|The Boston Club, decorated for a night parade, 1906. One of Mardi
Gras' long-running traditions features Rex, King of Carnival, toasting
his Queen in front of the Boston Club on Mardi Gras Day.
|The Boston Club, ca. 1890
|Boston Club on the left, with Macheca's Imperial
building on the right - this building was later to
be the home of Godchaux's Department store
from 1926-1987; photo, ca. 1909.
From History of New Orleans by John Kendall, published in 1922:
"An important part in the social life of the city is played today by the clubs. The Boston Club is the oldest
surviving organization of this type. It was formed in 1841 by a coterie of gentlemen devoted to the game
of Boston, a card game in vogue at that time. The club was incorporated in 1842. Its first quarters were
on Royal Street, but after a short residence there, it transferred its household goods to rooms on the
south side of Canal Street, adjoining Moreau's restaurant. About this time, other games than Boston
began to be played in its comfortable card rooms. Later on, the club took rooms on Carondelet Steet,
near Canal, and, finally, occupied its present home on Canal Street, between Carondelet and Baronne.
This building is a fine type of the pre-war southern residence. It was built by the famous Dr. W. N. Mercer,
when he relinquished his stately mansion on Carondelet Street, where he entertained Henry Clay, during
his frequent visits to the city. Mercer was an intimate friend of Clay, and it is said was the generous, but
anonymous, benefactor who paid the statesman's debts in the later years of his life. Among the noted
men who have belonged to the Boston Club may be mentioned John R. Grymes, Judah P. Benjamin, T. J.
Semmes and Gen. Dick Taylor."
|A current photo of the Boston Club.