American Horror Story premieres tonight on FX.
This season of the anthology series is titled, “Coven” and is set in New Orleans. Unlike previous seasons before, this season was filmed largely on location in the Big Easy. The city is rich in history and culture, much that is in play this season.
1. The LaLaurie
Madam Delphine Lalaurie and her third husband, Dr. Louis Lalaurie moved into a Creole mansion in the French quarter in the mid 1800’s. In the public eye, this was a woman of great influence carrying her with great style. The true face of Delphine lalaurie was discovered when a fire that started in her kitchen engulfed her home. When firefighters arrived they bored witness to a gruesome scene. Behind a false wall in the attic, they found more than a dozen slaves, some of which were dead in horrible conditions. Medical experiments where performed. Many salves were chained to walls, mutilated. The shelf contained souvenirs of the experiments.
Kathy Bates portrays Madame Delphine Lalaurie in this season of AHS, and based on the previews, she plays close to her characters
2. Marie Laveau
Marie Laveau was a practitioner of Voodoo in New Orleans. While much about her is steeped in myth and rumor, what remains is that she was the most powerful elder of her religion. One story about her occurred shortly before she died. The elderly woman went into her house and emerged as a young woman. The young woman was her daughter, Marie Laveau, who looked remarkably like her mother. When Marie the first died, the second took up her Voodoo practice, staging elaborate ceremonies for curious onlookers.
3. The Sultans Palace
Named The Gardette-LePrete House, it was built in the mid 1800’s by a dentist in Philadelphia, who sold the home to a wealthy businessman named Jean Baptist LaPrete. When LaPrete’s fortune went south, he decided to rent the property for extra income. He found a renter in form of a foreigner whose name was never revealed. It was speculated that he was from Turkey and was related to the Sultan of Turkey. When he arrived at New Orleans, he was followed by a huge entourage that included men, eunuchs, loads of trunks and suitcases, tapestries and woman. He turned the home into a palace. The nearby residents commented on the size of his harem and his activities. It was noted that his harem also included young boys. It was not unusual for the man to kidnap woman from the streets of New Orleans who he found attractive and forced them to join his harem.
One morning, the neighbors discovered blood seeping from the doors and pooling out on the streets. When the police entered the home to investigate, they found all the occupants, man, woman and child, had been raped and murdered. They were mutilated and decapitated to the point that there where to many pieces to count and trying to decipher which limb belonged to whom was impossible. The Turk was found buried in a shallow grave in the garden. He was found with a slash to his throat, but was buried alive before he died. Though the police searched for the murders, they never found who committed the crime.
4. Vampire in New Orleans
A man named Ramon is said to have been a vampire. He was the brother in law of Alberto De Leonne. Ramon was a drunk and became addicted to both absinthe and Laudanum. De Leonne had a garden that he held in high esteem. His wife convinced him to let Ramon tend to his garden. Under the effects of his vice, Ramon believed that he was cursed by Vodusi man. Ramon would sleep all day, and wake up an dusk. He would tend to the garden, then leave to roam the streets of the Old Quarter only to came back home at sunrise. Later Ramon was found dead in the garden near a Spanish lime tree. De Leonee ordered his slaves to dig a grave near the lime tree to bury Ramon. When they began to dig they discovered the decomposing remains of human bodies. The servants dug deeper and uncovered several limbs and torsos. There was no spot in the large garden that did not have a dead body. The mortuary workers determined that the bodies were drained of all blood before they were buried. Vampire Ramon is said to still roam the Old Quarter.
American Horror Story: Coven premieres tonight at 10/9pm on FX.