Louis Moreau Gottschalk (May 8, 1829 - December 18, 1869) was an American composer and pianist, best known as a virtuoso performer of his own romantic piano works. He spent most of his working career outside of the United States. Gottschalk was born to a Jewish businessman from London and a Creole in New Orleans, where he was exposed to a variety of musical traditions. He had six brothers and sisters, five of whom were half-siblings by his father's mulatto mistress. His family lived for a time in a tiny cottage at Royal and Esplanade in the Vieux Carré. Louis later moved in with relatives at 518 Conti Street; his maternal grandmother Buslé and his nurse Sally had both been born in Saint-Domingue (known later as Haiti). Gottschalk played the piano from an early age and was soon recognized as a wunderkind by the New Orleans bourgeois establishment. During 1840, he gave his informal public debut at the new St. Charles Hotel.