Letters and Stories Chronicle the Landry Family
My book Out of the Shadow of Leprosy: the Carville Letters and Stories of the Landry Family by Claire Manes has been released by University Press of Mississippi. It is the culmination of my life long search for my grandfather who died in the leprosy hospital at Carville in 1932, thirteen years before I was born. Our family silence about him slowed my search but never dimmed my curiosity. After my family discovered letters from him, I was able to tell his story. This book is the result, a testament, I hope to a man I never knew but greatly admire.
Anwei Law the International Coordinator of IDEA, the largest international human rights advocacy organization by and for people who have personally faced the challenges of leprosy, also known as Hansen’s disease, says of the book: “Throughout the world, one of the greatest challenges facing the Hansen’s disease/leprosy community is ensuring that individuals whose lives have been affected by this disease are afforded their rightful place in the history of their families, their countries and the world. By sharing the letters that her family kept from their relatives who had been taken from them together with powerful family photographs, Claire Manes provides us with an important, very personal perspective on the social response to those who had leprosy in the days when people were forcibly relocated to places like Carville. Even more important, she shows how the bonds of family ultimately prove stronger than any disease or society’s reaction to it.
Out of the Shadow of Leprosy is available from the University Press at 1 800 737 7788, through Amazon.com and from bookstore including Octavia Bookstore in New Orleans, La., Books along the Teche in New Iberia, La, and Barnes and Noble in store and online.
About the cover picture: My grandfather, Edmond Landry, my grandmother, Claire Landry, and my mother, Leonide “Teenie” Landry (Manes) are pictured at their New Iberia home in the summer of 1919 before leprosy had entered their lives.