This building is reputedly the most haunted site in the entire city of New Orleans, formerly the home of Madame Delphine LaLaurie and her 3rd husband Dr. Leonard Louis LaLaurie.
The haunted history of the Lalaurie House is perhaps one of the best known ghostly tales in New Orleans …
For more than 150 years, and through several generations, the LaLaurie House has been considered to be the most haunted and the most frightening location in the New Orleans French Quarter.
Mme. Marie Delphine Lalaurie and her third husband, a doctor, Leonard Louis Lalaurie, purchased the grand home at 1140 Royal Street in the early 1830s. Upon moving in, she began to outfit the home with the finest of appointments — costly furniture, silver and gold plates and paintings by noted artists. She would entertain and dispense hospitality from the downstairs drawing room.
She was born Marie Delphine, daughter of Louis Barthelemy Chevalier de Maccarthy. She was first married on June 11, 1800 to Don Ramon de Lopez y Angulo. When he died on March 26, 1804 in Havana, Cuba, she married Jean Blanque in 1808, who died in 1816. From there she married Dr. Lalaurie on June 12, 1825.
The circumstances of the deaths of her first two husbands are unknown and the whereabouts of Dr. Lalaurie at the time of the fire and subsequent to his wife’s flight from town remains a mystery.
Mme. Lalaurie was well-known for her spectacular parties and galas which she gave frequently at her home. She was one of the most well-known women in New Orleans society of the time. Renowned Voodoo Queen Marie Laveau lived in New Orleans at the same time, just a few blocks from the Lalaurie House. Although the nature of their relationship is unknown, undoubtedly these two women met and knew each other.
It was said that Mme. Lalaurie’s manners were sweet, gracious and captivating. She was born in the society’s upper circles. She was accustomed to and acculturated to the good life. Yet there were persistent rumors that she treated her servants with disdain and in a cruel, abusive manner.
And still, those who visited her said that she was kind to her servants. If one of them tremble in her presence or startled at the sound of her voice, she would soothe and endeavor to reassure her. Nevertheless, the stories of barbarity increased. The smothered indignation on Royal Street grew.
The old history really gets worse but in modern times it is not so.
It was owned by Nicolas Cage but he lost it and other properties during recent financial difficulties. It has demonstrated more activity to guests on tours than any other site in the city. It has a history steeped in horror and blood, and the metaphysical “stains” do not wash out easily. When you visit New Orleans it is a must see.
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