Abraham Lincoln and His Travels to New Orleans

Flat bottom boat of the style used during the time period when Abraham Lincoln traveled along the Mississippi River to New Orleans.
The Historic New Orleans Collection, Gift of St. Mary's Dominican College, 1984.205.1.7
Flat bottom boat
The Historic New Orleans Collection, Gift of St. Mary’s Dominican College, 1984.205.1.7

Abraham Lincoln’s Travels to New Orleans

In the spring and summer of 2017, the headlines in New Orleans newspapers dealt with the proposed removal of four statues honoring the Confederacy.

Ever wonder how we got to this point? I did, and it led me to Abraham Lincoln and his surprising connection to New Orleans. Today’s show is about Lincoln, his visits to New Orleans, and how they shaped his thoughts on slavery and reconstruction as the 16th President of the United States.

In this episode we visit with local author, historian, and geographer Richard Campanella. Richard is the author of Lincoln in New Orleans: The 1828-1831 Flatboat Voyages and Their Place in History. You met Richard back in episode #36, when we discussed how Bourbon Street happened.

In this episode, we travel along with a young Abraham Lincoln as he navigates the Mighty Mississippi,is nearly killed along the Sugar Coast, and witnesses the slave trade in New Orleans.

Through Richard’s meticulous research, we walk the streets of New Orleans in the late 1820s and early 1830s, and see this exotic city through the eyes of a future U.S. President.

All this and more in today’s episode of Beyond Bourbon Street!


You can find Richard on line at richcampanella.com. You’ll find excerpts from all of his books, as well as a wonderful collection of images of New Orleans.

Richard’s books are available at local New Orleans booksellers, including Octavia Books, Garden District Book Shop and Maple Street Book ShopYou can also purchase an autographed copy of Lincoln in New Orleans directly from Richard. Send him an email at: rcampane@tulane.edu

Links and show notes for today’s episode can be found at http://beyondbourbonst.com/40

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Leave us a message at 504-475-7632 or send an email to mark@beyondbourbonst.com

Thanks for listening!




  1. My favorite teacher of all time was my high school History/Social Studies teacher Mr. Quigley. He was an Abe Lincoln expert, in fact he wrote his Master’s Thesis on the life & times of Lincoln. I really enjoyed this podcast because it reminded me of him and the many conversations I had with him about the Civil War. Thanks for this one and all the other topics you’ve covered.

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