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One of the many quirky and wonderful things about New Orleans is that so many of their streets not only have signs, they have tiles. It was hard not to stop at every corner!

Dating back to the 1870s, these encaustic tiles are common in the older parts of the city. Those found in the French Quarter, for streets with Spanish colonial names, were a gift of the Spanish government in 1959. There is widespread restoration – even companies dedicated to custom, stylized tiles!

Encaustic is your vocabulary word today — “Encaustic tiles are ceramic tiles in which the pattern or figure on the surface is not a product of the glaze but of different colors of clay. They are usually of two colors but a tile may be composed of as many as six.” (source)

New Orleans: where the streets all have names.