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“A celebration of Treme's history and culture” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Backstreet Cultural Museum

Backstreet Cultural Museum
1116 Henriette Delille, New Orleans, New Orleans, LA 70116 (Mid-City)
504/522-4806
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Ranked #21 of 165 Attractions in New Orleans
Type: Specialty Museums, Museums
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Attraction details
Owner description: Hours: Tuesday thru Saturday, 10-5.
Westchester County, New York
Top Contributor
176 reviews 176 reviews
59 attraction reviews
Reviews in 88 cities Reviews in 88 cities
86 helpful votes 86 helpful votes
“A celebration of Treme's history and culture”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2013 via mobile

This small museum, in a former funeral home, celebrates the history, music, and traditions of Treme, a multicultural neighborhood in New Orleans. It displays several exquisite costumes created by members of various "Indian" groups, African Americans who celebrate Mardi Gras through these elaborate suits of beads and feathers. Each person takes an entire year to create a suit, beginning again each year. The craftsmanship and creativity on display are unique and extraordinary. The museum also highlights the second line parades and the talented musicians who perform in Treme throughout the year. We were so pleased to see school children visiting this wonderful community institution.

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142 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Portuguese first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
New Orleans, Louisiana
2 reviews
“cool stuff in a less touristy part of town”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2013

the backstreet cultural museum is one of the most unique places in the city. they have mardi gras indian costumes on display as well as other memorabelia.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tamworth, Australia
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
10 attraction reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Telling the untold stories”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 14, 2013

Spent a wonderful morning at this museum and very much enjoyed talking to Francis about the history of the Mardi Gras Indians, Social and Pleasure Clubs and Treme in general. We found him to be a gracious and enthusiastic host who really appeared to enjoy sharing the history of his area. He pointed us in the direction of a second line happening that day and spent quite some time with us, despite it being Mardi Gras - we could see how busy everyone was.

This place is well worth a visit - it's not slick, it's not polished, it's not professionally curated. But it is full of the life, vigour and lack of orthodoxy you expect from this fascinating city. One of the highlights of our week in New Orleans.

Visited January 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brooklyn, New York, United States
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Amazing gem of a museum”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 4, 2013

The Backstreet Cultural Museum in Treme is a true gem and was one of the highlights of my recent trip to NOLA. If you go to one museum, go to this one; it's truly unique and something you won't find anywhere else. You'll learn about the real history and practices of the Mardi Gras Indians, which are the African American traditions surrounding Mardi Gras, rather than what we currently think of (Bourbon Street, wild parades, etc.)

Though the museum itself is small (it's a few rooms in someone's home), you can really spend a long time here looking at all of the amazing objects - there are really elaborate, colorful costumes worn by the Mardi Gras Indians, memorabilia from parades and second lines, images and information about the history of Mardi Gras, the origins of jazz, brass bands, African American burial traditions, the list goes on. While we were there, we were shown around by a wonderful woman named Anita, whose family has been a part of the Mardi Gras Indian traditions for centuries. She told us lots of great anecdotes and history, and she was able to answer all of our questions (ask a lot!)

Make sure to call ahead and confirm that they're open (they're closed on certain days). This is a true NOLA experience not to be missed.

Visited January 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
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Houston, Texas
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
12 attraction reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Recommended if you'd like to take a peek into Treme stories”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2013

Didn't get to make it to the museum but heard it is a good museum that tells stories of the Treme neighborhood. Gospel mass at St. Augustine Catholic Church was plain awesome.

Visited January 2013
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