A Lost Colonial Graveyard

If you go here: https://books.google.com/books?id=0nZFAQAAMAAJ&lpg=PA498&ots=kNyDOAxGFS&dq=%22Hypolite%20Pargoud%22&pg=PA497#v=onepage&q=%22Hypolite%20Pargoud%22&f=false, you will read about Hypolite Pargoud’s fight with the Parish over a plot of land that had once been a cemetery.

Back in colonial days in the 1790’s, Jean Baptiste Filhiol set aside roughly twelve acres of land at the junction of Bayou DeSiard and the Ouachita River as a graveyard. The settlers planned to build a Catholic Church at the site but that never happened. A fence was lovingly erected around the cemetery. Many people were buried there between 1793 and 1800. For some reason, the graveyard was abandoned and the fence disappeared. By the mid 1800’s, only the oldest residents remembered it.

I am not exactly sure of the exact site of the old graveyard. If I was asked to guess, I would say somewhere close to the old Pargoud Indian Mound on Pargoud Landing. Indeed, legend says that Jean Francois Hypolite Pargoud lost a child in the 1820’s. He did not want to bury the child, “…in the old burying ground on the Pargoud Indian Mound…” He then bought a plot which began the Old City Cemetery on DeSiard. That means, fine homes now sit atop the ashes of our earliest settlers. I doubt even if you knew exactly where the cemetery was and you dug down, you would find anything. Our acidic soil long ago took care of any organic matter. Still, it does give me “Poltergeist” vibes to think about it!

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