Creole Landmark Home Located Near Degas House
The Duvigneaud House on Grand Route St. John
One of the earliest houses in New Orleans, the Duvigneaud House, was built circa 1800 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Louis Duvigneaud was an attorney, judge and state senator, until the end of the Civil War. During Reconstruction, he was the head of the Conservative Citizens of the State of Louisiana, one of many organizations formed to recover citizen rights that had been lost after the fall of the Confederacy.
Louis acquired this property in 1834, as land only, then purchased and moved a creole cottage from another lot to form his home here, before doubling it in size to meet the growing needs of his family.
Built on a native American canoe trail that linked Bayou Saint John to the Mississippi River, this house served as the main house for a small plantation, fronting Bayou Gentilly in the Fauborg Saint John. Although the rear of the house backed up to the trail originally, as New Orleans was developed and the natural waterways were lost, the house was actually turned to face the street, when the 1850 expansion occurred.
The canoe trail was the only mode of transportation from the French Quarter to Bayou St. John and was instrumental in the founding of the city at its current location at Jackson Square and the Mississippi River. Eventually, when the fort was built around the existing city for security purposes, the old Native American trail was casually called "the Public Road". Various street names evolved through history and time, including simply, "the road to the bayou", the "Great Road to Bayou St. John" and finally, the current street name, "Grand Route Saint John"!
Today, the house serves as apartment rentals, including weekly and corporate rentals, and as an occasional meeting place during the Jazz and Heritage Festival in late April and early May.
More information on the history of the founding of the city is given during the Edgar Degas House Creole Impressionist Tour, which includes a walking tour of the Creole Neighbornood hosted by Degas House.