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Jackson Square

"The song might be different each time, but the Rhythm and life of New Orleans can always be found in Jackson Square."

Notes of Jackson Square

Jackson Square, in the french quarter of New Orleans, was designed after Place des Vosges in Paris, France by architect Louis H. Pile. The square itself, including the landscaping was designed in 1851 by Micaela Almonester. In the center of the square a statue of president Andrew Jackson was erected in 1856. Ever since then it has served as the center of culture and in 1960 was declared a National Historic Landmark. Most of the original design can still be view today, with the dedication and renovations of the park staff.

Jackson Square famously hosts a plethora of public street performers, fortune tellers, and artist. It is a tradition started in the 1920 and made popular throughout the 1980's and today. Most fortune tellers and palm readers can be found sitting on St. Ann or St. Peter street. Over 2 million tourists travel to the park a year to experience the liveliness of New Orleans culture. The park is a particularly popular place during the city's celebration of Mardi Gras. 

As the Center for the french quarter of New Orleans, there is a lot of historical sites that surround it. The Pontalba Buildings, lining two sides of Jackson Square, are 4 story buildings that were built in the 1840's. Today their first floor hosts a variety of shops and restaurants. The top floors are rented out as apartments, and are the oldest continuously rented apartments in North America. A little ways up river is also the Jax Brewery Building. This is the original home of a favorite local beer among New Orleans residents. It is now home to several restaurants and unique shops. Downriver there is the Cafe du Monde which is part of the historic french market. Open 24 hours a day, the cafe serves excellent Cafe Au Lait and delicious beignets. The cafe has been serving food continuously since the Civil War.

Jackson Square is so woven into the community of New Orleans it is an absolute must-visit for any visitor wanting an authentic experience. One can across the square listening to the rhythmic saxophone street performers, enjoying the beautiful lush landscape, and seeing the colorful jugglers defy gravity. A visitor can go in and out of small local shops to find the most unique treasures and trinkets. Each visit is a unique experience, much like the improvised Jazz New Orleans holds so dear. The song might be different each time, but the Rhythm and life of New Orleans can always be found in Jackson Square.