What image comes to mind when you think of New Orleans?
When you think of the Eiffel Tower you think of Paris, France. When you think of the Leaning Tower of Pisa you think of Italy. When you think of the Statue of Liberty you think of New York City. And when you think of fortune cookies, you think of China…surprisingly, Chinese fortune cookies were actually invented here in the US by Japanese immigrants up until Word War 2 when the Japanese were put in internment camps and Chinese immigrants took the Japanese fortune cookies and made it the Chinese fortune cookies. Interestingly enough, the only place where fortune cookies aren’t served is in China…ironic don’t you think? Getting back to it, so when you think of St. Louis Cathedral you can only come to think of New Orleans.
History of Destruction
St. Louis Cathedral (also known as Cathedral-Basilica) was named after the King of France
whose name was…you guessed it, St. Louis. St. Louis Cathedral didn’t start out as a cathedral and actually there have been three catholic churches of St. Louis since 1718. It wasn’t until 1727 that St. Louis Church was completed and then subsequently burned down in the Great Fire of 1788 in the French Quarter. St. Louis Church was eventually rebuilt, this time by the ruling Spanish, and finally became St. Louis Cathedral in 1793. In 1794, a second great fire raged through the French Quarter but the cathedral remained unharmed this time. However, in 1909 there was actually a dynamite bombing in the cathedral and in 1915, the Hurricane of New Orleans brought more damage. It’s an understatement to say that St. Louis Cathedral has been through rough times which included a final recent hit during Hurricane Katrina in 2005 when high winds led to water damage to the Holtkamp (oldest organ maker in US) pipe organ.
Despite its destructive past, St. Louis Cathedral is an imposing structure from any angle. There is a majestic and often regal beauty that surrounds the structure that extends to its interior walls. If you’ve ever traveled to European nations such as Spain, France, or Italy, you’ll be spoiled by the architectural masterpieces. As you step inside St. Louis Cathedral, you’ll notice a small gift area before passing through to a stunning kaleidoscope of artwork and craftsmanship that will overwhelm you much in the same way the European architectures did. Crafted stained glass beams in a dizzying array of colors and as you look above, you’ll gaze upon the ivory ceiling embossed with Renaissance artistry. It truly is an awe-inspiring experience even to these eyeballs that have seen it a billion times over.
Also, several prominent priests and monks are actually buried on church grounds specifically behind the church where we have a statue of Jesus that’s a sight to behold at night. Rumors also speak of ghosts roaming the cathedral. St. Louis Cathedral, like New Orleans and the people who inhabit it, has a history of destruction, but despite this, it’s become an iconic symbol of Hope and Resilience. Get Location
Photos by: NOLA4ever