Creole Beauties of the 1940s & 1950s

Beauty- Shirley RandolphMiss Shirley Randolph (1941)

 Shown above is Miss Shirley Randolph as she reigned as Xavier University’s Homecoming Queen of 1941. She was a member of the class of 1944 and the   daughter of Allison and Edna Randolph of New Orleans.  In 1941, when this photo was taken, Shirley was one of nine children. Three of her siblings were attending Xavier Prep High, three were in attendance at Holy Ghost Elementary while the oldest  was working and the youngest was not yet ready for school. Their father, Allison Randolph was employed at the U.S. Post Office. She became Mrs. Shirley Randolph Willis and would later marry  Mr. Emile LaBranche.

 Beauty-Anona Blanchet-1945Miss Anona Daisy Blanchet (1945)

Anona Blanchet was pictured in The Louisiana Weekly on October 13, 1945 as the beautiful and charming daughter of Mr. & Mrs. Osceola A. Blanchet. [Read Osceola Blanchet 1902-1987 on 9/22/13 ] She had recently been elected as a delegate to the NAACP meeting which was held in Fort Worth, Texas. As a recent graduate of Bennett College and with plans toward attending LaSalle Extension School, she was presently employed as cashier secretary of the Pyramid Insurance Company of New Orleans. Her plans were to become a certified public accountant. She became the wife of Mr. Albert C. Bulls Jr. of Tuskegee, Alabama.

 Beauty- Dionne Humphrey (1954)

Miss Dionne Louise Humphrey (1954)

Miss Dionne Humphrey grew up surrounded by the rich sounds of New Orleans music. Her father was the legendary jazz musician, Willie Humphrey and her uncles were jazz greats, Percy and Earl Humphrey. She was chosen as Miss Xavier of 1954.  As a senior in the Department of Music, Miss Humphrey was engaged in student teaching at Clark High School at the time of this photo. She was a graduate of Xavier Preparatory High and had attended the Junior School of Music at X.U. and finished with second highest honors in the National Music Auditions held in the city. Besides being a member of the New Orleans Opera Guild Association, University Chorus, and various other organizations; she enjoyed bicycle riding, swimming and relaxing on the keyboard of her piano. She married Mr. Winthrop Lapeyrolerie.

 Beauty-Marita Sarrazain (1956)Miss Merita Sarrazin (1956)

Getting a late summer tan is popular Southern University beauty, Merita Sarrazin, as she appeared on the front page of The Louisiana Weekly issue of September 1, 1956.  She is the daughter of Alton Ambroise and Yvonne Clement Sarrazin of uptown New Orleans. She loved swimming, tennis and listening to modern jazz. She would become the wife of  Mr. William Miller.


 Beauty-Helen Mathieu (1942(\Miss Helen Elizabeth Mathieu (1942)

 Miss Helen Mathieu was chosen as “Queen of Beauty” of Dillard University in a contest sponsored by The Crisis magazine in February of 1942. As a sophomore at Dillard, she was selected by the general vote of the student body, and her picture appeared in the February issue of The Crisis. She later married  Mr. Jugurtha Clifton Butler.

 Beauty- Louise Cavalier (1940)Miss Louise Cavalier (1940)

 Miss Cavalier is shown in The Louisiana Weekly as one of New Orleans most popular misses. Here she is said to be spending her summer vacation on the Gulf Coast. She is the daughter of Harry & Jane Cavalier and the niece of Clothilde & Angelina Darensbourg. She would later become Mrs. Louise Cavalier Robertson.

Beauty- Gloria Dinvant (1949)Miss Gloria Grace Dinvaut (1949)

Pictured on the front page of The Louisiana Weekly on November 5, 1949 is Miss Gloria Dinvaut as she stopped over in New Orleans on her way to Columbus, Ohio. There she planned to study fashion designing after having graduated from Wilberforce State College in June. Miss Dinvaut is the daughter of Fernand and Alice Dinvaut of Edgard, Louisiana. Her father and brothers, who were engaged in numerous successful business enterprises, were featured in the November issue of Fortune magazine of that same year. She married Mr. Leon Frank Allain.

 Beauty- Theresa Cottles (1944)Miss Theresa Carmelita Cottles (1944)

Graduating in fine arts in 1944 from Dillard University, Miss Cottles used her artistic talent and training to design belt and bag sets for an exclusive New York company. The buyer selected her work as most promising from an open exhibit of local art students. The young designer is a native of New Orleans and attributes her success to the influence and encouragement of such teachers as E. Belfield Spriggins of McDonogh #35 High School and Vernon Winslow, art instructor at Dillard. She planned to continue her studies that fall at Pratt Institute of Design in New York. In 1948, Miss Cottles married Mr. Lucien Anthony Lewis.

Beauty- Veronica Ledoux (1944)Miss Veronica LeDoux (1944)

 Vivacious Veronica LeDoux was chosen “Miss Xavier for 1944.” As a junior in the Department of Home Economics, Miss LeDoux was a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Our Lady’s Sodality, the Legion of Mary, the Home Economics Club, and the Varsity Squad. She is the daughter of Louis and Gastonia LeDoux of Lake Charles, LA and the sister of Father Jerome LeDoux, the well- known pastor of St. Augustine Catholic Church in New Orleans for 16 years. She would marry Mr. Howard Mitchell.


Beauty-Dulcie Theresa Delahoussaye (1945)

Miss Dulcie Theresa Delahoussaye (1945)

 Petite Dulcie Delahoussaye is a native of New Orleans and a junior in the School of Education at Xavier University. She was very active in sorority activities on campus and resided with her parents, Althemus & Judith Green Delahoussaye, at 2024 Jena Street.  This uptown Creole beauty shared a home with several siblings: Ashton, Elaine, Althemus Jr., and Brenda Delahoussaye. She became the wife of  Mr. William J. Rudolph and lives in Niagara Fall, New York.


Beauty- Bernice Marguerite Delery (1945)Miss Berenice Marguerite Delery (1945)

 Pretty Berenice Delery was pictured in the Xavier Herald of December 1945 when she was a sophomore in the College of Liberal Arts. As a native New Orleanian, she lived at 1906 Annette Street with her parents, Ferdinand & Beatrice Patterson Delery and several siblings. While at Xavier, she was an active member of the Sodality of Our Lady and one of the ranking students of her class. She married Mr. William Rouege. After his death, she became the wife of  Mr. Calvin Moret of New Orleans.

For more on this topic read: “More Beauties of the 1940s & 1950s” posted on CreoleGen on August 31, 2015

Sources:   The Louisiana Weekly, 27 Feb. 1942 p.4+ 05 August 1944 p.4 + 13 Oct. 1945 p.1; 05 Nov. 1949 p. 1+ 13 Nov. 1954 p.1+ 01 Sept. 1956 p.1; Xavier Herald, Xavier University Archives & Special Collections,  Dec. 1944 p. 6+ Dec. 1945 p .5; (census records, etc).

Lolita V. Cherrie

20 thoughts on “Creole Beauties of the 1940s & 1950s

  1. Thank you so much for this wonderful article. All such beautiful women. I was thrilled to see my cousin, Merita Sarrazin 1956 and Dionne Humphrey 1954 who was our neighbor. Both are still so beautiful to this day.

    • Hi Theo,

      Are you interested in the genealogy of the Randolph family?… I have quite a bit of information I have researched over the years.


  2. I remember going in the Dinvaut’s store in Edgard in the 1940s and 1950s when we would visit my grandparents.

  3. Hi!
    Does anyone know what happened to Ms. Theresa Cottles? She passed away so young. She is buried next to my family’s tomb in St. Louis #3.

    • Theresa Cottles married Dr. Lucien A. Lewis and passed away in 1959 in Clayton, Missouri. She is buried in New Orleans, not in St.Louis #3 but in Mt. Olivet Cemetery. This info is from her obituary. Is this the same person you are referring to? By the way, her parents were William and Alma Cottles. She left behind about 6 siblings and a grandmother, Mrs. Hester Mitchell. Her Burial Mass took place at Holy Ghost Church on Louisiana Avenue….Lolita

      • Hi Lolita, thank you for the response. I am certain the tomb next to my family’s in #3 bears the name Cottles-Lewis and there is a beautiful photo of Ms Theresa on it as she is the only name on the tomb. The next time I go to #3 I will be sure to take a picture of the info. I have seen her picture growing up as a kid visiting my family’s tomb at the cemetery and wondered what happened to her.

        • Yes, you may be correct. My information on the cemetery where she is buried was taken from The Times-Picayune and, of course, we do know that newspapers do give erroneous information periodically….Lolita

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *