Gumbo Marie
New Orleans
Culture Queen™

Promoting and preserving Louisiana's cultural heritage

local events, NOLA blog, history tours, ancestral roots research


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In the Gumbo Pot

What we provide

About us

We are well-studied, dedicated cultural gate-keepers who want you to learn about and enjoy Louisiana's rich history! "New Orleans people talking up New Orleans culture to help you enjoy your Louisiana travels!"

Contributors include local authors, musicians, masking baby dolls, Louisiana historians, local activists and more! 

Pictured is Dr. Ronald Schumann, Ph.D Cultural Geography, co-founder of Unheard Voices of Louisiana™

Bienvenue en Louisiane!

 I'm Gumbo Marie, New Orleans Culture Queen™ and I love being able to share Louisiana's heritage!  Please check the blog for our fabulous contributing writers with information about history, local stories, fun facts, and amazing things to do in Louisiana!   Join our pot of gumbo, hang out and enjoy! Did you know the word gumbo comes from the Angolan word kingombo and means 'okra.’   xoxo Gumbo Marie

Our t-shirt worn by Nova on Queen Sugar!!!

We were super excited that Nova, the character played by stellar actress Rutina Wesley on the show "Queen Sugar" wore our Unheard Voices of Louisiana™ t-shirt! Queen Sugar is in it's second season and is based on the novel by Natalie Baszile. It's a great show with Louisiana roots! Order your Unheard Voices of Louisiana t-shirt ™ today! 

Black Storyville Baby Dolls™

We carry on a Mardi Gras masking tradition called the baby dolls. It started around 1912 in the neighborhood where Louis Armstrong lived called Black Storyville, some say! Our mission is to preserve the tradition through educational outreach by utilizing different platforms. We parade, host special events, offer Baby Doll  tours, volunteer in our community, and mentor youth. Learn more about the baby dolls here baby dolls

Photo credit: Cedric Ellsworth

Cemetery, Voodoo

Our oldest cemeteries reflect the practices of Catholicism and Voodoo and are interesting to behold. They are sacred places for many locals. Our families are entombed here as well as great contributors to our community. They are not museums. They are burial grounds. A proper introduction to our burial culture and the truth about Voodoo and Catholicism practices are a must. Our most benevolent Voodoo practitioners maintain their privacy although there are a few who openly practice. Voodoo was born between enslavement and the French crown who required citizens of Louisiana to practice Catholicism. Had it not been for the African enslaved being brought here Louisiana Voodoo would not exist. Originally they were healers, nurses of the sick, and spiritualists of African and Creole descent but secrecy, outsiders' influence, and Hollywood turned Voodoo into something many see as pop culture. Voodoo is a world religion and should be respected as such. Voodoo Queens rarely ever truly exist while many refer to themselves as such. Also, realize most of Louisiana Voodoo is passed from one generation to the next, not always, but typically in black families. A last note, Marie Laveau has no known descendants. Many people claim her as an ancestor but with no real proof. It has been researched by scholars and nothing has been found. For more information on this you might want to start with a solid read and a good lecture. One book about Marie Laveau I recommend is by author Carolyn Morrow Long: "A New Orleans Voudou Priestess: The Legend and Reality of Marie Laveau" 

Help fund research and educational efforts

Cultural preservation is a time consuming financial commitment. From public exhibits to research to community engagement projects, your support and contributions will enable us to meet our goals and help preserve New Orleans culture. Your generous donation will fund our mission.

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Top picks and Lagniappe

Food and beverage

 These are staples we know always deliver:

  • Brunch: Muriel's, try the grits and grilliades and the staple crawfish crepes! Always live music by the John Eubanks trio! $$$
  • Breakfast: Slim Goodies, great service, great breakfast with flair. $
  • Wine bar: Second Vine Wine in da Marigny. Great selection, tastings, Friday night book signings, great party room.
  • Happy hour: Brennans, Great champagne specials and you MUST try the fried black eyed peas, mildly salty. Pop them like peanuts and wash them down with bubbly. TDF!

Live local music

Top Jazz club: SNUG HARBOR. Always great music, separate dining which is casual with a wonderful local menu. An old New Orleans must-do!

  • Buffas. Live local music, check out Arséne DeLay on Monday's. Great casual menu and bar.
  • Ellis Marsalis Center in the 9th ward at Musicians Villiage. Live music events monthly on Tuesdays. Beautiful space, great programs for kids too!
  • Prime Example. off the beaten tourist path on Broad St. and St. Bernard Ave. Great shows most nights of the week! Great Creole menu! Crab cakes rock!
  • And the spot where you can get great meals,  Creole, vegan, seafood, live music all day , shopping, covered open spaces to relax, and find history galore? The oldest Market in New Orleans, The French Market. Hands down it offers everything! Open 7days/week 10am-dusk!

Lagniappe (a little something extra) for the soul

Organizations founded by Gumbo Marie™   

The Amazons Benevolent Society ™ raise funds for cancer patients

Unheard Voices of Louisiana research and programs on marginalized groups in LA history

The Catiche Destrehan Bed n Breakfast  Named for Dianne's 6th generation great grandmother, this bed and breakfast is located in Natchez, MS or "Little New Orleans, where the River runs wide and the HIstory runs deep."


Posts coming soon!

La Vie En Rose