Visit this home and 8 other stunning historic structures in Algiers Point at the Shotgun House Tour on Saturday, May 12
232 Pelican Ave · Jim Baird & Rob Booms
Walking up the steps to 232 Pelican Ave. one is greeted with the warm glow of a gas lantern and sounds emanating from the Mississippi River. Originally built in the last years of the 19th century, following the great fire of 1895, the home is distributed throughout with hand-carved millwork, beautiful wood flooring and original solid wood doors. It is also located next-door to the former home of Martin Behrman, the longest-serving mayor in New Orleans history who spent the majority of his life living in Algiers.
While searching for a home in the city, the owners wanted to live near the French Quarter, but not in it. Algiers Point ended up being the perfect fit: the historic, while cozy, neighborhood with ferry access to downtown. The owners thoughtfully converted the property from a double to a single-family home, lovingly preserving the historic integrity. They have updated the utility systems, the kitchen and bathrooms, and uncovered some gems, as well as adding their own architectural details like the handmade stained-glass transoms. The home also doubles as a gallery for their wide-ranging collections of art and memorabilia accumulated through their travels. The massive collection of theatrical masks displayed in the kitchen, includes stunning examples from Japan, the Philippines, India, Mexico, and Africa.
Aside from the globally sourced art, the home has obvious Southwestern décor styling. The owners previously lived in New Mexico and the home is dedicated to visually translating that environment to the New Orleans shotgun. The combination of local architectural details and familiar southwestern colors is a cheerful and exciting surprise. The library is painted in “Santa Fe Gold” and is an homage to their time spent in New Mexico and its art. The text that lines the walls above the bookcase and pocket doors was done by a previous tenant and adds a wonderful touch. For several years, Jim was the Program Director at the Ghost Ranch Education and Retreat Center where Georgia O’Keeffe had a home and painted for years. Being used to the open landscape and the incredible light, Jim insisted on having a sky-light installed in the guest bathroom, which was met by complete confusion and resistance from the local workers. Jim happily won them over.
Photos by Charles E. Leche