Cloverland Dairy

Although dairies are often left out of the histography regarding New Orleans food, they played an important role in early New Orleansians lives. Through specialty traditions like Creole cream cheese, New Orleans’ only indigenous cheese, New Orleans dairy culture carries on.

Cloverland Dairy opened its facility on South Carrollton in October 1924. The giant milk-bottle sign was a local landmark. It is said to have held 35,000 gallons of water which was used to wash milk trucks and rinse the dairy driveway.

The Cloverland Dairy employed many people, including the legendary jazz musician, Louis Armstrong. In his Memoir, Swing that Music, Louis Armstrong recalls that at fourteen he took a job at Cloverland Dairy. “While I was a newsboy I got a chance at a steady job at the Cloverland dairy, and I took it and went to work there for a while,” (p. 25). He delivered milk on a Cloverland Milk wagon and on Friday morning around 10 o'clock the delivery boys would get paid. Armstrong recalls that a lot of the boys would take their money around the corner from the dairy and play craps. He accounts in his book Satchmo: My Life in New Orleans, that one Sunday his foot missed the step of the wagon and his foot was caught underneath the wheel, which rolled his foot over and ground it into the oyster shells that were broken up to made the road. The pain was so bad that the driver he worked with took him to Charity Hospital (p. 117).

The building on Carrollton was converted to a US Post Office which kept the white stone façade from the dairy, however the famous bottle was demolished because its structure was rusting and could be dangerous.