A topsy-turvy history of new orleans & ten tiny turtles

Written by Simone Rathlé and Illustrated by Tania Lee

300 years ago, French explorers disembarked from their tall ships, waded ashore, and established the city of New Orleans. To its topsy-turvy history of pirates and parades, battles and brass bands, colorful cuisine, a chess champ, and some very heavy weather, the turtle family of 417 Royal Street has borne quiet witness from its stately courtyard.

Since its construction in 1795 by the great-grandfather of Impressionist painter Edgar Degas, the turtles’ iconic pink house has served as the first bank in the Louisiana Territory; as a mayor’s residence frequented by General Andrew Jackson; and as home to a world renowned chess prodigy -- who once, reportedly, permitted Queen Victoria a victory. For nearly three-quarters of a century, it has been the site of Brennan’s restaurant.

Here, for the first time, the present generation of ten tiny turtles -- nine girls and one boy -- reveals the vibrant evolution of this beloved city, and, in particular, the story of one of its most celebrated restaurants.

Available for purchase at Brennan’s and online.