There are hundreds of books published on New Orleans history. To save you time trying to find your next read, we pull together 10 of the most popular titles with updated prices for delivery to your door.
Beautiful Crescent: A History of New Orleans by Joan Garvey
A brief history for New Orleans' greatest admirers. This concise history of the Crescent City contains chapters covering the Mississippi River, the city's founding, European rule, and more, updated with expanded jazz and African American sections. It is a must for every library and home, and for those who love New Orleans and its rich history.
The World That Made New Orleans: From Spanish Silver to Congo Square by Ned Sublette
Publisher: Lawrence Hill Books
Tells the story of one of America's most complex cities, with an emphasis on New Orleans's musical heritage and its first century filled with war, religious conflicts, slavery, and its struggles with France, Spain, and England.
The history of New Orleans is one of contrasts--heroes and villains, catastrophe and celebration, sinners and saints. In this New Orleans, a serial-killing axeman threatens to murder anyone not playing jazz. A fearless band of missionary nuns pushes to civilize the frontier. During World War II, Nazi U-boats lurk off the coast, while Denton Crocker's battle with local mosquitoes contributes to victory in the Pacific. From the streetcar strikers who lined the thoroughfares with IEDs to the unsung heroine of the Battle of New Orleans, Ryan Starrett and Josh Foreman offer a dose of history that would be hard to believe if it hadn't happened here.
Nine Lives: Mystery, Magic, Death, and Life in New Orleans by Dan Baum
Publisher: Random House
The fascinating world and rich culture of New Orleans come alive through the lives of nine colorful characters spanning 40 years and bracketed by two devastating hurricanes, interweaving the stories of their individual lives with the history of the Big Easy and the disasters that threaten its existence. Reprint.
City of a Million Dreams: A History of New Orleans at Year 300 by Jason Berry
Publisher: University of North Carolina Press
In 2015, the beautiful jazz funeral in New Orleans for composer Allen Toussaint coincided with a debate over removing four Confederate monuments. Mayor Mitch Landrieu led the ceremony, attended by living legends of jazz, music aficionados, politicians, and everyday people. The scene captured the history and culture of the city in microcosm--a city legendary for its noisy, complicated, tradition-rich splendor. In City of a Million Dreams, Jason Berry delivers a character-driven history of New Orleans at its tricentennial. Chronicling cycles of invention, struggle, death, and rebirth, Berry reveals the city's survival as a triumph of diversity, its map-of-the-world neighborhoods marked by resilience despite hurricanes, epidemics, fires, and floods. Berry orchestrates a parade of vibrant personalities, from the founder Bienville, a warrior emblazoned with snake tattoos; to Governor William C. C. Claiborne, General Andrew Jackson, and Pere Antoine, an influential priest and secret agent of the Inquisition; Sister Gertrude Morgan, a street evangelist and visionary artist of the 1960s; and Michael White, the famous clarinetist who remade his life after losing everything in Hurricane Katrina. The textured profiles of this extraordinary cast furnish a dramatic narrative of the beloved city, famous the world over for mysterious rituals as people dance when they bury their dead.
Haunted New Orleans: History & Hauntings of the Crescent City (Haunted America) by Troy Taylor
Publisher: The History Press
New Orleans—the Big Easy, the birthplace of jazz, home of Café du Monde and what some call the most haunted city in America. Beneath the indulgence and revelry of the Crescent City lies a long history of the dark and mysterious. From the famous “Queen of Voodoo,” Marie Laveau, who is said to haunt the site of her grave, to the wicked LaLauries, whose true natures were hidden behind elegance and the trappings of high society, New Orleans is filled with spirits of all kinds. Some of the ghosts in these stories have sordid and scandalous histories, while others are friendly specters who simply can’t leave their beloved city behind. Join supernatural historian Troy Taylor as he takes readers beyond the French Quarter and shows a side of New Orleans never seen.
William Frantz Public School: A Story of Race, Resistance, Resiliency, and Recovery in New Orleans (History of Schools and Schooling) by Connie L. Schaffer
Publisher: Peter Lang Inc., International Academic Publishers
Why should you care about what happened to William Frantz Public School? Yes, Ruby Bridges entered the iconic doors of William Frantz in 1960, but the building's unique role in New Orleans school desegregation is only one part of the important history of this school. Many additional and equally important stories have unfolded within its walls and the neighborhoods surrounding it. These stories matter. It matters that society has historically marginalized Black students and continues to do so. It matters that attempts to dismantle systemic racism in schools and other institutions still face strong resistance, and these issues continue to deeply divide the United States. It matters that the building remains standing as an indomitable symbol of the resiliency of public education despite decades of waning support, misguided accountability, and a city devasted by Hurricane Katrina. It matters that opportunism, under the guise of recovery, reshaped public education in New Orleans. William Frantz Public School: A Story of Race, Resistance, Resiliency, and Recovery in New Orleansprovides more than an examination of education in one school and one city. It recounts a story that matters to anyone who cares about public education.
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