Friday, July 11, 2008

Architectural Art and Its Allies

During the early twentieth century, the Louisiana Architectural Association published a monthly journal titled Architectural Art and Its Allies (1906-1913). The publication committee included leading New Orleans architects General Allison Owen, C.A. Favrot and Sam Stone. The journal's November 1906 issue featured New Orleans General Superintendent of the Sewerage and Water Board George G. Earl's article "Drainage and Sewerage," accompanied with photographs and maps of drainage power stations and sewerage pumping stations. His Map of the City of New Orleans System of Drainage (p.7) is reproduced here, with existing and proposed drainage canals indicated on the key. By the end of 1908 Earl anticipated that some $17,000,000 would have been spent on the combined drainage, sewerage and water proposals.

The New Orleans Public Library has created an online index to Architectural Art and Its Allies and its predecessor, Architecture and Allied Arts (1905-1906). The indexing is partial: it does not include advertisements, letters to the editor, and the bulk of the articles addressing topics outside of Louisiana. Sometimes article illustrations appeared on later pages of the given issue (not co-mingled with the text they illustrate) and these instances were not accounted for by the indexers. Researchers can still browse through the issues: NOPL maintains microfilm copies; the Southeastern Architectural Archive retains originals. For those reading today's headlines about the Recovery School District (RSD) and Orleans Parish School Board (OPSB) plans for rebuilding the city's schools, note that many of E.A. Christy's projects are illustrated in this journal.

The Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans recently released its 2007 Report on Water Quality in the city. The Mississippi River is the primary source for the city's water, with treatment plants located on both banks, one in Algiers and one at Carrollton. The report includes a diagram of the water purification process, as well as data on tested contaminants.

[Pictured above: George G. Earl, Map of the City of New Orleans Showing System of Drainage. Sewerage and Water Board, New Orleans, 1906, Drawing No. 982-B-7. As reproduced in Architectural Art and Its Allies II:5 (November 1906), p.7. Southeastern Architectural Archive, Special Collections Division, Tulane University Libraries].

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