Jean Lafitte National Historic Park
New Orleans, LA
Chalmette National Cemetery is located within Jean Lafitte National Historical Park, adjacent to the site of the Battle of New Orleans, the last major battle of the War of 1812. In 1864, the U.S. government established the cemetery as a burial place for Union Soldiers who died during the Civil War. There are now more than 15,000 burials, including veterans from all American conflicts. Since 1939, the National Park Service has operated the cemetery, which is the oldest below-grade cemetery in the region.
In 2003, at the request of the Park Service, Lord, Aeck & Sargent conducted a condition assessment focusing on the leaning cemetery walls, headstones and drainage system. The project consisted of an evaluation and panel-by-panel assessment of the masonry wall.
Lord, Aeck & Sargent produced a written assessment and developed design solutions and cost estimates for several restoration and design scenarios.The recommended solutions included restoration of the perimeter masonry walls, headstones and iron fence and gate, as well as limited work to address the cemetery's drainage issues.
In 2006, Lord, Aeck & Sargent began a new phase of work at Chalmette. Hurricane Katrina did considerable damage to the site and as a result, the wall was reassessed to document the damage and develop a plan for repair. The design team also addressed repair of grave markers and monuments as well as the rehabilitation of the Superintendent's lodge and carriage house.