Galveston in Galveston County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
Mardi Gras in Galveston
Mardi Gras was born out of a fifteenth-century European masquerade ball tradition, where guests would wear extravagant costumes and masks to conceal their identities. The first Mardi Gras celebration in Galveston occurred in 1867 at Turner Hall, when a group called “The Jolly Young Bachelors” invited 100 guests for “Dramatic Entertainment and a Bal Masque.”
The initial Mardi Gras celebration was deemed a success; however, the now annual event experienced periodic hiatuses throughout its history. Private celebrations and impromptu parades helped fill in the gaps between publicly promoted and organized events. Many traditions in the celebration have developed over the years, such as multiple parades and processions. Several festive galas developed over time to include an elaborate “Treasure Ball” and a royal party featuring the crowning of that year’s King Frivolous.
After a lengthy hiatus, in 1985 businessman and Galveston native George P. Mitchell and his wife, Cynthia Woods Mitchell, spearheaded efforts to revive Mardi Gras as a public event with local traditions. Their efforts included the fantasy arches project, which featured eight decorative arches commemorating the re-establishment of Mardi Gras in Galveston as an annual event.
Today, Mardi Gras provides vital support for the local economy by attracting 300,000 visitors annually and sustaining downtown businesses. Daytime events have been added to foster a more family-friendly environment. The
Erected 2017 by Texas Historical Commission.
Location. 29° 18.368′ N, 94° 47.696′ W. Marker is in Galveston, Texas, in Galveston County. Marker is on Mechanic Street east of 24th Street, on the right when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is located on the sidewalk, near the street, in front of the Tremont House Hotel, just west of the main entrance. Marker is at or near this postal address: 2300 Mechanic Street, Galveston TX 77550, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Leon & H. Blum Co. Building (a few steps from this marker); The Tremont Houses (within shouting distance of this marker); 1871 Thomas Jefferson League Building (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Nicholas J. Clayton (about 300 feet away); Hutchings, Sealy & Co. Buildings (about 400 feet away); Santa Fe Union Station (about 600 feet away); Juneteenth (about 700 feet away); The Stewart Building (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Galveston.
Also see . . . The History of Mardi Gras in Galveston.
The first year that Mardi Gras (Submitted on May 14, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
Categories. • Notable Events •
Credits. This page was last revised on May 15, 2018. This page originally submitted on May 14, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 55 times since then. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on May 14, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. 5, 6, 7. submitted on May 15, 2018. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.