Perique: Photographs by Charles Martin
A look inside Louisiana’s perique tobacco tradition
Perique comes only from one place—St. James Parish, on the Mississippi River, where farmer Pierre “Perique” Chenet began selling pressure-fermented tobacco in 1824. He learned his technique, according to local legend, from Choctaw and Chickasaw natives who aged tobacco in hollow logs instead of barrels.
For eight years, Charles Martin has been out in the tobacco fields and curing barns of St. James Parish documenting the planting, harvest, and aging of perique tobacco. His black-and-white photographs are now on display at the Williams Research Center in New Orleans. Perique: Photographs by Charles Martin runs through February 2, 2013.