We were able to sleep in a bit on our last day in New Orleans. Accordingly, we spent a lazy Easter morning walking about, seeing some more of the French Quarter, and then packing up and heading out with just a few sites on our final to-do list.
We did make a few stops on our last day. We stopped by the St. Louis Cemetery, where we got to see bits of history. First, we saw the reputed grave of Marie Laveau, where people still leave voodoo items…
…For more on Laveau and her presence in popular culture, click on the screen shot, below…
…we also saw a plaque for Benjamin Latrobe, the nation’s first architect. Latrobe designed the US Capitol Building, the US Customs House in New Orleans and, among others, the Baltimore Basilica…
We were able to see several of Latrobe’s designs on our recent inauguration trip, so it was nice to see a follow-up site on this trip. Unfortunately, it’s not entirely clear where in the cemetery Latrobe is buried. He is in the Protestant section, but there is no grave marked for him in that small area, so we had to content ourselves with seeing a plaque set up in his honor.
Finally, we also saw the grave of Homer Plessy, the famous defendant in Plessy v. Ferguson (1896), infamous for establishing the “separate but equal” doctrine.
After leaving the cemetery, we tracked down the site at which Plessy was arrested for boarding the “whites only” portion of the train. Without too much trouble, we found it, on a corner in a less-traveled part of town, by the river.
It was a real treat to see this part of history, particularly the civil rights sites.
We had one more stop before arriving home. We stopped at the Louisiana Capitol Building in Baton Rouge…
This, of course, is the site of Huey Long’s Assassination, and one of the locations featured in the most recent version of “All the King’s Men”.
Typically, the Junior Fellows’ trips involve far-flung destinations with lots of stops along the way. On those trips, we arrive at our hotels around midnight and are off to the next spot six or seven hours later. This was different, with the opportunity to really explore the city, and it was a lot of fun. On the way home, we reflected on our favorite aspects of the trip, and the consensus was:
Restaurants: (1) Oceana Grill and (2) Blue Dog Cafe
Favorite Sites/Activities: (1) Segway Tour, (2) St. Louis Cemetery, and (3) WWII Museum
Favorite Street Performers: (1) Various Jazz Bands, (2) Gold Statue Man