varney tomb cemeteries

Varney tomb in St. Louis Cemetery Number One (Edward Branley photo)


My cemeteries website, Cities of the Dead (dot net) has been neglected by me since I started my NOLA History Guy page/project. I plead the excuse that the history books need to get sold! As a result, a lot of dust gathered here. I really, really want to create a proper wiki for cemetery stuff, though, so it’s time to get about that.


Here’s the plan: This site will consist of a blog and a wiki. The blog (you’re there now) will be the free-form section. I walk through cemeteries all the time, taking photos, making observations. Those observations will go here. I’ll post entries for the wiki here first, to see what sort of feedback and comments are generated. For example, a wiki entry for a cemetery will need a start/landing page, as well as a history page. This blog will be the sounding board for those. Editing a wiki isn’t difficult, but all too many folks won’t take the time to do it. They’ll comment on a blog.

Additionally, some things just don’t fit the wiki format. Maybe just a quick observation while on a walk, or a poem inspired by a tomb or statue. They can easily go on the blog, and we can discuss whether they should go into the wiki.

Cemeteries Wiki

The cemetery wiki will be more structured, an attempt to organize the stuff from the blog. Cemeteries organized chronologically, by neighborhood, etc. Historical facts. Personalities. Significant monuments/tombs/graves. I’ve tried to block this out a bit, and will update everyone with some mind-maps as the project develops. For now, I’m going to install mediawiki on the server and see if I can find a simple wiki that I can use as a template for style.

The wiki should be a community project, so I encourage anyone interested to get involved! More on that as we go forward.