A “Helpful Explosion”

  • William R. Freudenburg
  • Robert Gramling
  • Shirley Laska
  • Kai T. Erikson


Formally legislated efforts by “men” to “come to the assistance of nature” in New Orleans are nearly as old as the city, but they took on a new level of intensity at the end of the nineteenth century. In 1895, “the New Orleans Board of Trade, considered the most powerful business association in the city from 1879 to 1928, organized a conference to ‘investigate’ the conditions of the port,” and a lawyer and former head of the city’s cotton exchange, Walter Flowers, was elected as the city’s mayor. The new mayor wasted no time in demonstrating his commitment to the city’s commercial interests, and he soon managed to line up important allies in the state capital, particularly when the issue was waterfront reform.1


Army Corps Water Project Mississippi River Delta Fishery Commission Maintenance Dredging 
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Copyright information

© William R. Freudenburg, Robert B. Gramling, Shirley B. Laska and Kai T. Erikson 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • William R. Freudenburg
    • 1
  • Robert Gramling
    • 2
  • Shirley Laska
    • 3
  • Kai T. Erikson
    • 4
  1. 1.University of CaliforniaSanta BarbaraUSA
  2. 2.University of Southwestern LouisianaLafayetteUSA
  3. 3.University of New OrleansNew OrleansUSA
  4. 4.Yale UniversityNew HavenUSA

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