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  • Brevard-Clapp HouseBrevard-Clapp House New Orleans, Louisiana
    The Brevard-Clapp House is located at 1239 First Street in New Orleans, Louisiana and was constructed by James Calrow and Charles Pride in 1857. It is considered transitional in style, both Greek revival and Italianate characters with double galleries that have large Corinthian columns below and Iconic above that are sitting between square pillars by the corners. Albert Hamilton Brevard, the rich merchant that had commissioned its construction, had always had a taste for the finer things in life, and wanted the latest conveniences included. There was hot and cold running water in all four of the bedrooms; but Brevard didn't have a lot of time to enjoy the niceties since he passed on two years later. Reverend Emory Clapp purchased the home from Brevard's daughter in 1869, and had architect Charles Pride add the hexagonal bays designed so that one of the existing rooms could be enlarged to contain his library. The reverend enjoyed smoking so much so that he instead used the room for his smoking room. The Clapps had just been married and wanted the house to reflect their refinement and style, so they had huge beveled French mirrors put in the double parlors that were located downstairs. When the reverend passed on, his wife stayed in the home, until 1934; painstakingly maintaining it which she had found to be a great pleasure to her. She eventually had part of the gallery enclosed and put an elevator on one side of the house. During the period from 1989 until 2004, the house was owned by Anne and Stan Rice. Soon the home became the inspiration of Mayfair Manor, the garden district home of Mrs. Rice's Mayfair Witches. The home's backyard pool and side porch were also mentioned in the book. The side porch in the book is where Deirdre Mayfair sits silently for more than 30 years, not speaking so that Lasher couldn't enter her thoughts. Evidently, during this time, Lasher is frequently seen standing next to her, whispering into her ear. The house's real porch is two stories high with elaborate cast iron decorations; fronting on two attic windows that are located on the third story of the house. Back to the book, where Ancient Evelyn, as a young girl had made secret visits to Uncle Julien, climbing the cast iron balcony to the second story. The book and the house are certainly interesting enough, with the house being a wonderful place to visit and match parts of the book with the real parts of the house.

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  • SS NatchezSS Natchez New Orleans, Louisiana
    The name Natchez has been a name used for numerous steamboats and four naval vessels, named after the city of Natchez, Mississippi or the Natchez people; with this current steamboat being in operation since 1975. The rest had been used during the 19th century and the majority captained by Thomas P. Leathers; where his boats had a cotton bale shown between two stacks in his ensign. This is the ninth steamboat, which is a sternwheel steamboat that is based in New Orleans, Louisiana, and has been called the Natchez IX. It is owned and operated by the New Orleans Steamboat Company that docks at the Toulouse Street Wharf, where visitors can take day trips that also include dinner or harbor cruises on the mighty Mississippi River. It wasn't modeled after the other Natchez steamboats, but by the Hudson and Virginia; with its steam engines coming from the 1925 steamboat Clairton, as well as her steering system. The copper bell came from the SS. J.D. Ayres, which is made of 250 melted silver dollars, and on top of it is a copper acorn that came from the Avalon, which has since become the Belle of Louisville. The steam calliope plays 32 notes and the wheel is made of white oak and steel, measuring 25 feet by 25 feet and weighs more than 26 tons. The whistle is off a ship that sank in 1908 on the Monagabola River, and this Natchez was launched from Braithwaite, Louisiana; measuring 265 feet long and 46 feet wide. The weight is 1384 tons, made of steel mostly, due to the rules of the US Coast Guard. It won the Great Steamboat Race in 1982 held each year at Louisville, Kentucky; part of the Kentucky Derby Festival. She has never lost a race and the list of those that she has beaten include the Mississippi Queen, Belle of Louisville and the Delta Queen. When Katrina hit the city, she was moved upstream to Baton Rouge, but has since moved back to the city of blues, New Orleans.

January 11, 2011