The American Cyclopædia (1879)/New Orleans

Edition of 1879. See also New Orleans on Wikipedia, and the disclaimer.

NEW ORLEANS (Fr. La Nouvelle Orléans), the capital, chief city, and commercial metropolis of Louisiana, the ninth city of the United States in point of population, nearly coextensive with the parish of Orleans, situated on both banks (but chiefly on the left) of the Mississippi river, 100 m. above its mouth, and 960 m. in a direct line S. W. of Washington; lat. of custom house, 29° 57' N., lon. 90° W.

AmCyc New Orleans.jpg

New Orleans.

The river here has a general E. and W. direction. The older portion of the city is built on the left bank, on the convex side of a bend of the river, from which circumstance it derives its familiar sobriquet of the “Crescent City.” In the progress of its growth up stream, it has now so extended itself as to follow long curves in opposite directions, so that the river front on the left bank presents an outline somewhat resembling the letter S, and 11 or 12 m. in extent. The city includes, on the left bank, the town of Carrollton, formerly belonging to the parish of Jefferson, and the whole of the parish of Orleans, except the portion lying between Bayou Chef Menteur and the Rigolets pass; and on the right bank, the town of Algiers. The greater portion of this region is not built up, but consists of market gardens, swamps, canebrakes, and bayous. The boundaries of the city on the left bank are: on the west, the upper line of Carrollton and the line of the old Jefferson and Lake railroad; on the north, Lake Pontchartrain; on the east, Bayou Chef Menteur; and on the south, Lake Borgne, Bayou Bienvenu, Fisher's or Fisherman's canal, and the Mississippi. On the right bank, Algiers is bounded N. E. by the Mississippi river and by the line of Ptolemy street, running southeasterly (nearly as a continuation of Canal street on the left bank), and by other lines zigzagging more easterly, and terminating at Point Becka on the Mississippi. That portion of the parish of Orleans which alone has not been included in the city consists of a series of islets called Les Petites Coquilles, from the extent to which small shells enter into the composition of their soil. These islets surround a body of water from Lakes Pontchartrain and Borgne which is called Lake Catharine. At the Pontchartrain end of the Rigolets pass, on one of these islets, stands Fort Pike; on another, at the Lake Borgne end of the Rigolets, stands Fort Macomb. Near the western border of Bayou Chef Menteur stands Fort Wood. Fort Pike is in lat. 30° 10' N., lon. 89° 38' W., about 30 m. from the centre of the drainage sections of the city. Fort Wood is in lat. 30° 8' N., lon. 89° 51' W. Fort Macomb is about 6 m. S. E. of Fort Pike, and is virtually if not actually abandoned. Fort Pike, being surrounded by salt water, is healthy, while Fort Wood, standing in the midst of marshes, is very insalubrious. From the western boundary of the city to the northeastern (that is, from Carrollton upper line to Bayou Chef Menteur) the distance is about 22 m.; greatest breadth, at the N. E. extremity, nearly 10m.; breadth from the lake to the river, in the drainage sections, 7½ m.; least breadth, from Lake Pontchartrain to Bayou Bienvenu, about 5 m.; total area of the present statutory city, about 150 sq. m. The actual city, however, is comprised within the drainage sections, of which not more than one half is closely inhabited, while the other half comprises much that is but barely redeemed from original swamp. These sections cover an area of 26,026 acres, or about 40⅔ sq. m. They are bounded by lines which have been run for a contemplated protection levee, and by the river. The W. line is the upper line of the city from the river to the lake, a distance of nearly 5¼ m.; the N. line skirts the shore of the lake for nearly 4½ m.; the E. line is irregular, running from the lake to the river, a total distance of about 7¾ m. It is proposed to make this protection levee sufficiently broad at the top to form a good road. On the lake shore considerable progress has already been made, the levee along the river having long since been built. The region enclosed by these lines is lower than the surface of the Mississippi at high water, and besides has a slight general declination toward the lake. Somewhat further back than its centre it is crossed by an irregularly curved ridge, called the Metairie ridge on the W. side of the bayou St. John, and the Gentilly ridge on the E. side. Along these ridges run a bayou and a road bearing the same name, but the bayou Gentilly is better known, at least in its eastern course, as the bayou Sauvage, the name originally given to it. The bayou St. John, running southerly, from about the centre of the protection levee line along the lake, for a distance of nearly 4 m., is continued by the Carondelet canal some 2 m. further in a southeasterly direction to what is known as the Old basin, which stands at the end of Toulouse street, at a distance of about half a mile from the river. About two fifths of a mile from the W. extremity of the lake protection line the New Orleans canal, generally called the New canal, starts parallel to the bayou St. John, and runs S. and S. E. about 6½ m. into what is known as the New basin at the end of Julia street, about three quarters of a mile from the river. Connected with these bayous and canals are a number of others by means of which the city within the limits we are considering is drained. Many new ones are contemplated, several have lately been constructed, old ones have been lengthened, deepened, and otherwise improved, and some useless or objectionable ones have been filled up. By the bayou St. John and the New canal small vessels bring large quantities of articles from Mobile, Pensacola, the lake shores, and their vicinities. These are, besides some cotton, principally lumber, shingles, sand, shells, bricks, tar, oysters, wood, charcoal, fire clay, and garden produce. As many as 50 or 60 vessels have been seen in the basins at the same time. Some of these are large schooners, and a few small stern-wheel steamboats have plied among them. North of the Metairie bayou, near the western protection levee line, was the famous Metairie race course; and south of the bayou, somewhat nearer the levee line, is the Oakland race course. On the same ridge, between the New canal and the bayou St. John, somewhat nearer the latter, is the old city park. Here are numbers of fine large oaks and other trees, as there are also around the race courses and more or less along the whole ridge. This park has never had any proper attention paid to it, and is now but little frequented. A little east of the bayou St. John, on the Gentilly ridge, is a spot called the fair grounds, where periodical fairs, generally annual ones, are held. There is a race course here also.—The streets of New Orleans, in width, length, and general appearance, are second to those of no city of its size. As far back as Claiborne street, those running in general parallelism with the river and with each other present an unbroken line from the lower to the upper limits of the city, a distance of about 12 m. Those at right angles to them, or rather to the levee, run from the Mississippi toward the lake with more regularity than might be expected from the very sinuous course of the river. Claiborne, Rampart, St. Charles, Elysian-fields, Esplanade, and Canal streets are about 200 ft. wide, with a banquette or sidewalk about 12 ft. wide on each side, a central portion 25 ft. wide bordered on each side by a row of trees and a sidewalk of ample width, and a wide road between this central ground and each of the main banquettes. On the central portion railroad tracks are laid for several lines of street cars. In Canal street there are many very fine stores and some fine private residences. A number of streets are substantially paved with oblong granite blocks about a foot square by two feet long. Some of them are shelled, and afford very pleasant driving; but many are unpaved and in very wet weather scarcely available, and in dry weather intolerably dusty. Some of the finest streets in the city are in this condition, as Jackson street, and St. Charles street in the greater length of its upper portion. There are ten public squares in the city, counting as such Tivoli circle and the polyhedral oblong Coliseum place. With the exception of Jackson square and Douglas square, which are highly cultivated and well kept, trees and lawns constitute the only horticultural cultivation these squares exhibit. Most of them are enclosed with iron railings, but some are barely more than in embryo. In Lafayette square a fine white marble statue of Franklin, of life size, executed by Hiram Powers, has been erected. A colossal bronze statue of Henry Clay, by Hart, in Canal street, and that of Jackson in Jackson square, are the only others in the city. All parts are traversed by street railroads, extending in all directions between the river and the ridge, from the upper to the lower line of the city. There are over 20 lines, all of which, with one exception, have one terminus in Canal street.—Chief among the public buildings is the custom house, in which are also the United States marshal's office and the post office. It was commenced 27 years ago, and is an extensive and solid structure, covering a whole square, and built of massive blocks of granite, with immense pillars of white marble and heavy iron staircases, and other fittings correspondingly substantial. The post office, the fitting up of which has lately been completed, is one of the most elegant and commodious in the country. The St. Charles hotel, covering half a square, surpasses the custom house in elegance of front and of entrance, with its spacious balcony and portico, lofty and handsome Corinthian pillars, and large and tasteful rotunda. The city hall, situated in St. Charles street, opposite Lafayette square, is perhaps the most artistic of the public buildings of the city. It is in the Ionic order, principally of marble, with a wide and high flight of steps leading to an elegant portico supported by eight columns. The mint is in the Ionic order, covering about the same area as the city hall, but not so handsome. No coining has been done there since the war, but congress has taken steps to recommence operations. The United States assistant treasurer has his office there. The view presented by the St. Louis cathedral, and the adjacent court buildings, with Jackson square, the open levee, the river, and the country on the right bank in front of them, and the handsome row of Pontalba buildings on each of the other sides of the square, which is beautifully adorned with evergreen shrubbery and flowering plants, with the fine equestrian statue of Andrew Jackson by Mills, and with well kept shell walks, is one of the most interesting afforded in New Orleans. There are many fine churches, some yet unfinished, one of which, a Catholic church in Common street, promises to be one of the most substantial and beautiful in the city. The Catholic church of St. John the Baptist, on Dryades street, between Calliope and Clio streets, which was opened in 1872, is a very elegant building. Another new place of worship worthy of note is the synagogue of Reformed Israelites, called the Temple Sinai, in Carondelet street. Parti-colored bricks and pointing give its walls a light airy appearance, and it has a handsome portico, flanked by two towers capped with tinted cupolas. The Gothic windows are filled with beautifully stained glass. The old Gothic St. Louis cathedral, originally built by Don Andres Almonaster y Roxas, burned, and rebuilt in 1850, has often been described and represented. It has an imposing façade surmounted by a lofty steeple and flanked by two towers, each surmounted by a smaller steeple. Among the others worthy of note is the Jesuits' church of the Immaculate Conception with a college attached, in Baronne street, at the corner of Common; St. Patrick's church, in Camp street; the first Presbyterian church, in Lafayette square; St. Alphonsus Catholic church, in Constance street; and Trinity church (Episcopal), in Jackson street, which has lately been much improved and repaired. There are 33 cemeteries, about one sixth of which are within the inhabited limits of the city; three are Jewish, one is masonic, and one odd fellows'. A number are situated in Canal street, near Metairie ridge, and on this ridge adjacent. The old Metairie race course has lately been purchased and joined to them, and promises to become one of the most beautiful in the country. Those without the limits of the city are all more or less beautified with magnolia, cypress, willow, and other trees, and with a variety of flowering plants. The great peculiarity of these cemeteries is that, from the nature of the soil, which is almost semi-fluid at a depth of 2 or 3 ft., all the tombs are above ground. Some of these are very costly and beautiful structures of marble, iron &c.; but the great majority consist of cells, superimposed on each other, generally to the height of 7 or 8 ft. Each cell is only large enough to receive the coffin, and is hermetically bricked up at its narrow entrance as soon as the funeral rites have been performed. In most instances a marble tablet appropriately inscribed is placed over the brickwork by which the vault (or oven as it is called by many) is closed. It is a general custom to visit the cemeteries on All Saints' and All Souls' days (Nov. 1 and 2) every year, and to have the tombs decked with flowers, garlands, immortelles, and other tributes to the memory of the dead. Near the Battle monument, in St. Bernard parish, a national cemetery, wherein lie remains of deceased soldiers of the Union, has been established.—New Orleans has been known ever since its foundation to have suffered much from febrile diseases, and especially from yellow fever. Sauvolle, brother of Iberville and Bienville, founders of the city, died of la fièvre; and numbers of colonists and troops died of les maladies de l'été (summer diseases of febrile character). The distinction of these from yellow fever has been argued, but by no means proved. Apart from yellow fever, however, the healthfulness of New Orleans is not surpassed by that of any large city; and including all risks, the natives and thoroughly acclimated residents compare favorably with those of any other community in respect of health or longevity. Yellow fever prevailed with some severity in 1799, and has repeatedly ravaged the city during the present century. Some of the most memorable epidemics were those of 1819, '22, '29, '33, '35, '37, '39, '41, '43, '47, '53, '58, and '67. Even in the most fatal seasons the natives and older residents have been to a great extent exempted, most of the mortality occurring among strangers and foreigners.—The population of New Orleans has increased with great rapidity. In 1769 it was 3,190; in 1785, 4,980; in 1788, 5,331; and in 1797, 8,056. According to the federal censuses it has been as follows: 1810, 17,243; 1820, 27,176; 1830, 46,310; 1840, 102,193; 1850, 116,375; 1860, 168,675; 1870, 191,418, of whom 50,456 were colored and 48,475 foreigners. In 1875 the number of inhabitants was estimated by local authorities at more than 210,000. Of the total inhabitants in 1870, 90,279 were males and 101,139 females; there were 25,941 males and 28,657 females between the ages of 5 and 18, and 47,737 males 21 years old and upward, of whom 38,586 were citizens. Of the foreigners, 17,361 were born in Great Britain (of whom 14,693 were natives of Ireland), 15,239 in Germany, 8,845 in France, 1,571 in Italy, 960 in Spain, 936 in Cuba, 668 in Switzerland, and 593 in the West Indies, exclusive of Cuba. There were 39,139 families and 33,656 dwellings. Of the total population, 28,063 attended school, of whom 945 were foreign born and 5,025 were colored. There were 28,109 persons 10 years old and upward who could not read, and 31,826 who could not write, of whom 5,450 were foreigners, 6,915 white, and 24,884 colored. Of 66,092 persons 10 years old and upward engaged in all occupations, 31,235 were employed in personal and professional pursuits, 17,404 in trade and transportation, 16,074 in manufactures, mechanical and mining industries, and 1,319 in agriculture. Since 1870 the births have averaged about 4,480 per annum, and the marriages about 1,860. The deaths in 1867 numbered 9,580; in 1868, 4,838; in 1869, 5,593; in 1870, 6,943; in 1871, 5,595; in 1872, 6,122; in 1873, 7,505; in 1874, 6,798.—There are three railroads connecting with northern, eastern, and western roads, running from New Orleans: the New Orleans, Jackson, and Great Northern, by Jackson and Canton, Miss., Grand Junction, Tenn., and Cairo, Ill.; the New Orleans and Mobile, by Les Petites Coquilles, a bridge over the Rigolets, the watering places on Lake Borgne, and Mississippi sound, Mobile, and roads running thence; and Morgan's Louisiana and Texas (formerly the Opelousas), crossing by ferry to Algiers, and running thence to Brashear, on the Atchafalaya. There are also a railroad to Donaldsonville, crossing the river by ferry and running up the left bank; and the Pontchartrain railroad, running to the lake and connecting by a boat with Madisonville, Mandeville, Covington, and adjacent points on the lake. There are steamship lines running to Havana by Florida ports, to Baltimore via Havana and Key West, to Philadelphia via Havana, to Florida, to New York (several lines), to Boston, to Texas ports, to Vera Cruz, to Liverpool (several lines), to Havre, and to Bremen; and others, including one to Rio de Janeiro, are about being established. Including those of the railroads and that of the “Slaughter-house Company,” seven ferry boats cross the river at short intervals to and from various points on the respective banks of the river. Among late improvements on the levee is a line of sugar sheds, affording protection to dealers in that staple. These, with 26 cotton presses, 20 cotton pickeries, 40 cotton brokers, 20 cotton buyers, and over 100 cotton factors, with their various employees and servitors, suggest the origin and ramifications of the chief industries of New Orleans. The customs district, of which New Orleans is the port of entry, embraces nearly the entire valley of the Mississippi, with ports of delivery at various points. The direct foreign commerce of a large extent of country accordingly is transacted through this port. In the value of its exports and of its entire foreign commerce it ranks next to New York, though several ports surpass it in the value of imports. The entire sugar and rice crops of the state are brought here for shipment, while the cotton crop of Louisiana, most of that of Mississippi, and much from Arkansas and Texas, are likewise brought here, making New Orleans the first cotton market in the country. The number of entrances in the foreign trade for the year ending June 30, 1874, was 840, of 630,940 tons; clearances, 855, of 658,513 tons; belonging to the port, 574 vessels, of 91,768 tons, of which 30, of 19,824 tons, were sea-going, and 150, of 37,201 tons, river steamers; entrances in the coastwise trade the previous year, 472, of 300,879 tons; clearances, 533, of 300,104 tons. The value of imports and exports from and to foreign countries for the eight years ending June 30, 1874, has been as follows:

YEARS. Imports. Exports.

1866-'67   $11,142,249   $85,426,851 
1867-'68 11,386,858  60,175,896 
1868-'69 11,414,893  75,890,224 
1869-'70 14,993,754  108,l47,847 
1870-'71 19,427,238  95,246,791 
1871-'72 18,542,188  90,802,849 
1872-'73 19,933,344  104,898,732 
1873-'74 14,533,864  93,715,710 

The sugar product from 1870 shows an annual decrease in quantity and value, but more serious decrease has been felt at other periods. Between 1834 and 1861 the yield varied from 30,000,000 lbs., valued at $2,700,000, in 1835, to 528,321,500 lbs., valued at $25,095,271, in 1861; during the civil war it fell to 10,780,000 lbs., valued at $1,994,300. The product and value for four years have been as follows:

1870, 168,878,592 lbs., $14,260,636; 1871, 146,906,125 lbs., $12,487,020; 1872, 125,346,493 lbs., $10,027,717; 1873, 103,241,119 lbs., $8,122,575. Similar fluctuations are noticed in the statistics of cotton from 1860 to 1874:

YEARS. Receipts,

1860-'61   1,849,312   $92,465,600
1861-'62 38,800  1,769,040
1862-'63 22,078  5,107,082
1863-'64 131,044  46,677,872
1864-'65 271,015  73,320,398
1865-'66 787,386  140,312,185
1866-'67 780,490  97,639,299
1867-'68 668,395  $68,510,487
1868-'69 841,216  98,825,025
1869-'70 1,207,333  120,129,633
1870-'71 1,548,136  101,015,874
1871-'72 1,067,011  94,430,473
1872-'73 1,382,958  116,168,472
1873-'74 1,322,106  94,530,000

The rice crop shows on the whole a very large increase during the seven years from 1867 to 1874; the yearly product has been as follows:

YEARS. Bbls.

1867-'68   21,663 
1868-'69 29,960
1869-'70 57,956
1870-'71 37,585
1871-'72 29,973
1872-'73 52,206
1873-'74 96,546

In corn there has been an effort of late years to create a large foreign trade, which has met with fair success. The exports to transatlantic ports in 1873-'4 were, according to one authority, 1,034,348 bushels, against 695,925 in 1872-'3. The total value of the principal articles received from the interior from 1863-'4 to 1873-'4 is shown in the following table:

YEARS. Value.

1863-'64  $79,233,948 
1864-'65 113,549,285 
1865-'66 201,722,179 
1866-'67 168,343,569 
1867-'68 127,459,561 
1868-'69 167,559,658 
1869-'70  $200,820,496 
1870-'71 170,100,414 
1871-'72 169,756,667 
1872-'73 140,000,000 
1873-'74 170,000,000 

The receipts of leading articles for 1872-'3 and 1873-'4 were as follows:

ARTICLES. 1872-'73. 1873-'74.

Apples, bbls. and boxes 113,934  74,293 
Bacon, casks and hhds. 40,335  27,985 
Bacon, boxes 10,933  7,915 
Bacon, hams, tcs. 20,401  18,578 
Green meat, hhds. 11,748  8,349 
Green meat, boxes 3,551  3,076 
Meats, lbs. in bulk 1,459,208  2,378,974 
Bagging, pieces 7,409  3,960 
Butter, firkins and kegs 32,152  22,344 
Bran, sacks 191,830  117,373 
Beef, bbls. and tcs. 6,769  9,374 
Cotton seed, sacks 839,738  908,993 
Cheese, boxes 52,330  38,231 
Candles, boxes 61,797  54,630 
Coal, bushels  5,841,264   4,943,406 
Corn, bushels 1,877,910  1,433,472 
Corn, sacks 1,384,127  1,316,236 
Corn meal, bbls. 151,465  169,373 
Flour, bbls. 1,046,124  1,001,504 
Hides 439,522  376,073 
Hay, bales 165,698  152,050 
Lard, tcs. 50,257  31,683 
Lard, kegs 55,669  39,586 
Lime, bbls. western 49,905  44,935 
Malt, sacks 55,721  62,602 
Molasses, bbls. 150,640  151,531 
Molasses, half bbls. 5,340  5,262 
Oats, sacks 559,513  466,372 
Onions, bbls. 26,260  15,081 
Oils, cases 16,783  12,636 
Oils, bbls. 23,203  23,663 
Oil cake, sacks 98,523  70,479 
Potatoes, bbls. 201,597  176,420 
Pork, bbls. 101,324  76,427 
Shingles, M 6,255  11,474 
Soap, boxes 27,169  30,023 
Staves, M 3,967  4,234 
Tallow, bbls. and tcs. 5,541  6,327 
Tobacco, hhds. 30,182  16,783 
Tobacco, pkgs., manufactured  69,045  57,628 
Whiskey, bbls. 51,219  33,163 
Wheat, bushels, in bulk 725  323,385 

The following table gives the shipments of a number of commodities by sea and to Mobile and Texas, during the same period:

ARTICLES.  1872-'73.  1873-'74.

Bacon, casks and hhds. 18,029  10,655 
Bacon, boxes 3,625  3,443 
Bran, sacks 42,855  37,229 
Coffee, sacks 32,867  24,756 
Corn, bushels  833,411  1,001,630 
Corn, sacks 833,484  570,256 
Corn meal, bbls. 25,226  23,132 
Flour, bbls. 479,747  476,044 
Hides 568,521  358,708 
Hay, bales 22,842  15,075 
Hams, tcs. ......  5,351 
Lard, tcs. 21,518  13,759 
Lard, kegs 16,598  9,528 
Molasses, bbls. 103,282  93,218 
Oats, sacks 160,635  126,371 
Oils, bbls. 37,060  36,068 
Oil cake, sacks 220,835  256,985 
Pork, bbls. 15,592  8,762 
Salt, sacks 50,682  21,512 
Staves ......   6,514,357 
Sugar, hhds. 15,996  9,170 
Sugar, bbls. 22,596  21,304 
Tobacco, hhds. 19,989  25,947 
Tobacco, pkgs., manufactured  28,910  32,732 
Whiskey, bbls. 33,559  27,069 
Wool, sacks 12,972  14,080 
Wheat, bushels, in bulk None.  323,082 

The manufactures of the city are not extensive. According to the census of 1870, the parish of Orleans contained 911 manufacturing establishments, employing 517 steam engines and 5,640 hands; capital invested, $5,751,985; amount of wages paid during the year, $2,554,554; value of materials used, $4,566,543; of products, $9,980,278. The principal manufactories in 1875 were 5 of cotton-seed oil, 8 of sirup and cordial, 7 of tobacco, 3 of fertilizers, 3 of vinegar, 13 of soap, 5 sugar refineries, 5 distilleries, and 15 breweries. There were also 3 gas companies, 2 ice-manufacturing companies, 5 dry-dock companies or firms, 42 insurance companies, 23 banking institutions, 5 tow-boat companies, and 24 custom-house warehouses, arranged in four classes.—For municipal purposes the city is divided into seven districts, Algiers constituting the fifth, Carrollton the seventh, and the rest of the territory on the left bank the other five. It forms part of the first two congressional districts of the state, and for state legislative purposes is divided into 17 representative districts (in some cases with adjacent parishes) and 6 senatorial districts. The government of the city is administered by a mayor and seven administrators (of finance, commerce, accounts, water works and public buildings, assessments, improvements, and police, respectively) elected by the people for two years. The salary of the mayor is $7,000 a year, that of each of the administrators $6,000. Two coroners are elected for the same period, one serving in the districts below Canal street, the other in those above it (Algiers, or the fifth district, being included in the upper), at a salary of $5,000 and $7,000 each, respectively. There is no city police proper, but a body called metropolitan police, which is virtually a state militia police or state police militia, under the command of the governor, includes in its duties those of policing the city. Its organization is controlled by a board of police commissioners, five in number, appointed by the governor, and having for its president ex officio the lieutenant governor, and the city administrator of police as a member ex officio. The board appoints a superintendent, who ordinarily commands the force. A portion of the body is regularly mounted on suburban duty, and another portion is devoted to harbor duty. The annual expenditure for the body is about $260,000. A fire alarm and police telegraph is under the control of the police board. All police expenses are paid by a city tax. There are ten police stations in which persons arrested are confined until examination. There are five municipal, police, or recorders' courts, in which minor offences are disposed of, and others sent before higher courts. Of the least grave of these the first district court has cognizance; the superior criminal court of the more heinous ones. Minor offenders are confined in the workhouse, others in the parish prison, and convicted felons are sent to the state penitentiary in Baton Rouge. Capital punishments are carried out in the parish prison. The recorders are appointed by the governor, are paid by the city $2,500 per annum each, and have to remit to the city all fines levied. The judges of the district courts receive a salary from the state each of $5,000 per annum, except the judge of the superior district court, who is paid $7,500. The civil administration of justice in cases involving less than $100 is effected through eight courts held by justices of the peace, two in the first district and one in each of the other districts of the city. For amounts above $100 there are six district courts, all sitting in the same building, adjacent to the St. Louis cathedral. The judges and clerks of these courts are elected by the people for four years. The state supreme court sits in New Orleans from November to May, in a building contiguous to the St. Louis cathedral. The United States district and circuit courts sit in the custom house. The fire department is an extensive and influential organization. The city contracts with it for the extinction of all fires, which costs about $160,000 a year. This is all devoted to the general expenses of the association, the support of widows and orphans, the purchase of engines, horses, hose, carriages, and other apparatus, and the erection and repair of engine houses, &c. The members of the association, with the exception of the engineers, housekeepers, and hostlers, give their services voluntarily. There are 18 engine companies, all of whom have fine steam engines, besides four hook and ladder companies. Fire alarms, for which there are more than 100 stations, indicate the precise locality of the station from which they are sent. The fire departments in Jefferson, Algiers, and Carrollton are separate organizations, and have nine engines, several of which are hand machines.—The water of the Mississippi was introduced into the city for domestic uses in 1836. In 1868 the city assumed its reserved right of purchasing the works, paying for them $1,300,000 in city bonds. They are situated a mile and a half above Canal street, about 200 yards from the river. About 11,000 hydrants and 12,000 fire plugs are attached to them; but many of the former are cut off from supply in consequence of inability or unwillingness to pay the rates charged for water by the city. These are $12 per annum for each family of four, and $1 additional for each additional inmate. Most of the dwellings are also provided with large cisterns for rain water. According to the census of 1870, the assessed value of real and personal estate (which in 1860, before the recent additions to the city's jurisdiction, was computed at $125,284,305) was $146,718,888; its true value, $185,625,187. The total taxation not national was $4,191,417, of which $3,050,000 was imposed by the parish, and $1,141,417 by the state. The public debt of the city was stated to be $26,500,000. The state assessment rolls for 1874 show a taxation of $1,986,082 52.—Near Jackson square are the several buildings constituting the French market. Their extent and antique appearance, the abundance and varied character of their supplies, the number of various races seen, and the Babel of languages heard there, have given this market a world-wide fame, which it still deserves. There are 20 other markets, several of which are noteworthy for their neatness, substantiality, and commodiousness. They are farmed out by the year to the highest bidders, who reimburse themselves by the rents of stalls. For 1875 they yielded to the city about $260,000. Besides these public markets there were three wholesale and about 80 private ones, the latter of which a late act of the legislature prohibited. The former transact their business at the abattoir, constructed by a corporate company styled “The Crescent City Live Stock Landing and Slaughter-house Company,” on a property 240 acres in extent. It is situated on the leit river bank adjacent to the lower line of the city. The establishment comprises two cattle-landing wharves; 12 covered cattle pens, each having an area of over 1,000 sq. ft.; 28 open pens, each with an area of about 1,125 sq. ft.; 18 other pens for sheep, hogs, &c.; two receiving pens, each of an area of 600 sq. ft., for cattle immediately to be slaughtered; a slaughter house for cattle in 22 divisions, each of an area of 800 sq. ft.; a slaughter house for smaller animals well supplied with hot as well as cold water, and covering an area of 21,200 sq. ft.; and 22 stables. These buildings are separated from each other by wide and well constructed causeways, and are lofty and airy. Attached to them are two steam engines by which a plentiful supply of water is commanded and the fluid offal is pumped off, covered hide vats, an apparatus for the rapid curing of hides, and a Barbarin patent gas apparatus for lighting the whole establishment. Several dwellings and other buildings are also comprised within the property of the slaughter-house company. The average number of cattle slaughtered is about 1,000 a day in winter and about 700 in summer. The slaughtering of any of these animals elsewhere within the city limits is prohibited by law. An inspector, appointed by the governor, examines all cattle killed and certifies to their fitness for food.—The Howard association is one of the most prominent charitable bodies in the world, in view of the wide extent of its operations, the immense amounts it has disbursed, and the vast number of patients it has succored. Its special mission has been to labor for the relief of sufferers in epidemics, particularly of yellow fever and cholera. In these cases its operations have extended to every city and district in the south which has been afflicted. In seasons of epidemic infliction it has been the depositary of contributions from all parts of the country as well as from the citizens of New Orleans. The hospitals, infirmaries, and asylums in the city are some 55 in number. Prominent among them are the Hôtel-Dieu and Charity, Luzenberg, and smallpox hospitals; the Orleans, Touro, and Circus street infirmaries; the Jewish widows' and orphans' home; and the John McDonogh asylum. The Charity hospital, founded by Don Andres Almonaster y Roxas in 1784, is widely known. It has stood on its present site, in Common street, since 1832, affording a refuge to an average of 500 or 600 patients in ordinary seasons, and to nearly or quite double the number in others. Its domestic management is in the hands of the sisters of charity. It depends almost or entirely upon state appropriations, and hitherto has been well supported. The Hôtel-Dieu, half a mile further back from the river, is a very fine hospital established by the sisters of charity, and supported entirely by receipts from patients, some of whom are nevertheless beneficiary. It occupies a full square, and is surrounded by a well kept garden of shrubbery and flowers. Other prominent institutions are the Poydras female orphan asylum, in Magazine street, in the sixth district, the St. Anna's widows' asylum, the St. Vincent's orphan asylums, the indigent colored orphan asylum, the convent de la Sainte Famille for colored widows, and the German Protestant asylum. The Touro almshouse, founded by Judah Touro, was burned during the civil war by colored troops who had occupied it. Unsuccessful efforts have been made to induce congress to grant an appropriation for the restoration of the buildings. Besides the relief afforded through the various channels already noticed, much more is derived from the freemasons, odd fellows, and numerous similar societies.—To almost all the churches Sunday schools are attached, and a large proportion of them have also regular day schools connected with them. The Catholic church schools are very largely attended, the charges being very low, and in many cases entirely remitted. The public schools in the city are under state control, although the city is called upon to pay the taxes by which they are supported, amounting at present to $360,000 a year. The state board of education, consisting of the state superintendent and six division superintendents, appointed by the governor on the state superintendent's recommendation, elect 18 directors for the city, who choose the assistant superintendent, secretary, assistant secretary, teachers, porters, &c. There are nearly 80 schools, including one boys' high school and two girls' high schools. The other schools are of five grades. There are employed on the average 425 teachers, of whom about nine tenths are females. The salaries vary from $2,400 a year for the principal and $1,500 for associates in the boys' high school, to an average of $766 for teachers in the lowest grade. Teachers in the first grade of grammar schools get $1,500. There are very few private schools of any importance except those attached to religious bodies, and the great majority of others are for young ladies. The Peabody normal institute is supported from a fund bequeathed for such purposes by George Peabody. The Straight university, founded by Mr. Seymour Straight, is exclusively for colored students. It has a corps of six teachers and an average attendance of 100 students. Its instruction is of good grammar school grade. There are separate schools, both public and private, for colored pupils; and a few colored pupils have been admitted into some of the public schools which are nominally exclusively attended by white pupils. Yet the general opposition to “mixed schools” is very deep-seated and resolute in the minds of the white population. The “Agricultural and Mechanical College,” founded under a congressional grant of scrip for over 200,000 acres of land, opened in May, 1874, is a thoroughly “mixed school.” As yet nothing has been taught in practical agriculture or mechanics. It has been established in one of the university buildings in the city, and has a professor of mathematics, a professor of chemistry, a tutor in mechanical drawing, and a tutor in modern languages and history. The board of control have taken steps for a permanent location of the college at Chalmette, St. Bernard parish, on land belonging to the state, to be added to by the purchase of adjacent property on which there are suitable buildings. They report in January, 1875, actual assets to the amount of $240,300 77, and further contingent assets to the amount of $170,800, making a total of $411,100 77. The state university comprises only two departments, law and medicine, but both of these are of very high order, and are very largely patronized, especially the medical department, which during the past several years has had an annual average of nearly 200 students and of about 65 graduates. The state constitution requires a literary department to be connected with the university, but the legislature has hitherto neglected to provide for it. Children are sent to Virginia, to the north, or to Europe for a higher education. A dental college exists, but has not many students. There are four commercial colleges. There is an academy of sciences, founded in 1853, but it has suffered from lack of encouragement and support. To some of the educational establishments there are libraries attached, as to the Straight university and the boys' high school; but these are very limited in extent and character. There is a library belonging to the city and another to the state, which are still respectable, but very far from what they have been. The state library was removed and greatly damaged by neglect and pilfering during the war. Some of the clubs of the city have small libraries. There are a few good private libraries, but they have shared the common fate.—There are about 20 clubs in the city, prominent among which are the Boston, the Pickwick, the Shakespeare, and the Jockey clubs. The Jockey club has a beautiful house and highly decorated and cultivated grounds, on property purchased from the fair grounds. The Shakespeare club gives occasional dramatic performances which are always largely and fashionably attended. The existing theatres properly so called are the St. Charles, the Varieties, the academy of music, the opera house, and the National or Globe. Of these, the St. Charles and the academy are the only two which have been able to continue in operation with success during the late unprosperous times. Besides the theatres there are a score or more of halls in which entertainments of various kinds are given. The principal of these are the masonic hall in St. Charles street, odd fellows' hall and St. Patrick's hall in Camp street, opposite Lafayette square, exposition hall in St. Charles street, and Grünewald hall in Baronne street, between Canal street and the university buildings. The lyceum hall in the city hall, which was built for such purposes, has been transformed into public offices. Among the societies which have been formed for the purpose of festival celebrations are that known as the “King of the Carnival” or “Rex,” in which an effort was made to merge all others, the “Mistick Krewe of Comus,” the “Twelfth Night Revellers,” and the “Knights of Momus.” From Christmas to Lent these various associations give entertainments and processions through the streets, with a gaiety and universal enjoyment unequalled elsewhere in the United States, and culminating in a display of profusion and abandon on Mardi gras or Shrove Tuesday which have made them widely famous.—There are in New Orleans 7 daily (1 French and 1 German), 1 semi-weekly, and 12 weekly newspapers, besides a monthly and a bi-monthly periodical. The number of churches is 142, viz.: Baptist, 22; Congregational, 8; Episcopal, 12; Evangelical Protestant, 5; Jewish, 6; Lutheran, 4; Methodist Episcopal, 22; Methodist Episcopal, South, 11; Presbyterian, 12; Roman Catholic, 38; Swedenborgian, 1; Unitarian, 1.—The site of New Orleans was surveyed in 1717 by De la Tour; it was settled on in 1718, but abandoned in consequence of overflows, storms, and sickness; resettled in 1723, held by the French till 1769, then by the Spanish till 1801, and by the French again till 1803, when, with the state, it was ceded to the United States. It was incorporated in 1804, and in 1836 it was divided into three municipalities, each with a separate government; but in 1852 these municipalities were consolidated, and the limits of the corporation were extended to include the town of Lafayette, lying in the adjacent parish of Jefferson. In 1870 (before the census) Algiers was included within the city limits, and by the same act the corporation was extended over the entire parish of Orleans on the left bank, except Les Petites Coquilles, which are said to have been omitted through a misapprehension in regard to the legal boundaries of the parish. The city of Jefferson, Jefferson parish, was also annexed by this act, and in 1874 Carrollton was added from the same parish. New Orleans was made the capital of the state by the constitution of 1868. The most memorable event in the history of New Orleans, from its transfer to the United States to the breaking out of the civil war, was the battle on Jan. 8, 1815, for an account of which see Jackson, Andrew. The battle was fought on the plains of Chalmette in the parish of St. Bernard, 4 m. from the city, where stands an unfinished marble monument.—New Orleans, being the largest city of the south, its principal shipping port, and the commercial entrepot of the valley of the Mississippi, was of great importance during the first two years of the civil war. Its population mainly sympathized with the movement for secession, and directly after the passage of the South Carolina ordinance the city came practically into the hands of the state authorities, who took possession of the forts below, which commanded the passage of the Mississippi, and on Feb. 1, 1861, seized the United States mint and custom house; and soon after the city was occupied by a considerable confederate force. Plans for its recapture were at once formed by the federal government; but the first definite action took place in February, 1862, when a combined naval and military force, under Commodore Farragut and Gen. Butler, was sent thither. The main obstacle to its advance was Forts Jackson and St. Philip, on opposite banks of the Mississippi, about 83 m. below New Orleans. They were supposed to be very strong, and there was a considerable fleet stationed above them; but on April 24 Farragut succeeded in passing the forts and destroying the vessels above. Passing up the river, he met little opposition, and reached New Orleans, which was entirely commanded by his fleet. He then demanded the formal surrender of the city. The confederate military force had been withdrawn, and the civil officers declared that they had no authority to make a formal surrender; but it was agreed that Farragut should take peaceful possession. In the mean while the forts below, which Farragut had merely passed, were given up, and on May 1 Butler took formal possession of New Orleans as military governor. He ruled the city with great vigor until Dec. 14, when he was superseded by Gen. Banks. Since the close of the war the city has been the scene of several disturbances, growing mainly out of the conflicting pretensions of the two parties claiming to be the legal authorities of the state of Louisiana.