of New Orleans photographs



(Mss 302)






Earl K. Long Library

University of New Orleans


March 2002








Historical Note


List of Series


Container List


Index Terms


Procedures for Requesting Special Collections Materials







Size:                          0.75 linear foot



locations:                 New Orleans, La.; rural Louisiana


Inclusive dates:      ca. 1960-1980


Summary:                The collection consists chiefly of photographs from the New Orleans Courier (formerly the Vieux Carré Courier), a weekly newspaper.



collections:              Vieux Carré Courier Collection (Mss 57)


Source:                     Gift, February 2002


Access:                     No restrictions


Copyright:                Physical rights are retained by the Earl K. Long Library, University of New Orleans.


Citation:                    Don Lee Keith Collection of New Orleans Photographs, Earl K. Long Library, University of New Orleans




Historical/Biographical Note



            The Vieux Carré Courier began as a neighborhood newspaper for French Quarter residents in 1961 but soon gained a larger audience throughout the Greater New Orleans area with its investigative reporting.  The Courier served as a springboard for the journalistic careers of several writers, among them Bill Rushton whose stories on architecture and the environment generated local interest.  The Courier always experienced financial problems.  After one of its monetary crises, Philip Carter bought the newspaper in 1973, and during his tenure as publisher the Courier achieved its greatest journalistic successes.  It ceased publication in 1978.


            Don Lee Keith, a native of Wheeler, Miss., started work as a reporter at the New Orleans Times-Picayune in 1962, covering everything from politics to hurricanes to strippers.  "He once said that he found writing a whole lot easier than working.  It paid the bills," recalled Tony Franks, a friend since childhood.  "He said one time that a writer sees everything that everybody else sees, and more."


            Keith’s observations could sting.  In writing an interview with the former child star Margaret O'Brien, Mr. Keith said that getting her "to utter a good quote is like trying to extract the wisdom tooth of a water buffalo."  In a review of Kay Starr's performance at the Fairmont Hotel's Blue Room, Mr. Keith, in a reference to her best-known song, said, "Kay Starr's wheel of fortune has just about run out."


            His exploits became legendary.  To land a session with Capote, Keith wrote a long letter, Hardy said, but because he couldn't afford postage, he sent it as a telegram—collect.  "Truman Capote called back, pretending to be his secretary," Hardy said, "but Don Lee knew the whiny-cat voice and went along with it. They became good friends."


            Keith left the paper in 1974, the year in which he received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.  He spent two years in the Washington, D.C., area, writing for such publications as The National Observer, The Washington Post, and Rolling Stone before he returned to New Orleans in 1976 as associate editor of The Courier, an alternative weekly newspaper.  Before returning to freelance work several years later, he also was editor of New Orleans Magazine and a columnist for Figaro, another alternative weekly.


            A recipient of many journalism awards, Mr. Keith twice received the Alex Waller Memorial Award, which the Press Club gives to the outstanding print entry in each year's competition.  He also taught at the University of New Orleans and was adviser to The Driftwood, the student newspaper.  While serving in those capacities, on July 28, 2003, Keith was found dead in his home.  He was 62.


Source:  Quoted almost verbatim from John Pope, “Don Lee Keith, 62, Writer, Instructor,” New Orleans Times-Picayune, July 30, 2003.


            Processing note:  Headings used by Mr. Keith have been retained.  Photographs depicting persons and streets have been arranged alphabetically.  In other series, photographs are in the apparently random sequence in which they arrived.




List of Series



Series I.    Persons


Series II.        New Orleans Flavor


Series III.       Buildings and Places


Series IV.      Streets


Series V.       Jackson Square


Series VI.      Jazzfest


Series VII.     Cemeteries


Series VIII.    Rural Scenes


Series IX.      Miscellany




Container List





Series I.  Persons.  52 items.


302-1                Becky Allen

302-2                Vernel Bagneris as Papa Dee in “One Mo’ Time”

302-3                Danny Barker

302-4                Dr. Joe Beasley

302-5                Thais Clark as Mama Reed in “One Mo’ Time”

302-6                Dan Dial

302-7                Fats Domino

302-8                Clarence Doucet and John McMillan (2 photographs)

302-9                Svaié Forstand

302-10           Pete Fountain (2 photographs)

302-11           David Gano, New Orleans opera set designer

302-12           Jim Garrison / NOAC

302-13           Sheldon Hackney family

302-14           Al Hirt and Lauren Hutton

302-15           Bill Holliday, actor-comedian

Lauren Hutton, see 302-14

302-16           Barry Kaiser

302-17           [Clarence John] Laughlin (2 photographs)

John McMillan, see 302-8

302-18           Frank Martinez

302-19           [Ernest N. “Dutch”] Morial (2 photographs)

302-20           Julia Nead

302-21           New Leviathan Oriental Fox Trot Orchestra

302-22           Jenny Oerfes

302-23           Lyla Hay Owen

302-24           [Photograph of poster depicting Chris Owens]

302-25           Chris Owens

302-26           Marguerite Piazza

302-27           Geoffrey Platt

302-28           John Platt, Director of Arts Council of Greater New Orleans

302-29           “Professor Longhair, he invented rock and roll”

302-30           D. Richmond

302-31           Bill Rushton

302-32           [William “Bill” Russell?]

302-33           Sister Gertrude, primitive artist (2 photographs)

302-34           Southside Jonnie

302-35           Babe Stovall

302-36           Sweet Emma (2 photographs)

302-37           Ben C. Toledano family (2 photographs)

302-38           The Wild Magnolias

302-39           [Unidentified man, possibly René Louapre, seated at a theater organ]

302-40           [Unidentified man with guitar]

302-41           [Unidentified male bartender]

302-42           [Transparency depicting unidentified man]

302-43           [Unidentified woman]

302-44           [Unidentified Bourbon Street dancer]

302-45           [Unidentified woman in a hat shop]



Series II.  New Orleans Flavor.  59 items.


302-46           [Lighting in a shop window]

302-47           “Halbedel residence on St. Ann, padlocked after ‘kidnapping’ incident, October 1975”

302-48           [Window bearing sign, “No Loafing Allowed”]

302-49           [Mannequin in shop window]

302-50           [Unidentified woman in gazebo]

302-51           [French Quarter scene that includes an advertisement for Uneeda Biscuit painted on wall]

302-52           Wall, Toulouse Street

302-53           [Man holding out clay pipe]

302-54           [Starting gate at horse race]

302-55           [Unidentified auction house]

302-56           [Unidentified mime with two small boys at corner of Chartres and St. Peter]

302-57           [Drawing of streetcar]

302-58           [Plate of boiled] crawfish

302-59           [Photograph of New Orleans street map]

302-60           [Photograph of record jacket for “Professor Longhair’s New Orleans Piano”]

302-61           [Photograph of] “The Louisiana Buzzard,” sculpture by Suzanne Ormond

302-62           [Photograph of Currier & Ives print, “A Midnight Race on the Mississippi”]

302-63           Bourbon Street” [photograph of nude woman]

302-64           [Man and woman on street corner, probably in or near French Quarter]

302-65           [Wicker furniture]

302-66           [Cat and plant on window sill]

302-67           French Quarter doorbells

302-68           [Collage of New Orleans media mastheads and logos]

302-69           “The Courier on Sale Here” [2 graphics, one positive and one negative]

302-70           [Barker standing outside Bourbon Street club]

302-71           Bourbon St. [novelty shop window]

302-72           [Four black men sitting on stoop]

302-73           [Unidentified person wearing mask]

302-74           [Two unidentified women posing outside Bourbon Street club]

302-75           “Voodoo Bamboula”

302-76           [Riverboat]

302-77           [Fountain with statue]

302-78           [Unidentified member of the Hare Krishna outside a residence]

302-79           Market vendors [watermelons in background]

302-80           Pelican

302-81           [Window of Salvation Army store, strewn with stuffed animals and broken dolls]

302-82           [Black man with a broom] (22 photographs)



Series III. Buildings and Places.  41 items.


302-83           “The Cabildo Arcade” by Paul N. Bond, [19]73

302-84           “The Pontalba Apartments” by Paul N. Bond, [19]73

302-85           The New Orleans Courier, morning after closing

302-86           [Plantation scene]

302-87           [Detail, early New Orleans scene]

302-88           St. Patrick’s Church, Camp Street (2 photographs)

302-89           Antoine’s

302-90           Galatoire’s

302-91           Muriel Bultman Francis’ solarium

302-92           Times-Picayune Tower

302-93           Demolition, St. Charles Hotel

302-94           [Clarence John] Laughlin’s Pontalba apartment

302-95           “A Breath of Europe” [Pontalba Building]

302-96           “Unmistakably New Orleans” [Garden District]

302-97           [Unidentified musicians at] Pat O’Brien’s

302-98           Patio, Pat O’Brien’s

302-99           “BIJOU” [sign outside place of business]

302-100       Old MCA Building, Once Temple Sinai, adapted by Repertory Theatre, 1970”

302-101       Morning Call Coffee Stand, Decatur Street

302-102       Superdome (2 photographs)

302-103       Pitot House (2 photographs, one depicting a drawing)

302-104       Coliseum Theater

302-105       “Two Faces!” [Parasol’s Bar with residence across the street in background]

302-106       Old U.S. Mint

302-107       “[International] Trade Mart, White Supremacy [Liberty Place] Monument”

302-108       Gallier House

302-109       Guys and Dolls Club (2 photographs)

302-110       Decatur Street Flea Market

302-111       Audubon Park (2 photographs)

302-112       “View (front) from dormer of Madame John’s [Legacy]”

302-113       Faubourg Marigny [aerial view]

302-114       [Photograph of “A View of New Orleans Taken from the Opposite Side of the River Mississippi, 1763”]

302-115       [Photograph of] Cabildo poster

302-116       [Photograph of graphic depicting the Superdome as a toilet]

302-117       [Double house] (2 photographs)





Series IV.  Streets.  14 items.


302-118       Bourbon Street (2 photographs)

302-119       Bourbon Street [with mini-bus]

302-120       Canal Street [with Maison Blanche in background]

302-121       [Decatur Street from Moonwalk]

302-122       1236 Decatur Street

302-123       Fat City

302-124       Mississippi River Bridge

302-125       Mississippi River Bridge traffic

302-126       “Pirate Alley” by Paul N. Bond, [19]73

302-127       Poydras Street

302-128       Royal at St. Peter

302-129       Royal Street

302-130       St. Charles Avenue



Series V.  Jackson Square.  4 items.


302-131       Banana tree/[St. Louis] Cathedral

302-132       Chartres [Street]/Jackson Square [after rain]

302-133       [Primitive color illustration of Jackson Square, on invitation to National Trust for Historic Preservation events in Louisiana, 1973]

302-134       Aerial photo, Jackson Square



Series VI.  Jazzfest.  5 items.


302-135       [Outside the food tents]

302-136       [Roman Candy vendor]

302-137       Wild Magnolias (2 photographs)

302-138       [Unidentified second-liner]



Series VII.  Cemeteries.  3 items.


302-139       [Overgrown tomb]

302-140       [Pile of headstones]

302-141       [Unidentified black woman sitting among tombs]



Series VIII.  Rural Scenes.  7 items.


302-142       [Rural house beside railroad tracks]

302-143       “Bayou Life”

302-144       [Bare tree]

302-145       [Cutting cane]

302-146       “Rural Homestead

302-147       [Print and negative by Clarence John Laughlin depicting façade of a plantation]



Series IX.  Miscellany.  13 items.


302-148       [Graphic]

302-149       [Letterhead stationery and envelopes from Gambit] (12 items)




Index Terms



Courier (Newspaper : New Orleans, La.)

Keith, Don Lee

New Orleans (La.)--Views

New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival