On my recent trip to New Orleans, I fell in love. This was not a normal love by any means. It was more of the obsessive kind. The kind of love that you can’t stop thinking about. I was walking through the Frenchman’s Art Market when I saw her, well actually I saw a photograph of her. I was awestruck. It was love. I had to capture her or at the very least, I had to know where I could find her. I had to witness her glory first hand. It was then that the journey began. A streetcar later and what seemed like miles of walking, I finally found where she rests. At first, I was saddened. She had been locked away from the outside world, kept safe where no one could harm her. Such a pity that the world cannot appreciate her exquisiteness. I circled the white building that held my love, looking for a way to catch a glimpse of her radiance. Above me, one of the luminous blue stained glass panes broken and I was finally able to lay my eyes upon her. Tucked away, hidden from the outside world, it was like she had been waiting for me. She laid there, angelically, banished from the heavens to forever reside in this world. So began my obsession and journey of discovering the beauty that lies hidden and unnoticed.
If you want to check out a virtual tour, click here. This is probably one of the coolest virtual tours that I have seen.
A little history:
“Chapman Hyams was a millionaire stock broker in New Orleans and an art collector. He had many business interests, including holdings in the St. Charles Hotel Company, the Louisiana Jockey Club, and The Times-Picayune Publishing Company. He was also a member of the New Orleans Cotton Exchange, the Stock Exchange, the New Orleans Club, the Boston Club and the Southern Yacht Club. He died in April 1923, and he, too, was buried in the Hyams mausoleum.”
“The mausoleum in Metairie Cemetery was designed by Favrot & Livaudais, one of the leading architectural firms at the end of the 19th century and the early decades of the 20th century. It is a Greek temple with free-standing Ionic columns on all four sides, made of granite from the quarries of Stone Mountain, Ga. Inside are a large blue stained-glass window and two smaller ones that cast light on the marble statue of a grieving angel. Chapman’s monument is a copy of the “Angel of Grief” done by William Wetmore Story. William Wetmore Story angel serves as a monument for himself and wife in the Protestant Cemetery, Rome, Italy. ” Reference
And so it begins…
Photograph was taken at the Metairie Cemetery in New Orleans.
Property of Charlotte Ashcroft Photography