Showing posts with label mardi gras culture. Show all posts
Showing posts with label mardi gras culture. Show all posts

Monday, February 1, 2021

Send Love To The Second Line In New Orleans

Unfortunately the pandemic has hit New Orleans extremely hard and lot of the people impacted are of color. Another project of the Krewe of Red Beans, a nonprofit organization, is called Feed The Second Line. 

The second line refers to the folks who are the culture bearers, the people who make up the Black Mardi Gras experience like the Social Aid and Pleasure Clubs, Mardi Gras Indians, Baby Doll groups, musicians and other artists throughout New Orleans.

The elders receive rides to get their vaccines through younger musicians for hire.  Also donations go to local restaurants to order meals which allow those businesses to stay open. Then the meals are delivered to the elders in the communities where it's most needed.


To support our culture bearers during this difficult time visit:  https://www.feedthesecondline.org  Please donate what you can.

Photo credit: NY Times, City of New Orleans, courtesy of Crista Rock. Member of the Young Men Olympians Benevolent Association, a Social Aid and Pleasure Club.

Thanks for stopping by. Leave comments on what you'd like to see here. 


Sondra Carpenter
The Mardi Gras Girl

Sunday, October 14, 2012

The Mardi Gras Indians, First African American Mardi Gras Krewe

You won't see them with the rest of the krewes and walking clubs during the Mardi Gras celebrations.That's because they don't hang out around Canal Street near the French Quarter or Uptown near St. Charles Avenue where all the other krewes parade. I admit, because I didn't know the schedule until late last year, I still haven't seen them perform myself. You may be able to see them at the Jazz and Heritage Festivals if you don't catch them on Mardi Gras Day, St. Joseph's Day or a Super Sunday. I'm referring to the Mardi Gras Indians, the oldest African American Mardi Gras Krewe.

The Mardi Gras Indians mask in the historically African American neighborhood of Treme in New Orleans and make stops at different local restaurants and taverns in the community. Since African Americans were not included in the earlier Mardi Gras parades, they created their own celebrations within their neighborhoods.

You can contact the Backstreet Cultural Museum in Treme for information on the schedule, which is where I found out a lot about the history. This amazing African American cultural tradition goes back to the early 1800's with the Creole Wild West shows. Native Americans were credited with assisting African Americans during slavery and this was a way to pay homage.

The costumes, called suits, are made of not only feathers but also intricate bead work. They take about a year to make and weigh at least 100 pounds. They also don't wear the same one twice. The downtown suits are made more of feathers indicative of Native American tribes and the uptown costumes are more reminiscent of West African beading traditions.

The amazing picture displayed on this post is of the Cheyenne Gang. Photo credit goes to Perry Braniff, Sr.


*** Click here also for more information on the Mardi Gras Indians.

Thanks for visiting. There is so much more to the Mardi Gras Indian culture than what's covered on this post. If you'd like me to add more about information about this topic on the blog please let me know by posting your comments below.


Sondra Carpenter
The Mardi Gras Girl