The New Orleans Historic Voodoo Museum

Wooden masks, portraits and the occasional human skull mark the collections of this small museum near the French Quarter

The Voodoo Museum "is an entry point for people who are curious, who want to see what's behind this stuff," says anthropologist Martha Ward. (Tyrone Turner)
Smithsonian Magazine | Subscribe

(Continued from page 1)

The eighth graders—visiting from a rural Louisiana parish—filed through the rooms, sometimes pausing to consider candles flickering on the altars or to stare into the vacant eye sockets of skulls.

The braver girls hoisted Jolie Vert over their shoulders for pictures. (“My mom’s going to flip!”) Others scuttled for the door.

“Can we go now?” one student asked in a small voice.

About Abigail Tucker

A frequent contributor to Smithsonian, Abigail Tucker is the author of The Lion in the Living Room: How House Cats Tamed Us and Took Over the World, which is available in bookstores and online starting October 18. More information is available at her website: abigailtucker.com

Read more from this author

Comment on this Story

comments powered by Disqus