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William Hepworth Dixon, White Conquest: Volume 2, Chapter 5: the State House. (search)
fter the royal founder of Louisiana, the Hotel St. Louis. Rue Royale and Rue St. Louis cut and cross the old French quarter. This side of New Orleans is quaint with balconies, green shutters, high gateways, and inner yards, tricked out with squirts of water and pots of oleander, doing duty for fountains and gardens; a decrepit and deserted corner of the town, from which the tides of life and trade have long since ebbed away. The stench reminds you of Dieppe, the dominoes and billiards of Bayonne. Yet this French quarter used to be a fashionable lounge, where ladies flirted, duellists fought, and senators ruled. The Rue St. Louis was an afternoon drive for belles and beaux, where sparkling Creoles ruined their admirers with a smile; but since that period fashions have changed, and everyone now lodges at the Hotel St. Charles. The once fashionable hotel has sunk into a State capital; one wing of the old hostelry being turned into an executive office, and a deserted dining-room in