As the city of New Orleans marks its 300th anniversary this year, learning about its rich history through its landmarks is as easy as using a smartphone app.
Small signs posted at more than 40 landmarks across the city will highlight local history, as part of public broadcasting station WYES-TV's tricentennial campaign. A major donation from the Gayle and Tom Benson Foundation unveiled Wednesday has made the signs possible.
The signs, at 45 landmarks in the French Quarter, Mid-City, Uptown and Downtown, feature a digital code similar to a barcode. By using a free QR code reader app on a smart phone, visitors can scan the code and pull up a short video, produced by WYES, that details the site's history.
Twenty-one of the plaques are at spots in the French Quarter, including St. Louis Cathedral, where Wednesday's unveiling was held, as well as at the nearby Cabildo and Presbytere, the Pontalba buildings, Jackson Square, the Old U.S. Mint, Le Petit Theatre and Antoine's Restaurant.
Others are being placed at Audubon Park, City Park, the Fair Grounds, the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, Smoothie King Center, Woldenberg Park, Gallier Hall, the Aquarium of the Americas, among other spots.
In addition to the Bensons, other major sponsors are the Historic New Orleans Collection and the Meraux Foundation.