Who was Carrie?
Who was Carrie? Carrie Bell, born in 1867, was the first child of Mathilde Musson and William Bell. At the time of Edgar Degas’ visit to New Orleans, Carrie was five years old and is likely one of the subjects of the painting “Children on a Doorstep”, which was painted from what is now the breakfast room of this house. Due to her age, Carrie is likely the girl in the white dress with the black bow seated on the doorstep.
In 1872-1873, she had two brothers, Sidney (1 year old) and William (an infant). These three children would be the only ones out of six siblings that would survive past the age of 21.
Carrie lived a full life and died in 1937 at the age of 70.
The Carrie Room located on the 3rd floor Garret of Degas House is a charming and comfortable room with its queen-sized bed, desk and armoire. A “garret” is a living space at the top of a house under a pitched roof, which was typically a habitat for artists. Edgar Degas lived in a garret in France.