Oct 3, 2007

further funeral home news



In more funeral home news, I just read that the old Bultman Funeral Home will be converted to a Borders bookstore.

It's been empty since Katrina. I remember going to a few funerals there. It was beautiful, like a rambling plantation, a bit frayed at the edges.

What I hadn't realized was that had hosted services for both Jefferson Davis and Jayne Mansfield in its 120 years.

Now, instead of stale coffee from those ancient coffee urns, I suppose there will be overpriced frappuccinos from surly grad students.

Doesn't matter, I just want to be able to read a copy of US magazine on the spot that Jayne Mansfield's corpse once lay.

9 comments:

mrpeenee said...

What I found striking about the TP's story was the description of the intersection of Louisiana and St. Charles: "a recently reopened Rite Aid, a closed bakery, and a shuttered, collapsing gas station."

I'm amazed that such an important location could be so deserted.

It's probably cursed. When that RiteAid was a KB, the manager poisoned the oak trees on St. Charles there so the big purple K&B sign would be more prominent. That's why there aren't any oaks for that half block.

jason said...

Really? I had no idea.

There should be a special circle of hell for such people.


They've recently torn the abandoned Rite Aid (K & B) down... who knows what will rise in its place. It's a sad little corner at the moment.

Anonymous said...

My family has lived a block from that doomed intersection since the late '50s. I've always felt that the corner had crappy karma/ju-ju/feng shui/whatever.

Frankly, we could use another bookstore. The Bultman's-to-Borders transformation will serve the city better than another hotel or condo.

thombeau said...

At least the building is being re-used instead of torn down and replaced by some monstrosity, which is what they do in Chicago!

Michael Guy said...

There's something charming about old funeral homes. My Dad's funeral was at the very same Italianate-style southern mansion where his mom/dad were waked. The place still had the same 1940's wallpaper that I traced my fingertips upon as a four-year old at their funerals.

But they upgraded to horrible LOWE'S brass chandeliers. All I could think of (besides getting on the next plane out) was "hasn't anyone here heard of a dimmer switch?" Way too much light.

But BORDERS...that's a good thing.

Anonymous said...

I'm no fan of the funeral industry, but I know what you mean about old funeral homes, Michael. Several generations of my clan were laid out purty at Bultman's!

In response to your post, thombeau, NOLA did okay this time, but saving our architectural heritage from developers is a never-ending battle. We've made some terrible decisions for the sake of profit, dealt hideous blows to the urban landscape, and parted with huge chunks of soul in the process.

If Chicago has its share of monstrosities, it's hardly alone. I live in NYC, where "tear it down" is the order of the day.

Miss Janey said...

Thombeau is dsadly correct. In LA, that thing would've been razed and replced by condos years ago.

A friend was forced out of his charming 1920s bugalow last year for exactly that. They tried to get historical designation, but were denied. Such a shame- there were 8 1 BR cottages w/ courtyard- everyone shared teh garden area- what fab parties!

Still, Miss J would take a bookstore over a condo any day. Maybe it'll be haunted by Miss Jayne M.

Miss Janey said...

Thombeau is sadly correct. In LA, that funeral home would've been razed and replaced by condos years ago.

A friend was forced out of his charming 1920s Craftsman bungalow last year for exactly that. They tried to get historical designation, but were denied. Such a shame- there were eight 1 BR cottages w/ shared courtyard- what fab parties!

Still, Miss J would take a bookstore over a condo any day. Maybe it'll be haunted by Miss Jayne M.

thombeau said...

It's a sad sign of how greed rules our capitalist society. Chicago, home of beautiful and historically notable architecture, has been tearing anything and everything down to be replaced with hideous prefab cinderblock crap that is as generic as it is ugly. After over a quarter of a century here, I'm glad I'm leaving, though I suppose it's the same everywhere. Sigh...