Frenchmen, Desire, Good Children: . . . and Other Streets of New Orleans!

Frenchmen Desire Good Children and Other Streets of New Orleans John Chase has taken what in lesser hands would have been a dull recounting of fact and made a delightfully accurate yet breezy book New Orleans Times Picayune History in its most painless form lighte

  • Title: Frenchmen, Desire, Good Children: . . . and Other Streets of New Orleans!
  • Author: John Churchill Chase
  • ISBN: 9781565549319
  • Page: 414
  • Format: Paperback
  • John Chase has taken what in lesser hands would have been a dull recounting of fact and made a delightfully accurate yet breezy book New Orleans Times Picayune History in its most painless form lightened not only by cartoons but by narrative approach New York Herald TribuneThe history of New Orleans is a street level story, with names like Iberville, Terpsichor John Chase has taken what in lesser hands would have been a dull recounting of fact and made a delightfully accurate yet breezy book New Orleans Times Picayune History in its most painless form lightened not only by cartoons but by narrative approach New York Herald TribuneThe history of New Orleans is a street level story, with names like Iberville, Terpsichore, Gravier, Tchoupitoulas, and, of course, Bourbon, presenting the city s past with every step The late John Churchill Chase eloquently chronicles the origins and development of the most fascinating of American cities in this humorous read.Frenchmen, Desire, Good Children details the interesting stories of the developers and families as well as the infamous and famous people, places, and events from which the city s names and character are drawn First published by now defunct New Orleans publisher Robert L Crager in 1949, the book remains funny and informative, generally accepted as a standard reference about the Crescent City.

    883 Comment

    • Christoph says:

      As a resident of the city Post-Katrina (five years now), I am almost to a point I can legally call myself a "New Orleanian". In so doing I am able to do certain things that tourists arent allowed to: bad-mouth the city, join a krewe, cook authentic dishes, etc. But with all that I will risk it to do the thing you arent allowed to do EVER: put tradition into question. I am going to call bullshit on this book!Dont get me wrong, a book about New Orleans by a New Orleanian is required by law itself [...]

    • Richard Gazala says:

      I've navigated thousands of streets in scores of cities round the world, only rarely stopping to ponder much how those street names have to say about their cities' stories, whether glorious or sordid. Nowadays many of us traverse modern cities cut into neat blocks by roads efficiently but boringly designated chiefly by numbers and letters, or states and presidents. (As in, "I'll meet you at the corner of 32nd and U, not Virginia and Jefferson.") Especially for those people, John Chases' book "Fr [...]

    • Eric Sarrett says:

      First published in 1949, its age shows at time, but the fact that it's still in print and recommended by locals is testament to its strength. Tells history of New Orleans through the quirky street names. Humorous and fascinating. It drags at times, especially later, but a good place to start if you're interested in local history. Helps to know street names. See my full review at myyearofmardigras/2013

    • Jamie says:

      Finally I get to read it! It was an easy, entertaining read about New Orleans history.

    • Danielle says:

      Interesting history - definitely from another time before civil rights/human rights but if you take that with a grain of salt, it is an interesting perspective of New Orleans history told as roads became named.

    • Travis says:

      Rambling, though mostly interesting, history of New Orleans as told through the origins of its street names.

    • Meen says:

      I adore New Orleans. It is a most fascinating city. I've been looking forward to this one for a while but had to finish my research projct and my degree and take the LSAT before I started anything nonfiction. This will be poignant, too, considering how little recovery there has been in N.O. since Katrina.Update: Woah, this book was first written in the '40s, and the racist commentary about the Choctaws in the first couple chapters almost made me puke. This edition was published in 1979, but appa [...]

    • Sharon says:

      This book was recommended by a friend, as it would be useful in my research for a novel I'm writing. She was correct.John Churchill Chase started out studying the history of New Orleans street names in order to use the information in speeches at his local Toastmasters Club in the 1940s. He subsequently became known as such an expert that he was offered a book contract, resulting in the 1949 first edition of this book. The current edition was published in 1959, with an additional chapter updating [...]

    • Austin says:

      In a city with a history as rich and diversified as New Orleans even the street names have their origins rooted in corruption, glad handing, back stabbing and local legend. In John Chase’s Frenchman, Desire, Good Children…d Other Streets of New Orleans! the task of tracking down the history of many of the streets in the historic areas of the crescent city. While the book is filled with nice tidbits and fun facts, it gets bogged down in a history lesson that tend to wander and repeat itself w [...]

    • Conan says:

      I love New Orleans! And I'm currently reading two books that are recounting tremendous histories through a niche lense. In this book, John Chase relives the history of New Orleans through its eclectic array of street names. Not only was he a witty cartoonist, this book is a nice read (and you can also remember some of your high school history!) UPDATE: I finished this book a-WHILE ago. And I was just married in the Big Easy back in June, so it was very cool to go back to this wonderful city with [...]

    • Aaron says:

      I really easy book to read on the basic historical nomenclature of it's streets and tidbits of insight of the people that colonized it and so on. I had just visited New Orleans a couple of weeks ago and reading this made a good accompaniment since the history I had learned on a couple tours were still fresh in my head. Other than that you should visit New Orleans for it's full of history and still seeped in traditions of when it was colonized.*My tour guide told our group of this book when we vi [...]

    • Marcelle says:

      loved it. really increased my appreciation for the city, and taught me a bit about the bourbon dynasty in france, which has sparked my interest so much that after i get off of this nola books kick i'm on, i'm going to go on a france run. while the book is well written and interesting, i think its not recommended if you don't have some sense of where the streets are that chase is talking about. one thing that is pretty apparent is the time of publication - iirc, its 1946 - so much has changed in [...]

    • Storey Clayton says:

      So this is a fascinating depiction of the history of New Orleans through the lens of its disproportionately quirky street-names, which I loved learning about. That said, it's a relic of 1949 thinking about culture and race, meaning the history is laced with the same sort of historical perspective as that era, or arguably more like 1749. If you can stomach the cringey perspectives on pretty much everyone who is not a white wealthy landowner, then there's some interesting history here. Basically i [...]

    • Aimée says:

      Good stuff for Louisiana History nerds and teachers. However, once you get to the last chapter, read it. In this chapter, he corrects all of the major errors through the whole book. Like, giant ones. Some that, when I was reading, jumped out at me as though something was wrong. And then that leads me to wonder, what the heck? Why wouldn't you just correct it? What if you only read select chapters and never got to the last one? Bad editing decision.

    • Melanie says:

      This book is obviously dated (language and prevailing social/political thought) and I imagine that some of those things impacted the lens through which some of this history is told. That said, this book is informative and interesting, especially for anyone who has walked the streets of New Orleans pondering their rich history.

    • HeavyReader says:

      This is the book to read if you want to know why New Orleans has so many weird street names.I used to live on Rampart Street, which used to be called Love Street. It was called Love Street because it was the street where many rich white men built houses for their free women of color mistresses and the children who were produced by these unions.Fascinating history.

    • Ronn says:

      Interesting enough, I suppose. But even as a regular visitor to New Orleans, I have a hard time following the geography, and with only hand-drawn cartoon maps, it is very hard to get a feeling for modern locations. Perhaps more recent editions have addressed this problem.

    • Sean Chick says:

      This is really an anecdotal history of New Orleans before the Civil War, error prone and noted for Chase's dislike of the Choctaw and the Bourbons. It gets dull towards the end but it is mostly a fun little ride.

    • mia says:

      the history of the naming of the streets of new orleans - which have some pretty weird names so it does make you wonder. The stories are really neat and some are very odd. Who would think it is a good idea to name a street Elysian Fields? Would you like to live there?

    • Christian says:

      An essential New Orleans read. I think the history is exaggerated in a bunch of spots in order to get a laugh but I enjoyed every minute of the book and it inspired me to seek out more information about the history of NOLA.

    • Trevor Acy says:

      Recommended by long time New Orleans resident, this book was a great introduction to this fasacinating city, its history, and where all the crazy street names came from. If you enjoy learning about origins of any nature then you would do well to pick up a copy.

    • David Kimberly says:

      This is one of the best books on New Orleans history I have read, and I've read a few. It's fascinating. If you've been to New Orleans, you've wondered about the unique street names, they are like no where else. Chase works them into a narrative of the history of the city from the beginning.

    • Steven says:

      I really loved this book. I learned so much valuable information on the history of New Orleans from its streets and how they came to be. I will be using this as one of my main sources for my undergrad research project when I return to New Orleans, once again, next month.

    • Jenae says:

      An entertaining account of the wild history of New Orleans, told through the names of her streets. Chase's narrative voice and beautifully hilarious cartoons make this a very quick and enjoyable read.Upon re-reading: a bit more dry the second time around, but still a light read.

    • Daylily says:

      I picked this book up while on a visit to New Orleans at the suggestion of one of the tour guides. It gives a detailed history of the foundation of this unique city. Needless to say, I fell I love with New Orleans and its history. As a note this book was written decades ago.

    • Christina says:

      Fun, entertaining read for New Orleans natives, transplants, tourists, whomever My mom and I shared a lot of laughs over this one!

    • Heather says:

      This is a great read for a New Orleans history buff as long as you can get past the racism of the author.

    • Linda says:

      Fun historic factsa wee bit dated in some of the references toward original inhabitantsbut it was written a long time ago. Enjoyed it

    • Jbduhe says:

      A great angle on learning the history of New Orleans through the names of its streets! Thoroughly enjoyable to read and very informative. Each chapter may be read as a stand alone essay.

    • Ann says:

      A popular history of New Orleans, with an emphasis on popular.

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