On this site at 1700 Moss St. there was a Confederate soldiers' home named "Camp Nicholls" in honor of Gov. Francis T. Nicholls, a Civil War hero.
In March 1866, the Louisiana Legislature established a Confederate Soldiers' Home for Louisiana. The home operated at Mandeville until 1868 when the Reconstruction government halted the appropriation. Then under an 1882 amendment of the 1866 Act, a reorganized Board of Commissioners bought the tract of land on Bayou St. John for the purpose of building a soldiers' home.
The new home was dedicated with great ceremony on May 16, 1884. Mrs. T.J. (Stonewall) Jackson had herself made a flag of Louisiana, and this flag was raised to the top of a 70-foot flagpole by her daughter, Miss Julia Jackson; the daughters of Gen. Robert E. Lee, Mildred and Mary; Gen. D. H. Hill's daughter, Nanny; and Mary May, daughter of Col. A.H. May, veteran officer of the Washington Artillery. The large brass howitzer "Redemption" of the Washington Artillery fired a salute of 13 rounds.
The camp was home for many years to Confederate veterans, and on the grounds a visitor could see several old cannons taken from Spanish Fort and a submarine torpedo boat constructed during the Civil War.
Then in 1949, it became the State Headquarters for the 39th Infantry Division of the National Guard; and in April 1951, a new $120,000 armory was constructed, and the site became the home of the 135th Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron of the Louisiana Air National Guard.
After a period of vacancy, the building was renovated in 1983, and the Police Department took up residence.
I remember being told as a child that Valette and Verret streets were named for two sisters. Who were they? And Sequin Street surely wasn't named for the round, sparkly things, was it?
If T. S. Eliot thought that "the naming of cats is a difficult matter," he would have been driven mad over the naming of streets in New Orleans.
First, Valette and Verret were not sisters at all. And Seguin Street is not even spelled the same as the decorations on the raiment of Carnival royalty.
Modern-day Algiers began shortly after the Louisiana Purchase, and Barthelemy Duverje played a major role in its development when he purchased property there in 1805. His family and plantation grew and prospered. There was once a Barthelemy Street, but it has been changed to Bermuda.
Furcey Verret, for whom the street was named, was also a plantation owner whose property extended from Vallette Street to the slaughterhouse, at that time located about where Behrman Avenue is. There was a sugar plantation jointly owned by Verret and Duverje's widow. Verret dug a canal on the property in 1814 to drain the plantation. This canal, which no longer exists, connected with the Mississippi and was used by fishermen and smugglers as well as Jean Lafitte and Dominique You.
Seguin Street is named for Andre SeGuin, a native of France, who in 1819 established the first shipyard on the bend of the river on property he had obtained from the Duverje heirs. Algiers soon became associated with shipbuilding and ship repairing.
Francois Vallette took over Seguin's business in 1837 and continued to operate the shipyard. Vallette was from the family that built the big warehouses in Brooklyn. To honor him, a street named Gosselin was changed to Vallette.
There were other prominent families living in Algiers such as the Oliviers, and there were multiple marriages among the Oliviers, the Duverjes and the Verrets. Many streets in Algiers are named in honor of family members such as Alix, Evelina, Elmira, and Eliza.
Many streets in New Orleans and Algiers had name changes over time, but at least they never had three names at once like Eliot's cats.