Louisiana Division/City Archives   New Orleans Public Library

Images of the Month Gallery
January 2006

The images in this month's gallery date from 1947 or from the early- to mid-1950's. The first nine of them (from the Department of Streets collection) show streets in sections of New Orleans that were badly flooded by Hurricane Katrina. The next two (from the U.S. Corps of Engineers collection), taken after the hurricane of September 1947, show the two of the major causes of the flood -- the 17th Street and Industrial Canals, which failed, allowing the waters of Lake Pontchartrain and the Gulf of Mexico to swamp our city. The final image (from the Sewerage and Water Board collection) illustrates one of the major controversies to grow out of the levee failures -- the role of engineering design in the disaster. Accompanying the streets images is the estimated flood level at each location on September 19, 2005; these flood levels speak for themselves.

These locations are all dry now. Some of them are beginning to come back; some, as yet, are not. The citizens of New Orleans were encouraged last month by the promise of federal funds to repair the levees that failed us. As in all of the Images of the Month galleries that we have put up since Katrina, this one suggests signs of hope and, at the same time, reminds us of the continuing questions about the future that mark our city today.

Happy New Year, New Orleans! Here's to a better year in 2006!

Click on the images to see a larger version and accompanying text.
And click HERE to visit previous Images of the Month.

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