New Orleans is home to numerous museums that explore a wide variety of histories and cultures, many of which are participating in Museum Month this August. Museum Month is a program where one museum membership gets you and a guest access to every participating museum for the entire month. History buffs in particular can make the most of Museum Month by visiting the museums listed below.
Recognized as Trip Advisor’s #2 museum in the nation and #2 museum in the world in 2017, The National WWII Museum is a world-class destination. Telling the story of American Experience in the war that changed the world, the museum has exhibits ranging from The D-Day Invasion of Normandy to The Arsenal of Democracy. Beyond All Boundaries, showing exclusively in The Solomon Victory Theater, is a 4D journey through the war. With several restaurants and a hotel on its campus, there’s so much to explore.
The Museum of the Southern Jewish Experience covers the geographical area of 13 Southern states and 300 years of history—and it features exhibits, collections, and programming focused on the history of Southern Jews. Interactive exhibits make for a wonderful experience to learn about the history of Judaism and how it is practiced today.
A favorite of adults and children alike, the museum offers dynamic interactive exhibits, multigenerational educational programming, research facilities, and engaging musical performances in the city where jazz was born.
This house museum was built by the late philanthropists Edith and Edgar Stern. The Classical Revival-style mansion is surrounded by eight acres of breathtakingly landscaped gardens designed by some of the finest outdoor architects of the early 20th century. Live music in the garden, as well as gardening classes and other special programming, are regularly offered.
Located in historically Black Tremé, the New Orleans African American Museum is dedicated to protecting, preserving, and promoting the history, art, contributions, and culture of African Americans in New Orleans and the African diaspora. The museum features exhibits from Black artists and showcases Black-owned businesses at a monthly market.
New Orleans is home to several house museums, with Pitot House being one of, if not, the oldest. Built in 1799 on Bayou St. John, Pitot House was the home to New Orleans' first “American” Mayor and remains as one of the few West Indies-style houses remaining in Louisiana.
BK Historic House & Gardens is a historic home dating back to the 19th century complete with twin curved staircases, a Tuscan portico, and a brick-walled garden. Former residents include Confederate General Pierre Gustave Toutant Beauregard and American author Frances Parkinson Keyes.
Gallier House, built in 1857 by f8amous architect James Gallier, Jr., is a Victorian townhouse with modern innovations and stunning decor. This house museum is known for its innovative and advanced-for-its-time architectural features including running hot and cold water.
The Historic New Orleans Collection is a museum, research center, and publisher with exhibits ranging from sculptures to photographs of the French Quarter. View a 3D sculpture of the iconic Jackson Square, which includes a five-foot tall St. Louis Cathedral, plus the French Quarter galleries with over 300 artifacts, and more.
This restored French Quarter home built in 1831 includes a Federalist architectural façade, original operating open-hearth kitchen, a courtyard, and more. The Urban Enslavement Tour is currently offered. On this tour, visitors will learn about the experience of enslaved women, men, and children in urban settings and how they differentiate from that of rural plantations. Hear the stories of Catherine, Maria, and other individuals of African descent who were enslaved by the Hermann and Grima families and view the French Quarter property through the lens of enslavement.
Housed in the apothecary of America’s first licensed pharmacist, this museum’s collection documents and illustrates the history of medicine during the 19th century. It’s one of the most interesting and unique museums New Orleans offers.
Stepping into the Backstreet Cultural Museum takes you straight to the heart and soul of New Orleans. Flanked with hand-sewn Mardi Gras Indian suits of every color, the museum was the dream of the late Sylvester “Hawk” Francis. The museum chronicles the history of Black New Orleanians in life and death, from the great Mardi Gras Indian tradition to social aid & pleasure clubs to the tradition of a jazz funeral. Located in the historically Black Treme neighborhood of New Orleans, Backstreet is off the beaten path but well worth the visit.
See the full list of participating museums here.