O'Dwyer's Club

Stop 7 of 9 in the Early 20th-Century Gaming in the Free State of Jefferson tour

According to Al Kleindienst, after selling their family's Club Forest to the Mills brothers, Al Schorling and Carlos Marcello, the O'Dwyers opened a club at 100 Jefferson Highway in 1949 called "O'Dwyer's."

"It was a way of life in new Orleans. They, my mother-in-law, they never really had a lot of money. He was a lieutenant with the fire department. My father-in-law. But once or twice a month [people] would get dressed up and come to Beverly or O'Dwyer or something like that and just enjoy it. Just eating good and gambling a little. And the music, and they'd dance and everything. It was just a way of life. It was really nice. But. Like I said... Washington didn't get their share [in taxes], and that was the end of that. So it's a way of life that just stopped going on." Al Kleindienst, Interview, 12 Nov. 2012.

Images

Postcard from O'Dwyer's

Postcard from O'Dwyer's

This postcard from O'Dwyer's shows images of the interior and exterior of the club and provides its location. The gaming is not shown. From the Collection of Ashton O'Dwyer, Courtesy of Sam Katz. View File Details Page

Back of a Postcard from O'Dwyer's

Back of a Postcard from O'Dwyer's

Advertising themselves as a place to enjoy "an Adventurous New Orleans Evening," with the "Finest of Famous New Orleans Dishes--smart music," this O'Dwyer's postcard served as both memorabilia and advertisement. It does not explicitly mention illegal gaming, but certainly does describe the establishment. From the Collection of Ashton O'Dwyer, Courtesy of Sam Katz. View File Details Page

Front of O'Dwyer's Business Card

Front of O'Dwyer's Business Card

This business card from O'Dwyer's gives the club's address and provides us with a great image of the establishment. From the Collection of Ashton O'Dwyer, Courtesy of Sam Katz. View File Details Page

Back of O'Dwyers Business Card

Back of O'Dwyers Business Card

Describing the club as a "Cocktail Lounge," this business card from the O'Dwyer's was an advertising method for the establishment. Although the gaming was well-known and illegal, it did not force the establishments into total hiding. From the Collection of Ashton O'Dwyer, Courtesy of Sam Katz. View File Details Page

O'Dwyer Matchbooks

O'Dwyer Matchbooks

These matchbooks from gaming clubs owned by the O'Dwyers are not only a collectors item today, but were an important advertising method while the clubs were in operation. Items and Information Courtesy of Al Kleindienst, 11/12/12. View File Details Page

Cite this Page:

Christina Lawrence, “O'Dwyer's Club,” New Orleans Historical, accessed April 30, 2017, http://neworleanshistorical.org/items/show/447.
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