Cassie Pruyn is the author of Bayou St. John: A Brief History and the poetry collection Lena, winner of the Walt McDonald First-Book Prize in Poetry and finalist for the Audre Lorde Award. Born and raised in Portland, Maine, and a graduate of the Bennington Writing Seminars, she teaches at Bard Early College in New Orleans.
9:45 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.
State Capitol Building, House Committee Room 6
Bayou St. John
10:45 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
Barnes & Noble Bookselling Tent
Bayou St. John: A Brief History
Bayou St. john played a significant role in the neighborhood of the same name, fueling debate over the waterway's use, control and ownership for centuries. Native Americans first used it as a trade route. Later, it became a backdoor entrance for settlers to the present-day French Quarter. As commercial use declined, residents witnessed a progressive shift toward recreation. Following the Civil War, tourists flocked to witness Marie Laveau's voodoo ceremonies. The early twentieth century brought two amusement parks. And events like the Bayou Boogaloo music festival draw thousands of visitors. Despite its many costume changes, the bayou continues to be the Crescent City's most beloved waterway. Author Cassie Pruyn reveals this evolving story.
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