map

Lafayette Cemetery No. 1

icon-location-red

0.00/5 - (0 Votes)

Attractions Details

📌 Address

1427 Washington Ave, New Orleans, LA 70130, USA

Opening Hours

8:00 AM - 5:00 PM

💸 Entrance Fee

Free

Find it on google maps

0.00/5 - (0 Votes)
expert
Colm
Local tour guide
"Visit Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 early in the morning to avoid the heat and the crowds, as this historic site gets quite busy; and don't forget to look for the unique family tomb of the Jefferson Fire Company, which tells a rich story of the city's firefighting history."

What is Lafayette Cemetery No. 1?

Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 is a historic resting place in the heart of New Orleans' Garden District. This cemetery, set amongst ancient oaks and Southern magnolias, is the final home for numerous famous and influential personalities. What sets it apart is not just its age or the notoriety of some of its "residents," but also the distinctive above-ground vaults and tombs, characteristic of New Orleans' unique burial practices necessary in a city challenged by a high water table.

Our Most Popular Tour:

All-Inclusive
Boston Walk Through History Tour

Boston has such a rich history, and on our Boston walking tour, you can explore it on foot! Whatever the time of year, you’re sure to love this immersive ...

US$279/pp Learn more

As someone with a remarkable affinity for the historical tapestry of New Orleans, I find this cemetery to be an open book on the cultural melting pot that our city embodies. Here, ornate family mausoleums stand alongside simpler wall vaults, displaying a range of architectural styles from Gothic to Classical—each with its own story to tell.

Venturing inside, the myriad of pathways takes you through a time-worn but still poignant city of the dead, offering a serene, contemplative experience quite apart from the vibrant buzz of life that New Orleans is so famous for.

History of Lafayette Cemetery No. 1

Established in 1833, Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 is one of the oldest city-operated cemeteries in New Orleans. Pioneers of the City Planning Commission saw the need for a new cemetery after outbreaks of yellow fever and cholera. It was named after the City of Lafayette, which was once separate from New Orleans and incorporated into the city as the Garden District, a place synonymous with antebellum architecture and Southern charm.

Did you know that some of our customs around death and burial here are so ingrained that they've shaped the layout of this historic site? The cemetery was planned with intersecting avenues, which mirrored city streets, hence the term ‘cities of the dead.' Graced with decorative ironwork and sculptures, the cemetery is a profound statement of both personal and municipal identities.

Our Top Trending United States Tours:

  • All-Inclusive

    Boston Fantastic Foodie Tour

    US$239/pp Learn more
  • All-Inclusive

    Chicago Instagram Tour: The Most Famous Spots

    US$599/pp Learn more
  • All-Inclusive

    Chicago Historic Pullman Company Town Private Walking Tour

    US$189/pp Learn more

Throughout the years, Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 has navigated the divide between segregation and unity. Here, individuals of various ethnicities, social classes, and religious backgrounds are entombed. It's not just a testament to New Orleans' colorful past, but a constant reminder of the rich diversity that fashioned the city's culture. This is a place where history isn't just remembered; it's palpably felt.

Why is Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 Important?

Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 is a monumental record of the historical patterns unique to New Orleans—a narrative of epidemics, architecture, art, and cultural diversity. To the backdrop of a city where both life and death are celebrated with fervor, the cemetery stands as a sacred space that honors the past while still being an integral part of the living community.

Consider how these tombs, with dates spanning centuries, reflect the passing of time and the evolution of a city often deemed timeless. Have you ever pondered the depth of heritage that can be revealed from a single headstone or family plot?

It is also an important venue for cultural heritage and genealogical research, offering invaluable insights to those tracing lineage or scholars studying the societal makeup of 19th and 20th century New Orleans. Lafayette Cemetery No. 1, then, is not just a location; it's a cornerstone of identity for the city and its many lineages.

Things to Do & See at Lafayette Cemetery No. 1

Walking through the narrow avenues of Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 is akin to stepping back in time. Photography enthusiasts will find themselves perfectly at home among the photogenic tombs and statuary that seem to hold countless untold stories. To truly immerse yourself, consider those silent narratives each monument whispers to those who take the time to listen.

  • Discover family histories: Each tomb is a microcosm of New Orleans' broader history, containing the remains of families that have influenced the city in various ways.
  • Architectural marvels: Observe the array of architectural styles reflected in the tombs, with unique features that showcase the confluence of cultural influences over the years.
  • Learn about burial customs: A walk through the cemetery offers a learning opportunity about the unique burial customs that became necessary due to New Orleans' unique geographical challenges.

Enhancing your visit with a guided tour can layer additional context and stories that might escape the casual observer. Be it tales of yellow fever victims, Civil War soldiers, or iconic Creole families, the full tapestry is as intricate as the ironwork on the 19th-century gates. And as you saunter through, ask yourself: what echoes of history are these walls so eager to share with us today?

Frequently asked questions

What is Lafayette Cemetery No. 1?

Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 is a historic cemetery in New Orleans, known for its above-ground tombs and strong cultural significance within the city's Garden District.

How old is Lafayette Cemetery No. 1?

Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 was established in 1833, making it one of the oldest cemeteries in New Orleans.

Can visitors take guided tours of Lafayette Cemetery No. 1?

Yes, visitors can take guided tours of Lafayette Cemetery No. 1, which are often led by local historians or tour companies who share insights into the cemetery's history and the notable individuals buried there.

Are there any famous people buried in Lafayette Cemetery No. 1?

Yes, Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 is the final resting place of several prominent New Orleans residents, including judges, mayors, and other influential figures from the city's past.

Is Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 featured in any movies or books?

Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 has been featured in numerous films, television shows, and books, adding to its fame and allure as a landmark. It's particularly known for its appearances in Anne Rice's novels and its atmospheric setting in various movies.

Attractions Details

📌 Address

1427 Washington Ave, New Orleans, LA 70130, USA

Opening Hours

8:00 AM - 5:00 PM

💸 Entrance Fee

Free

Find it on google maps