The New Orleans culture originated originated early in 1718. Jean Baptiste Bienville established this area as military-style grid. Officer Bienville used this type of identification on maps. He used a seventy –square grid to designate local landmarks.
He named this gridded-parcel of land after the Regent Duke d’Orleans. Since that time, New Orleans, including the French Quarter, has a distinctive French influence. This influence permeates the culture, the language, the architecture and its renowned cuisine.
Later, during the 16th century, Spain became a distinguishing authority in New Orleans. Under the ruling authority of Charles lll of Spain, a revolution occurred in 1768. The New Orleans French Quarter succumbed to obvious Spanish characteristics. The Spanish Quarter erected wrought iron balconies as olive oil cooking became the new standard in New Orleans cuisine.
In 1803, the United States purchased a large area of land, known as the Louisiana Purchase. This event is noteworthy, because another significant cultural influence would soon infiltrate the multi-cultural diversity of New Orleans. More than ten thousand displaced French and Haitian people became permanent residents of this city after their victory in 1815, at the Battle of New Orleans.
New Orleans experienced an unexpected population growth, which created a period of prosperity that reached into every corner of New Orleans’s diverse cultural heritage. These distinctive variations in religion, language, food preparation and cooking, including music and other cultural arts, forged the heart and spirit of New Orleans culture.
The heart and spirit of New Orleans is the result of four centuries of successful assimilation. New Orleans has successfully incorporated distinctive, deeply entrenched customs and beliefs into an indomitable society. New Orleans reflects every entity whose dominance and authority have created a dynamic citizenry.
New Orleans aptly represents their ancestors, who originated in central France. These French men and women have endured wars, revolutions and siege after siege. They have endured; they have survived through years of violence, hardship, and devastation. They have triumphed over adversity and deprivation, with “Joie de vivre.” The English translation means, “Joy for life or living.”
These characteristics are inherent in the name of this city; and its virtues are the essence of the people who reside in the city of New Orleans. New Orleans is the birthplace of Jazz, which is not surprising. Both New Orleans and Jazz comprise elements of change, with a mixture of diverse influences. Jazz is alive; it infuses the enduring spirit of New Orleans. Both New Orleans and its people emit a never-ending glow.
New Orleans is a living testament to perseverance, tenacity, hospitality and generosity. Neither tragedy nor an ongoing series of disasters can dampen the positive attitude of New Orleans residents. I was born and raised in the remarkable city.
William Shakespeare asked the question, “What’s in a name?” As you can see, there is an abundant and varied worth in the name of “New Orleans.” These impressive treasures are a small sample of the eclectic features replete in this grand southern city of New Orleans.