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Carville, Louisiana: National Hansen's Disease Museum

Formerly the Old State Leprosarium, a place of banishment for those with an assumed-to-be-contagious (and verifiably unattractive) disease.

5440 Point Clair Rd, Carville, LA
I-10 exit 173. Drive south on Hwy 73 for five miles. Turn right onto Hwy 75/River Rd. Drive five miles. Hwy 75 turns right, away from the river, but stay straight on River Rd, which becomes Hwy 141. Drive two miles. Look for the historical marker and Indian Camp Plantation on the right. Turn into the entrance and stop at the National Guard gatehouse. There is a checkpoint at the gate. Show photo ID to the guard, who will direct you to the museum.
Tu-Sa 10-4 (Call to verify) Local health policies may affect hours and access.
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Visitor Tips and News About National Hansen's Disease Museum

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National Hansen's Disease Museum

The museum is having a phased post-pandemic reopening, but offers an excellent 25-minute audio driving tour, with opportunities to see the exteriors of the buildings and cemetery.

[Jennifer Kefer, 06/22/2022]
Old State Leprosarium Museum

This museum tells the history and stories of patients and staff who lived and worked at the Old State Leprosarium. There are no longer any patients living on the site, which is now a Louisiana National Guard Base. Expect to be stopped by a guard at the main gate and to show valid ID. [Elizabeth, 04/05/2017]

Tales at the Leprosarium.

Old State Leprosarium Museum

As of July, 2012, six patients still reside here. They're in their 80s and NO, they're NOT contagious, but this is their home. I spoke with Pete, an 88-year old resident and he made it worth the trip. WOW. What a guy... and the stories... Ask for Pete. Highly recommended.

[Nathan, 07/19/2012]
Old State Leprosarium Museum

This is on a military base, so make sure you enter through the main gate and check in!

[Lydia, 09/28/2011]
Old State Leprosarium Museum

"Hey Kids! Who wants to go to the Leprosy Museum?!"

The National Hansen's Disease Museum is a historical museum in Carville, Louisiana at the site of a former sugar plantation and leprosy hospital.

Exiled on a former plantation made into a hospital, a makeshift government town made a life for those who were not allowed to ever mix with the outside world.

The hospital closed in 2000, with only a handful of lifelong patients still in residence.

[Bob Pearce, 06/01/2009]

Nearby Offbeat Places

Tiny Church - Chapel of the MadonnaTiny Church - Chapel of the Madonna, Point Pleasant, LA - 3 mi.
Freedom Tree and Purple Martin SanctuaryFreedom Tree and Purple Martin Sanctuary, Plaquemine, LA - 9 mi.
Chicken Yard of PlaquemineChicken Yard of Plaquemine, Plaquemine, LA - 10 mi.
In the region:
Zam's Swamp Tours, Thibodaux, LA - 39 mi.

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