724 St. Philip rebuilds after illegal teardown

The destruction of a historic structure is being rescued by new owner Vincent Marcello who is doing a nice job on the reno:

The stages

700 Royal

pics: May 2016, September 2016 and January 2017.

Original story from 2015:

NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — The bricks for 724 St. Philip street were laid down in the 1820s, and in 1917 three Sicilian brothers by the family name of Montalbano purchased the small house from a widow and set up shop.

The front of the house became a delicatessen, and the back a grocery. The shop became known for the “Roma Sandwich” or the modern day muffuletta. The back room was filled with holy pictures and was allegedly bless by the Pope.

Leslie Perrin moved in next door at 728 St. Philip in 2000 and recalls the cast of “King Creole” lining up around the block to experience the original muffuletta.

The building is now owned by Larry Anderson, who obtained permits for interior renovations but demolished the entire building.

When the common wall between 724 and 728 St. Philip came tumbling down the residents became suspicious.

“At some point I said, ‘I need to see some engineering, where are the plans that you promised me?'” Perrin’s contractor husband Chuck remembers. “I wanted to see what the city has approved, you know, ‘how are you going to do it?’ And they kept saying well, I’ll bring them over tomorrow.”

But the proof of license never came.

According to Meg Lousteau, Executive Director of the Vieux Carre Property Owners, Residents and Associates, there were never permits. And Anderson did not show up to his hearing — his contractor did on his behalf.

The fine: $6,000. A small price to pay for destroying a piece of history that makes up the fabric of the neighborhood.


Story since Marcello bought from Anderson:

The VCC’s Architectural Committee said a new, two-story cottage that Marcello said he plans to build behind the building’s façade would be “decidedly reminiscent of a Creole townhouse.” The new building would be similar to the small masonry cottage that was originally erected at the location and later connected to the carriage house.

“There are historical elements of the building in the front that are still existing, and we plan to try to work with that to make a seamless transition,” Marcello said about his concept, which includes batten shutters, traditionally used on outbuildings, and restoration of the original millwork.


Welcome Homer A. Plessy Community School

Our new charter school at 721 St. Philip St. To assist this school, contact them for moving assistance, school volunteering opportunities or donate funds to build this community school at their new location.

On June 7, 1892, Homer Adolf Plessy Purchased A First Class Railroad Ticket, Boarded The Train, And Was Arrested Two Blocks Later At The Corner Of Press And Royal Streets. He Was Charged With Violating The Separate Car Act, Which Mandated Separate Accommodations For Black And White Railroad Passengers.

The result was the landmark Plessy v Ferguson Supreme Court case, which made “Separate but Equal” the law of the land until the ruling was overturned in Brown v Board of Education in 1954.

We draw inspiration every day from Homer Plessy and the Citizens’ Committee — for their bravery, their ingenuity, their sense of community, and their commitment to justice

This seemingly simple act w, in fact, t the result of meticulous planning by a group called the Citizens’ Committee. Their creative and highly sophisticated work was designed with a Supreme Court challenge in mind, intending to stem the tide of segregation that was taking over post-Reconstruction America.

History Of The School

Back in 2009, a community of educators, families, and advocates began to come together around a simple idea: we saw a need for an excellent elementary school in downtown New Orleans. Through door-to-door campaigns and hundreds of small-group meetings in homes and church halls, a vision came together of a school that placed that a high value of critical thinking, creativity, diversity and citizenship. Today that is the Homer A. Plessy Community School.

In 2012, the Plessy School’s Type 1 Charter Application was approved by the Orleans Parish School Board. Plessy opened its doors in the fall of 2013, serving children in grades Pre-K-2 with an arts-integrated, project-based curriculum. The school will grow by one grade level each year to serve children in grades Pre-K through 8.

The Plessy calls itself a community school but it could even more accurately be called a family school. Every member of the Plessy family is highly valued, and together we work to provide a top quality education for all of our young people.


Homer A. Plessy Community School

Muffalettas and catfish

Serious question: is there good food to be found in the French Quarter under 10.00?

Answer: yes.

Today, I went to the French Market to buy chopsticks ( I also buy my sunglasses, luggage, wallets and a few other things, quite a useful place when you get over the longing for the lost farmers market there) and when I left, I walked down Decatur to Central and got a half muffaletta, then scootered to Matassa’s for baked catfish, baked mac and green beans.

Took them both home to divide up into meals, and I have probably 4.5 meals here.

7.63 at Central

9 something at Matassa’s.

catfish looks great (see picture) and seems like 2.5 meals to me, based on past experience with their food.

As for the muffaletta, I will take a quarter when I go kayaking and sitting on bayou st john tomorrow with a beer and that sandwich with my feet up. the other quarter will probably be lunch on Sunday with another beer, after gardening.

All done in the lower Quarter, which means parking along the levee/Mint.  Dodging the slow folks on Decatur and wondering who all those crazy ass people that are sitting in bumper to bumper traffic on a beautiful day, instead of walking from a few blocks away.

2.5 meals from one order of baked catfish, baked mac and green beans.