This is Bourbon Street in the French Quarter of New Orleans. I visited New Orleans on August 25-26, 2005, three days before Hurricane Katrina hit the city. I was in Monterrey, Mexico when the news of Hurricane Katrina reached us. As I returned from Monterrey, back across the Mexico-U.S. border, I encountered the refugees from both Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in Texas and Tennessee. It is doubtful that Bourbon Street now looks exactly as it did in this image (yet). The man in the center of this image is holding up a sign, as others did throughout the street, for various drinks and liquors. This is part of what makes Bourbon Street famous. The sign says "Huge Ass Beers to Go", and by the look of the people on the street, they sold quite well!

Click any of the images below to see more images of my trip to Louisiana!

This is an image of Bourbon Street during the day. The gateway of Armstrong Park can be seen at the end of this street.
This is a grave site for (Catholic) soldiers of the New Orleans Artillery Battalion killed during the Battle of New Orleans.
This is a grave sight for the Protestant soldiers killed in the Battle of New Orleans. There are two distinct portions of this grave site. One side is for the Catholics, the other for the Protestants. So much for religious equality in death!
This is Bourbon Street in the daytime. It is quiet during the day, and cars can drive down this street during this time.
Bourbon Street at night. The big hustle and bustle is located further down the street, near the center of this image. There are places along this street that are very quiet, almost dead, as it were.
Bourbon Street hosts many jazz clubs with some incredible talent. This is one of them, the Maison Bourbon. It's motto is "Dedicated to the Preservation of Jazz". The little poster in between the singer and clarinet player says "No Video Taping". Since my camera doubles as a movie camera (35 second movies anyway), I could easily get a small snippet of the music without drawing attention. Actually, I was not video taping, I was video imaging, in which no tape is involved.
The center of attention in Bourbon Street. This is the intersection of Bourbon and St. Louis Streets.
This statue is in the Italian section of the St. Louis Number 1 cemetery. Some might recognize this statue as the one Peter Fonda climbed up and hugged during the film "Easy Rider".
In New Orleans, people cannot be buried underground because the city is below sea level. Previous attempts at traditional burial resulted in decomposed corpses floating down streets. During the many Yellow Fever epidemics of the 18th and 19th centuries, many people were buried here. They were buried in ovens, above ground. The bodies decomposed in the searing heat within these boxes, literally burning to ashes. The ashes are then removed from the brick enclosures (seen in this image) and buried on burial vaults (some holding several generations of families). The man in the image was our tour guide, who explained the unique history of voodoo and burial rites within New Orleans.
St. Louis Number 1 cemetery has some impressive architecture, as you can see here.
Brick ovens are aligned in rows in this image. The dead will be removed from these ovens and their ashes will be stored in burial vaults.
Brick ovens have many different styles, mainly dependent on the family's financial status. In some cases, an entire family can buy on burial plot to store generations of ashes.
St. Louis Cemetery Number 1 lies within the French Quarter of New Orleans, next to Armstrong Park. There is a famous tomb in this cemetery (see below).
The tomb of Marie Laveaux, the famous voodoo queen of New Orleans. She used her unique intelligence and spiritual beliefs to construct a vast empire within New Orleans, and a following that continues today. On the tomb, you will see three X's carved or drawn everywhere. This was a tradition begun after her death. You can see the three X's drawn on walls of buildings all over town.
This plaque explains the "Oven" vaults and their history quite well. It was located near the center of the St. Louis Number 1 Cemetery.
This vault was an interesting one. A homeless man buried his grandmother here, but he wanted the vault to be more colourful than the basic white. Whenever he can, he collects any colouring material he can scrape up and perpetually dresses up his grandmother's tomb with colour.
This burial plot is for the plumber Francois Girard. His final wish was to be buried amongst plumbing pipes, and he was, as this image shows. The string of fake pearls hanging around the pipes is probably due to a tourist having some fun.
The St. Louis Number 1 Cemetery was first built in 1789, shortly after the U.S. Revolutionary War. It was blessed once more during its bicentennial in 1989, and this plaque installed. The plaque is located on a wall full of plaques commemorating the cemetery. Another plaque is shown below.

This a plaque for the U.S. Revolutionary War Veteran Pierre (Pedro) Voisin, who lived from February 22, 1756 to September 14, 1822, as inscribed on the crypt's inscription.





Louisiana Was Last Modified On May 24, 2010