Tulane University’s archival program is one of the oldest in the state of Louisiana. On May 3, 1889, Mrs. L. Dolhonde presented to the Charles T. Howard Memorial Library a letter written by Thomas Jefferson to M. duPlantier of New Orleans. The Louisiana Research Collection still preserves that letter, and has since collected almost three linear miles of archival records that document the breadth of Louisiana life from the colonial period to the present day. Included among our holdings are the papers of governors, statesmen, and soldiers, as well Southern ladies and suffragettes. We collect the papers of artists and writers, free people of color, merchants, breweries, prominent Louisiana businesses, ministers and congregations, LGBT activist groups, and much, much more.

Many of our collections have detailed finding aids which are available through the LaRC website. The archival collections are also represented in the library’s online catalog. All researchers are welcome.

A few examples of our more notable holdings include:
  • Southern authors John Kennedy Toole and George W. Cable
  • Louisiana governors Sam Jones, David Treen, and Huey Long
  • Medical researchers and educators Rudolph Matas and Bernard Weinstein
  • New Orleans mayors deLesseps Morrison and Victor Schiro
  • The papers of more than a dozen members of Congress, including Hale Boggs, Lindy Boggs, David Treen, Edward Hebert, and Bob Livingston
  • Extensive collections relating to the American Civil War, including papers of Jefferson Davis, Stonewall Jackson, Robert E. Lee, Randall Lee Gibson, Algernon Badger, and dozens of soldiers and civilians on both sides.
  • The records of the Episcopal Diocese of Louisiana and the records of most Jewish synagogues and temples in the greater New Orleans area. LaRC serves as the Jewish archives for the New Orleans area and also preserves the records of many local Jewish philanthropic and social welfare organizations.
  • The records of social welfare organizations just as the Louisiana ACLU, the New Orleans YWCA, the Council of Social Agencies of New Orleans, the Jewish Children’s Home, Kingsley House, Protestant Children’s Home, the Traveler’s Aid Society, the Community Chest of New Orleans, the Women’s Exchange, and more.
  • The records of many women’s organizations, such as the New Orleans YWCA, the New Orleans League of Women Voters, the Quarante Club, the Ruth McEnery Stuart Clan, the Independent Women’s Organization, the New Orleans Women’s Club, the Metairie Women’s Club, Cancer Crusaders, and perhaps most notably, the records of the Poydras Home, which is probably the oldest organization in the country established for women and continuously run by women.

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We need your help.

To preserve our past for future generations, the Louisiana Research Collection depends on the help of persons such as yourself. If you know of letters, diaries, scrapbooks, photographs, or other documents illuminating Louisiana's past, please contact us so we can help ensure that they are preserved. We can also work with your social, civic, fraternal, or professional organization to preserve its minutes, reports, and other organizational records.

We would also be grateful for donations of Louisiana brochures, pamphlets, flyers, campaign literature, menus, and books. For materials that might fall outside of our collecting criteria, we can work with you to find a more appropriate professional archival, library, or museum facility.

For more information, please visit our "Giving" web page or contact:

Leon Miller
Head, Louisiana Research Collection