LaLaurie Mansion – New Orleans, Louisiana - Atlas Obscura

LaLaurie Mansion

This symbolic piece of New Orleans architecture is also home to a few ghastly stories.  

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A classic New Orleans structure, the LaLaurie Mansion comes complete with its own dark legend.

The LaLaurie mansion is an unmistakable piece of New Orlean’s history with its baroque facade, wrought-iron balconies, and rectangular floor plan. The grandiose structure is located on Royal Street in the French Quarter. When Marie Delphine MacCarthy Blanque LaLaurie purchased the property and constructed a three-story mansion in 1832. The house quickly gained a reputation as one of the grandest homes in the city’s French Quarter.

The mansion also included slave quarters and LaLaurie had a reputation as a cruel slave owner behind closed doors. There were frequent rumors swirling around New Orleans about her cruel behavior. 

In 1834, a fire broke out at the mansion. When area residents rushed to the scene to help, they resorted to breaking down the doors to the slave quarters after the LaLaurie refused to provide the key. Inside, they found seven imprisoned slaves, whose bodies had been mutilated. When news of the discovery spread around the community, a mob descended on the mansion.

Realizing she was no longer welcomed in New Orleans LaLaurie fled to Alabama, then onto Paris to live out the rest of her life. 

The LaLaurie Mansion still stands on the corner of Royal and Governor Nicholls streets nand is a highlight of many New Orleans ghost tours due to its macabre and tragic history.