Everyone knows Mardi Gras in New Orleans means a good time. The story of the Mardi Gras Indians, however, is not known by many.
Looking into this history gives us a glimpse at how the people of New Orleans have overcome adversity since the very founding of their city.
“Few in the ghetto felt they could ever participate in the typical New Orleans parade. Historically, slavery and racism were at the root of this cultural separation. The black neighborhoods in New Orleans gradually developed their own style of celebrating Mardi Gras. Their krewes are named for imaginary Indian tribes according to the streets of their ward or gang. The Mardi Gras Indians named themselves after native Indians to pay them respect for their assistance in escaping the tyranny of slavery. It was often local Indians who accepted slaves into their society when they made a break for freedom. They have never forgotten this support.”
Be sure to check out MardiGrasNewOrleans.com for more on the history of this world-famous celebration!