Mariona Lloret, who is currently completing her doctoral dissertation on Huey Long at Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona, Spain, offers an international view on Louisiana’s most famous governor. “Our aim is to understand the Kingfish in a broader framework, including him in the Greater Caribbean narrative,” Lloret states of her dissertation, titled Greater Caribbean Strongmen: Leadership Styles in Louisiana and Cuba in the 1920s and 1930s. “Louisiana is such an interesting place,” Lloret adds, “and it can be conceived as a sort of frontier between the Hispanic and Anglo worlds. Huey Long could even be considered a caudillo.” Caudillo is Spanish for a military or political leader, especially one who may be considered authoritarian or dictatorial.
Along with Dr. Rubén Carrillo, Lloret conducted her research at LSU Libraries Special Collections in August 2015, consulting the Huey P. Long Papers (Mss. 2005), the T. Harry Williams Papers (Mss. 2489, 2510), and the Harley B. Bozeman Papers (Mss. 2431). “The variety of sources, including personal letters, official documents, pictures, newspaper clippings, circulars, and pamphlets, among other items, was excellent,” Lloret asserts. “Also, it was fantastic being able to explore Williams’ personal notes on his multiple interviews.” T. Harry Williams was an LSU history professor who won a Pulitzer Prize for his biography titled Huey Long. Special Collections holds his papers, which include the interviews he conducted for the book.
Lloret affirms that “our visit to LSU was essential. Doing research at Hill Memorial Library has been a very pleasant experience, and it has certainly enriched our perspective on our research topic.”
For additional information on Special Collections materials related to Huey Long, consult the Libraries’ subject guide.