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BB King's Blues Club…

Jul 29 - 29, 2016
Join us for live music with Stevie J Blues Solo. more

BB King's Blues Club…

Jul 29 - 29, 2016
Join us for live music with BB King Allstar Band ft. Larry Johnson & Jonte… more

Carousel Gardens…

Jul 29 - 31, 2016
Now is a great time to buy your season pass. The season pass even gets you… more

d.b.a. New Orleans…

Jul 29 - 29, 2016
Join us at d.b.a.  for Colin Lake with Dinosaurchestra. more

David Hansen's Garden…

Jul 29, 2016
Since 2006, Hansen's Garden District Jazz Trio has performed every night at… more

DigiTour Summer

Jul 29 - 29, 2016
Headlined by Baby Ariel, Jake T. Austin, Dylan Dauzat and Weston Koury with… more

FestiGals

Jul 29 - 30, 2016
FestiGals is the Ultimate New Orleans Girlfriend Getaway that celebrates,… more

Festigals 2016

Jul 29 - 31, 2016
FestiGals will return to the JW Marriott for its sixth women's weekend! more

House of Blues…

Jul 29 - Dec 30, 2016
Every Friday join us in the Voodoo Garden for live music, beer and drink… more

MechaCon 2016

Jul 29 - 31, 2016
MechaCon is an annual three day anime convention held during the summer at the… more

New Orleans Museum of…

Jul 29 - 29, 2016
In conjunction with NOMA's special exhibition The Essence of Things:Design and… more

Photo Exhibition -…

Jul 29 - 30, 2016
Join us for the Photo Exhibition - "MAAFA: The Past We Inherit; the Future… more

The Illusion

Jul 29 - Aug 6, 2016
Strange things happen when you wander into a magician’s cave. Pridamant,… more

Tulane Lupin Theater…

Jul 29 - Aug 6, 2016
Join us The Shakespeare Festival's production of The Illusion.   The… more

“The National WWII…

Jul 30 - 30, 2016
The French Market welcomes The National WWII Museum's Victory Belles back to… more

Backyard Grooves

Jul 30, 2016 - Jan 10, 2026
In The Voodoo Garden, All Ages.   more

BB King's Blues Club…

Jul 30 - 30, 2016
Join us for live music with Piano Man Lucy Blackledge. more

BB King's Blues Club…

Jul 30 - 30, 2016
Join us for live music with BB King Allstar Band ft. Larry Johnson & Jonte… more

BB King's Blues Club…

Jul 30 - 30, 2016
Join us at the BB King's Blues Club New Orleans for BB King Allstars Band ft.… more

Double Dose

Jul 30, 2016 - Jan 10, 2026
ActionActionReaction and friends keep the dance floor energized with mixes of… more

BB King's Blues Club…

Jul 29 - 29, 2016
Join us for live music with Stevie J Blues Solo. more

Krewe of Zulu

February 12, 2013

Early in 1909, a group of laborers who had organized a club named "The Tramps" went to the Pythian Theater to see a musical comedy performed by the Smart Set. The comedy included a skit entitled, "There Never Was and Never Will Be a King Like Me," about the Zulu Tribe.

That is how Zulu began, as the many stories go...

Years of extensive research by Zulu's staff of historians seem to indicate that Zulu's beginning was much more complicated than that. The earliest signs of organization came from the fact that the majority of these men belonged to a Benevolent Aid Society. Benevolent Societies were the first forms of insurance in the Black community where, for a small amount of dues, members received financial help when sick or financial aid when burying deceased members.

Conversations and interviews with older members also indicate that in that era the city was divided into wards, and each ward had its own group or "Club." The Tramps were one such group. After seeing the skit, they retired to their meeting place (a room in the rear of a restaurant/bar in the 1100 block of Perdido Street), and emerged as Zulus. This group was probably made up of members from the Tramps, the Benevolent Aid Society and other ward-based groups.

While the "Group" marched in Mardi Gras as early as 1901, their first appearance as Zulus came in 1909, with William Story as King.

The group wore raggedy pants, and had a Jubilee-singing quartet in front of and behind King Story. His costume of "lard can" crown and "banana stalk" scepter has been well-documented. The Kings following William Story (William Crawford - 1910, Peter Williams - 1912, and Henry Harris - 1914) were similarly attired.

1915 heralded the first use of floats, constructed on a spring wagon, using dry good boxes. The float was decorated with palmetto leaves and moss and carried four Dukes along with the King. That humble beginning gave rise to the lavish floats we see in the Zulu parade today.

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