Jackson Square

November 17, 2016   |   0 Comments |  

jackson-square

Jackson Square is one of the most noted locations in the French Quarter.  It is home to some of New Orleans’ most prized structures.  It is often depicted as the symbol of the city.  The square is as unique as the rest of the city and no doubt a must see on your to do list.

Catholicism has been part of the French Quarter’s fabric since it was settled by the French.  It was considered the state religion of France and up until the late 1850’s it was illegal to practice another religion in New Orleans. New Orleans is home to the second largest dioses in the United States.

It is not surprising considering the city’s deep roots with the Catholic religion that it is home to the oldest cathedral in the United States.  The St Louis Cathedral, named for the French King Louis XI sits majestic in Jackson Square. It is one of New Orleans’ most prominent landmarks.  Many individuals are buried under and inside of the cathedral, including men of the faith and wealthy parishioners. Located in different places around the building you can read the names of those individuals, while being mystified by the sheer beauty of the architecture. 

The Presbytere, which sits next to the Cathedral is another main location in Jackson Square.  Its original intention was to house the clergy, since the site of the building was the location of the rectory.  It was used for commercial purposes until 1834 when it was used by Louisiana’s Supreme Court. In 1911 it became part of the Louisiana State Museum and is considered a national landmark.

The Presbytere’s twin, the Cabildo sits on the opposite side of the Cathedral. The Cabildo has many claims to fame, including being the first Mayoral home in New Orleans and the site of the first jail in New Orleans.  The original jail door can still be seen outside the building today.  It was also the location where the Louisiana Purchase was signed in 1803.  In 1911 along with the Presbytere, the Cabildo became a Louisiana State Museum.  It holds Napoleon Bonaparte’s death mask as one of its prized artifacts.

No story about Jackson square can be complete, without mentioning the man the square was named after.  Major General Andrew Jackson, considered to be the hero of the battle of New Orleans.  Jackson, the seventh President of the United States and the founder of the Democratic Party is a vital part of Louisiana’s history. He is forever cemented in the front of the square on top of his beloved horse named Hurricane.

While Jackson square is home to so much of New Orleans history, it is home to so many present day characters.  You can see street performers, palm readers, musicians and artist all sitting out there to make your experience one you can only find in New Orleans.

Let one of our experienced guides take you on a trip to see the marvels that not only Jackson Square holds, but the entire city of New Orleans.

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