Charity Hospital Cemetery New Orleans

Charity Hospital Cemetery was established in 1847 to bury paupers and people with no relatives.  Over the years, over 150 people were buried in unmarked graves.  Most of them died from Yellow fever and Malaria during the epidemics.  The cemetery is closed now, and locked iron gates surround it.

The first tomb in this row is barrel vaulted, which was common early on.  It was later replaced by a flat lintel panel.  Number 2 and 3 are parapet tombs, a flat roof with a raised extension at the front of the roof. Number 5 is a pitched roof tomb, defined by gables or facade variations.  They often contained acroteria on each end, which was a corner element.  A pitched roof tomb looked like a tiny church.

The second tomb (white with iron fence) more closely resembles a sarcophagus in size and design, but could be a version of a parapet or pediment tomb.  Number 3 is a pediment tomb, ofter a multiple vault tomb, and was greater in height than in width.  The top has integrated front gable end, pediment of flat, triangular, or segmented design.

A barrel vault tomb is visible behind this parapet tomb.

During my first visit to New Orleans in the early 1990s, I was absolutely fascinated and enamored of the cemeteries.  I spent hours photographing the unique designs, completely overwhelmed with the fact that they were like little cities, with street names.  This was pre-digital, and after shooting 3 rolls of film, Randy finally persuaded me that surely I had enough by then.  “But there are so many more still here….”

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2 Responses to Charity Hospital Cemetery New Orleans

  1. Oh, I love visiting the cemeteries in New Orleans! I am glad that I found this old post of yours. Aren’t we (and husbands) grateful digital photos? Thanks for the recent visit and comment to my post,


    • Suzassippi says:

      One wonders how we ever made do without digital. 🙂 And, of course, like all things that evolve in design, my first digital was very complex to use, and the quality far less than print, but still, the ability to see those images immediately was so gratifying.


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