New Orleans Public Library’s Louisiana Biography and Obituary Index now fully online

This press release appeared online this morning. Don’t forget that many immigrants to this country arrived at the port of New Orleans. Many then ventured up the Mississippi River to their new homes. U.S. residents may have spent some time in New Orleans as they journeyed on the water from the East Coast to the West Coast and vice versa. This is one index I have dreamed of using because much of it was a WPA (Work Projects Administration) indexing project in the late 1930 as part of FDR’s New Deal program. Since that time, librarians have made extensive additions to the index. The library’s website includes information on ordering copies of articles the index references.

“The New Orleans Public Library’s Louisiana Division is pleased to announce that its “Louisiana Biography and Obituary Index” is now available online.

The original Index, which references obituaries appearing in New Orleans newspapers, 1805-1972, and selected biographical references in a variety of published sources, is a massive card file of some 650,000 cards, most of which include multiple references. The online version, a searchable database of the card index, is the result of a nearly 10-year-long collaboration between NOPL and The Historic New Orleans Collection, which funded the project and produced the database and the web interface. While names from about the first third of the alphabet have been searchable online for a number of years, the database is now complete. Names can be searched from Aachler, Fred E. to Zyzik, Pauline Wyplor. We are finally done.

To search the index (and find out more about the project), please link to http://neworleanspubliclibrary.org/obits/obits.htm. (If you have the original version of the index linked or bookmarked, please note that the link has changed, since the completed index has moved to a new server.)

Irene Wainwright
Archivist, Louisiana Division/City Archives
New Orleans Public Library
219 Loyola Ave.
New Orleans, LA 70112

© 2009, Paula Stuart-Warren. All rights reserved.

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