New Orleans University
New Orleans University c. 1920
Former names
New Orleans College
TypePrivate, HBCU
Active1869 (1869)–1935
Location, ,
29°55′37″N 90°06′43″W / 29.927°N 90.112°W / 29.927; -90.112
AffiliationsGilbert Academy

New Orleans University was a historically black college that operated between 1869 and 1935 in New Orleans, Louisiana, United States. It was founded by Freedmen's Aid Society and the Methodist Episcopal Church. It merged with Straight College in 1935 to form Dillard University.[1]


New Orleans University was founded in 1869 by the Freedmen's Aid Society with funds from the Methodist Episcopal Church.[2] It was located above Canal Street (present-day Lower Garden District),[2] at Camp and Race streets in New Orleans. In the year 1869, sixteen schools for African Americans were active in the New Orleans area.[2] It later moved to 5318 St. Charles Avenue, near what is presently Jefferson Avenue.[3]

New Orleans University was considered an auxiliary school to the Gilbert Academy, a prestigious college-preparatory school for African-American students in New Orleans.[3] The two schools formed an administrative merger in 1919,[4] with the two institutions remaining in their respective locations.[5] When New Orleans University and Straight College combined to form Dillard University at a new campus in Gentilly in 1935, Gilbert Academy moved into the buildings vacated by New Orleans University.[6]

Notable alumni

See also: Category:New Orleans University alumni and Category:Dillard University alumni


  1. ^ New Orleans City Guide. Works Progress Administration (WPA). Garrett County Press. 2011-08-15. ISBN 978-1-891053-40-5.((cite book)): CS1 maint: others (link)
  2. ^ a b c Toledano, Roulhac; Christovich, Mary Louise; Swanson, Betsy (1971-01-01). New Orleans Architecture: Faubourg Tremé and the Bayou Road. Friends of the Cabildo. Pelican Publishing. p. 100. ISBN 978-1-56554-831-2.
  3. ^ a b Johnson, T. R. (2023-03-02). New Orleans. Cambridge University Press. p. 218. ISBN 978-1-316-51206-7.
  4. ^ United States. Works Progress Administration of Louisiana; McKinney. "Description and history of Gilbert Academy". Louisiana Digital Library. Louisiana Works Progress Administration. p. 35.
  5. ^ Bethea, Judith (April 2004). "Two remarkable African-American schools and the site they shared on St. Charles Avenue". Preservation in Print. 31 (3): 28–29.
  6. ^ Campanella, Richard (February 2021). "Preservation's selective lens: the Gould House, Gilbert Academy and the legacy of New Orleans University". Preservation in Print: 10–12.
  7. ^ Anderson, Susan Heller (1989-11-04). "John L. Wilson Jr., 91, Architect Of Harlem River Houses, Is Dead". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2023-02-21.
  8. ^ Wilson, Dreck Spurlock (2004-03-01). African American Architects: A Biographical Dictionary, 1865-1945. Routledge. ISBN 978-1-135-95628-8.