On August 3, 2019, my best friend and fellow investigator Victoria and I headed to New Orleans to celebrate her birthday. Unlike many folks, binge drinking and staggering down Bourbon Street wasn’t on our agenda. (Although we did take lots of pictures that night and enjoyed a muffelatta and other treats.) As always, we were going in search of ghosts, or at the very least unique and atmospheric architecture. To our surprise, it was the Sachmo Festival and the place was packed from the French Market to Chartres Street. Undeterred, I mean this was the bestie’s big day, we grabbed a few pieces of equipment and drove to the Lafayette Cemeteries, the oldest cemeteries in the area. Unbeknownst to us, the Catholic Church stop-blocked us at the entrance. We were not allowed to go inside without paying the $20 admission fee (each) and we had to be guided by one of their guides, so no paranormal investigations. We could enjoy their stories about the dead.
That made me sick.
I understand trying to protect the resting souls of the two Lafayette Cemeteries but… I’ll keep my thoughts to myself. So we got back in the car and went to the St. Vincent de Paul Cemeteries No. 1 and 2 which weren’t far away. These two plots are located on Louisa Street, near Robertson in the St. Claude neighborhood of New Orleans. Often confused with another set of cemeteries with the same name located Uptown, these cemeteries were likely the parish cemeteries for the Catholic church of St. Vincent de Paul, located on Dauphine Street in the Bywater neighborhood. The precise founding date of this cemetery is not clear. Some sources say the property came into use as a burying ground in the 1830s, but we can’t be sure.
Famous duelist, swordsman and bullfighter Pepe Llulla founded this cemetery. Through his lifetime, Pepe Llulla dabbled in many different business ventures. He purchased real estate and ran a logging company. For some time, he staged bull fights in Algiers. Can you imagine? He is best remembered as the proprietor of the “Louisa Street cemeteries,” now known as the Vincent DePaul Cemeteries which he most likely purchased in the 1840s.
Back to our investigation. Tori and I were up against some serious heat, the heat factor was in the 100s and there were a few times when we had to stop and cool off. There are no trees for shelter in either of the cemeteries, just perfect rows of mausoleums and graves. There is white stone everywhere and some fine marble, all the graves were heart-wrenching and beautiful.
Our visit to #1 was quiet. Nobody was awake, or if they were they didn’t want to talk with us or interact at all. (Many of you followed along with us through our videos. If you didn’t get a chance to see them the videos are still on my Facebook page.)
Yep, it was pretty quiet until we got ready to leave and go to #2. As we were exiting #1, an older woman with kinky brown hair and a white dress warned me, “Don’t go over there. They’re all crazy!” But it was hard to take her seriously because she was also laughing at us. She was quite the character. (I’m a medium, in case you were wondering.) I didn’t engage in conversation with her except to say, “Thank you.”
In the car between our walks, Victoria and I reviewed our EVPs (nothing at all on those) and we did a quick vid while we cooled off. A few minutes later we grabbed my digital recorder, our cell phones and headed off to the second location.
The lady in Cemetery #1 wasn’t wrong. The energy in the Cemetery #2 was frenetic, moving and unsettled. We went to the left immediately and it didn’t take long to encounter one particular ghost that didn’t want us around. He was male, that was all I gathered before he shut down on me and began getting physical. He was not very tall but he did have a bad attitude. He punched me in the gut repeatedly until I had to make him quit. Tori immediately began sensing his energy too and we followed him to see if we could make contact. Clearly, he wanted no part of that. He had a cane or a sword or something which he poked me with in the top of my foot. I had to pause and make him stop again and then he moved a few rows over. We slowly walked behind him and you can see in one of the videos a translucent person move between Tori and I but to be fair, that image could also have been the heat. And it was so hot the heat shut our phone down a few times. Or something did.
We did catch a stellar EVP which I’m including here. You’ll hear a man’s voice around: 23. (Turn up the volume or listen with headphones and tell me what you heard.) Personally, I think we encountered Pepe Llulla. I think Pepe is still watching over the dead at the St. Vincent DePaul Cemetery, the cemetery he purchased and managed for many years. We offered to help Pepe but he didn’t want our help. There was one other man awake in the cemetery but he steered clear of us and I could only see him as a shadow. It was a unique experience and one that I will never forget.
As a kid, I never wanted to be a superhero but I would have traded all my Barbies to be Nancy Drew. That love for mysteries and a total obsession with ghost stories is what led me to become a writer. I just love a mystery!
I'm a true blue Southern girl who loves living on the Gulf Coast. When I'm not playing the trumpet or hanging out with the people I love, I'm probably daydreaming.
It's really what I do best.