The spins of old books on a shelf
Louisiana Historical Center workers logging documents

Louisiana Historical Center

The Old U.S. Mint is also home to the Louisiana Historical Center, one of America's great archives. Since it opened in 1982, the Center has served thousands of researchers from around the world. Besides its priceless collections of colonial-era manuscripts and maps, the Louisiana Historical Center houses a wealth of primary and secondary source materials in a wide range of media.

The Center’s archives include colonial Louisiana documents, such as records of the French Superior Council (1714-1769) and the Spanish Judiciary (1769-1803), which are invaluable primary sources for researching Louisiana’s history. The general manuscript collections date from 1584 and feature the original 1724 Code Noir signed by Louis XV, as well as documents from the Battle of New Orleans, the War of 1812, the U.S.-Mexican War and the Civil War. More than a thousand maps and an extensive range of microfilm are also part of the collection.

The Louisiana Historical Center’s archives are open to anyone with an interest in Louisiana history and culture, from professional scholars to family genealogists. All services are free during regular hours or by appointment.

The Louisiana Historical Center’s Donald M. Marquis Reading Room is currently accepting researchers by appointment only. Each 105-minute session is offered Tuesday through Friday, three times a day: 9:30 to 11:15 a.m., 12:30 to 2:15 p.m., and 2:30 to 4:15 p.m. Only one researcher is allowed per 105-minute session. To check our availability and book an appointment online, click here. You may also schedule an appointment by email  or phone at 504-568-3659. The Donald M. Marquis Reading Room is located on the second floor of the Old U.S. Mint. 

Sarah-Elizabeth Gundlach   
Curator of Maps & Manuscripts   
[email protected]

Reading Room Attendant   
[email protected]

Collections at the Louisiana Historical Center
Louisiana Colonial Documents

Louisiana Colonial Documents

manuscript collection


historic maps collection available at the Louisiana Historical Center


sheet music

Sheet Music