land was indeed for- 
bidding. Looking back from the high ground near the river, all was 
impenetrable forest. Tall cypress swayed in the breeze, moss covered, 
trunk wet. The annual inundations of the river left swamp and marsh, 
cut up with thousands of small ravines, ruts, and pools of stagnant 
water. It took real vision to see a thriving metropolis growing from this 
mire. Maybe others were right when they had pressed for Manchac as 
the site, on nice, high ground. 

It was named New Orleans, in honor of Philip, Duke of Orléans, 
Regent of France. 

Things were rough in the first years of New Orleans. Not until 
1721 did the settlement deserve that name. In 1728, Governor Périer was 
worried: “Whereas it is maintained that the diseases that prevail in New 
Orleans during the summer proceed from the want of air and from the 
city being smothered by the neighboring woods, which press so close 
around it, they shall be cut down as far as Lake Pontchartrain . . .” 

Governor Périer also deserves a vote of thanks for another achieve- 
ment, his decree in 1727 that levees be built to protect the city from the 
river. During the floods, New Orleans was described as a vast sink or 
sewer. The waters of the river and the lake met at the high ground we 
know as Metairie Ridge. For drainage, a large ditch ran around each 
square of ground, and every lot of the city was also ditched, ‘looking 
like a microscopic Venice’’. 

A wide ditch was dug in 1727 the length of Bourbon Street which 
helped to carry off the water into the outside moat, or canal. 

Gradually, due to the need for space and the desire for estates on 
the part of distinguished and influential citizens, the land outside the 
original city, the Vieux Carré of Bienville’s plan, became habitable, 
arpent by arpent. More canals were dug, land cleared for planting and 
for country homes of the wealthy. 

SeaaN, en 

One of the first to push beyond the confines of the city toward the 
east were the brothers Dreux. They received a large tract on Bayou 
Sauvage, and later named it Gentilly for a commune of the Seine in their 
native France. The names of Dreux and Gentilly became synonymous. 
Until du Fossat and St. Maxent received grants beyond the Dreux’, 
everything in that direction was called simply Gentilly. 

Mathurin and Perier Dreux had come to Louisiana through the 
super-salesmanship of John Law, the perpetrator of the ‘‘Mississippi 
Bubble’. Mathurin, it is said, helped Bienville’s engineer, Le Blond de 
la Tour, lay out the city. These “Sieurs of Gentilly” were patricians and 
knew how to establish a dynasty. Their home and hospitality were famous. 

A petition to the Superior Council of January, 1769, read: 
‘“. .. The inhabitants of the coast of Gentilly (The Sieurs of Gentilly) 
have the honor to represent that a certain Bazillier, living on Bayou 
St. John, has for several years taken the liberty of going on the Gentilly 
grounds to kill cattle which he pretended were wild. A few years ago, 
by his own authority, he is said to have left some cattle at a place above 
Gentilly, called Chef Menteur .. .” 

This depredation, claimed Dreux Pére, reduced his herd from some 
800 to 80! 

In connection with the future of ‘. . . a place above Gentilly...” 
we should note an interesting project to the south, between that location 
and the Mississippi River. Near the land which was to become the battle- 
ground at Chalmette, a prosperous planter named Pierre de la Ronde had 
bought a large tract. 

The lovely de la Ronde plantation became an early landmark, 
noted for the beauty of its comfortable house and its luxurious tropical 
gardens. Upon de la Ronde’s death, the plantation was purchased by a 
syndicate with big ideas. They named the plantation “Versailles”. An 
engineer was engaged to lay out the property into a mighty real estate 
development. In 1834, a completed plan showed opportunities for pur- 
chasing large tracts for estates. A road would connect the Mississippi 
River with Lake Pontchartrain, and it was named Paris Road. The plan 
even envisioned a barge canal down the middle of Paris Road! 

Versailles never got out of the ground. The only evidence remain- 
ing is Paris Road, still connecting river with lake, through the eastern 
extremity of Gentilly. 

So, the idea of a large development to the east is not entirely new. 

ay pee 

To the east, then, is the direction in which St. Maxent looked for 
this royal grant. But who was Gilbert Antoine de St. Maxent? 

The St. Maxent family flourished in the last half of the 18th cen- 
tury in New Orleans, and surrounding territory. It left an indelible 
mark on the colony. And yet, like many aggressive and influential 
families of the French and Spanish periods, the name is forgotten. Only 
a short street, Maxent, perpetuates the name, appropriately enough just 
off the old Gentilly Road. 

St. Maxent is important to our story as the first owner of the 
property. He is equally important to the history of Louisiana. Appa- 
rently, the name first appeared in Louisiana with the arrival of Gilbert 
Antoine de St. Maxent from France, the exact date we can only attempt 
to reconstruct. He came from the town of Longy in Lorraine, which 
perhaps accounts for the Germanic sound of Maxent. It is of record 
that he was baptized in the parochial church of St. Dagobert, Diocese of 
Treves, on April 4, 1727. His father was Gilbert Antoine de St. Maxent, 
which explains several references to him as “‘Jr.’’. His mother was the 
former Elizabeth Le Cocq. 

Assuming that he was baptised not long after birth, and that he 
was about 20 years old when he came to America, his arrival can be 
placed at about 1747. That is just two years before his recorded marriage 
in St. Louis Cathedral, August 31, 1749, to Elizabeth La Roche. The 
young couple set about producing one of the most unusual Creole families 
in Louisiana. Of nine children listed, six did especially well for them- 
selves. Gilbert III became an officer in the Spanish army when the 
colony came under that country’s rule; a daughter, Felicity, first married a 
d’Estrehan and soon became a wealthy young widow. She then married 
the dashing Don Bernardo de Galvez. She rode with him to the heights 
as he became the Governor of Louisiana, Viceroy of Mexico and of all 
the Indies. 

Francois Maximilian de St. Maxent became Spanish Governor of 
West Florida, and later harassed Governor Claiborne of the U. S. terrt- 
tory of Louisiana. Josephine became the wife of another Spanish gover- 
nor of Louisiana, Don Luis de Unzaga y Amezaga, and later went with 
him to rule Venezuela. Pupon also married into the influential d’Estrehan 
family; and Celestino, a further military-minded son, became a captain of 
the Third Louisiana Regiment and was one of the Spanish defenders of 
the fort at Baton Rouge in 1810. 

=o (y Paine 

ext eked fords bree 

PLAN OF THE CITY of New Orleans in the State that it was when His Excel- 
lency the Count O'Reilly took possession of it, (1768), by Carlos Trudeau, St. 
Maxent’s star ascended under the Spanish régime. 

But it is the lovely daughter Felicity who is perhaps most enshrined. 
For her were named the parishes of West Florida, East and West 
Feliciana, the beautiful “Feliciana parishes’ of today. 

The father of this illustrious Louisiana brood, Col. Gilbert Antoine 
de St. Maxent, was a mixture of brilliance and controversy. Like many 
influential French colonists, he made the transition from French to 
Spanish sovereignty with ease. In the revolution of the French hot-heads 
in 1768 against the first Spanish Governor, Ulloa, St. Maxent was one of 
those who called for moderation. Had he prevailed, bloodshed would 
have been avoided when O’Reilly came to avenge the insult to Spain. 
In fact, O'Reilly was so impressed with St. Maxent’s stand that he gave 
him a commission in the Spanish colonial army. 

With that entré into Spanish good graces, coupled with the lucky 
marriage of his beautiful and wealthy daughter to the well-connected 
Galvez, St. Maxent’s light became a meteor. Galvez’ father was the 
King of Spain's closest adviser! 

St. Maxent must have been a pretty good soldier, too, for he accom- 
panied his son-in-law in daring and successful military expeditions, 

we, Lets 

notably the capture of the British forts at the Manchac and at Baton 
Rouge, and at Mobile and Pensacola. At the Manchac, St. Maxent was 
the first to storm into Fort Bute. The affluence of St. Maxent at this 
time is shown by his personally underwriting the soldiers’ pay and other 
expenses during a strain on the colonial purse. 

In a long letter from Carlos III to Governor Galvez, dated October 
31, 1781, the King recounts all of St. Maxent’s exploits and loyal services 
to the crown, conferring upon him the rank of ‘Commandant of the 
Military Forces in Louisiana, Lieutenant Governor of the provinces of 
Louisiana and Western Florida, and Commissioner of the Bureau of 
Indian Affairs of both provinces . . 

On the surface, it seems that St. Maxent was firmly entrenched. 
But all was not well. St. Maxent had gained immense wealth, and he 
also was able to spend it with equal vigor. The father-in-law of the 
governor went to Spain and sold the King on allowing him to purchase 
for large sums of pesos, cloth, trinkets and other merchandise for the pur- 
pose of trading with the Indians and keeping them happy. He offered 
to advance these large sums from his own purse, and the King accepted. 
But all did not work as St. Maxent had anticipated. Deliveries were not 
forthcoming from Spain. Indian chiefs were disappointed. A wholesale 
mess ensued, and St. Maxent was fired as Indian Commissioner, with 
some well-founded accusations that his personal financial affairs were in 

high disorder. 

Meanwhile, St. Maxent had been dealing in a dozen directions. The 
same year he obtained the Chef Menteur grant, he also had negotiated 
an unusual franchise from the King of France. Together with his partner, 
Pierre Lacléde, “merchants of New Orleans’, they received the exclusive 
right to “Indian trade in the Missouri River valley and all of the country 
West of the Mississippi as far north as the St. Peters river...” A 
memoire of Jean Lacléde, brother of Pierre, in the National Library in 
Paris, tells the story of the expedition, which left New Orleans on August 
3, 1763. Its purpose was to transport certain goods to a post which they 
would establish for the exploitation of their franchise. To make a long 
and highly interesting story short, the expedition resulted in the founding 
of the city of St. Louis! 

From the valuable book, ‘The Stewardship of Don Esteban Miro”, 
by the late Dr. Caroline Burson, we learn many facets of St. Maxent’s 
accomplishments. For instance, she discloses that St. Maxent could make 
money at almost anything. By 1784 he had even licked the agriculture 

—9) — 

THE MONTEGUT FAMILY, (Ca. 1790) by an Unknown Artist. This fine paint- 
ing depicts a typical wealthy family of the Louisiana colonial period. Dr. Montegut, 
right, a prominent physician of New Orleans, was retained by St. Maxent to 
administer to the health of his slaves. 

problem. With the failure of indigo as a profitable crop in the colony, 
the plantation owners frantically tried other means of seeking reward 
from the soil. The perishable tobacco, beset by other hazards, didn’t 
work. Sugar had not come into its own, nor had cotton. 

Yet, in 1784, St. Maxent had three profitable plantations going at 
the same time, working 167 negroes, with a diversified list of money 
crops, plus a stockfarm. 

We also know that St. Maxent was a contractor of sorts. He was 
associated with his nephew, Guilberto Guillimard, architect of the Cabildo, 
the St. Louis Cathedral, and the Presbytére. St. Maxent, on his own, built 
Fort St. Philip in Plaquemines Parish under contract, and his succession 
discloses that he owned slaves still working there in 1794. 

When it came to living, St. Maxent was supreme in the colony. 
Even the governor couldn’t touch him. His finances were often in 

Fig h gy oe 

extremely mixed-up condition. He was arrested for participation in a 
smuggling scheme, but due to his station, he was treated with deference 
and allowed to remain at home. After all, he was the father-in-law of 
Bernardo de Galvez! 

The records of his lavishness, as gleaned by Dr. Burson from the 
yellowed pages of his succession, show how a wealthy planter lived 
in Louisiana. One of his homes was valued at 26,000 pesos. It was 
ninety feet long and forty feet wide, with a twelve-foot gallery surround- 
ing it. The records show that in 1789, St. Maxent sold a residence to 
the Captain of Militia, Lorenzo Sigur, “adjoining the so-called French 
Gate, having a frontage of seven arpents, and a two-story house with 
gallery around it and two flights of steps twenty-eight feet long and 
sixteen feet wide.’ The sale included “the tapestries which were fastened 
to the walls as well as the woodwork and mirrors of the fireplaces . . .” 

According to Samuel Wilson, Jr., this house and plantation were 
later purchased from Sigur by the fabulous Marquis Pierre Philippe de 
Marigny de Mandeville. There he and his son, the even more amazing 

A VIEW OF NEW ORLEANS taken from the plantation of Marigny, (1803) by 
J. L. Bouqueto de Woieseri. This print celebrates the acquisition of Louisiana by 
the United States. “Under My Wings Every Thing Prospers’ reads the banner 
carried by the eagle. Marigny’s plantation house was originally St. Maxent’s lux- 
urious home, 

THE MARIGNY HOUSE, sketched before its demolition. St. Maxent sold it to 
Lorenzo Sigur, from whom the Marignys bought it. Here the future King of France 
was entertained. 

Bernard, held princely sway. In this house the exiled Duke of Orleans, 
later King Louis Philippe, was magnificently entertained, and upon de- 
parture, was supplied with a munificent purse for his expenses. The 
house stood on the site now occupied by an electric generating plant, 
between Elysian Fields and Marigny St. The great plantation—extending 
from Elysian Fields Ave. to the Industrial Canal—was later incorporated 
into the city. 

The house was also the New Orleans residence in 1803 of Pierre 
Clement de Laussat, prefect of Napoleon for Louisiana, who arrived to 
take over the colony from Spain, only to find it had been sold to the 
United States. However, he entertained here with colorful parties on the 
occasion of the double transfer. 

At the time of St. Maxent’s arrest in 1784, an inventory was made of 
his estate, but so large was the task, that only the major pieces were listed. 
The above-mentioned plantation house was described. Also, a plantation 
with fifty negro cabins “adjoining the Santilly (Gentilly of the Dreux’) 
plantation”’ worth 20,000 pesos; a rum distillery worth 4,000 pesos; a 
plantation a half-league below the city on the other side of the river, 
5,000 pesos; and a country place on Bayou St. John, a league from the 
city, 0,000 tpesOne. ten. 

eB ie noe 

Besides his slaves, said to be skilled hands all, his huge herds of 
cattle, his lumber and bundles of furs, he had two regal coaches com- 
plete with sparkling harness, and two gigs. 

He had a mahogany billiard table, crystal chandeliers, silver candle 
brackets, a clavi (early type of piano), tables for playing chess and 
checkers, writing sets on mahogany tables, fifty dozen napkins with 
matching tablecloths, one hundred dozen pieces of fine china, porcelain 
and crystal, silver of the finest Parisian manufacture, and a wine cellar 
of 3,000 selected items. 

Full-length, gold-leaf mirrors, the list went on; terrestial and celes- 
trial globes, a clock ‘in the form of a conical cage of such mechanism 
that when the instrument sounds the hour, a bird in the middle of the 
cage sings an aria; all made of copper guilded and adorned with dif- 
ferent figures of marble.”’ His library was “composed of 4,700 books, 


all new . 

Such was the magnificient St. Maxent in his palmier days. We 
know that much was gone by the time he and his wife went to live 
with their friend Lorenzo Sigur in the house St. Maxent had sold him 
“outside the city’s walls’. It was in Sigur’s house on August 5, 1794, that 
old Gilbert Antoine made his will. And it was in Sigur’s house three 
days later, that he closed his eyes. He left ‘some real estate outside the 
city limits’, presumably the Chef Menteur property; a plantation at 
Houmas; property on the levee “in the square containing the Government 
House, between Miguel Fortier’s and Robt. Montreuil’s lots (now oc- 
cupied by the lower Pontalba building)”. He still owned the place on 
Bayou St. John, and a “piece of land sold to St. Maxent by Jose Xavier 
de Pontalba.. .” 

Sieur de St. -Maxent had owned his plantation “. . . to a point called 
Chef Menteur . . .”” for some 31 years. 

In 1796, the plantation was sold to one Lieutenant Louis Brognier 
(Bronier) deClouet. Lieutenant deClouet was another of those “transition” 
Creoles, who although steeped in French tradition from birth, yet adapted 
quickly to the Spanish régime and fared very well. 

The deClouets had been in Louisiana from the earliest days. His 
father, Alexandre deClouet, Sr., who resided at St. Martinville, was a 
landmark all by himself. Distances were reckoned from “the church town 
where Monsieur deClouet lives.” And St. Martinville was quite a town 
in itself by then. 

Sea fs See 

Louis Bronier was probably born about 1764, of parents as French 
as they could be. He was reared in French surroundings, although Spain 
was taking over Louisiana as he came into the world. Perhaps for this 
reason he considered himself more Spanish than French, which may 
account for his loyalties later on. 

By 1777, old Alexandre, Sr., was already a Lieutenant-Colonel in the 
Spanish army, and the young Louis became an “aspirant” in that year. 
In 1785, as a cadet, he sailed on the expedition that founded Galveston 
Bay, Texas, and by 1800, he was a Captain. Another explanation of his 
strange departure from his native heritage is said to have come from a 
feud in his home town, between the deClouets and the deBlancs. These 
new arrivals from France, such as the deBlancs, breathing the heretical 
notions of the Revolution, must have angered the deClouets. 

Next, the young deClouet turns up a wealthy “play-boy” in New 
Orleans, estimated to be worth from $300,000 to $400,000. With some 
of this money, he bought from the succession of Gilbert Antoine de St. 
Maxent, “a plantation or tract of land . . . situated at the place commonly 
called Chef Menteur...” 

deClouet found the easy life in New Orleans expensive. Even 
before Spain gave Louisiana back to France, and France sold it to the 
United States, he was borrowing money, even selling his Chef Menteur 
tract in January, 1801, apparently to “live it up’. He became deeply 
involved with the Spanish government after the Louisiana Purchase, and 
tried to establish a colony on the Trinity River in Mexican Texas, for 
Louisianians who wanted to flee the United States and remain Spanish 

By 1814, deClouet had turned completely against his French heritage 
and his new country. He became a spy or agent for Spain. On record is 
a most infamous ‘“‘memorial’ of deClouet. In the Archives of the Indies 
in Seville is a long letter to the Spanish prime minister from deClouet 
outlining a strategy whereby Spain could recapture Louisiana from the 
United States through New Orleans! What’s more, he explained in detail 
how the troops and cavalry of King Ferdinand should land. And where 
would that be? 

. . . Two thousand or twenty-five hundred men, 
who shall sail from Pensacola or from Havana in gun- 

boats .. . shall enter by Lake Pontchartrain and disem- 
bark their troops by way of CHEF MENTEUR 
RECER yee 

deClouet rose to the grade of Brigadier-General, became governor 

Pony. ele 

of Hagua, a province in Cuba. Queen Isabella named him Count de la 
Fernandina de Hagua, and elevated him to the Spanish senate when he 
passed on in his 84th year, at Madrid. 

The activities of Louis must have thrown a cloud of suspicion over 
the family name in Louisiana. In the tumultous days just before the 
Battle of New Orleans, Governor Claiborne took pains to separate a loyal 
deClouet from “some of his family” in the following letter to General 
Jackson, dated November 5, 1814: 

“. . . The Colonel Commanding the Detached Militia, Alexander 
deClouet, (he was Louis’ brother) is anxious to obtain a furlough for 
three weeks and begs me to be an applicant to you for that indulgance. 
He has a mother laboring under a disease of which she cannot recover 
and a numerous family whose interests requires his presence for a few 
days in Atakapas—Colonel deClouet is the Senior Colonel of the State;— 
he belongs to an ancient Creole family, who were much patronized by the 
Spanish Government, and one of his brothers (not Louis) is now an 
officer at Pensacola; but in Colonel deClouet’s fidelity, I place entire 
confidence;—he has on various occasions afforded proof of his attach- 
ment to the American, and for the uniform and steady support he has 
given me, I feel personal obligations.—I have said this much of Colonel 
deClouet lest the feelings attributed to some of his family may excite 
some suspicion of him... | 

Still a play-boy was deClouet, however, back in 1801, when he sold 
“Chef Menteur Land . . .” to one of New Orleans’ most engaging 
characters, a man of many parts, some of them bad—Bartolomey Lafon. 

Here was a colorful Frenchman to end all colorful Frenchmen. Born 
in the small town of Ville Pinte, in Languedoc, France, he had come to 
Louisiana about 1787. A civil engineer, by 1798 he was a thriving 
iron master with a foundry outside the ramparts of the Vieux Carré, on 
worthless ground which is now the lower part of Canal Street. He gained 
stature as an architect, builder, real estate appraiser, cartographer, pub- 
lisher, a major in the militia, a theatrical impressario, and the best sur- 
veyor in Louisiana. He served with distinction as a military engineer at 
the Battle of New Orleans. Despite all this, by 1816 he was bankrupt! 

Add to the above-listed talents—piracy. Yes, Bartolomey Lafon 
was not only a privateer and a smuggler zncognito, but he worked closely 
with the notorious brothers Lafitte. He actually wore two hats, or cos- 
tumes. He could sail with the corsairs of the Gulf, or dance with the 
best ladies in the salons of the elite on Royal Street. He had respectable 

peed She 

George N. Grandjean. This plat, from 
the Notarial Archives of Orleans Parish, is 
the Maxent-deClouet-Lafon-Michoud tract, 
now New Orleans East, Inc. The location 
of the old plantation buildings are shown, 
lower left. Furrows can still be detected. 
Note heavy wooded banks of old Bayou 
Sauvage (Gentilly). 


sethe property of B... 
» wethe property o 4 


sitisvete in the 


if $4, 1 


sy $ ¥ 
appar mscoom, IF 
4 Pg ss e 

aP Rees 

douvest, te haredy Cartifiads Correct 

offices in the building still known as the Skyscraper, at Royal and St. 
Peter Streets. 

It was only a year after he bought deClouet’s property that he was 
advertising in Le Moniteur de La Louisiane for investors in his theatrical 
enterprise. And still a year later, 1803, he was advertising for a care- 
taker to run his plantation, and was having his title to the Chef Menteur 
land examined by the new United States government . . . “bound on the 
North by Lake Pontchartrain, on the East by Bayou Chef Menteur. . .” 

That Lafon didn’t miss a trick in his eagerness to acquire property 
is evidenced from a letter written by the Mayor of New Orleans, James 
Mather, to Governor Claiborne, dated August 7, 1809: Speaking of 
attacks made against “our city’s acknowledged rights’, he wrote: “ 
Mr. Lafon is trying repeatedly to take possession by force of nearly one- 
half of the ground betwixt the Suburb Ste. Mary and the town, com- 
prised within 600 yards of Commons acknowledged and confirmed to 
us by Congress . . .” 

In 1807, the following letter was written to Albert Gallatin, Secre- 
tary of the Treasury in Washington: “... Mr. Lafon (Deputy Surveyor 
for Orleans County) has made, or pretended to make, surveys of private 
claims by measuring the front only and taking the bearing from the side 
lines, from which data he makes his return and demands of the Claimant 
the full compensation which the law allows for an actual survey . . .” 
But only the year before, President Jefferson had written Governor 
Claiborne seeking Lafon’s services in surveying General Lafayette’s claims 
in New Orleans. So, who is to judge at this distance? 

At any rate, Lafon’s services with the privateers enabled him to 
produce maps and charts with exact details of the coast and environs of 
New Orleans. The Lafon maps are still excellent. His map dated 1809 
of his Chef Menteur property showed his precision; and the great Lafon 
map of Louisiana of 1805 entitled ““Territorie d'Orléans’ is definitive 
for that period. Proudly, on the Chef Menteur land he has written, 

Following the Louisiana Purchase, all previous titles to land in 
the territory, which had been dispensed by the Kings of Spain or France 
were examined by special commissioners of the United States. The St. 
Maxent patent, now owned by Lafon, was among them. Lafon obtained 
from the new government a clear confirmation of his title to the planta- 

tion property. 

Bache: 3a? 

Another side to this incredible man. In 1804-1805, Governor 
Claiborne was busy bringing order out of the frontier chaos he had 
found upon the annexation of Louisiana. The mails must go through, 
for one small item on his agenda. 

Two routes were being studied between New Orleans and Wash- 
ington City, the nation’s capital. One was across Lake Pontchartrain, 
continuing north; the other, by land out the Gentilly Road, crossing at 
Chef Menteur, continuing eastward into what is now Mississippi. Lafon 
seemed to be anxious to “‘get into the act’, regardless of the route. In 
June, 1805, Governor Claiborne wrote the Postmaster General that ‘‘a 
Mr. Lafon has agreed to convey the mail in a safe boat with all possible 
expedition” via the lake route. Then it appears that Lafon, the owner 
of the plantation “to a point called Chef Menteur . . .”, saw a wonderful 
opportunity. Why not espouse the route over his own property? On 
June 17th, Governor Claiborne wrote again to the Postmaster General: 

“The map which I have the honor to enclose was made 
out by a Mr. Lafon . . . no difficulty will be ex- 
perienced in the Transportation of the mail on the 
route marked by the red lines along the Canal of 
Carondelet, the Bayou of Gentilly, the Chemin (road) 
Du Chef Menteur to the River of that name, as the 
road so far is well opened .. . it is the belief of Mr. 
Lafon that the Government may open a road from the 
River Chef Menteur through the Isle Aux Pins and the 
island at the mouth of the Maringouin to Boisdore 

In other words, the surveyor, plantation-owner, opportunist, en- 
visioned the need and practicability of a road continuing on beyond Chef 
Menteur to the East, a century before such a road became a reality! And 
this early mail route was established. 

In 1812, Lafon went to Washington to seek out the great architect 
Latrobe, who was then constructing the water works in New Orleans, and 
many fine buildings. He wanted Latrobe, also busy on the United States 
capitol building, to act as his agent in selling the trees from his plantation 
as lumber to the United States Navy. 

His activity at the Battle of New Orleans is interesting because the 
battle itself was nearly fought on his property. Instead of Chalmette, 
it looked for several days very much as if Lafon’s plantation would be 
the battleground. Major Lacarriére Latour, Jackson’s engineer-in-chief, 

reported that on December 25, 1814, the General heard that the enemy 
had landed at Chef Menteur. Major Lacoste, who commanded a post 
“at the confluence of Bayou Sauvage and Chef Menteur River’’ (sic), had 
hurriedly pulled back three miles along the Chef road, which ran as 
today along the banks of the bayou, “on the principal plantation of 
Lafon’’. Troops stationed ‘in the plain of Gentilly’’ became alarmed, 
although they realized the terrain was difficult for an enemy attack. 
The prairies of Chef Menteur at that time were very dry, and several 
small bayous could allow the enemy to penetrate within a “‘short distance 
of Lafon’s principal plantation”. 

Some soldiers, said Latour, had even seen and pursued on the prairie 
several Red Coats who had landed to set fire to the grass! The blazing 
prairie of Lafon might perhaps have been an original smoke screen for 
the advancing British troops, who might land at Chef Menteur and 
Bayou Sauvage, to advance on the city along the Chef road. 

Possibly, in which case, there would have been a brave stand by 
Lacoste’s Creoles, reinforced as they soon were by Tennessee Moun- 
taineers. Latour, who was in charge of these reinforcements said: “Had 
the enemy dared to penetrate into the woods of Chef Menteur, the 
opinion I had of the Louisianians composing Major Lacoste’s batalion 
and the gallant Tennesseans who accompanied me, made me confident 
of his complete discomfiture . . .” 

But before Latour reached Lacoste’s position, word came that the 
report of the landing at Chef Menteur was false. However, a guard was 
maintained until January 6, when it became evident where the British 
had decided to attack. Lafon Plantation had known its hour of glory. 

And where was Major Lafon, by the way? He was cutting the 
levees behind the British on the other side of the river, doing a job 
described as “promptly and successfully executed”. 

Incidentally, after the battle, Jackson ordered the redoubt at the 
Chef Menteur and Bayou Sauvage confluence completed; and he stationed 
a body of free Negro troops on Lafon’s plantation, numbering 450 men, 
until certain that the British had departed the coast. 

Among the very real contributions Lafon made to New Orleans 
was the laying out of the city from Faubourg Ste. Marie up to the city 
of Lafayette into the pleasant streets we now have, giving them the 
classic mythological names, such as Tivoli Circle (now Lee Circle), the 
Prytaneum, now Prytania Street, Coliseum Square, and others. In 1809, 
he subdivided Faubourg St. John. Lafon also laid out the Faubourg 

Marigny, with such names as the Elysian Fields, Craps Street, and 
Good Children Street. There is extant a very handsome plan and elevation 
drawing by Lafon for a public bath which was never built, but exhibits 
his fine craftsmanship. 

Until 1820, it seems that Lafon operated with the Lafittes in various 
schemes, sandwiched in surveying jobs, and put out publications. On 
September 29, 1820, this obituary appeared in Le Courier: 

“Died this morning after a short illness, Monsieur Bartholomey 
Lafon, the engineer, Geographer and architect, and old inhabitant of 
this place. His death is much lamented by a number of respected citizens 
who have known how to appreciate his talents and his heart.” 

PLAN OF THE FAUBOURG MARIGNY, (1814) by J. Tanesse. The city began 
its move eastward from the Vieux Carré when Lafon laid out the Faubourg 
Marigny. Location of plantation house, ‘outside the city limits’, can be seen. 

PROPOSED PUBLIC BATHS, (1795) by Barthelemy Lafon. Baths were never 
built, but the craftsmanship of this versatile man is evident from the drawing. 

A period now began when, for the only time, major portions of 
the Chef Menteur, or the Lafon, tract have been separated from the 
main plantation. In the succession of Bartolomey Lafon, starting in 1821, 
creditors began to pounce on the holding, and at sheriff’s sales, lots 
began to go. But the largest remaining section had been left to a brother 
in France, Jean Pierre Lafon, because Bartholomy had remained a bachelor. 

But a gay bachelor he was! In one of his early wills, later rescinded, 
he had left a house located on the plantation to one of his quadroon girl 
friends. In this will, the plantation is called by Lafon, “L’heureuse 
Folie’, or “Happy Folly”. 

We know that Jean Pierre Lafon came to New Orleans to claim his 
inheritance, but that he died shortly after arrival, leaving this major 
remaining portion of the plantation to his children. And it was from 
these heirs of Jean Pierre that the property was bought on October 3, 
1827, by Antoine Michoud, the new name on the horizon. 

Antoine Michoud was a strange one. He was born in Dauphiny 
on the River Rhone in 1782. His father, Lugues Michoud, was a person 
of some distinction being an administrator of Domains for the Emperor 
Napoleon in the ancient province of Dauphine. His mother was Sophie 
d’Antillon. He was educated during the hey-day of the Revolution, and 
pursued a course of “‘liberal studies’, complimented with trips throughout 
Europe, especially Italy. It is known that he became a “voluntary exile”’ 
after the fall of Napoleon, and came to New Orleans in 1817. 

It is believed that some early and severe disappointment in friend- 
ship, business or love must have happened to change a man of his edu- 
cation and spirit into the peculiar person he became in New Orleans. 
Was it only the fall of Napoleon? Others closer to the Little Corporal 
made adjustments in the New World. 

Dore: {igiones 

It should be recalled, too, that in New Orleans at that time, was just 
about the new world’s best collection of recluses and eccentrics, wealthy 
men all. There was the strange Scotsman, Alexander Milne, on Claiborne 
near Bayou Road, with his brick kiln quietly amassing a fortune. There 
was John McDonogh, acting about as queer as any one ever did. There 
was Judah Touro, with his great philanthropies and peculiar ways. And 
now there was Antoine Michoud. 

Having arrived in 1817, Antoine Michoud apparently plunged into 
the business of catering to the aesthetic tastes of the Creoles. He occupied 
a shop on Royal Street, between Toulouse and Conti. (It was likely the 
building just above the corner, now a store featuring brass objects.) An 
advertisement which first appeared on August 15, 1817, and ran for 
several weeks in the newspaper, “L’ Amie des Lois’, began: 

“Mr. Michoud whose store is presently on Royal 
Street in the Pavie house, between the apothecary and 
the Bank of Louisiana, offers for sale, wholesale or re- 
tail, the following objects lately arrived from 
France: . 

A full column of items was given, some of which were: 

. a magnificent clock representing the God Hymen 
on a chariot drawn by dogs, symbol of fidelity, an 
assortment of engravings of the principal battles of 
Bounaparte, general in chief of the Army of Italy, 
leaping first over the bridge of Arcole, with the flag 
snatched away from the soldiers who are retreating, 
a portrait of the First Consul, painted in oils by one 
of the best pupils of David, several views of Vesuvius 
and of the enchanting sites in the environs of Naples, 
a quantity of engravings representing the mosaics and 
frescos of the subterranean cities of Pompeii and 
Herculaneum .. .” 

We can speculate that this might have been Michoud’s first big 
“removal sale’, for on October 30, he advertised: 
‘““Removal—M.Ant. Michoud gives notice that he has 
just removed his retail store to M. Seignouret’s new 
house, Royal between Toulouse and St. Louis Streets, 
where he offers for sale bills of exchange on London, 
Paris and Marseilles.” 

Michoud rented half the ground floor of this magnificent edifice 
(now the home of WDSU-TV) from its builder and owner, Francois 
Seignouret, New Orleans’ earliest and perhaps foremost fine furniture 


maker. Whether he gave up his objects d’art business entirely for dealing 
in bills of exchange; or handled both at the same time, we do not know 
for certain. Nor will we ever know exactly why he changed from the 
art dealer and connoisseur, with an obvious wide circle of cultured friends 
and patrons, into the recluse who dealt in rusty junk. 

But a secluded junk-dealer he became, and a rich one. 

Shortly after taking up residence in New Orleans, he was appointed 
Consul of the Kingdom of Sardinia and Savoy, which post he held for 
30 years. In 1852 he was decorated by King Victor Emanuel II, who 
made him a knight of the Cross of the Order of St. Maurice and St. 
Lazarus. He liked to be called Chevalier thereafter, about his only affecta- 
tion, it appears. 

In 1822, the city directory lists Antoine Michoud’s “exchange and 
commercial broker’’ establishment at 21 St. Louis, and his partner as 
Gauvain. That, however, is the only year he is linked with anyone. Two 
years later, he had moved to 66 Levee Street, and 20 years later, he was at 
the corner of Bienville and Old Levee Streets. It was at this location, in 

TION, photographed as they still stand in front of the huge Higgins Aircraft- 
Chrysler Tank Engine Plant on the Old Gentilly Road. When Col. deMontluzin 
negotiated with the highway builders for the right-of-way, he expressly demanded 
in the agreement that the old landmarks be preserved. Later, when they were in 
the way of the aircraft plant construction, Andrew J. Higgins, Srv., had them care- 
fully moved to this location. 

THIS IS “A POINT CALLED CHEF MENTEUR .. .”, the confluence of old 
Bayou Sauvage, sometimes called Bayou Gentilly, which once approached from the 
left; and Chef Menteur pass, or Chef Menteur River as it was often called, the 
wide stream on the right. Old Fort Macomb lies in foreground, covered with 
growth, but formidable and solid. The original fort, built by Gen. Andrew Jack- 
son’s troops previous to the Battle of New Orleans, occupied this site. Fort Ma- 
comb was begun by the War Department in 1818, and although manned and 
armed for many years, never saw action against an enemy. 

1854, that a fire burned him out, stock and all. He then moved to another 
of his properties at 27 Elysian Fields, corner of Moreau Street. 

‘Few men lived more quietly’, said a contemporary. He engaged in 
trade, dealt in hardware, but only in second hand articles, the rustier the 
better. And, of course, he invested ‘‘funds’’ in real estate. “He owned 
for many years a plantation at Chef Menteur, between the lakes Pontchar- 
train and Borgne, of which he sold a portion to the United States Govern- 
ment for the site of Fort Macomb. He was the possessor of extensive 
tracts north east in the country, and of large portions of the city .. .” 

The fort mentioned still stands, almost hidden by wild growth. 
Originally called Fort Chef Menteur in Jackson’s day, it was later known 
as Fort Wood. In 1818, the War Department began this massive pile of 
red bricks. It cost more than $360,000, and was renamed Fort Macomb. 
Its inner passageways present a gruesome sight today; but its outer walls, 
with emplacements for cannon and small square openings for riflemen, 
are intact and ready to repel an invader. 

ee Ses 

(Fort Macomb saw no action in the Civil War, but it was occupied 
and manned by both sides. In 1860, it had 300 men and 49 guns. At 
the outbreak of hostilities in 1861, Confederate troops took it over. Upon 
the capture of New Orleans by Federal forces a year later, a body of 
troops in Blue replaced the Gray. Not a shot was ever fired in anger 
from the formidable ramparts of the fort.) 

Said a friend of Michoud in later years: ‘His shop was always a 
queer place. It was full of rusty nails, ancient anchors, corks without 
bottles, demijohns with cobwebs, rusty guns, forks without knives, and 
patent medicines of doubtful origin or vintage. Here also the Chevalier 
Michoud disposed of a large part of the crops yielded by his plantation 
at Chef Menteur, dealing out his sugar by the pound, his molasses by the 
quart. All this was lost in the fire, and being valued at $30,000, was a 
sad loss to the old man.” 

Someone asked him to accept their hospitality after the fire, and to 
rent a comfortable residence. He made a characteristic reply, an old 
French proverb, and the only direct quotation history has left us by 
Antoine Michoud: 

Wp petit chez soi vaut meiux qu'un grand chez les autres”’ 

A little home of one’s own is much better than the large place of 

His new “home’’, opposite the Pontchartrain railroad station, was 
something again. He soon had another large stock of rusty nails and 
second hand hardware. 

‘He always kept the place locked’, reported a visitor. “One peered 
in through the cloudy glass to see if he was in, and then one knocked. 
He would call for the name of the visitor. If the name passed muster, he 
would call to wait a minute ’til the dogs were shut up. When you entered, 
before you stood, bowing with a cheerful smile, a tall aged man, whose 
face and manner impressed one favorably, despite the long blanket coat, 
and the big ‘negro’ shoes of undressed leather. He would put his hand 
on the desired object in his stock with his eyes closed. If you came when 
he was at dinner, you would see a frugal repast, soup with some vegetable 
laid upon a table in the midst of pandemonium and rusted trumpery . . .”’ 

Our visitor once ascended to Michoud’s bedchamber above, climbing 
a ladder to do so. He found the bare, unplastered, unpainted, walls, the 
uncarpeted attic, through which the wind howled in winter, the lack of 
fireplace, the straw mattress on a cot made from a door—all the familiar 
trappings of miserly filth, right from Dickens. 

meee Et aes 

The Chevalier Michoud, although born a Catholic, displayed no 
religious feeling. He had no known charities, but he was not inhospitable. 
Occasionally a delicacy from the plantation would be shared with a friend 
who would be invited to dinner. He had been fond of hunting when 
younger, but walked with a limp, perhaps from a hunting accident, and 
gardening was his only recreation in later years. 

Nicholas Girod, financier, holder of property above Canal Street, and 
in the Vieux Carré, was about his closest friend. Girod left him $50,000, 
and named him executor of his estate. As with many wealthy persons, the 
Chevalier was a target for unscrupulous women. One woman sued him 
for $10,000, said to be owed her “‘in return for favors’, using a docu- 
ment with his signature on it as evidence. Michoud proved it to be 
a fake, and won the suit. His fortune was said to have been in excess of 
$200,000 when he passed on, unattended by any relative, with only a 
faithful dog at his bedside. 

Reported the Daily Delta of July 24, 1862: ‘We have to chronicle 
today the death of one of the oldest inhabitants of the city, Monsieur 
Antoine Michoud. The eccentricities of M. Michoud’s life gave him 
rather an obscure condition in society. Although belonging to one of 
the best families of France, and himself a man of immense wealth, his 
secluded habits deprived him of that station in life which he might have 
worthily filled both by his rank and intelligence. Mr. Michoud was 
formerly Sardinian Consul at this port and a knight of the Order of St. 
Maurice. He leaves no family, but a few relatives in France who doubt- 
less will become legatees of his excessive fortune.” 

Michoud had become a naturalized citizen. It was believed that he 
was saddened at the advent of the Civil War. His heir was a nephew 
living in Lyons, and to Jean Baptiste Michoud, whom he had never seen, 
went his huge estate. 

Antoine Michoud had been extremely canny in his handling of his 
money, especially in the matter of the Chef Menteur land. After the 
Bartolomey Lafon succession, small lots had gone to the four winds. 
Michoud set about painstakingly buying them up, and actually put the 
entire tract back together again. The last piece was rejoined in 1853, 
nine years before he died. 

The plantation was appraised at $100,000 in the inventory. 

And so to Jean Baptiste Michoud it went, a man who never saw his 
uncle, and was never to see his property. In 1870, through his attorneys 
in New Orleans, he compromised an agreement to sell a 100-foot right of 

St 5) 7 pone 

way through the property, and a lot for a station, to the New Orleans, 
Mobile, Chattanooga Railroad Company, which became the Louisville & 
Nashville Railroad Company. 

In 1873, he sold the shore of Point-Aux-Herbes to the United States 
government for a lighthouse. And on February 19, 1877, he died leaving 
his only son, Marie Alphonse Michoud, as heir. 

Alphonse sold another right of way in 1882 to the New Orleans 
and Northeastern Railroad Company (a predecessor of the Southern Rail- 
way System); and a lot for a station house a year later. The American 
Telephone and Telegraph Company bought a right of way for a line in 

Otherwise, the tract remained intact until 1910, when John Stuart 
Watson, for the sum of $410,000 cash, bought the property from Marie 
Alphonse Michoud. Immediately the property was sold to Watson’s 
company, the New Orleans Drainage Company, which attempted to sell 
stock for the purpose of draining and developing the tract. Later, the 
bonds issued by the company were pledged to a Chicago bank, the Con- 
tinental and Commercial Trust and Savings Bank, as security for a loan of 
$400,000 to Watson. The bonds, notes, and mortgages were defaulted. 
The property was ordered sold, and a Mr. Walter J. Engle bought it 
for the bank. Years of litigation followed, while the bank—through 
Engle—retained title to the property. 

To meet the next owner of the property, let us move back to the 
turn of the century, before Watson entered the picture. A bright young 
man, avid for knowledge, eager with ambition, worked for the law firm 
of Carroll & Carroll in New Orleans. His was another proud French 
family, long associated with Kings and Emperors. de Montluzin, was the 
family, and Roch Eugene Edgar de Montluzin du Sauzay was the young 
boy’s full name, a sonorous, resounding name to roll off one’s tongue. 
He could even use the inherited title of “Count”. 

It was also a name to reckon with, as New Orleans would find in a 
few short years to come. As a lad in a law office, young Edgar de 
Montluzin kept his eyes and ears open. One of the items of information 
this observant boy picked up was the almost-legendary tract of land, of 
enormous proportions, that lay in the eastern part of the City, in the 
direction of Chef Menteur. 

“I was attracted by the enormous size of this property and had the 
desire, at that time, of someday being the owner of it’, said Edgar de 
Montluzin in later years. 

Sh Peres 

Love at first sight, it was. Young de Montluzin’s driving ambition 
led him into the real estate business in 1905. He became a pioneer de- 
veloper of the city, one of the first successful suburban developers in 
the United States. The area which he and his associates developed is 
known to Orleanians of two generations as Gentilly Terrace. de Mont- 
luzin never lost sight of one motivating force: ownership of the Chef 
Menteur Tract. 

“Later I learned, after the New Orleans Drainage Company became 
owners’, he said, “that they had defaulted on their bonds, which bonds 
were acquired by the Continental & Commercial Trust and Savings Bank, 
(now Continental-Illinois National Bank & Trust Company of Chicago) 
... I made many trips to Chicago and endeavored to make a contract with 
the bank to purchase this tract of land, if, as and when they should 
become the owner at the foreclosure sale...” 

His chance finally came. The bank decided to make an arrangement 
whereby he could buy the property on terms which he could handle, and 
he borrowed the money to make the down payment. After many details 
had been worked out, the Michoud tract formally became ‘Faubourg de 
Montluzin” on June 12, 1923. 

COL. R. E. E. de€MONTLUZIN, former owner of the land, "'. .. to a point called 
Chef Menteur .. .” displays the amazingly prophetic painting he had done in 
1926, by a celebrated Chicago artist, Gibson Catlett. Col. deMontluzin saw the 
great potential of this property as growing space for New Orleans to the East, had 
artist portray his dream. 

Stef [os eee 

From his earliest possession of the tract, Colonel de Montluzin saw it 
as a great development possibility for the growth of New Orleans to the 
east. He had a huge painting made in 1926 by a celebrated artist from 
Chicago, Gibson Catlett, portraying the vast residential suburb he en- 
visioned for Faubourg de Montluzin. Meanwhile, he sold timbers for 
cross ties from the trees remaining along Bayou Sauvage and on other 
large stands on the property, as well as submerged cypress logs. He 
leased the broad marshlands for trapping the valuable muskrat which 
abounded therein. Other arrangements were made with outdoor advertis- 
ing firms for placing billboards on the highways traversing the property. 
As the years of two world wars brought increased industrialization and 
expansion, he gave rights-of-way through the property for power and 
telephone lines. More recently, he sold rights-of-way for co-axial cables 
carrying television and long-distance telephones, and for gas pipe lines. 

Near the south line of Faubourg de Montluzin, he granted the 
United States government permission to build the Intracoastal Canal 
through the property, for about seven and one-half miles, to Chef 
Menteur. Besides this, he dug for his own purposes, several canals and 

Over one million dollars in oil prospecting, by major companies and 
independent producers, has taken place in Faubourg de Montluzin with- 
out any producing wells being discovered. 

During the depression years, Colonel de Montluzin saw his property 
almost slip from his grasp on several occasions. Only through heroic ef- 
fort and extreme courage, so characteristic of the man, did he manage 
to hold it intact. 

One of the epochal events in Colonel de Montluzin’s ownership of 
the tract was the wartime construction on a 1000-acre site of the Higgins 
Aircraft Plant. This gigantic facility, (its building alone contained 40 
acres of air-conditioned work space), was designed to produce all-wood 
cargo airplanes. It had its own airport. Employing some 5,000 workers, 
under the direction of the dynamic Andrew J. Higgins, Sr., of landing 
boat and PT fame, the first aircraft came off the assembly line by the time 
the war was over. The plant was leased by the Federal Government to 
the Board of Commissioners, Port of New Orleans, and became head- 
quarters for 40 individual companies at one time. Later, when the 
Korean conflict arose, the plant was leased to the Chrysler Corporation 
which tooled up and renovated at a cost of many millions of dollars to 

See aces 

produce tank engines. Foilowing the Korean action, production stopped, 
and the plant reverted to surplus status where it remains today. 

Members of the Higgins family retained a 75 acre tract by purchase 
and still operate a plywood, veneer, and wood products plant, including 
a high-quality block flooring sold throughout the United States. 

Various small parcels totalling some 1000 acres of land were sold by 
Colonel de Montluzin during the 36 years he owned the tract. Several 
areas were developed by him into industrial, commercial, and residential 
sites. But the property has largely kept its original proportion. 

And thus it remained until 1959, when Colonel de Montluzin sold it 
to a group now known as New Orleans East, Inc. The property “.. . 
to a point called Chef Menteur’ will be developed as a unit by its 
new owners. They are mindful of the historic responsibility inherited 
with this important property, over which explorers of destiny, wars of 
conquest, and struggles for commerce have passed. They realize that this 
property has observed the growth of New Orleans from the sidelines 
as the settlement became a town, the town became a city, and the city 
became one of the world’s great commercial centers. 

Now it is the turn of New Orleans EAST to assume its role in the 
area’s march of progress. 

If ever the future can be studied from the past, New Orleans, 
augmented by its last remaining section, is surely destined for a tomor- 
row that neither the facile pen of the journalist nor the measured phrases 
of a lawyer can express. Posterity will certainly look upon it one day 
and say, 

“What hath God wrought.” 

aa 8 ee 


The Drainage Battle 
of New Orleans 

PT ee 

VIEW OF NEW ORLEANS, (1726), by Lassus. This early print shows the extent 

of the cleared and drained portion of the city eight years after its founding. 

Much has been written about the two battles of New Orleans, 
against the British in 1815, and against the Federal forces in 1862. 
But the city’s most relentless and most devastating battle has been against 
water, and it is still being waged on all fronts. 

It began in Bienville’s day, when the river flooded the early settle- 
ment, and must have given ‘‘the father of New Orleans’’ reason to doubt 
his dream of founding a great city. 

But against overwhelming odds, the dream of Bienville has come true. 
The building of New Orleans, one of the world’s great ports, a city 
equally famed for its pleasant atmosphere, its charm, its food, and its 
culture, has been one constant battle to overcome a substance which to 
some other cities would be a bonanza—water: the water that falls from 
the skies, the water that surges down the Mississippi, or is blown up 
out of the lakes. 

Inch by arch the city has forced back the swamp; levee by levee, Old 
Man River has been contained in his course. Canal by canal, the rain 

PEE eee) 

water has been carried off until it hardly presents a problem. Drainage 
and protection from flooding, then, have been the major problems for 
New Orleans. With the victory over these have come triumphs over their 
satellite worries, mosquitoes and plagues. 

As the need arose for more living space, huge new sections radiating 
from the original Vieux Carré have been cleared and drained. Today, 
one remaining section of the city of New Orleans is about to be drained 
to meet a need. Already protected from the river and the lake, it awaits 
the suction of the first pump to draw off its shallow waters to reveal fine, 
fertile, solid ground for the city’s growth. This is the property of New 
Orleans East, Inc. 

It is important to remember that New Orleans is built virtually in 
a bowl-like depression. Because of the lack of any elevation, there is no 
natural drainage. Waters must first be removed through sub-surface 
canals having gravity flow to pumping stations strategically located 
throughout the area. These receive waters, and lift them—sometimes 
twice—high enough to be pushed out into Lake Pontchartrain. 

Besides the standing water, the attendant problems of sewage dis- 
posal and safe drinking water have constantly prodded the city fathers 
to action. Until comparatively recent times, cisterns collected rainwater 
for drinking; and certain men made a living from cleaning out cess pools. 
Also, from renting skiffs for daily travel about the city after heavy rains! 

Another hazard was fire. Early fire-fighting equipment and methods 
were clumsy and ineffectual. Two great conflagrations, in 1788 and 1794, 
almost completely destroyed the young city; later destructive fires razed 
famous landmarks. The St. Charles Hotel, for instance, was twice leveled, 
the second time as late as 1895. 

Prior to 1893, some part of the city was always under water! 

Various stumbling steps had been attempted through the early 19th 
century to do something about New Orleans’ perpetual enemy—water. 
The earliest real attention to the problem was made by Louis H. Pilié, the 
city surveyor. In 1857, before the Civil War engulfed everyone’s atten- 
tion, he reported to the Common Council a plan for “dealing with that 
part of the city beyond Claiborne Street . . .’’ He recommended the con- 
struction of open canals for drainage, and levees for protecting the city 
from the lake. Previously, the only stab in this direction had been a State 
Legislature appropriation of $5000 to study the drainage back of the city. 

The Pilié plan languished because of war, and also because he gave 

ja Oe 

OLD CANAL IN DAUPHINE STREET. This was one of the early efforts to rid 
the Vieux Carré of rain water. 

no practical means or design for the location or type of canals or 

In 1868, the city surveyor, L. Surgi presented a new report also 
recommending more canals and improved machinery. He wanted to use 
Bayou Bienvenue to drain the part of the city “below Esplanade’’ into 
Lake Borgne. He also had found that, as early as 1835, a 20-year charter 
had been granted the New Orleans Drainage Company which was to drain 
and reclaim a vast area beyond the city by means of canals and ditches. 

Me eer 

THE CITY OF NEW ORLEANS, (1885), Currier & Ives. "'Bird’s-eye”’ view 
showed large remaining undrained portions of city as recent as 74 years ago. 
(Heavy dotted line was extent of drained area.) 

The City Council liked Surgi’s ideas and added some of its own, 
including the ultimate plan of underground sewers to collect and deliver 
the water into the Mississippi, an impractical idea. 

Nothing really came of this plan, either. In 1871 the so-called “Bell 
Plan” again recommended using Lake Borgne as the outlet. Other ideas 
came and went, and the water stayed. Then in 1890, a new start was 
made to arouse interest in the problem’s solution. The Orleans Levee 
Board offered $2500 for the best plan for draining the city. 

Several desultory plans were submitted, but none were accepted. 
Little topographical or engineering data was available on which anyone 
could base an intelligent plan, and the Levee Board was offering no 
specifications. The city even tried to get private firms interested, or to 
do the work itself, all to no avail. 

Finally, in 1893, by the hardest, a sum of $17,500 was voted by the 
council to start collecting reliable engineering data on which a sound 
policy could be formulated. This was the beginning. 

The “Bell Plan” of 1873 comes closest to what was actually devised 
to help drain part of the city. Major canal arteries leading to four “draw- 
ing machines’ or pumps, were built. These ultimately delivered the water 
to Lake Pontchartrain, just as they do today. Yet, by 1895, the area from 
the river to Metairie and Gentilly was only partially drained, some sections 

Barty on 

still wholly undrained; about 13,357 acres of the city could be classed as 
drained, about half of that classified as “good”. 

In 1896, with the formation of the New Orleans Drainage Commis- 
sion, the program, like the water, really began to get off the ground. 
Drainage, water, and sanitation facilities were incorporated under a single 
head in 1899, when the Sewerage and Water Board was created by 
legislative act, and has built, maintained, operated, and developed these 
facilities to this day. 

Between 1897 and 1915, $27,000,000 was spent on the construction 
of water, drainage, and sewer facilities, through a two-mill tax on all 
property, plus half of the surplus from the one percent debt tax. 

To visualize the “bowl’’, the seawall at Lake Pontchartrain is 10 
feet above sea level; the Metairie-Gentilly ridge is 4 feet above. Between 
these two rises, the ground dips to five feet below. And south of these 
ridges, it measures two below before it rises to the river bank’s 14 above. 
Artificial levees now rise to 25 feet above sea level. The Bonnet Carré 
Spillway, 20 miles upstream, can be opened in extreme high water con- 
ditions to keep the level at a safe 20 feet at New Orleans. 

The United States Corps of Engineers and the Orleans Levee 
Board, keep the river and lake waters out of this divided bowl. The 
Sewerage and Water Board handles the rain. 

And how it can pour! Heaviest recorded to date was 15.1 inches in 
17 hours. The average annual rainfall is 57.4 inches, which, over 49,000 
acres of the metropolitan area, amounts to more than 10 billion cubic 
feet weighing nearly 320 million tons. 

Eight pumping stations on the East bank and three on the West, 
with a combined total of 17.5 billion gallons per day do the job. That 
is enough to empty a lake of 8 square miles 10 feet deep in 24 hours. 

An early visitor to New Orleans, noting its maze of draining ditches, 
likened the city to a “microscopic Venice’. This is even more true today, 
although one can’t see most of the canals and ditches. Venice has 28 
miles of canals; New Orleans has 108 miles, excluding our Grand Canal, 
the Mississippi River. 

The last 60 years have turned the tide, to use an apt pun. In this 
period from 1900 to 1959, New Orleans literally rose like Venus from 
the sea. This has been its greatest half-century of progress. When the 
draining and developing of the city’s last remaining acreage is completed, 
its growth possibilities are unlimited. 

Bienville’s dream has come true. His judgment has been completely 

ville Ys tae 

From Pelts 

to Petroleum 

T he looked-for gold and pearls which motivated Hernando de Soto 
to explore ‘‘New Florida’ for his King in 1540 never developed. The 
hapless adventurer, besides discovering the Mississippi River, the sting 
of the mosquito, and the accuracy of the Choctaw bow, might well have 
asked himself: ‘What on earth am I doing here?” 

It was nearly a hundred years after his ill-fated expendition, that 
the French Canadians caught on to the fact that the territory to the South, 
by way of the Great River of the Spaniards’ tales, might be an avenue to 
a prosperity unrivalled by any in the world. 

If the upper lands could produce an endless supply of pelts, minerals, 
and food supplies, what about that land down below? 

So, year after year, explorers and “‘coureurs de Bois’, those rugged 
men of the forests and rivers, ventured down the Mississippi, some of 
them accompanied by the inevitable priest in quest of new souls to con- 
vert. Among them were Father Marquette with the explorer Joliet, and 
the intrepid La Salle. 

Soon after its founding in 1718, New Orleans began to take on the 
aspects of a world port. Even in its earliest days, commerce flowed be- 
tween New Orleans and the Caribbean, the East Coast colonies, Mexico, 
and Europe. The produce of the uplands, the generosity of the valley's 
soil and minerals and forests, poured by keelboat, broadhorn, and after 
1811-12, by steamboat onto the docks of New Orleans for shipment 
elsewhere. In return, loaded caravels of finished goods piled up at New 
Orleans for use at the thriving inland centers, springing up everywhere. 

By 1840, New Orleans was on its way to fulfilling Thomas Jeffer- 
son’s prediction that the Crescent City would become the greatest port in 
the world. 

noch sa 

There was nothing quite like the city of New Orleans in its balmiest 
days of 1840-60. Wealth knew no bounds. The great names of inter- 
national finance gravitated to New Orleans, established offices, founded 
banks, built palatial mansions in the Garden District to rival the magnifi- 
cence of the proud, and not always hospitable, Creoles in the Vieux Carré. 

New Orleans was said to have more banks than any other city, 
including New York. Its docks were lined with the world’s shipping; 
its wharves, with “floating palaces” which rivalled the finest hotels in 
existance. Speaking of hotels, the St. Charles and the St. Louis were 
international landmarks, as were the city’s great restaurants, several of 
them still serving fine food. 

Cotton was King. The staple, its seeds originally smuggled from 
Mexico in a man’s coat, built fortunes. Second was sugar, the sturdy 
variety from the West Indies, brought by the Jesuits with Bienville, but 
only made practical as an economical crop with the discovery of the granu- 
lation process by deBoré, first mayor of New Orleans, in 1790. His 
plantation occupied part of what is now spacious, verdant Audubon Park. 

From the upper valley came giant hogsheads of tobacco; lumber in 
unlimited supply; corn, wheat and other grains from the Central Plains; 
lead from the mines of Illinois; whiskey from Kentucky; cattle and hogs 
from the farms being carved out of a wilderness. 

Then came the war and its terrible effect on man and land. It can 
truly be said that New Orleans hardly recovered its economic status until 
the turn of the 20th century. Through Reconstruction, it lagged in 
body and in spirit, as the impotent man, waiting for someone to help him 
at the moving of the waters, not realizing he had to “rise” himself. 

But rise he did, with two World Wars to open his eyes to his own 
potential. In the following 50 years, New Orleans again assumed its 
world position, its national leadership as a center of economic pros- 
perity. Added to its port have come the petroleum and allied industries, 
bringing opportunities for manufacturing plants to serve them and to 
use their products. With these have come the needs for housing and 
service facilities for a burgeoning population. 

These needs are still with New Orleans, for new plant sites, new 
commercial areas, new housing and recreation facilities. 

New Orleans now is utilizing the remaining undeveloped acreage 
within its boundaries—to the East. Here lies its opportunity for further 
development, down the road which has brought the city a long way 
already, from pelts to petroleum. 



Archives of the Missouri Historical Society, St. Louis. 
Cabildo Archives, Louisiana State Museum, New Orleans. 
Notarial Archives, Parish of Orleans. 

St. Maxent Papers, New Orleans Public Library. 

The Newberry Library, (Ayer Collection), Chicago. 


ARTHUR, STANLEY CiisBy. The Story of the West Florida Rebellion. St. Francis- 
ville, 1935. 

BARBE-MARBOIS, M. Histoire de la Louisiane. Paris 1829. 

BurRSON, Dr. CAROLINE. The Stewardship of Don Esteban Miro. Louisiana State 
University Press, Baton Rouge, 1934. 

CABLE, GEORGE W. The Creoles of Louisiana. New York, 1884. 

CAUGHEY, JOHN WALTON. Bernardo de Galvez in Louisiana, 1776-1783. Berke- 
ley, 1934. 

CHASE, JOHN C. Frenchmen, Desire, Good Children, and Other Streets of New Or- 
leans! New Orleans, 1949. 

CLAIBORNE, WILLIAM C. C. Official Letterbooks of W. C. C. Claiborne, 1801- 
1816. 6 Vols. Jackson, Miss.. 1917. 

COLEMAN, WILLIAM H. Historical Sketch Book and Guide to New Orleans and 
Environs. New York, 1885. 

Drainage of the City of New Orleans, New Orleans, 1893. 

Fleur de Lys and Calumet. (The Pénicaut Narrative of French Adventure in Lou- 
isiana). Tr. Richebourg Gaillard McWilliams. Louisiana State University 
Press, Baton Rouge, 1953. 

ForTIER, ALCEE. A History of Louisiana, 4 Vols. New York, 1904. 

FossierR, Dr. ALBERT A. New Orleans, the Glamour Period. New Orleans, 1957. 

FREGAULT, Guy. Iberville le Conquérant. Montreal, 1944. 

GAYARRE, CHARLES. History of Louisiana. 4 Vols. New Orleans, 1885. 

GIRAUD, MARCEL. Histoire de la Louisiane Frangais. Vols. 1, 2. Paris, 1953. 

HuBER, LEONARD V., AND CLARENCE A. WAGNER. The Great Mail. The Ameri- 
can Philatelic Society, Inc., State College, Pa., 1949. 

KING, GRACE. Creole Families of New Orleans. New York, 1921. 

—_——_—_———. New Orleans, the Place and the People. New York, 1895. 

ean OE ES 

LATOUR, ARSENE LACARRIERE. Historical Memoire of the War in West Florida 
and Louisiana in 1814-15. Philadelphia, 1816. 

LAUVIERE, EMILE. Histoire de la Louisiane Francaise, Louisiana State University 
Press, Baton Rouge, 1940. 

Le PaGE pu Pratz. Histoire de Louisiane. Paris, 1758. Translation, English 
Edition of 1774, reprinted by Harmanson, New Orleans. 

Louisiana Purchase. Catalogue of an Exhibition in the Cabildo. New Orleans, 
Louisiana State Guide. New York, 1941. 

MARGRY, PIERRE. Decouvertes et Etablissements des Frangatis dans l’Ouest at Dans 
le Sud de L’ Amerique Septentrionale. 6 Vols. Paris, 1879-1888. 

MARTIN, FRANCOIS-XAVIER. History of Louisiana From the Earliest Period. New 
Orleans, 1882. 

McDERMOTT, JOHN FRANCIS. The Exclusive Trade Privilege of Maxent, LaClede 
and Company. Vol. XXIX, No. 4. The Missouri Historical Review, July, 

Mississippi Provincial Archives, 3 Vols. ed. Dunbar Rowland and A. G. Sanders. 
Jackson, 1927, 1929, 1932. 

New Orleans City Guide. New York, 1938. 

READ, Dr. WILLIAM A. Lowisiana-French. Louisiana State University Press, 
Baton Rouge, 1931. 

SURREY, NANCY MARIA MILLER. The Commerce of Louisiana During the French 
Régime, 1699-1763. New York, 1916. 

Territorial Papers of the United States, Vol. TX, Orleans Territory. U. S. Govt. 
Printing Office, 1940. 

TINKER, EDWARD LAROCQUE. Creole City. New York, 1953. 

VILLIERS DUTERRAGE, BARON MARC DE. Histoire de La Fondation de la Nouvelle 
Orléans. Paris, 1917. 
—. Les Derniéres Années de la Louisiane Francais. Paris, 1903. 

WILSON, SAMUEL, JR. (Ep.). Impressions Respecting New Orleans, by Benjamin 
H. B. Latrobe. Columbia University Press, New York, 1951. 
The Louisiana Historical Quarterly—Various Nos. 

Le Moniteur de la Louisiane, newspaper files, Louisiana State Museum Library. 
Newspaper files of The Daily Picayune, The Times-Picayune, and The New Or- 
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The Daily Delta, newspaper files, New Orleans Public Library. 

The Era (New Orleans), newspaper files, New Orleans Public Library. 

L’ Amie des Lois, newspaper files, Louisiana State Museum Library. 

Translations of Dispatches of the Spanish Governors of Louisiana, The Louisiana 
State Museum Library. 

Various items in the collection of Mr. Samuel Wilson, Jr., including translations 
made by him from the Notarial Archives of Orleans Parish, and from Le 
Moniteur de la Louisiane and L’ Amie des Lois. 

ei ae 


Acres in St. Maxent’s Grant, 2 

Alligator Point, xii 

(The) American Telephone & 
Telegraph Co., 28 

Area of New Orleans East, Inc., 46 

Atakapas, 15 

Audubon Park, 39 

Bank of Louisiana, 23 

Bastille, 2 

Baton Rouge, 3; 739 

Battle of New Orleans, 15; 19; 25 

Bay St. Louis, 4 

Bayou Bienvenue, 35 

Bayou Chef Menteur, 18 

Bayou Gentilly, ix; 9; 19; 25 

Bayou, Iberville, 4 

Bayou Mardi Gras, 3 

Bayou Road, 23 

Bayou St. John, 5; 6; 12; 13 

Bayou Sauvage, ix; 6; 16; 20; 25; 30 

Bazillier, 6 

“Bell Plan’, 36 

Bienville, Sieur de, xi; xii; 3; 4; 5; 
Ono 6 on oe 

Bienville Street, 24 

Big Island, xii 

Biloxi, 4 


Boisdore, 19 

Bonnet Carré Spillway, 37 

Borgne, Lake, xi; 253; 35; 36 

Bossa N pax ixxl 

Bourbon Street, 5 

Bounaparte, 23 (See also Napoleon) 

Burson, Dr. Caroline, viii; 9; 11 

Cabildo, 10 

Cadillac, 3 

Canada, 3 

Canal Street, 15; 27 

Canals, 37 

Caribbean, 38 

Carolina, 3 

Carlos LI, 9 

Carondelet, 19 

Carroll and Carroll (Law Firm), 28 

Catlett, Gibson (Artist), 29; 30 

Central Plains, 39 

Chalmette, 6; 19 

Chantilly, 2 

Charleston, 3 

Chef Menteur, ix-xii; 2; 6; 9; 13; 
14; 19; 20; 22: 25-31; 46 

Chef Menteur Land, 4; 15; 18; 27 

Chef Menteur Pass, 1x; 25 

Chef Menteur River, 14; 19; 20; 25 

Chemen du Chef Menteur, 19 

Chicago, 29 

Choctaws, 1x; x; 38 

Chrysler Corporation, 30 

Civil W ar, 26; 27; 34 

Claiborne, Governor, 7; 15; 183; 19 

Claiborne (Street), 23; 34 

Clouet, (See de Clouet) 

Coliseum Square, 20 

Common Council, 34 

Confederate troops, 26 

Conti (Street), 23 

Continental and Commercial Trust 
and Savings Bank, 28; 29 

Continental-Illinois National Bank & 
Trust Company, 29 

“Coureurs de Bois’, xii; 38 

Craps Street, 21 

Creoles, xi; 15; 23; 39 

Crescent City, 38 

Cross of the Order of St. Maurice and 
St. Lazarus, 24; 27 

“Daily Delta’ (Newspaper), "al 

a’ Antillon, Sophie, 22 

Dauphine (Province), 22 

Dauphine Street, 35 

David (Painter), 23 

Dauphiny, 22 

de Boré, 39 

de Bienville, (See Bienville) 

de Blancs, 14 

de Clouet, Colonel Alexander, 13-15 

de Clouet, Lt. Louis Brognier, 13; 
14> 18 

a’Estrehan, 7 

a’ Iberville, (See Iberville) 

de la Ronde, Pierre, 6 

de la Tour, 6 

de Marigny, 11; 12 

de Montluzin, 28-30 (See also 
Faubourg de Montluzin) 

de Montluzin, Col., 24; 31; 46 

de St. Maxent (See St. Maxent) 

de Soto, Hernando, 38 

Detroit, 3 

Dreux, 63.12 

du Fossat, 2; 6 

East Coast, 3 
East Coast Colonies, 38 
Elysian Fields, 12; 213 25 

mip sek 

Engle, Walter J., 28 laleske-Chata, x 

Esplanade (Street), 35 Iberville, xi; 3-5 

Europe, 22; 38 Illinois, 39 

Industrial Canal, 12 
Interstate Highway, (EP) 
Intra-Coastal Canal, 30; (EP) 
Isle Aux Pins, 19 

Faubourg de Montluzin, xi; 1; 29; 30 Isle-aux-Pois, 4 

Faubourg Marigny, 21 Isabella, Oueen, 15 
Faubourg St. John, 20 et 22 hate 
Faubourg Ste, Marie, 20 Italy, Army of, 23 

Federal Forces, 26 
“Feliciana Parishes’, 8 

Ferdinand, King, 14 Jackson, General, 4; 15; 19; 20; 25 
Folger, J. A., Company (EP) Jefferson, President, 18; 38 

Fort Bute, 9 Jesuits, 39 

Fort Chef Menteur, 25 Joliet, 38 

Fort Macomb, ix; 25; 26 
Fort St. Philip, 10 

Fort Wood, 25 Kentucky, ea 
Fortier, Miguel, 13 Kerlérec, ix; x31; 2 
revece, 6- 96 14-15 16°22 5:23" 27 

ee Canadians, 38 Lacléde, Jean, 9 
French Gate, 11 Lacléde, Pierre, 1; 9 

Lacoste, Mayor, 20 
Lacoste’s Creoles, 20 
Lafayette, General, 18 

Gallatin, Albert, 18 Lafayette (City), 20 

Galveston Bay, Texas, 14 Lafitte, 15; 21 : 

Galvez, Bernado de, 7-9; 11; 12 Lafon, Bartolomey, Mitt tae Tae 2 S27 
Garden District, 39 Lafon, Jean Pierre, 22 

Gauvain, 24 Lafon Plantation, 20 

Gayarré, Charles, ix-xi “LT Amie des Lots,” 23 

Gentilly, ix; 2; 6; 12; 16; 20; 36 Languedoc, France, 15 

Gentilly Road, 7; 19 LaRoche, Elizabeth, 7 

Gentilly Terrace, 29 LaSalle, 3; 38 is 

Girod, Nicholas, 27 Latour, Mayor Lacarriére, 19; 20 
Good Children Street, 21 Latrobe, 19 

Government House, 13 Laussat, Pierre, 12 

Grandjean, George N., 16 Law, John, 6 

Grassy Point, xii LeBlond de la Tour, 6 
Guillimard, Guilberto, 10 Le Cocg, Elizabeth, 7 
Gulf-River Seaway (EP) Le Courier,” 21 

Lee Circle, 20 

“Le Moniteur de la Louisiane,’ 18 
Levee Street, 24 

“DT heureuse Folie,” 22 

Hagua, Count de la Fernandina de, 15 Little Lake, xii 
Hagua, Cuba, 15 London, 23 
“Happy Folly’, 22 Long Point, xii 
Harland Bartholomew and Associates, Longy, 7 
46 Lorraine, 7 
Havana, 14 Louis Philippe, King, 12 
Herculaneum, 23 Louisiana, ix; x; 3;6;7;9; 
Heron Bay, xii £1-152719 
Higgins, Andrew J., Sr., 24; 30 Louisiana Purchase, 14; 18 
Higgins Aircraft-Chrysler Tank Louisville and Nashville Railroad, ix; 
Engine Plant, 24 28s CEP) 
Higgins Family, 31 “Lying Chief’, ix; x 
Houmas, 13 Lyons, 27 

Poa), Wr 

McDonogh, 23 

Madrid, 15 

Manchac, 3; 4; 5; 9 

Mardi Gras, 3 

Maringouin, 19 

Marigny Street, 12 

Marinas, 46 

Marquette, Father, 38 

Marseilles, 23 

Mather, James, 18 

Maurepas, Lake, 4 

Maxent-Lafon-de Clouet-Michoud- 
de Montluzin Tract, vii; 16 

Maxent Street, 7 

Metairie, 36 

Metairie Ridge, 5 

Metairie-Gentilly Ridge, 37 

Mexico, 38; 39 

Michoud, 29 

Michoud, Antoine, xi; 22-27 

Michoud, Jean Baptiste, 27 

Michoud, Lugues, 22 

Michoud, Marie Alphonse, 28 

Michoud Plantation, 16; 17 (map) 

Milne, Alexander, 23 

Mississippi (State), 19 

“Mississippi Bubble,” 6 

Mississippi Gulf Coast, xi 

Mississippi River, 2-6; 9; 33; 36; 38 

Mississippi Valley, 3 

Missouri River, 9 

Mobile, 9 

Montegut Family, 10 

Montreuil, Robert, 13 

Moreau Street, 25 

Naples, 23 

Napoleon, 12; 22 (See also 

"New Florida,’ 38 

New Orleans, xi; xii; 1; 2; 5; 7-9; 
PE12% 141518720" 22224: 
26-31; 33; 34; 36-39; 46 (EP) 

New Orleans and Northeastern 
Railroad Co., 28 

New Orleans Drainage Commission, 

New Orleans Drainage Company, 28; 
293 3) 

New Orleans East, Inc., vii; xii; 1; 
16-31% 34°46" (EP) 

New Orleans, Mobile, Chattanooga 
Railway Co., 28 

New York, 39 

Old Gentilly Highway, (EP) 
Old Gentilly Road, 24 

Old Levee Street, 24 

Old Man River, 33 

O’Reilly, 8 

Orleans County, 18 

Orleans Levee Board, 36; 37 
Orleans Parish, ix 

Oulabe Mingo, ix 

Paris, 23.9; 23 

Paris Road, 6 
“Passe-aux-Herons,” 4 

Pavie House, 23 

Pensacola, 9; 14; 15 

Périer, Governor, 5 
Phélypeaux, Jerome de, 4 
Phélypeaux, Louis de, 3 
Philip, Duke of Orléans, 5 
Pilié, Louis H., 34 

Planning Services, Inc., 46 
Plaquemines, 10 
“Point-aux-Coquilles,” 4 
"Pointe-aux-Herbes,” ix; 4; 28 
Pompeit, 23 

Pontalba Building, 13 
Pontalba, Jose Xavier de, 13 
Pontchartrain, Count de, 3; 4 

Pontchartrain, Lake, ix; 4-6; 14; 18; 

19% 25° 345 365°37 
Pontchartrain Railroad Station, 26 
Port of New Orleans, 30 
Presbytére, 10 
Prytaneum, 20 
Prytania Street, 20 

Rainfall in New Orleans, 37 
Reconstruction, 39 

Rhone River, 22 

Rigolets, ix; xii; 4 

Royal Street, 15; 18; 23 

St. Charles Hotel, 34; 39 

St. Dagobert, Church of, 7 

St. Louis Cathedral, 7; 10 

St. Louis (City), 9; 46 

St. Louis (Hotel), 39 

St. Louis Street, 23; 24 

St. Martinville, 13 

St. Maxent, Celestino de, 7 

St. Maxent, Felicity de, 7; 8 

St. Maxent, Francois Maximilian de, 7 

St. Maxent, Gilbert Antoine de, viii; 
xis 13;23;-6-14% 18 

St. Maxent, Josephine de, 7 

St. Maxent, Pupon de, 7 

St. Maxent patent, 18 

St. Peters River, 9 

St. Peter Street, 18 

Santilly, 12 

Sardinia and Savoy, Kingdom of, 24 
Sasaki, Walker and Associates, Inc., 

Sauvage, ix 

Sauvole, Sieur de, 3; 4 

Seignouret, M. Francois, 23 

Seville, 14 

Sewerage and Water Board, 37 

Shell Point, xii 

Ship Island, 3; 4 

“Sieurs de Gentilly,” 6 

Sigur, Lorenzo, 11-13 

Skyscraper , 18 

Southern Railway System, 28 

Spain, 9; 12; 14; 18 

Suburb Ste. Mary, 18 

Saver, L.,-35 5°36 

Superior Council of the Colony of 
Louisiana, 1; 2; 6 

Tanesse, J., 21 

Tennessee Mountaineers, 20 

“Territorie d’ Orléans,” 18 

“The Stewardship of Don Esteban 
Miré,” viti; 1; 9 

Third Louisiana Regiment, 7 

Tivoli Circle, 20 

Tombighee Fort, ix 

Toulouse (Street), 23 

Touro, Judah, 23 

Trinity River, 14 
Trudeau, Carlos, 8 
Tunica Bend, 3 

United States, 12; 14; 18; 19; 25; 
28-30; 31 

Ulloa, 8 

United States Corps of Engineers, 37 

United States Navy, 19 

Unzaga, 7 

“Venetian Isles,” 46 

Venezuela, 7 

Venice, 5; 37 

“Versailles,” 6 

Vesuvius, 23 

Victor Emanuel II, King, 24 

| Fae A sf Phos em le Pe eee AY ieatte L: Sate Ye 

Ville Pinte, 15 

WDSU-TV, 23 

Washington City, 18-19 
Watertown, Mass., 46 

Watson, John Stuart, 28 

West Indies, 39 

Western Florida, 9 

Wilson, Samuel, Jr., 11 
Woieseri, J. L. Bouqueto de, 11 
World Wars, 39 

Illustrations Credits 

Book designed by Gus D. Levy, with his original sketch on the cover. 

OSHS PCL ea cn atens ss eos Courtesy, Missourt Historical Society, St. Louis. 
IEP Bee Sera ie ee Courtesy, Louisiana State Museum. 

Bae. UO ead ae tot Courtesy, Louisiana State Museum. 

pS oa: Ce aes eee ees Courtesy, Mr. Felix H, Kuntz. 

(Ge FT 2 SEA ree a Soe ene From an early sketch by Pennell. 

Paces ao anidel fini. a) From Notartal Archives, Parish of Orleans. 

| oc Sag RAR Rh, 6. la ee Courtesy, National Archives, Washington, D. C. 
Page 2225. ys ote Courtesy, Louisiana State Museum. 

Ravel DA ee as Photo by Leon Trice for New Orleans East, Inc. 
TTRSONE i estece te oc deb re ena Aerial Photo by Ray Samuel. 

|S ent is is De Bilge ho Photo by Leon Trice for New Orleans East, Inc. 
Paces 42.and 33s22-220-n.s Courtesy, Samuel Wilson, Jr. 

Le Teleco 8 nae a am ae From an early sketch by Pennell. 

Page SG tae eke. eg, From a print by Currier & Ives. 

Page 47 (foldout).............. Map by Harland Bartholomew and Associates, St. Louis. 

Sah? (yee 

The Story 
to be Told 

The ultimate development of the land “. . . to a point called Chef 
Menteur . . .” remains for the Twentieth Century to see fulfilled. 

Among the first steps, New Orleans East, Inc. retained the noted 
firm of city planners, civil engineers, and landscape architects, Harland 
Bartholomew and Associates, St. Louis. They have advanced their earlier 
planning which was begun for Col. R. E. E. deMontluzin. In addition, 
Mr. Louis C. Bisso, former city planner of New Orleans, now President 
of Planning Services, Inc., was retained to work on the many practical 
aspects and problems of integrating the Bartholomew studies into the 
City of New Orleans’ expansion into this area. 

New Orleans East also employed the firm of Sasaki, Walker and 
Associates, Inc., Watertown, Mass., to study the aesthetic usage of drainage 
waterways canals and lagoons with a view toward designing them as 
attractive assets instead of the dreary liabilities which New Orleans has 
been expensively covering up—or ignoring—for many generations. 

The Bartholomew plan, as shown on the accompanying fold-out 
page, discloses an intriguing effort, completely in keeping with the mag- 
nitude of the property's 50-square-mile area. It encompasses all types of 
property which are needed in the present and future growth of New 
Orleans: heavy industrial sites with both deep-water and barge-canal front- 
age, supplied with rail and highway service; medium industrial sites, also 
serviced by rail-highway-water transportation; light industrial and com- 
mercial sites of any size. In the residential plans, again New Orleans East 
runs the gamut, from choice lakefront sites for luxury homes, to low- and 
medium-cost housing areas, to apartment clusters, to deLuxe “Venetian 
Isles’ areas with water frontage for yachts. Planning includes ample 
recreation facilities, country clubs, golf courses, public and private. Parks, 
including sparkling lagoons for water sports, and wooded areas for 
healthy childplay are featured. Marinas abound to ease the shortage of 
boat-parking space in New Orleans. 

In short, New Orleans East, was planned to be a model city in itself, 
while enjoying the advantages of being a physical part of the great 

i ae he 

(Please fold out map — 


Sago ie 

iy 24 t 
: ist 
’ = “a vi 

The Story 
to be Told 

The ultimate development of the land “. . . to a point called Chef 
_Menteur . . .”” remains for the Twentieth Century to see fulfilled. 

Among the first steps, New Orleans East, Inc. retained the noted 
firm of city planners, civil engineers, and landscape architects, Harland 
Bartholomew and Associates, St. Louis. They have advanced their earlier 
planning which was begun for Col. R. E. E. deMontluzin. In addition, 
Mr. Louis C. Bisso, former city planner of New Orleans, now President 
of Planning Services, Inc., was retained to work on the many practical 
aspects and problems of integrating the Bartholomew studies into the 
City of New Orleans’ expansion into this area. ; 

New Orleans East also employed the firm of Sasaki, Walker and 
Associates, Inc., Watertown, Mass., to study the aesthetic usage of drainage 
waterways canals and lagoons with a view toward designing them as 
attractive assets instead of the dreary liabilities which New Orleans has 
been expensively covering up—or ignoring—for many generations. 

The Bartholomew plan, as shown on the accompanying fold-out 
page, discloses an intriguing effort, completely in keeping with the mag- 
nitude of the property’s 50-square-mile area. It encompasses all types of 
property which are needed in the present and future growth of New 
Orleans: heavy industrial sites with both deep-water and barge-canal front- 
age, supplied with rail and highway service; medium industrial sites, also 
serviced by rail-highway-water transportation; light industrial and com- 
mercial sites of any size. In the residential plans, again New Orleans East 
runs the gamut, from choice lakefront sites for luxury homes, to low- and 
medium-cost housing areas, to apartment clusters, to deLuxe “Venetian 
Isles” areas with water frontage for yachts. Planning includes ample 
recreation facilities, country clubs, golf courses, public and private. Parks, 
including sparkling lagoons for water sports, and wooded areas for 
healthy childplay are featured. Marinas abound to ease the shortage of 
boat-parking space in New Orleans. 

In short, New Orleans East, was planned to be a model city in itself, 
while enjoying the advantages of being a physical part of the great 


(Please fold out map — ) 

City of New Orleans. Designed to support a 
future population of more than 175,000 people, 
adequate space was, of course, reserved for 
schools, universities, churches, playgrounds, 
shopping and business centers. 

The first new firm to select a site in the 
primary industrial development area was the 
J. A. Folger Company for a coffee processing 
facility. Selected was a 20-acre tract on the 
Old Gentilly Highway, adjacent to the Lou- 
isville & Nashville railroad. 

The Interstate Highway segment through the 
northern section of New Orleans East, when 
completed, will provide a limited access speed- 
way to the heart of New Orleans. Residents 
of New Orleans East, who work in the city 
proper, can commute by car in about 15 

With ample supply of water, electricity, 
natural gas, and with drainage and sewerage 
facilities, rail, highway and water transporta- 
tion, New Orleans East is a unique “‘all-in-one”’ 
opportunity for development. The fact that 
such a large tract is under one ownership— 
and has been since 1763—makes it especially 
attractive, since negotiating for large sites is 

Being located on the Intra-Coastal Canal, 
America’s vast inland waterway, is important 
in itself; but also being situated at the head 
of the new 100-million-dollar Gulf-River Sea- 
way, allowing ocean-going ships to dock at its 
industrial area, is of enormous advantage to 
the future growth of New Orleans. 


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