incorrectly referred to by the (technically redundant) phrase "King Rex". The correct
title is simply "Rex". The identity of Rex is made public on Lundi Gras, the day before
Mardi Gras. Rex is always a prominent person in the city, one who is usually involved
in several philanthropic and civic causes. Being chosen Rex is one of the highest civic
honors a person can receive in New Orleans. The Mayor of New
Orleans traditionally hands over a symbolic Key to the City of New Orleans to Rex for
Mardi Gras Day.
A consort is also chosen each year for Rex, and she is titled the "Queen of Carnival".
The queen is always a debutante of the current season. Like Rex, the queen is chosen in
the spring of the previous year, and must keep her identity secret until Lundi Gras.
Rex has held more parades in New Orleans than any other organization. Its official song
Rex (founded 1872) is a New Orleans Carnival Krewe
which stages the city's largest parade on Mardi Gras
Day. Rex is Latin for "King", and Rex reigns as "The
King of Carnival".
Rex was organized by New Orleans businessmen in part
to put on a spectacle in honor of the New Orleans visit
of Grand Duke Alexei Alexandrovich of Russia
(remembered locally as "Grand Duke Alexis") during the
1872 Carnival season. Also in the minds of the founders
of Rex was the desire to lure tourism and business to
New Orleans in the years after the American Civil War.
The Rex parade is put on by an organization called The
School of Design.
One member of the Rex Organization is each year
chosen to be the monarch of the organization; he is often
Carnival Time at the turn of the 19th century. A parade is coming up Royal Street and
turning lakebound on Canal Street. This was a common route for parades at the time.
(Parades no longer go through the Quarter because the crowds are too large and pose a
fire hazard to the old buildings.)
Electrifying Canal Street has brought a few changes to downtown. The wires all over
make for busy photographs, to be sure. The higher poles are carrying power to the
buildings, and the lower wires are for the streetcars.
The monument to Henry Clay, which occupied the entire Canal Street neutral ground
between St. Charles Ave. and Royal Street has been cut back dramatically. The massive
round base of the monument was an obstruction to streetcars. The old mule-drawn
cars could easily maneuver around the statue, but the electric streetcars need to follow
their wires, so the monument had to be altered. Even with the cutback of the base, the
statue was still a problem for streetcars, because they barely had room to pass. In
1901, the city decided to remove the statue from Canal Street and relocate Mr. Clay to
Lafayette Park, where he remains today.
|1. What event?
2. What city?
3. What date does this event fall on this year?
Bonus: What is on this corner today?
|If you have a picture you'd like us to feature a picture in a future quiz, please
email it to us at CFitzp@aol.com. If we use it, you will receive a free analysis of
your picture. You will also receive a free Forensic Genealogy CD or a 10%
discount towards the purchase of the Forensic Genealogy book.
|1. Rex Parade, Mardi Gras
2. New Orleans
3. February 24, 2009
The picture shows intersection of Royal and Canal Sts. facing south.
The Solaris Boutique is located on the northeast corner towards the camera, at
701 Canal St.Naghi's is on the facing southeast corner at 639 Canal.
This was the 1906 Rex Parade (February 27).
On first float is Captain Alexander M. Halliday who reigned as Rex that year.
|Click here to see results of
5th occasional photoquiz survey.
|Answer to Quiz #191 - 4 January 2009
|If you enjoy our quizzes, don't forget to order our books!
|Click here to see results of
5th occasional photoquiz survey.
|The bonus was a bit tricky because the signs on
the building to the left in the photo seemed to
indicate that it was then the St. James Hotel; which
in turn would lead one to believe that corner was
occupied by the Board of Trade Plaza. But actually,
St. James Hotel was a couple of blocks over on
Magazine St; which wouldn't give us this view.
On the right side of the photo we see a partial view
of the ORHEUM sign which hung over Canal St.
In the center one building is marked 635; so, a
search for 635 Canal St looking towards the dome
building which used to be the Godchaux
department store (but is a Marriott hotel today)
puts us across from the corner of Canal and Royal.
Solaris Boutique should be the replacement for
Gen'L Arthur Cigar.
The corner of the photographers view point (Canal
St/St Charles Ave.) holds Denim Den.
Also used Google Street View to match up window
configuration on Thos. Griffin Building as well as
block work on Maryland Club building.
|How John Solved the Bonus Question
|Congratulations to Our Winners
Mr. Rick and his Quiz Angel Jina Yi. Are they good or what?
Marilyn Hamill Jocelyn Thayer
Dawn Carlile Judy Pfaff
Diane Burkett FootNoteMaven
Tom Tollefsen Dave Doucette
Lexie Condit Linda Dean
Teresa Yu Carolyn Cornelius
Dan Schesinger Gina Ortega
Milene Rawlinson Angie McLaughlin
Norm Smith Gary Sterne
Carl Blessing Bill Utterback
Don Haase Alan Cullinan
Carol Darrow Wayne Douglas
Mike Dalton Pat Crosley
Joycelyn Thayer Joshua Kreitzer
Robin Depietro Marilyn Hamill
Maureen O'Connor Cari Thomas
Betty Chambers Dennis Brann
Mary South Tamura Jones
John Chulick Stan Read
Nancy Gamelin Jim Kiser
Deborah Campisano Karen Petrus
Margaret Waterman Tina Kowis
Karen Kay Bunting Sandy Thompson
Sandra McConathy Douglas Smith
Robert Edward McKenna, Quiz Poet Laureate
|Comments from Our Readers
|I've ridden down this street in Bacchus over twenty years. I quit several years ago
when I retired. The formidable building in the background was the Department Store
Godchauxs which is now occupied by a rather routine building: a Marriott Hotel. See
old photo from the other direction: Click here.
This is the 1906 Feb 27th Rex Parade with the Theme of "Utopia". This is the corner of
Canal and Royal. The 600 to 700 block of Canal. See this link for more:
www.shorpy.com/node/4525. Folks dressed rather nicely during those days didn't
Mardi Gras this year is Feb 24, 2009.
Does most of the quizmasters realize that Mardi Gras is "Fat Tuesday" the day before
the Lenten season begins on Ash Wed. Hope you share the link that dissects this picture
very well. Jim Kiser
N.B. The Krewe of Bacchus is one of the other clubs that holds a parade during
Mardi Gras season. There are many others. The two big parades that occurr on
Mardi Gras day are those of the Krewe of Rex and the Krewe of Comus.
Actually I started the research of the photograph with C. Bennett Moore. As his sign
was prominent in the photograph I figured a wise photographer would have been sure a
photograph was also an advertisement. Dumb luck! Foot Note Maven
I lucked out and the second search I did was on Gen'l Arthur Cigar and I found this
website (www.shorpy.com) which answers all except this year's date (that is assuming
the answers are correct, but you will tell me if they aren't). Milene Rawlinson
This is a photo in the Library of Congress of the New Orleans Mardi Gras (The Red
Pageant) as a glass negative, taken between 1900 and 1910. This year's Mardi Gras will
fall on 24 February. This is probably Canal Street in the photo, and I believe that the
St.James Hotel is still standing on a corner there, but I cannot swear to that one.
N.B. This is the Rex Parade, and not the Red Parade. That was a typo on the LOC
site. The St. James Hotel was torn down a long time ago. Retail establishments now
occupy that corner.
I miss getting my weekly King Cake fix. Diane Burkett (from New Orleans)
The date is sometime in the early 1900's looking at the clothing. Notice that they ARE
wearing clothing. No drag queen parades here!
My puritanical roots are showing when I say that going to Mardi Gras in New Orleans
and visiting Las Vegas are both on my list of things I never want to do. (Now hearing
some good Preservation Hall Jazz and Pete Fountain are another thing!)
OK The Gang is back from the Christmas break..Wild as ever...SSometime in the
future, Jina wants to do a Mardi Gras-She is Thinking of making a key carrier for her
chair. Mr. Rick and Jina Yi
N.B. If you go to Mardi Gras without me, I'll be P.O.'d!
If this photo was taken by C. Bennette Moore, he managed to get his sign into the
photo - a clever way to sign his work, or a way to advertise depending on how the
photo was to be used. Mr. Moore only owned the studio for a couple years at this
point and hadnt built his reputation yet. John Chulick
N.B. Yes the picture was taken by C. Bennett Moore. Surprise, surprise!
I have to confess that I'm seriously "direction challenged". If I didn't have a GPS I
would never know which direction I was heading in. I should have gone with the
obvious from Shorpy's instead of finding the wrong Marriott (JW Marriott at 614 Canal
St.) instead of the REALLY BIG Marriott at Canal and Chartres. Sheesh! So the bonus
answer is Solaris Boutique. It's a pity that they demolished all those gorgeous buildings.
Looking [north] from Magazine and
Decatur Streets. In the next block, at
Camp and Chartres Streets, we see
streetcars on almost every track, including
the center track terminus for the City Park
and Levee & Barracks lines. Centered in
the picture is Godchaux's Department
Store, at Canal and Chartres. There is a
ladder propped up on the roof of the
“gallery” near the right side of the picture,
in front of the building on Canal Street at
Decatur. — Grombach-Faisans Co.
|The southeast corner of the
intersection of Canal and Royal St.
as it appears today.
See for yourself on
Google Maps Street View.
|A TRULY GREAT SHOW
The picture of the Monti Gras Parade taken in the early 1900's,
A presentation celebrating Rex, as the King of the Parade.
Celebrated with the theme of the Pageant, as Utopia,
New Orleaneans at the time felt that they had things made.
In 2009 the Monti Gras celebration will be held on February 24,
The day before the Ash Wednesday's annual observation.
The current corner of Canal and Magazine Streets,
Displays a Mini Mart and a building undergoing renovation.
Robert Edward McKenna
Quiz Poet Laurreate
Oh gosh you have fallen for our red herring.
You seemed to have lost your usual bearing.
The St. James Hotel has moved, no longer seen
on Rue Royal since it moved to Rue Magazine.
The view is where Royal with Canal intersects
It's a photo of the Mardi Gras float with King Rex.
Hardly surprising the southeast corner store
The photo was taken by C. Bennett Moore!
Quiz Poet Laureate Understudy
|The northeast corner of the
intersection of Canal and Royal St.
where the Solaris Boutique
is located today.
See for yourself on
Google Maps Street View.
|On the corner of Canal Street & Royal Street, "C.
Bennette Moore Photography" is now Naghi's
(jewelery, I believe) and the "St. James Hotel
Lodging "is now Solaris Boutique.
On corner of Canal Street and Exchange Place,
where "M. Scooler Diamond and Jewelry Business"
was, it is now Canal Video Camera. The building
to its left is a Popeyes. On the other corner, where
the Shoe Shop sign is, it's now "Voodoo Mart."
The late C. Bennette Moore, who passed suddenly
December 8, 1939 at the height of his career, was born in
Sauk Center, Minnesota in 1879. As a very young man he
enlisted for the Spanish-American War and following his
discharge from the service, entered the employ of Emile
Rivoire, famed French photographer of New Orleans. In
1904, he purchased the studio, re-named it and proceeded
during the following thirty-five years to establish a
reputation for portraiture which made his name known.
throughout the south.
From all parts of Louisiana and many surrounding states the best people traveled to
New Orleans to have their portraits taken by C. Bennette Moore. After Moore's death,
the studio was kept open by his wife and daughters until the late 1960s. When the
studio closed Eugenie Stoll, a grandaughter, left New Orleans and placed the collection
into carefully filed boxes. In 1999, Joseph Bergeron, owner of the Bergeron Studio &
Gallery and a former employee of the Moore Studio, began displaying various
photographic collections from the turn of the century, including some of the work by
C.Bennette Moore. Recently Eugenie Stoll Regan returned to the New Orleans area with
the entire collection, which includes such things as 8 x 10 glass plate negatives, 4 x 5"
negatives, original steel plate negatives and handpainted photographs. The unique
collection represents not only a high degree of artistic and technical skill; it exemplifies
the style and techniques of an earlier period. In a few years, the plates, negatives and
even cameras of traditional photography will most likely begin to gather dust as
digitalization advances. Read more....
We are looking at the back side of the
Orpheum sign that hung at the St.
Charles/Royal intersection. Since the
front of the sign faced the river, we are
looking in, toward the river. The closest
car is number 256, on the lakebound inner
track, probably one of the Jackson &
Sharp cars built in 1899. At the right, a
car is just completing the turn from St. Charles Street onto the inner riverbound track,
presumably on the Coliseum or Henry Clay line. We can see a sign for the Peoples
Bank at the top of one of the buildings on the right (uptown) side of Canal Street. At
the far left, we can just see a multi-seat automobile, an early bus, awaiting passengers
— a sign of things to come. — Acmegraph Co.
|Rex 1906, Alexander N. Halliday, lived at
1415 Exposition Blvd. which borders
Audubon Park. He was born in Indianapolis
about 1840. At the age of 42, he married
Henrietta Cook Pickles (widow of Edwin
Beebe) on 8/31/1882 and worked for his
father-in-law Thomas Pickle as a Superindent
of the New Orleans ferry boat concessions.
Alexander N. Halliday
|A traditional New
Orleans King Cake,
served only during the
Mardi Gras season
More info, click here.
|The Rex Procession is led
by the Captain of the Rex
publicly only by the title
"Bathurst." Masked and
astride his white mount, he
acknowledges the crowd as
he leads the parade from the
den, down St. Charles
Avenue, and into and
through the city's business
|Placed at intervals
throughout the parade are
lieutenants. They ride in
groups of three, wearing
uniforms of purple, green,
and gold, the royal colors.
is "If Ever I Cease to Love", a quirky
tune from the 1870s musical
"Bluebeard". This was adopted
because the Grand Duke Alexis of
Russia had a fondness for the
actress who sang the song in the
musical, which was playing in New
Orleans at the time of the first Rex
parade in 1872. It has stuck around
since then and is played often during
Rex has been incorrectly categorized as a "Super Krewe;" these are parades such as
Bacchus, Endymion, and Orpheus that employ cutting edge technology such as
fiber-optic lighting to create floats sometimes large enough to carry hundreds of riders.
Rex, by comparison, still assembles floats using techniques that have spanned
generations, entirely by hand. Contrary to popular belief, Rex floats are not built over
Civil War-era cotton wagons; the truth, as often is the case, is less glamorous. All Rex
floats are built on wagons formerly employed by the City of New Orleans to collect
refuse in the late 19th century.
The theme for each year's parade is decided more than a year in advance, and as soon
as the parade is over on Mardi Gras Day, float artists begin work on the next year's
parade. It takes thousands of man hours to create an entirely new parade, and it is for
this reason, as well as the organization's commitment to its history and traditions, that
many consider the Rex parade to be the highlight and most beautiful sight of New
In addition to its famous parade, the Rex Organization also holds a private ball for its
membership and invited guests on Mardi
Gras night. In the 1950s, this ball made
headlines when the Duke and Duchess of
Windsor bowed down to Rex and the
Queen of Carnival.
In recent decades, the Rex ball is held on
one side of the Municipal Auditorium,
while on the other half of the building at
the same time, the Mistick Krewe of
Comus (the oldest krewe), holds its ball. A
rich tradition is that Comus (the
monarch), extends an invitation to Rex
and his queen to join him and his consort
at the Comus ball. This is called the
"Meeting of the Courts", and when the
monarchs have all made their exits, the
Captain of Comus literally closes the
curtain on the Carnival season. This event
is televised live locally (and to selected
areas outside of the city) - and many New
Orleanians stay up to watch - despite their
weariness - the very end.
Since its founding in 1872, a few years
after the civil war, Rex has constantly held
|The Rex parade dedicates a permanent
float to an enduring symbol of Mardi Gras,
the Boeuf Gras. Riders on this float dress
as masked cooks, another symbol of the
feasting on "Fat Tuesday" before the
austerity of Lent.
Quizmaster trivia: My father Emmett
Martin Fitzpatrick, a retired florist, made
the garland that is shown around the bull's
itself to a tradition of public service. The Rex motto, "Pro Bono Publico" (for the public
good) was adopted during this time, and continues to define the organization's
commitment to service.