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Where exactly is the famous Dueling Oak? 

Blake Pontchartrain: N.O. Know It All

click to enlarge This oak tree in City Park was one of two so-called Dueling Oaks. The other was lost in a hurricane in 1949.

This oak tree in City Park was one of two so-called Dueling Oaks. The other was lost in a hurricane in 1949.

Hey Blake,

Where exactly is the famous Dueling Oak? I can't find it and am worried it was lost when the levees broke?

Phyllis Stearnes

Dear Phyllis,

  New Orleans City Park lost approximately 2,000 trees after Hurricane Katrina and the federal levee failures, but the Dueling Oak still stands where Dueling Oaks Drive meets Dreyfous Drive between the Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden and the New Orleans Museum of Art. At one point, there was a placard that explained the tree's historical significance, but it's no longer there.

  Originally, there were two "dueling oaks," but one was lost in a hurricane in 1949. In the 1800s, men would defend their pride and honor by dueling each other under the oaks at what is now City Park but then was a normally quiet spot secluded from the rest of the city.

  Some of the city's most notable figures who participated in duels in City Park include U.S. Congressman Emile LaSere and Bernard de Marigny, a nobleman and president of the Louisiana Senate in 1822-23. Many of the disputes between parties were either reconciled before the duel or after one party sustained a minor injury. Dueling deaths were reported, however. In 1805, Micajah Green Lewis, Gov. William C.C. Claiborne's private secretary and brother-in-law, was killed by Robert Sterry, a Claiborne opponent. By 1890, dueling was outlawed.

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