The 1868 Society is a diverse group of historians, artists, community leaders, and New Orleanians of all backgrounds dedicated to a critical understanding of our city’s unique history and an honest discussion of our public symbols.
We take our name from the Louisiana Constitution of 1868, the most forward-looking declaration of values in the state’s history. At a time when reactionary forces threatened to drag the state backwards, the 1868 Constitution made a bold claim to a better future, emphasizing equity, freedom, democracy, and education for all.
For too long, the interpretation of history in New Orleans has been dominated by a select few who sit enthralled by the Lost Cause, so thoroughly drowned in the mythology that they cannot trace its own history as a vehicle for white supremacy. History, as a discipline, requires an ability to evaluate ideas, sources, and artifacts in context, not a blind allegiance to a facile fiction justified by its own existence.
We simply ask anyone involved in the monument debate take the oath our 1868 Constitution demanded 150 years ago, “signing a certificate setting forth that he acknowledges the late rebellion to have been morally and politically wrong, and that he regrets any aid and comfort he may have given it…”
We believe a segregated society demanded a segregated history. The 1868 Society believes we deserve a better past.
Contact us at info (at) the1868society.com