Most of us know it as the "West
Bank" (some detractors
have called it the "worst bank," only to be countered by defenders who insist that it's the "best bank). Historically,
though, the section of Orleans Parish across the Mississippi River from the "city proper" was always known as
the "Right Bank." Indeed, during the years from
1846 to 1870, the area was governed by the Police Jury of the Parish of
Orleans on the Right Bank of the River Mississippi. Since 1870 Algiers has been known as the Fifth Municipal District
of the City of New Orleans.
For most of its history Algiers was a village sandwiched between the commercial activity on the River and the agricultural activity of the vast majority of its 13,000 acres. With the opening of the Greater New Orleans Mississippi River Bridge in 1958, the Right Bank of New Orleans began to take on the appearance of a modern suburb, with new brick houses built on slab foundations, shopping centers and country clubs. But Old Algiers, centered in the Algiers Point neighborhood, still retains much of the appearance and pace of the quiet village of years past.
This exhibit provides only a taste of Algiers in this the 130th anniversary of its annexation by the City of New Orleans. It is drawn from materials in the City Archives, the Louisiana Photograph Collections, and other collections in the New Orleans Public Library's Louisiana Division. The exhibit was designed and mounted by two left-bankers, Irene Wainwright and Wayne Everard, archivists of the New Orleans City Archives. It will remain on view on the third floor of the Main Library through the end of the year 2000. This online version will be available permanently in NUTRIAS.
Follow these links to view the exhibit: