What else can I find on this blog?

Dear Readers,

Louisiana Genealogy Blogs - Help create links to other genealogy blogs in Louisiana! If you have a Louisiana genealogy blog, please send me a link. You can find links to other genealogy blogs from a variety of sources below this blog. There are links to news stories about genealogy in Louisiana (when that Google thing works - tx Google!) and genealogy tags from Word Press, Louisiana posts from Cousin Connect, and posts from the genealogy community at Live Journal. You may also find other networking websites linking here interested in genealogy and a whole slew of other genealogy blogs. Most of the Louisiana Parishes RootsWeb mailing lists are found linked to the left. I have found these to be the most helpful. Maybe, you will, too.

Let me know if I can be of any assistance to you. Feel free to post to the forum or the Louisiana Surname - Louisiana Researchers list and if you're feeling rather adventurous, you can join the Yahoo!Group, too. I try to update the surname list on a monthly basis. You can read the entire four and one half pages of the Louisiana Surnames Louisiana Researchers list here. And if that is giving you trouble (it does sometimes), go here.

I would like to encourage other Louisiana genealogy bloggers to copy the profile I created from Blogger. It assists others in finding you in every parish in Louisiana! There are useful social tools like Add This at the bottom of the blog.

Thanks for stopping by!

Louisiana Genealogy Blogs

P.S. You can visit my Louisiana Lagniappe too and find more Louisiana pages on Facebook by clicking on the tabs.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Thanks Martin for doing what you do

Martin Gautier's Louisiana cemeteries made The Advocates headlines.


Finding graves for a hobby
La. man tracks down cemeteries

* Advocate staff writer
* Published: Feb 1, 2009 - UPDATED: 12:05 a.m.

Comments (0)
POINT PLEASANT — Martin Gauthier loves the dead.

One day last week, the 63-year-old climbed to the top step of a tomb, 5 feet above the ground.

The tomb is more imposing than a simple tombstone, but nothing ornate. The black iron railing encircling the top is twisted and rusted in one spot.

Under the concrete block forming the tomb are the remains of former Louisiana Gov. Paul Octave Hebert.

Born in Iberville Parish, Hebert was the state’s leader from 1856 to 1860. He died in New Orleans in 1880 but was buried in his home parish.

If someone just walked into St. Raphael Cemetery near River Road, they would never know a former Louisiana governor was buried there unless they climbed the steps of Hebert’s tomb and peeked over to read the inscription on top: “Ex Gov P.O. Hebert died Aug 29 1880.”

Climbing the tomb steps is exactly the kind of thing White Castle resident Gauthier does all the time.

Gauthier has been studying Louisiana cemeteries since 1992, when he and his now-deceased father began investigating their own genealogy.

Part of that investigation involved researching cemetery records and, eventually, visiting graveyards.

In 2005, Gauthier started a Web site dedicated to his historical cemetery research over the years: http://www.la-cemeteries.com.

Visitors can click on one of the state’s 64 parishes and look at Gauthier’s list of cemeteries he has found in that parish.

Gauthier posts pictures he’s taken as well as interesting historical facts about the cemeteries and some of the people buried there.

The project is nothing more than a hobby for Gauthier, a semi-retired electrical engineer.

“I’ve found about 6,000 cemeteries in Louisiana. There are probably 1,000 more I haven’t found yet,” Gauthier said recently while visiting St. Raphael Cemetery in Iberville Parish.

Gauthier said some people think his hobby is weird.

“I don’t really talk about it, unless someone asks about my hobby. I say, ‘I collect cemeteries.’ That’s when most people just sort of look at you and don’t say anything else,” he said with a laugh.

Gauthier said some of his closest friends don’t know about his interest in cemeteries.

While visiting and researching state cemeteries for his Internet data index, Gauthier began to track down the burial sites of all the deceased Louisiana governors.

Gauthier said he has tracked down gravesites of 33 of Louisiana’s 48 deceased governors.

His travels have taken him as far as Portland, Maine, where he found the tomb of George Foster Shepley, a Union Army general installed as military governor of Louisiana in 1862. Shepley was buried in the Maine city where he died.

Gauthier said he was surprised to learn that there was no mention of Shepley as a former Louisiana governor on his northern tomb.

“Actually, about a third of the governors I’ve found have no mention of their service to Louisiana mentioned on their tombs,” Gauthier said.

Alecia P. Long, an assistant professor of Louisiana history at LSU, said Gauthier’s Web site is “useful, interesting and a great resource.”

“Sites like this, even by an amateur historian, can enrich research. That’s what’s exciting about history on the Web,” Long said.

Long said Gauthier’s hobby can provide raw historical information that can “take on a life of it’s own.”

“It’s an amazing project,” Long said.

Although it’s the history that draws Gauthier, the White Castle engineer said he is also attracted by the beauty of cemeteries.

“I wish I knew more about marble, architecture and the actual stones, but I don’t,” Gauthier said. “But a cemetery can just be so pretty. It’s beautiful. Look around.”

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