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Frenchmen, Desire, Good Children: . . . and Other Streets of New Orleans! Paperback – October 31, 2001

4.3 out of 5 stars 32 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Have you ever wondered where the fascinating and often difficult-to-pronounce street names of New Orleans come from? This classic, humorous reference on the nomenclature of the city's roadways explains the history of such street names as Tchoupitoulas, Marigny, Poets, Decatur, and more. Frenchmen, Desire, Good Children reveals the intriguing tales of the developers, families, notorious and famous people, places, and events from which these names were created, sharing the street-level history of this one-of-a-kind American city.

About the Author

New Orleans born and educated, John Churchill Chase studied at the Chicago Academy of Fine Arts before returning to his city of birth, it being better suited for "living purposes." He lived on Music Street, not named, he used to say, because his children used to take lessons and practice on the piano every day. During his life, Chase was the number one authority on the streets' histories, in fact, on much of New Orleans history. He was frequently contacted by the city before a street name was changed, though many were changed anyway.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 280 pages
  • Publisher: Pelican Publishing; Revised edition (October 31, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1565549317
  • ISBN-13: 978-1565549319
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #462,749 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
There's no place like New Orleans! John Churchill Chase eloquently chronicles the origins and development of this most fascinating of American cities in his humorous masterpiece "Frenchmen, Desire, Good Children."

Learn why the "French Quarter" isn't French (p. 58).

Learn why "Craps Street" was renamed "Burgundy Street" to save the reputation of three New Orleans churches (p. 85).

Learn why "Bourbon Street" wasn't named after "bourbon" whiskey (p. 19).

Learn why New Orleans was the scene of the first "American Revolution" (p. 55).

Learn the origins of the word "Creole" (p. 73), and why the Creoles considered the first American settlers in Louisiana "barbarians." (chapter 6).

"Frenchmen, Desire, Good Children" is fun, fascinating, and illustrated. It's must reading for those who love New Orleans!

Read it before your next New Orleans visit. It will greatly enhance your enjoyment and understanding of the "Big Easy."

David (the Nac) Naccari,
New Orleans Historian and Professional Speaker
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Format: Paperback
Although I am a New Orleans native, I had no idea there was so much fascinating history behind the names of the streets. Chase is legendary, and his stories have the same amusing light bite of his political cartoons. Great reading, and you don't have to be familiar with the city to enjoy it.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Originally written in 1949, John Chase provides an entertaining and thorough history of how the streets of New Orleans got their names. I would recommend this as a companion to similar books for those interested in New Orleans' history and learning how its streets were named.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Although it was written in the 1940's this book is valued for preserving street history and stories. Chase uses his sense of humor that he used to create his political cartoons in the past. It is an amusing, enjoyable book.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've navigated thousands of streets in scores of cities round the world, only rarely stopping to ponder much how those street names have to say about their cities' stories, whether glorious or sordid. Nowadays many of us traverse modern cities cut into neat blocks by roads efficiently but boringly designated chiefly by numbers and letters, or states and presidents. (As in, "I'll meet you at the corner of 32nd and U, not Virginia and Jefferson.") Especially for those people, John Chases' book "Frenchmen, Desire, Good Children" will make you wish your city elders had the good sense to christen such tepidly named streets instead in honor of the famous or infamous folks who first founded your cities back when the roads weren't more than well-trod ruts in the dirt. Chase's book unveils the long and twisted history of New Orleans by revealing how its streets came to bear the names they do. For anyone who has wandered the serpentine thoroughfares and alleyways of New Orleans, or who wonders what forgotten tales the more singular street names of their own cities may tell, "Frenchmen, Desire, Good Children" is an enlightening and very entertaining read.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a must read classic about New Orleans since the original 1949 edition. Knowledgeable New Orleanian John Chase gives a comprehensive historical overview by explaining street name origins! His original cartoon illustrations further liven up this droll updated history of the Big Easy .
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I am from New Orleans and loved the book - interesting details I didn't know or perhaps didn't remember. I took a trip to New Orleans shortly after reading the book and I was telling my friend who still lives there about different areas. We were on Poydras and I told her the part of Poydras we were on had been a lake at one time. Will read again at some point.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I really like this book. I own both the hard-copy and the Kindle version. It is funny, has a bunch of information about the history of New Orleans street names. The only thing is that it is a bit uneven, the first part of the book is very good but then it appear to run out of steam and becomes tedious to read.
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