Sunday, March 29, 2009

Landry Tomb Ascension Parish

The Landry Tomb according to the Historic Places Database, was placed on the Historic Register on 8/11/1982. It is located in Ascension Parish, Louisiana in Donaldsonville, Louisiana. It is also called the Ascension Catholic Church Cemetery, which is located near the corner of St. Vincent and Claiborne Streets. :

The Landry Tomb (1845), an extremely monumental above ground multiple burial vault, is located in a small town cemetery. Since it was built and filled, it has undergone no changes aside from the gradual growth of vines. Hence there is absolutely no integrity problem.

The tomb is a two stage monument constructed of ashlar granite. Set on a heavy base, the lower stage contains the square tomb space, which has 2 severely cut Doric pilasters on each face and a massive diagonally set pier on each corner. Each pier is surmounted by an urn. The second stage is a granite cube with a 4 pilaster temple front on each face. The walls spread markedly towards the base, which indicates a desire to combine Egyptian characteristics with this essentially neo-classical monument.

The tomb is entered on the north side by means of a bronze door and a granite stoop.
Specific dates 1845 - Builder/Architect attributed to James Dakin, Architect

The Landry Tomb is significant on the state level in the area of architecture as one of the most outstanding extant examples of antebellum Louisiana funerary architecture. Louisiana is known for its large elaborately designed tombs, but virtually all of the more impressive ones date from the late nineteenth or early twentieth centuries. Prior to the Civil War the finest Classical Revival tombs tended to be sarcophagi (sometimes double sarcophagi) with a pediment at each end and a set of corner pilasters. The Landry Tomb is far more pretentious than this. Its two stage design with four massive corner piers, urns, and a pavilion top which presents a full pedimented portico on each side represents a much bolder and more ambitious approach to funerary architecture than was common at the time.

The Landry Tomb was built in 1845 and is attributed to James Dakin by his biographer,
Arthur Scully, Jr. Scully's conclusion that the tomb was "in all likelihood" designed by Dakin is based upon the architectural evidence and a drawing in Dakin's collection of a building which strongly resembles the tomb.

There are 24 vaults in the Landry Tomb. One of the individuals buried there is the one to whom it is dedicated, Joseph Landry, who died in 1814 and was moved into the present tomb in 1845.

Major Bibliographical References
Scully, Arthur, Jr. James Dakin, Architect. LSU Press, 1973.

Ascension Parish was formed in 1807. You can view a map of all of the parishes in Louisiana here. Donaldsonville is also known as "the second Acadian coast." You can visit the Ascension Parish library online and learn more.

Ascension Heritage Association (ASHA)
P.O. Box 404
Donaldsonville, LA 70346
Contact: Barbara Ourso Board Member (225)473-7371 (225)746-9627 :
Contact: Pam Gregoire President (225)473-8285
Cultural organization involved with efforts to retain the historic homes, businesses, and churches
of Donaldsonville, along with beautification projects. Eligibility: none Dues: $10 per year.
Meet: 2nd Wednesday of each month at noon.

East Ascension Genealogical and Historical Society
P.O. Box 1006
Gonzales, LA 70707-1006
Contact: David Powers (225)644-1869
Genealogical research. EAGHS Library location: 13324 Etienne Road Gonzales, LA
70737. Library hours: Tuesdays - 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. Workshops: Tuesdays at 6:00
p.m. EAGHS Library

Los IsleƱos de Galvez Heritage & Cultural Society
7437 Meadowbrook Avenue
Baton Rouge, LA 70810-2014
Contact: Dennis Delaney (601)798-8384
Contact: Deanna Carbo (225)769-9456
Descendants of the Canary Islands; promotes history, culture, and genealogy of the people of the
area and across the world. Educational focus.

New River Rangers U.D.C., Chapter 2514
38356 Hwy. 74
Gonzales, LA 70737
Contact: Ruth Hanson, President (225)673-8434
War veterans, history, education, genealogy and field trips.

River Road African American Museum & Gallery
P.O. Box 266
Donaldsonville, LA 70346
Contact: Kathe Hambrick Museum Director (225)474-5553
Physical Address: 406 Charles, Donaldsonville, LA 70346
Museum dedicated to the preservation, interpretation, and collection of African and African American art and artifacts as it relates to the River Parish communities. Offer storytelling, research, artist workshops and performances, and historical exhibits. Tours available. $4.00 admission. Hours: Wednesday - Saturday 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.;
Sunday 1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Events and News


Magnolia Memories VI will be held March 6th, 7th and 8th in the historic Magnolia Cemetery in Baton Rouge and the Governors Mansion. Read more

Save Our Cemeteries

SKELETONS IN OUR CLOSET: 1850’s New Orleans Personalities

A look at the lives and final resting places of the developers, architects, builders, politicians, plantation owners and other assorted characters from 1850’s New Orleans.
A lecture by Pat Dupuy, Tour Guide Extraordinaire

Saturday, March 7, 2009 6 1:00 pm
Louisiana State Museum Arsenal
600 St. Peter Street
New Orleans, LA 70116

Free for SOC members, $5 for non-members

Sunday, March 29, 2009
11 am - 3 pm

Destrehan Plantation
13034 River Road
Destrehan, LA

A day of fun featuring a gourmet brunch, cocktails, live entertainment, an egg hunt, an arts and crafts tent, face painting, egg races, a raffle, and games with the Easter Bunny!

Advance tickets: $15 for kids under 12, $20 for SOC members, $25 non-members

For more information or to purchase tickets, call (504) 525-3377 or go to:


A recent article concerning a cemetery clean up in the city owned potters field, Holt cemetery in Mid City, was published this week. Holt cemetery has been reported as neglected to Saving Graves in 2001 and was the subject of a previous clean up project in 2008. Oddly enough the funeral service and mortuary science program of Delgado Community College abuts the overgrown cemetery. "It's our calling in life not to just take care of the dead when they die but to give them perpetual care," said Bobbiann Lewis, an instructor in Delgado's program, whose students have been required to do cemetery upkeep since late last year.

In Shreveport, Louisiana the Interstate 49 planning between I 49 and I 220 could affect local cemeteries. Baton Rouge-based Providence Engineering will partner with Franklin Industries and conduct an 18th month long study. "The most important thing we need to get is citizen input," said Perry Franklin, head of Franklin Industries. No contact information concerning Franklin Industries or Providence Engineering was available in this article.
Amazon books about - Louisiana Cemeteries


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