New Orleans, LA

The legacy of island people at St. Bernard's Los Isleños Museum and Cultural Center

Curtis Macken

New Orleans, LA - The St. Bernard's Los Isleños Museum and Cultural Center offers the history of Isleños, an ethnic group living in the state of Louisiana.

The Isleños are the descendants of colonists who settled in Spanish Louisiana between 1778 and 1783. They came from the Canary Islands, which became the origin of the name of Isleños that means island people.

Located at the 1357 Bayou River, the museum is located in the heart of St. Bernard Parrish, around 15 miles downriver from downtown New Orleans.

Marie Louise Molero and Mabel Isabel Molero donated the house as a legacy from their parents, Manuel Molero and Camille Silvera. Manuel Molero was one of the early 20th-century Isleños from the St. Bernard Parish, known for their fur trapping business.

The museum has six rooms, including a bathroom and kitchen, which reflect the Isleño life during the late 19th to early 20th century. Two of the museum's exhibits are facing the Bayou Terre-aux-Boeufs.

The museum has a research library that consists of nearly 1,000 volumes of history books. The visitors can dive into the history, folk culture, and literature of the Canary Islands, Spain, and the Isleños of Louisiana from the book available at the library.

The museum charges a $5 admission fee per person for guided tours of the Museum complex, but children under 12 are free to enter with parent supervision.

The museum is open from Wednesday until Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and it is closed on all federal holidays. The museum also accepts the appointment request by calling the hotline 504-277-4681.

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