Mardi Gras, New Orleans, Louisiana

Mardi Gras Celebrations In New Orleans, Louisiana

King of Zulu at the Mardi Gras festivities in New Orleans, Louisiana in 1936.

Historians have trace the origin of Mardi Gras, which was originally referred to as Carnival and as “Boeuf Gras”, to medieval Europe. The festival expanded from Venice, Rome in the 17th and 18th centuries to France. Afterwards, the “Boeuf Gras” celebrations expanded to the “New France” colonies in North America, with the first celebration being at the Fort Louis de la Mobile in the present area of Mobile, Alabama, in 1703.

“Boeuf Gras,” celebration did not begin in the French settlement of New Orleans until the 1730s.

Mardi Gras, Mobile, Alabama

Mobile, Alabama – The Site Of The First Mardi Gras Celebrations

In 1703, the first Mardi Gras celebrations in the United States began in the “New France Colony”, in present day Mobile, Alabama. The French brought Catholics to the colony which started the Mardi Gras celebration. The celebration ended for a few years, for unknown reasons. After the Civil War, Joe Cain, a citizen of Mobile got fed up with post-Civil War misery and started an impromptu parade down the streets.

In present day, Mardi Gras is celebrated in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Mobile, Alabama, New Orleans, Louisana, and other southern cities.