Where to Find Maps

It is now possible to devise dynamic views of past experience in the form of animated series of map images that can be started and stopped as "time" progresses to show conditions at any given moment.—Anne Kelly Knowles, 2002

During this project, extensive use was made of both archival and digitally available maps. Historic maps are usually only available in hard copy, or as a photographic image of a hard copy. They are most often found in local libraries, historic societies and archives, or in private collections. They can be very useful to establish the boundaries and conditions of a site at an earlier time. Historic photographs or maps such as the Sanborn Insurance Maps can be 'rubber-sheeted' and digitized with software such as Autodesk® Raster Design (previously known as Autodesk® CAD Overlay®), or from within GIS software, such as ArcView®.

Urban Change

The series of maps below were developed using historical maps and primary references. They show the early development of the city and changes to the cemetery boundaries as the city's needs changed. Hover over dates to see the map change.

Urban change maps by J. Hinchman

Sanborn Insurance Maps

Sanborn Maps provide invaluable detail ... Because of the maps' labeling of the type, use, building material used in construction, flammable material on site, and even name of specific buildings in towns and cities they have become increasingly popular primary sources.—Chris Nehls, Geostat Center and Department of History, University of Virginia, Learn about the history of Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps, Jan. 2003

Sanborn insurance maps were available for the St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 neighborhood from 1896. Maps from 1896, 1908, 1940, 1951, 1991 and 2001 were photographed and then digitized to study the urban changes surrounding the site. Hold mouse over date to see additional maps.

1896 - St. Louis Cemetery with the Carondelet Canal evident to the right.
1908 - Railroad built. Storyville present. Carondelet Canal partially filled.
1940 - Iberville Housing Project replaces Storyville. Basin Street buildings largely demolished. Carondelet Canal filled. Warehouse District.
1994 - Railroad removed and replaced by Interstate 10 exit/entrance.
2001 - Warehouses replaced by parking lot.