Mardi Gras History
It is really interesting how far back the "Mardi
Gras" holiday goes
In the late 1700's
pre-Lenten balls and parties were held in New Orleans under French rule,
flourished, but were banned later when Louisiana was under Spanish rule.
an American city, New Orleans' fun loving Creole populations convinced
the governor to
allow Mardi Gras balls in 1823. In 1837, a costumed group of revelers
walked in the first
documented parade. Due to the violence of several masked paraders during
Mardi Gras once again faced prohibition. Six New Orleanians formed the
Comus, and proved Mardi Gras could be a fun and beautiful celebration.
several traditions such as forming a secret carnival society, choosing a
mythology, having themed parades with floats and costumed maskers, and
having a ball.
Rex began in 1872 and has been known as the "King of Mardi Gras" ever
since. This group
honored visiting Russian royalty; organized the first daytime parade;
chose the colors of
Mardi Gras, purple, green, and gold*; the musical theme, "If Ever I Cease
to Love," and
produced its first flag. In 1916, the first black krewe, Zulu, came upon
the scene. The first
Zulu king poked fun at Rex and ruled with a banana scepter.
Mardi Gras survived the war years, the Great Depression, and other
struggles. It is
celebrated throughout the entire Gulf Coast from from the Florida
panhandle to Texas.
*COLORS OF MARDI GRAS
Purple represents Justice; Green stands for Faith; Gold signifies Power