St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 is at Basin and St. Louis sts., just n. of the French Quarter. Save Our Cemeteries tours depart from the Backatown Coffee Parlour, 301 Basin St., a block from the cemetery. The oldest and best known of the city's above-ground cemeteries opened in 1789. Homer Plessy of the famous civil rights case Plessy vs. Ferguson, which was referenced in the Brown vs. Board of Education case, is interred here; voodoo queen Marie Laveau is said to rest in the Glapion family tomb; and actor Nicolas Cage has a tomb that resembles a pyramid built to eventually hold his remains.
Save Our Cemeteries' 1.5-hour day tours delve into the site's history and also provide insights about New Orleans settlers and city culture. A Tombs by Twilight tour also is offered the fourth Saturday of the month by advance reservation for adults ages 21+; phone ahead for details. Tour fees are used to preserve, protect and restore New Orleans' historic cemeteries.
Note: The cemetery is not open to the general public; all visitors must be accompanied by a registered tour guide.