Aug 182017

Lusher Charter School. (Robert Morris,

In 1961 — only a year after Ruby Bridges had famously integrated New Orleans’ public schools — Sylvia Branch became the first black child to attend Robert Mills Lusher school, and still today recounts how the Lusher administration welcomed her with literally open arms.

Branch’s admission, however, would have been anathema to the school’s namesake, Robert Mills Lusher, who followed a Confederate governmental career with leadership of the state’s public schools, and used that post to promote “the supremacy of the Caucasian race,” in his words. For more than three decades from the end of the Civil War until the end of the 19th Century, Lusher fought in word and deed for the idea that the purpose of the public schools was to ensure that white students remained in a better social position than blacks.

Now — as Nazi and Ku Klux Klan sympathizers march nationally in support of Confederate monuments, while activist groups in New Orleans demand the removal of memorials to white supremacists, and children and adults alike struggle to make sense of it all — celebrated local historian and author Michael Tisserand has released the results of his research into Robert Mills Lusher’s racist legacy.

Author Michael Tisserand reads from his book “Krazy” at Octavia Books in December 2016. (Robert Morris,

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Aug 182017

Rosa Mezcal Apache, Mezcaleros, and Notenos Tacos (Kristine Froeba)

Magazine Street winds itself along the river down the center of old New Orleans from the French Quarter to Audubon Park.

It’s our Main Street. It is also our restaurant row.

Along its corridor, diners can explore our unique local culinary styles and culture, and experience both regional and international food.

What makes this plethora of restaurants unique is their individuality. Each is a small business with a chef, a menu and a soul. Our restaurants, big and small, represent the histories, tastes, and dreams of the owners and chefs. Continue reading »

Aug 172017
Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

Candidates for elected office – especially after qualifying – are usually out kissing babies, shaking hands, and attending numerous events seven days a week. But not the highly popular New Orleans Coroner Jeffrey Rouse, first elected in 2014 after having served as deputy chief coroner and head of the office’s mental health division for twelve years. Rouse is being challenged by Dr. Dwight McKenna in the October 14, 2017 election. Continue reading »

Aug 162017

New Orleans Fire Department chief Tim McConnell speaks Wednesday afternoon at a news conference at City Hall. (via City of New Orleans)

A diesel sheen atop the water in a drainage canal in Carrollton led to the discovery Tuesday night of a leak from an underground tank at the Sewerage & Water Board plant, New Orleans city officials said Wednesday afternoon. Continue reading »

Aug 152017

NOPD Chief Michael Harrison and Mayor Mitch Landrieu speak to the media during Mardi Gras celebrations earlier this year. (Robert Morris,

Whether to freeze property-tax assessments on homes to fight gentrification or whether the New Orleans Police Department needs a new leader were among the issues debated by candidates for City Council in a Tuesday night forum. Continue reading »

Aug 152017

Surveillance video shows a pickup truck after it crashed through a gas station wall on South Claiborne Avenue early Saturday. (submitted photo)

A pickup truck crashed through the wall of a South Claiborne Avenue gas station while it was open Saturday in attempt to steal the ATM, and New Orleans police say a second, similar heist was successful in Jefferson Parish the next day. Continue reading »

Aug 152017

The pumping station in Broadmoor has two small pumps out, but still has most of its pumping capacity, according to the Sewerage & Water Board. (photo via Google)

Two of the 11 pumps in the Broadmoor pumping station are out of service, but the station still has most of its capacity — unlike the critically impaired stations in Lakeview, City Park and New Orleans East, officials said. Continue reading »

Aug 122017

Mayor Mitch Landrieu leads a news conference Saturday morning. (via City of New Orleans)

Although the fire-damaged backup power system to the city’s pumps has now been repaired, the city has identified 17 of its 120 pumps that are out of service and need emergency repairs, Mayor Mitch Landrieu said Saturday morning. Continue reading »