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Louisiana Research Collection. Tulane University. Howard-Tilton Memorial Library Special Collections.
New resources from LaRC

David Vitter (1961 - present, left), papers (1992-2016), 85 linear feet. David Bruce Vitter, Republican, served as a member of the Louisiana House of Representatives (1992-1999), the U. S. House of Representatives from Louisiana's 1st district (1999-2005), and the U. S. Senate (2005-2016). LaRC acquired the Vitter papers in January. It normally takes more than a year to organize senatorial papers, but due to the generous financial support of Senator Vitter, the collection is now organized and available to researchers.
Tyler Bridges papers (1968-2003), 10 linear feet, concerning Bridges' research into David Duke and the Louisiana gubernatorial race of 1992. Bridges is a freelance journalist based in New Orleans and Lima, Peru, who was twice a member of Pulitzer Prize-winning teams. He is the author of Bad Bet on the Bayou: The Rise of Gambling in Louisiana and The Fall of Governor Edwin Edwards and The Rise of David Duke. Bridges donated his collection to LaRC in January and the guide to his papers is now available online.
Stewart Butler (1930- present), papers (1972-2006), 21 linear feet, concerning Butler's career as an activist for LGBTQ rights. A founding member of LAGPAC, Butler was the only individual to be part of all three attempts to pass a New Orleans Gay Rights Ordinance in 1984, 1986, and 1991. He has served on the boards of the Lesbian and Gay Community Center, LAGPAC, Celebration New Orleans, PFLAG, and many other organizations dedicated to equal rights for all. The LAGPAC portion of Butler's papers is now available; the remainder of the collection will be available later this year. Processing was made possible with the generous support of the LGBT+ Archives Project of Louisiana. 

Alan Robinson (1949 - 2012), papers (1969 - 1997), 2 linear feet, concerning Robinson's life as an LGBTQ and AIDS activist. Includes correspondence, organizational materials, and other documents related to the Louisiana Lesbian and Gay Political Action Caucus (LAGPAC), Orleans Parish Democratic Executive Committee (OPDEC), New Orleans AIDS Task Force (NO/AIDS), and the Gay Rights National Lobby. Other materials include personal correspondence, photographs, and material related to the Faubourg Marigny Bookstore, which Robinson owned and operated from 1988 until 2003. Processing was made possible with the generous support of the LGBT+ Archives Project of Louisiana.

Acquisitions spotlight: foodways

Because food and foodways are central to Louisiana, documenting our state's food culture is a special mission of the Louisiana Research Collection. Not only do we collect menus and other restaurant ephemera (which we have put online), we also make a special effort to acquire Louisiana cookbooks. Many cookbooks from well-known chefs, restaurants, and presses are readily available, while others are more difficult to obtain.

Particularly difficult are self-published cookbooks that document a family's recipes or are sold by organizations as a fund-raising tool. LaRC recently acquired nearly a hundred self-published cookbooks from Louisiana churches, schools, social organizations, and families in parishes and small towns across the state, from the Episcopal School of Acadiana to the Baton Rouge Chapter of Sweet Adelines. These are essential for documenting an area's particular food interests. They are also often the only way to document older foodways, such as "great-grandmother's recipe for etouffee."

We're always trying to create as complete a collection of Louisiana cookbooks as possible. If you or your organization has a cookbook celebrating Louisiana cuisine, please help us add a copy to our collection.


Fond farewell to Cathy Kahn

After working with LaRC as a volunteer since 2013, Cathy Kahn is entering her third (or is it fourth?) retirement.
The Louisiana Research Collection serves as the Jewish archives for the Greater New Orleans Metropolitan Area and in 2013 Cathy began helping LaRC catalog our extensive Jewish collections. Cathy helped organize the records of Touro Synagogue (which includes Gates of Mercy and Dispersed of Judah), Temple Sinai, Hebrew Rest Cemetery, the Holocaust Memorial, and the Jewish Children's Home. You can learn more about LaRC's special commitment to preserving the Jewish Heritage of the New Orleans here.
Cathy first worked as an archivist at the Historic New Orleans Collection and then founded the archives at Touro Infirmary. She is a past president of the Greater New Orleans Archivists and the Southern Jewish Historical Society (SJHS). Among her many honors are the SJHS Saul Viener Outstanding Career Service Award, the Judah Touro Award from Touro Infirmary, and the Helen Mervis Jewish Community Professional Award from the Jewish Endowment Foundation of Louisiana.
Cathy, we couldn't have done it without you. Many thanks and best wishes.


Thank you, Carlo Vescovi

This Spring, the Louisiana Research Collection was pleased to host Carlo Vescovi as part of Tulane's Center for Public Services internship program. The program gives students hands-on experience that serves as a bridge between academic learning and service to the community.

A native of New York, Carlo is a sophomore history major. For his internship project, he organized the papers of Mickey Gil, who was a founder of the carnival krewes of Petronius and Satyricon and an important carnival costume designer.

"The very first time I walked through the neat stacks of the Louisiana Research Collection I was in awe,' said Carlo. 'In awe that all this, thousands of linear feet of research materials, lay tucked away beneath my Intro to Psych classroom. LARC has a wealth of resources and knowledge that they continue to make available to the public. I am thrilled to be a part of their institution and share their ambitions. To be trusted with the archival materials they hold is an honor. I hope to continue my experiences with LARC and encourage the public to make use of the incredible service they provide."


People and places

Sean Benjamin, LaRC's Public Services Librarian, attended the annual meeting of the Louisiana Historical Association March 16-18 in Shreveport, where he was reappointed to the LHA Archives Committee. LaRC is the official archives of the Louisiana Historical Association.

Leon Miller (left), head, Louisiana Research Collection, has been named to the planning group of an international digitization project jointly sponsored by the Smithsonian National Museum of American History and the ONE Archives Foundation. Its goal is to develop a collaborative technology infrastructure for allowing LGBTQ archives around the world to make their collections available in a digital format. The Phase 1 groundworking meeting took place at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History in Washington, DC, May 11 and 12.

Miller will speak to the Algiers Historical Society Saturday, July 15, on "The Role of Archives in Cultural Preservation." The event will take place at 10:00 AM at the Algiers Regional Library, 3014 Holiday Drive, and is free and open to the public.

Andrew Mullins, LaRC Library Associate, attended the 2017 Biennial Conference of the Society of Mississippi Archivists in Columbus, Mississippi, April 26-28. While there, he participated in a pre-conference workshop on digital preservation.

For more information about Tulane University’s Louisiana Research Collection (LaRC), please visit our website.
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Louisiana Research Collection Room 202, Jones Hall, Tulane University,
New Orleans LA 70118
Phone: 504-865-5685 | Fax: 504-865-5761  |