City Archives
New Orleans Public Library

Louisiana. Parish Court (Orleans Parish).
Records, 1813-1846
95 ft. and 30 v.

Go to Online Index to Suit Records, 1813-1835

The extant docket books (1822-1846) and manuscript indices (1818-1832, A - D only; 1835-1846) for the Parish Court have been digitized and are available You must create an account with FamilySearch in order to view the images, but the account is free. LINK HERE to access the images. (Click on "Browse through xxx images" and then choose "Parish Court.") Note that the information in these indices is NOT included in the online index referenced above.

By act of 3/15/1813 the Legislature established the court of the parish of New Orleans having civil jurisdiction within Orleans Parish concurrent with that of the District Court of the First Judicial District. The Parish Court also had the same criminal jurisdiction over slaves as had been enjoyed by the City Court of New Orleans prior to 1813.

A single appointed judge presided over the Parish Court. That officer also served ex-officio as the judge of the Court of Probates for New Orleans (this was changed by legislative act of 3/9/1836, whereby a judge was to be appointed to serve exclusively as judge of the probate court) and as president of the Police Jury of Orleans Parish as well. He was to call court into session on the first Monday of each month and to hold court until the business of the term was concluded. The judge was further allowed to adjourn the court during the months of August, September, and October, "in case of epidemic disorders.:

Following adoption of the Constitution of 1845 the Legislature established a new court system in 1846. Under the new arrangement the Parish Court ceased to exist. Its pending cases were transferred to the new Third District Court of New Orleans.

The records include the following, all of which are records of the regular business of the court:

original suit records,
general and special dockets (and indexes),
minute books, and
deed books,

Also included are records of more specialized activities of the Parish Court:

slave emancipation petitions,
change of domicile declarations, and
statements of slaves imported into New Orleans.

There is also one carton of miscellaneous materials.

See also the Register of Naturalizations for Parish Court (VNA) [Inventory not in electronic format]

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