THE LAST MADAM A LIFE IN THE NEW ORLEANS UNDERWORLD

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The Last Madam

Author : Chris Wiltz
ISBN : 9781497658509
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 71.23 MB
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The “raunchy, hilarious, and thrilling” true story of the incomparable Norma Wallace, proprietor of a notorious 1920s New Orleans brothel (NPR). Norma Wallace grew up fast. In 1916, at fifteen years old, she went to work as a streetwalker in New Orleans’ French Quarter. By the 1920s, she was a “landlady”—or, more precisely, the madam of what became one of the city’s most lavish brothels. It was frequented by politicians, movie stars, gangsters, and even the notoriously corrupt police force. But Wallace acquired more than just repeat customers. There were friends, lovers . . . and also enemies. Wallace’s romantic interests ran the gamut from a bootlegger who shot her during a fight to a famed bandleader to the boy next door, thirty-nine years her junior, who became her fifth husband. She knew all of the Crescent City’s dirty little secrets, and used them to protect her own interests—she never got so much as a traffic ticket, until the early 1960s, when District Attorney Jim Garrison decided to clean up vice and corruption. After a jail stay, Wallace went legitimate as successfully as she had gone criminal, with a lucrative restaurant business—but it was love that would undo her in the end. The Last Madam combines original research with Wallace’s personal memoirs, bringing to life an era in New Orleans history rife with charm and decadence, resurrecting “a secret world, like those uncovered by Luc Sante and James Ellroy” (Publishers Weekly). It reveals the colorful, unforgettable woman who reigned as an underworld queen and “capture[s] perfectly the essential, earthy complexity of the most fascinating city on this continent” (Robert Olen Butler).
Category: Biography & Autobiography

Storyville

Author : Lois Battle
ISBN : 9781101640227
Genre : Fiction
File Size : 88.41 MB
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From turn-of-the-century New Orleans, a city renowned for sin, seduction, and sex, comes a tale of two women inextricably linked by “the District” of Storyville, where prostitution was legal—and flourishing. Kate—young, beautiful, and abandoned by a man who doesn’t love her—finds herself thrown on the mercies of the city. Julia Randsome is a transplanted Yankee, a supporter of women’s rights, who against everyone’s advice marries into one of the city’s most prominent families. Though they occupy different universes in New Orleans, somehow all roads bring Kate and Julia to the same place…back to the District. As lush and provocative as New Orleans is itself, Storyville sweeps across lines of caste and blood, money and desire—and into the voluptuous secrets of a city as tempting as any on earth. “Lois Battle is a born storyteller.”—The Washington Post “Storyville comes to lurid life.”—Kirkus Reviews
Category: Fiction

New Orleans Mon Amour

Author : Andrei Codrescu
ISBN : 9781565127906
Genre : Fiction
File Size : 42.44 MB
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A “lovely collection” of essays by the NPR commentator about his beloved adopted city, both before and after Hurricane Katrina (Publishers Weekly). NPR commentator Andrei Codrescu has long written about the unique city he calls home. How apt that a refugee born in Transylvania found his place where vampires roam the streets and voodoo queens live around the corner; where cemeteries are the most popular picnic spots; the ghosts of poets, prostitutes, and pirates are palpable; and in the French Quarter, no one ever sleeps. Codrescu’s essays have been called “satirical gems,” “subversive,” “funny,” “gonzo,” and “wittily poignant”—here is a writer who perfectly mirrors the wild, voluptuous character of New Orleans itself. This retrospective follows him from newcomer to near native: first seduced by the lush banana trees in his backyard and the sensual aroma of coffee at the café down the block, Codrescu soon becomes a Window Gang regular at the infamous bar Molly’s on Decatur; does a stint as King of Krewe de Vieux Carré at Mardi Gras; befriends artists, musicians, and eccentrics; and exposes the city’s underbelly of corruption, warning presciently about the lack of planning for floods in a city high on its own insouciance. Alas, as we all now know, Paradise is lost, but here Codrescu also writes about how the city’s heart still beats even after 2005’s devastating hurricane. New Orleans, Mon Amour is a portrait of an incomparable place, from a writer who “manages to be brilliant and insightful, tough and seductive about American culture” (The New York Times Book Review). “Finely honed portraits of a fabled city and its equally fabled inhabitants. The author, who has called the Big Easy home for two decades, shows how, like some gigantic bohemian magnet, New Orleans attracts some of the world’s most talented, self-indulgent freaks. Codrescu finds himself quite at home there. He expertly weaves pages of New Orleans history through his stories of personal discovery and debauchery. . . . Readers can’t help coming away from reading it without an abiding hope in the ability of ordinary people, under the worst circumstances, rising to whatever challenges they face.” —Publishers Weekly
Category: Fiction

Spectacular Wickedness

Author : Emily Epstein Landau
ISBN : 9780807150160
Genre : History
File Size : 80.67 MB
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From 1897 to 1917 the red-light district of Storyville commercialized and even thrived on New Orleans's longstanding reputation for sin and sexual excess. This notorious neighborhood, located just outside of the French Quarter, hosted a diverse cast of characters who reflected the cultural milieu and complex social structure of turn-of-the-century New Orleans, a city infamous for both prostitution and interracial intimacy. In particular, Lulu White -- a mixed-race prostitute and madam -- created an image of herself and marketed it profitably to sell sex with light-skinned women to white men of means. In Spectacular Wickedness, Emily Epstein Landau examines the social history of this famed district within the cultural context of developing racial, sexual, and gender ideologies and practices. Storyville's founding was envisioned as a reform measure, an effort by the city's business elite to curb and contain prostitution -- namely, to segregate it. In 1890, the Louisiana legislature passed the Separate Car Act, which, when challenged by New Orleans's Creoles of color, led to the landmark Plessy v. Ferguson decision in 1896, constitutionally sanctioning the enactment of "separate but equal" laws. The concurrent partitioning of both prostitutes and blacks worked only to reinforce Storyville's libidinous license and turned sex across the color line into a more lucrative commodity. By looking at prostitution through the lens of patriarchy and demonstrating how gendered racial ideologies proved crucial to the remaking of southern society in the aftermath of the Civil War, Landau reveals how Storyville's salacious and eccentric subculture played a significant role in the way New Orleans constructed itself during the New South era.
Category: History

Mr New Orleans

Author : Matthew Randazzo V
ISBN : 0692237488
Genre :
File Size : 46.34 MB
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Wiseguys called him "the Keith Richards of the American Mafia" and JFK hero Jim Garrison denounced him as "one of the most notorious vice operators in the history of New Orleans" ... but you can just call him MR. NEW ORLEANS. Mr. New Orleans tells the incredible story of Frenchy Brouillette, a redneck Cajun teenager who stole his big brother's motorcycle and embarked on a 60-year vacation to New Orleans, where he became a legendary gangster and the underworld political fixer for his cousin, Louisiana Governor Edwin Edwards. Written by Crescent City native Matthew Randazzo V, the wickedly funny Mr. New Orleans is the first book to ever break the code of secrecy of the New Orleans Mafia Family, the oldest and most mysterious criminal secret society in America. "Mr. New Orleans is a rollicking, disturbing ride through the underbelly of a bygone New Orleans, lined with moments of dark, side-splitting hilarity. If you're a fan of James Lee Burke, drop what you're reading and pick this one up. In an era when popular wisdom tells us T.V. has stolen all depth from the literary true-crime narrative, Matthew Randazzo has found a way to beat that trend mightily; he's gone straight to the source and captured the singular, confounding voice of the New Orleans' mafia's top political fixer with fast-paced, riveting prose and a fine journalist's eye for detail." Chris Rice, New York Times Bestselling Author "Mr. New Orleans is a total knockout: Take everything you ever imagined about the sleazy good times to be had in New Orleans -- the sleazy good times capital of America -- and quadruple it, and you have a hint of what's inside these sticky pages." Bill Tonelli, Author of The Italian American Reader and Editor for Esquire and Rolling Stone
Category:

Madam

Author : Cari Lynn
ISBN : 9781101634752
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 78.99 MB
Format : PDF
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When vice had a legal home and jazz was being born—the captivating story of an infamous true-life madam New Orleans, 1900. Mary Deubler makes a meager living as an “alley whore.” That all changes when bible-thumping Alderman Sidney Story forces the creation of a red-light district that’s mockingly dubbed “Storyville.” Mary believes there’s no place for a lowly girl like her in the high-class bordellos of Storyville’s Basin Street, where Champagne flows and beautiful girls turn tricks in luxurious bedrooms. But with gumption, twists of fate, even a touch of Voodoo, Mary rises above her hopeless lot to become the notorious Madame Josie Arlington. Filled with fascinating historical details and cameos by Jelly Roll Morton, Louis Armstrong, and E. J. Bellocq, Madam is a fantastic romp through The Big Easy and the irresistible story of a woman who rose to power long before the era of equal rights. From the Trade Paperback edition.
Category: Biography & Autobiography

Madame Vieux Carre

Author : Scott S. Ellis
ISBN : 9781604733594
Genre : New Orleans (La.)
File Size : 37.34 MB
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Celebrated in media and myth, New Orleans's French Quarter (Vieux Carr(r)) was the original settlement of what became the city of New Orleans. In Madame Vieux Carr(r), Scott S. Ellis presents the social and political history of this famous district as it evolved from 1900 through the beginning of the twenty-first century. From the immigrants of the 1910s, to the preservationists of the 1930s, to the nightclub workers and owners of the 1950s and the urban revivalists of the 1990s, Madame Vieux Carr(r) examines the many different people who have called the Quarter home, who have defined its character, and who have fought to keep it from being overwhelmed by tourism's neon and kitsch. The old French village took on different roles--bastion of the French Creoles, Italian immigrant slum, honky-tonk enclave, literary incubator, working-class community, and tourist playground. The Quarter has been a place of refuge for various groups before they became mainstream Americans. Although the Vieux Carr(r) has been marketed as a free-wheeling, boozy tourist concept, it exists on many levels for many groups, some with competing agendas. Madame Vieux Carr(r) looks, with unromanticized frankness, at these groups, their intentions, and the future of the South's most historic and famous neighborhood. The author, a former Quarter resident, combines five years of research, personal experience, and unique interviews to weave an eminently readable history of one of America's favorite neig
Category: New Orleans (La.)

New Orleans Memories

Author : Carolyn Kolb
ISBN : 9781617038846
Genre : Travel
File Size : 43.4 MB
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Carolyn Kolb provides a delightful and detailed look into the heart of her city, New Orleans. She is a former Times-Picayune reporter and current columnist for New Orleans Magazine, where versions of these essays appeared as “Chronicles of Recent History.” Kolb takes her readers, both those who live in New Orleans and those who love it as visitors, on a virtual tour of her favorite people and places. Divided into sections on food, Mardi Gras, literature, and music, these short essays can be read in one gulp or devoured slowly over time. Either way, the reader will find a welcome companion and guide in Kolb. In bringing her stories up to date, Kolb’s writings reflect an ongoing pattern of life in her fascinating city. Since the devastation of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, some of these things remembered will never return. Some of the people whose stories Kolb tells are no longer with us. It is important to her, and to us, that they not be forgotten. Kolb, and her readers, can honor them by sharing and enjoying their stories. As Kolb says, “When things fail, when the lights go out and the roof caves in and the water rises, all that remains, ultimately, is the story.” This collection of such stories was made with love.
Category: Travel

New Orleans Mourning

Author : Julie Smith
ISBN : 9780804107389
Genre : Fiction
File Size : 86.96 MB
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When the smiling King of Carnival is killed at Mardi Gras, policewoman Skip Langdon is on the case. She knows the upper-crust family of the victim and that it hides more than its share of glittering skeletons. But nothing could prepare her for the tangled web of clues and ancient secrets that would mean danger for her--and doom for the St. Amants.... "Smith is a gifted writer." THE WASHINGTON POST BOOK WORLD
Category: Fiction

Intimate Enemies

Author : Christina Vella
ISBN : 9780807149669
Genre : History
File Size : 22.99 MB
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Born into wealth in New Orleans in 1795 and married into misery fifteen years later, the Baroness Micaela Almonester de Pontalba led a life ripe for novelization. Intimate Enemies, however, is the spellbinding true account of this resilient woman's life -- and the three men who most affected its course. Immediately upon marrying Célestin de Pontalba, Micaela was removed to his family's estate in France. For twenty years her father-in-law attempted to drive her to abandon Célestin; by law he could then seize control of her fortune. He tried dozens of strategies, including at one point instructing the entire Pontalba household to pretend she was invisible. Finally, in 1834, the despairing elder Pontalba trapped Micaela in a bedroom and shot her four times before turning his gun on himself. Miraculously, she survived. Five years later, after securing both a separation from Célestin and legal power over her wealth, Micaela focused her attention on building, following in the footsteps of her late, illustrious father, Andrés Almonester. Her Parisian mansion, the Hôtel Pontalba, is today the official residence of the American embassy in France; and her Pontalba Buildings, which flank Jackson's Square in New Orleans, form together with her father's St. Louis Cathedral, Presbytere, and Cabildo one of the loveliest architectural complexes in America. As for Célestin, he eventually suffered a total physical and mental breakdown and begged Micaela to return. She did so, caring for him for the next twenty-three years until her death in 1874. In Intimate Enemies, Christina Vella embroiders the compelling story of the Almonester-Pontalba alliance against a richly woven background of the events and cultures of two centuries and two vivid societies. She provides a window into the yellow fever epidemics that raged in New Orleans; the rebuilding of Paris, the Paris Commune uprising, and the Second Empire of Napoleon III; European ideas of power, class, money, marriage, and love during the baroness' lifetime and their inflection in the New World setting of New Orleans; medical treatments, legal procedures, imperial court life, banking practices, and much more. Combining the historian's meticulous research with the biographer's exacting knowledge of her subject and the novelist's gift for narrative, Vella has crafted a rare cross-genre work that will capture the imagination and admiration of every reader.
Category: History