This book was recommended by a friend, as it would be useful in my research for a novel I'm writing. She was correct.
John Churchill Chase started out studying the history of New Orleans street names in order to use the information in speeches at his local Toastmasters Club in the 1940s. He subsequently became known as such an expert that he was offered a book contract, resulting in the 1949 first edition of this book. The current edition was published in 1959, with an additional chapter updating the book with corrections and new information. That is the book currently in print.
Chase's illustrations at the beginning of each chapter give a humorous look at some of the historic figures he talks about, and how their names came to be applied to various streets in New Orleans. There have been some additional street name changes since 1959 ... for obvious reasons, they are not included here. Still, it's an entertaining look at Louisiana's history through the streets of the Crescent City ... and helpful if you need to know (for instance) that Governor Nicholls Street used to be Hospital Street for obvious reasons, and part of Burgundy Street used to be Craps Street because of Bernard Marigny's fascination with the dice game.