Thursday Doors – On the way to Bourbon St

Immaculate Conception church
Immaculate Conception church

New Orleans, like most older cities, has a rich mix of architecture and with that comes, well, what else, doors. Although I had set out to capture photos of Bourbon Street doors, before the throngs of people crowded the sidewalks and entryways, I was delayed on several occasions during my walk by other interesting doors. I tucked these away, hoping to be able to discover something interesting about these buildings.

I discovered that it’s pretty easy to find information about otherwise meaningless places. Let’s face it, it’s not like I was looking up the history of The Battle of New Orleans, which, by the way, was the final major battle of the War of 1812. I mention that battle, because, in some sense, the war had ended before that battle was fought. The combatants just weren’t aware. It’s not like they had cell phones and 24-hr news feeds. The battle was fought more than 22 years before the telegraph was invented. My guess is that information back then was carried by a rider on a succession of fast horses.

OK, pretty far off topic. Sorry Norm.

The featured door is at the entrance to The Immaculate Conception church, also known as Jesuit church. In reading about this church, I was surprised to discover that it’s a duplicate of its former self. The first Immaculate Conception church was built on the same site, in the 1850s, completed in 1857. While they were building the nearby Pere Marquette building, the church’s floor split in half as a result of damage to the foundation. The church was disassembled in 1928. A new foundation was poured and the church was rebuilt on the same site. The current building was dedicated in 1930.

The Rectory for the Immaculate Conception church, and its door, can also be found in the gallery today.

Le Pavillon Hotel
Main entrance to the Le Pavillon Hotel

The runner-up for featured door is the main entrance to Le Pavillon Hotel. I love the intricate curved muntins in the beautiful glass doors. Originally called the New Denechaud Hotel, after the owner, Justin Denechaud. The hotel opened in 1907. He built the hotel to withstand fires, and to offer good views to all guests (see the photo of the building on its lot). In 1913, new owners renamed it the Hotel DeSoto. According to the hotel’s history page:

“It became a popular destination for visiting dignitaries, and during the Prohibition Era, an underground passage stretching about a block and a half to another building was put to use when discreet exits by politicians and other well-knowns were needed.”

Also in the gallery, are two not-so-discrete entrances: Cajun Mike’s Pub, that boasts about its atmosphere and bill of fare on Facebook with the tag-line: “Far rowdier and down-the-bayou food and drinks!” and the Green Door. Perhaps, the less said about the Green Door the better. I will say that if you look it up, you will find references to the New Orleans Vice Squad. Also nearby, the Big Pie Pizza and Bar, whose wood and glass doors behind beautiful iron-work, I really enjoyed.

Eagle Saloon
Eagle Saloon

The final building featured in the Gallery today is the Eagle Saloon, a building that is the target of a community rescue effort. It seems this building has had a few brushes with death over the years. The 19th-century building was purchased by Jerome “PopAgee” Johnson who had dreams of reviving the badly dilapidated jazz club, through the non-profit New Orleans Music Hall of Fame. Unfortunately, Johnson died in 2014, without having raised the required funding. The group is still working, with the hope of having a jazz club on the first floor while the upper floors would be devoted to jazz history and education. You can read the entire history here.

This post is part of Norm Frampton’s fun weekly series, Thursday Doors. If you like looking at and learning about doors, architecture, photos, paintings, Thursday Doors is the place for you. Saunter on over to Norm’s place and look for the blue linky button. Check out his doors while you’re there.

85 thoughts on “Thursday Doors – On the way to Bourbon St

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    1. Yes, and also “A Few Bloody Noses” – I always enjoy the British view. Ironically, I had just watched a documentary on the White House the night before I wrote this. They showed a bit of video (obviously not live) as the British soldiers set fire to and looted the White House. Following up with the Dolly Madison story (where she saves George Washington’s portrait). Always more than one side to an issue :)

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    1. Thanks Judy. I think these doors are within a block or two of one another. They certainly aren’t far apart. It’s interesting to learn about how cities grew, but you’re right, NOLA has a complicated history.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. This was a fun door post…brought back memories of New Orleans, although I don’t remember seeing any of the places you featured. The LePavillon Hotel looks high class and exquisite. I like the entire building and wouldn’t mind spending a night or two there.

    I laughed at The Green Door photo. I saw a few of those places while there with a girlfriend. We would chuckle at them and keep on walking.

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    1. Thanks Mary. Wasn’t there a movie. Behind the Green Door? Maybe. Nothing good going to come from that trip. Walking around that city, I swear, I was stopping eery few feet to snap another door-photo.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Norm. I was torn between that and the church, but the fact that the door was open and the story of the church breaking in half made that more interesting to me. So many doors and so much iron work in that city.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. You always feature interesting doors, Dan, but the ones from New Orleans tend to be real attention-grabbers. You could have left the text out and simply posted caption-less pics, and although I’ve yet to visit the Big Easy, I would have known right away which city it is.

    And even though most old urban areas tend to feature a mixture of styles, there’s something about New Orleans that is unique in this area. What a potpourri of entrances!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Paul – you are exactly right. I walk through other cities and see an interesting door here and there. In NOLA, it was like “just keep the camera out” – I have enough NO Doors to fill 3-4 more Thursdays.

      I do have to say, you have quite a collection of interesting doors in DC as well. I have e few more posts to come out of those trips, too.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Deborah. I’m craving a seafood Po-boy and an ice cold beer. I hope they pull the Eagle Saloon out of the ruins. Jazz club, cajun food, beer/wine – makes a compelling case.

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    1. I’m glad you like the door I chose to feature, Kate. I just loved the story about how they had to build it twice. Cajun Mike’s looks like a place I might stop for a bite to eat, if it opened earlier.

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  3. I think New Orleans is door heaven. The perfect time to take pictures is the morning after Mardi Gras just after the streets get cleaned up. You get maximum doors with minimum people holding you up from that ‘perfect’ shot.

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      1. I think it’s a good 8-10 hour drive but very doable for sure! I do like a good road trip. And just think of all the doors we could see along the way! Heck, I may never get there though if I stop too much, lol.

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            1. I think it may be the best way to do it! And safe too. Just think, no one can anticipate your arrival and plan bad things around it. (An Army security thing-the element of surprise.) So you are spontaneous AND tactically secure. Who knew?

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  4. SO much to say. Love the gears to open the door. Love that photo. Would frame it and hang it in my house.
    The first church, well that brickwork! And they rebuilt it? Astounding! Love the rectory as well, yellow always helps my loving the things. “Faith seeking understanding” is an excellent phrase, so bonus on that rectory.
    Also, the pizza place doors. Those narrow wooden doors with grates/gates across them, that’s how I remember much of New Orleans.
    Le Pavillon is ooh la la, so pristine with its white and fancy.
    I appreciate this contrast in cities, the dilapidated next to the magnificent. A little of this, a little of that.
    Great doors, Dan! :)

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    1. Thanks Joey! If you want a high-res shot of those gears, I’ll stick one up on Flickr. That’s the photo I worked n the longest. It’s not a door, but I really like it. All of these doors are in such close proximity that it really does make you wonder, but it works pretty well as a city, so… The thought of having to build that church twice just boggled my mind.

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  5. As soon as I read “The Battle of New Orleans”, Johnny Horton started singing in my head. ♫ “In 1814 we took a little trip…” ♫ That’s going to be stuck in there all day. Thanks so much, Dan. O_o

    The featured door is beautiful, but I do prefer the Pavillon Hotel entrance. Gorgeous, gorgeous detailing, from the columns to the monogrammed “P” above the door, to those wonderful lions (huge fan of stone lions). And I like that you can see the lit chandeliers inside. That’s a place I would very much like to go.

    Though when I think “N’Orleans doors”, what I’d really enjoy seeing is cemetery doors! I’m sure some of those incredible mausoleums have doors that are well worth admiring!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Wendy. If I ever go back, I might take a trip to a cemetery. I think I would enjoy that as well. Sorry about the song. It was stuck in my head for a while too. Maybe when it first played for you, it ended for me – thanks!

      The hotel is magnificent for sure. It was very hard to get photos (I wanted to go close that door) and I felt like the doormen were silently shooing me away.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Wow, what an assortment of doors this week, Dan!!! LOVE the pavilion door and that red one had me intrigued. You won’t be finding me anywhere near that green door, thank you. I found the grillwork on the pizza and grill door fascinating as I just stared at all the different sways and dips in it. I’m with you on the Jazz society. I hope that does happen too!! Great door post! Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Amy. Yes, from rag-tag to opulent to “don’t go there” – all in one 2-3 bock walk. All before I ever got to Bourbon St! The pizza doors are a fav, with that iron work. I’m actually kinda partial to Cajun Mike’s too, but more the gears than the door.

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  7. What a perfect homage to New Orleans, Dan. The doors there are spectacular, whatever style they have. This is a complex city and your post shows some of its rich history. I’ve been there three times and would love to return, like you in the winter.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. They are, Jan! “Move along, door photo in progress…” Norm really needs to get us those credentials. the other thing about NOLA is the close proximity of buildings to each other. It’s hard to get photos of entire buildings, unless they sit on a corner.

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  8. New Orleans is a day trip for me but my husband is so not a fan. I think it is a beautiful city. Try watching NCIS: New Orleans to spot more doors. I think you will like it. Great post, Dan.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Oh, Dan. I like the way you present your doors and the stories you weave into the post. The Immaculate Conception Church door is gorgeous and ornate. This looks heavy and the squares built outwardly out of the brick made really study the layers.
    I liked the hotel door which was classic in design and quite austentatious. The ones which were interesting in their stories added to this post, Dan. :)

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Thanks, Dan. I have been quite homesick lately. While Baton Rouge is really where my personal history lies, we spent many Sundays in New Orleans for family visits and as I got older, to venture out into the “great wild” of party life and Mardi Gras. My state is in distress and I feel for the people. I think if you visit big BR yiu would find some awesome doors there! The downtown buildings alone or Spanish town would keep you clicking. Have a great weekend. Yeah, no one needs to know what goes on behind “the green door”. 😳

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Great post. I kinda disappeared for a while, but I am back. The moment you uploaded this post I was waiting for my turn at the dentist. The stitches are gone and I am doing good, just in case you want to know. Your Thursday Doors post offer me a weekly dose of history combined with great images. I wish my school books were this interesting and that you would be my history teacher.

    Liked by 1 person

          1. Exactly….interesting side note: a number of years ago we were vacationing in Mazatlan Mexico and had a local giving a tour …..took us to their original downtown and it was like stepping into the French Quarters…I didn’t realize their influence stretched to the Pacific side of Mexico

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  12. Impressive collection of historic New Orleans doors. Ah the Jesuits, we Lutherans banned them in the Nordic countries for some time. It wasn’t until after WW II when Norway signed signed the European Declaration of Human Rights that it had to be repealed. They could be quite ruthless in the old, bad days – however, these days, from what I gather (I haven’t had occasion to meet or know any) they seem to be developing a more ecumenical stance.

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