Marie Laveau (b. Sept. 10, 1801, New Orleans, LA–d. June 15, 1881, New Orleans, LA) was a New Orleans Voodoo Queen in the 19th Century. Her parents were Marguerite Henry, a free woman of color of Native American, African, and French descent, and Charles Laveau Trudeau. She was married to Jacques Paris for a year before he died; they had two daughters. After Jacques's death, Marie worked as a hair dresser to the New Orleans elite and lived with Christopher Dominick de Glapion. Of Laveau's magical career, there is little that can be substantiated, but she appeared to excel at obtaining inside information on her wealthy patrons by instilling fear in their servants whom she either paid or cured of mysterious ailments. After her death in 1881, oral tradition states that she was seen by some people in town after her supposed demise. One of her daughters, also named Marie likely carried on her magical practice. Because of her prominence within the history of Voodoo in New Orleans, Laveau has inspired a number of artistic renditions and fictional characters as well.
Marie's surname is often spelled Laveaux, the French spelling; Laveau is the Spanish spelling. He exact date of birth is unclear; some sources list it as 1794 while the record seems to assert it was 1801.