Italians have shaped things like Louisiana art, politics, and cuisine since the end of the nineteenth century.
Since the late 1800's, Italians have had a profound influence in Louisiana and it's culture.
Italians have shaped things like Louisiana art, politics, and cuisine since the end of the nineteenth century. Orleans Parish Sheriff's Deputy, History professor, and author Alan Gauthreaux shared a look at the Italian people and their culture on September 26 at the Donaldsonville Library.
Alan is a native of Marrero, La. He graduated from the University of New Orleans with a bachelor's and master's degree in History. Gauthreaux eventually wrote the book, Italian Louisiana: History, Heritage, & Tradition. In the book, Gauthreaux documents the experience of Italians who arrived in Louisiana over one hundred years ago.
At the event, he signed copies of the book for guests and presented information about it. Light refreshments were served. Besides being a premier scholar on the subject of Louisiana Italians, Gauthreaux is also an entertaining speaker.
"I love to teach and educate people," he said. "I also love to hear my voice a lot. In fact I record it and play it back for me at night. It gets me to go to sleep."
Gauthreaux has also written Dark Bayou: Infamous Louisiana Homicides, Bloodstained Louisiana: Twelve Murder Cases, and Echoes of Valor. Additionally, he does some mini-documentaries on Youtube about historical crime.
"A lot of people go to the back of this book," Gauthreaux said. "They're looking for their last name. It is not about one particular family. It is about the Italian assimilation as a whole. When I say Italian, I'm going to use Italian and Sicilian interchangeably."
Follow Darian on Twitter: @dariangshark
Greg Fischer also contributed to this article.