New Orleans City Government
Twenty Years Ago

April 1979

Norman Jones, a laborer with the New Orleans Aviation Board, was one of the employees who helped to see that the grounds around the New Orleans International Airport were clean and well-maintained in April, 1979. Then, as now, Jones' job was an important one, since the airport often provides the first, and last, impression of New Orleans that visitors to the city receive. This issue of Hall Talk also included an article, "Keeping Up With the Joneses," which pictured five other city employees named Jones, all unrelated. Included was Julie Jones, a page at NOPL's Napoleon Branch (now the Children's Resource Center.)

Once again we present below a sample of other City Government Happenings that were reported in Hall Talk twenty years ago.

In the Memo: From the Mayor column, Mayor Dutch Morial reported that they city was able "to prevail upon the National Football League owners to bring Super Bowl XV on January 25, 1981, to New Orleans and the Superdome." The Mayor also apologized ahead of time to "you football widows'" who might not think his news was good news.

In Employee knows "Who Shot the La La" But, he's not telling, NOPD's Building Services Supervisor Oliver Morgan stayed mum about that great mystery of rock and roll. Morgan's recording of "Who Shot the La La" sold nearly a million copies in 1962.

Employees of the Sewerage and Water Board were busy microfilming all of their house connection records, dating back to 1904. The microfilm was later transferred to the City Archives at New Orleans Public Library, where it is often used by patrons researching the history of their houses or other buildings in the city.

Leonard Lassalle's Out to Lunch column reviewed Mother's restaurant where, in those long-ago days, the Ferdi Special cost $2.50. "On any given day, you will find the whole spectrum of the New Orleans work force there--," Mr. Lassalle wrote, "from longshoreman to Councilman--plus a large tourist trade." These days, the tourists tend to outnumber the workers, and the Ferdi costs $7.50!

Gas prices were on the rise twenty years ago, just as they are in April 1999. The Hall Talk Asks roving reporter and photographer visited the Sewerage and Water Board's Billing Section with the query, "How high will gasoline prices have to go before you give up driving?" Employee Carol Stratton answered, "It's high enough now but if it would go up to more than a dollar a gallon, I would get a good may with lots of money to pay for my gas."

January, 1979
February, 1979
March, 1979

The Louisiana Division of the Library has a complete set
of Hall Talk in its City Documents Collection.
Come by and read about the past some time!