Despite fire, Rex Krewe says they’ll continue to stop at historic St. Charles mansion for toast

Firefighters were seen Thursday trying to save some of the artwork inside the building.

by Mary Staes
February 21, 2019

The day after a 7-alarm fire ripped through the Montgomery-Grace home on St. Charles Avenue, Krewe of Rex officials made an announcement Thursday afternoon that they will continue a century-old tradition of stopping at the home for a toast on Mardi Gras morning.

MORE: Historic St. Charles Avenue mansion, Carnival icon, lost in blaze

The mansion is commonly known as the “Rex House,” and officials say at least five people who have lived in the home have reigned over Carnival.

“This majestic residence has been a special setting since 1907 of a very iconic tradition for the Rex Organization,” said an official from the krewe.

The tradition pays homage to the families who have lived there and their contributions to not just the Krewe of Rex, but to all of Carnival.

“The family is steadfast, as are we, that the lore and legacy of this beautiful tradition, despite yesterday’s misfortune, will continue,” officials said. “I have spoken with His Majesty, as well as the family, and both agree that the real tragedy would be, along with the possessions and the majesty represented by this beautiful home, is if those traditions were to go away and fade, as well.”

Krewe officials said the reason the toast happens is to pay homage to the current and former residents of the home. Numerous Carnival artifacts were also on display in the home. Firefighters were seen Thursday trying to save some of the artwork inside the building.

“What is more important, however, are the people that were in there,” officials said. “We are grateful that they all came out of there unscathed physically. While we will continue to stop and toast the residents, it is really our love for the people that resided there and their dedication to Carnival and all of Rex being the reason that we stop there and toast. No fire can take that away.”

Mary Staes is Digital Content Lead for Very Local. She works with our freelancers and crafts content for our social media platforms and website. Before Very Local, she worked with CBS affiliate WWL-TV as a web producer and weekend assignment editor for about 4 years. She has also handled broadcast coverage for 160 Marine Reserve training facilities while she served as an active duty Marine. As a native New Orleanian, she takes being "very local" to heart. She loves being intertwined with the culture and figuring out how there are less than two degrees of separation between us all, whether...

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