For almost 30 years, Smith decorated plots here, along with his mother's grave at Carrollton Cemetery and his grandmother's at St. Louis Cemetery No. 1. Though it is not clear who is presently interred in these plots, Smith's intent was to remember all the dead of Holt. He referred to one of the plots as a chapel for this purpose.
A devoutly religious man from a Catholic background who once founded his own church, Smith sees his work as resting firmly in a Christian tradition of memorialization. In the case of elaborate environments like those he created around these two graves, Smith is drawing on artistic traditions with sources in Africa and beyond.
Holt, like all cemeteries, is a landscape that incorporates personal reactions to death, loss, and mourning, in addition to those borne of economic necessity.
Adornment of Graves: Experienced Objects
These signs highlight some elements of these traditions which have been written about extensively in the book: No Space Hidden. The Spirit of African American Yard Work by Grey Gundaker/Judith McWillie. (2005) The University of Tennessee Press/Knoxville.
These signs are the result of a partnership between the University of New Orleans Department of Anthropology
and Sociology and Save Our Cemeteries, a non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation, promotion,
and protection of New Orleans' historic cemeteries through restoration, education and advocacy.
Erected by University of New Orleans and Save Our Cemeteries. (Marker Number 3.)
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Cemeteries & Burial Sites.
Location. 29° 59.076′ N, 90° 6.38′ W. Marker is in New Orleans, Louisiana, in Orleans Parish. Marker can be reached from Buddy Bolden Place north of City Park Avenue, on the right when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 635 City Park Avenue, New Orleans LA 70119, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance
More about this marker. Located inside the cemetery
Credits. This page was last revised on January 8, 2021. It was originally submitted on January 6, 2021, by Cajun Scrambler of Assumption, Louisiana. This page has been viewed 41 times since then. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on January 6, 2021, by Cajun Scrambler of Assumption, Louisiana.