Permanent Collections

Within these landmark buildings, Louisiana State Museums preserve, research, and exhibit artifacts from a permanent collection of nearly 500,000 objects. Highlights include major collections of Louisiana paintings and decorative arts from colonial times to the present; costumes and ephemera illustrating the history of Carnival in Louisiana; a globally recognized collection of musical instruments, recordings, sheet music, and photographs illustrating the history of New Orleans jazz and Louisiana music; and an extensive document archive housed at the Louisiana Historical Center, which includes comprehensive judicial and civil records of French and Spanish colonial rule from 1718 to 1803.

Collections of the Louisiana State Museum
Madame John’s Legacy, William Woodward, ca. 1910, oil on canvas, Louisiana State Museum 12231

Visual Arts Collection

King Oliver's band playing on the sidewalk, Walter C. Allen, 1921. Gift of the New Orleans Jazz Club. Louisiana State Museum 1978.118(B).00665.

Jazz Collection

This woolen coat was worn by U.S. Army Lt. Col. William Sutherland Hamilton who saw action in the Great Lakes early in the War of 1812, and possibly in skirmishes near New Orleans in 1815. Hamilton later became a prominent planter and politician in West Feliciana Parish, serving in the Louisiana Legislature and running unsuccessfully for governor in 1830. (Louisiana State Museum)

Costumes & Textiles Collection

Airplane Exhibit at Wedell-Williams Aviation and Cypress Sawmill Museum

Science & Technology Collection

Little Miss Muffet mug, Newcomb Pottery, 1928. Louisiana State Museum 2007.104

Decorative Arts Collection

Louisiana Colonial Documents

Louisiana Historical Center