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Calcasieu Historical Preservation Society

2014 Focus Points and Endangered List

Four focus points frame the 2014 agenda of the Calcasieu Historical Preservation Society (CHPS) in a presentation made at the recent annual meeting of the Society.

In addition, the Society announced its Eleven Sites to Watch, locations the Society believes are valuable resources that are worthy of preserving, promoting, and redevelopment.

According to Adley Cormier, advocacy chair, CHPS encourages the adaptive reuse of existing structures and cites a long listing of successful projects throughout Calcasieu Parish including Cash Grocery and Sales, the Kelly-Weber Warehouse, Sulphur’s Judicial Center, and Henning House and other projects visited and used daily by residents of the area and visitors.

CHPS LogoSecond, the Society encourages developers to acknowledge our unique geography to reduce sprawl and development expense. They encourage redevelopment of older settled areas, traditionally among the highest elevation buildable land, and encourage new construction infill in established neighborhoods over expensive development of lower elevation and higher cost land.

Third, the Society encourages practices to keep and build real neighborhoods, with real identities, sidewalks, and community amenities.

Fourth, the Society encourages the importance of trees and green spaces, and particularly encourages good urban forestry and conservation practices to reduce runoff contamination, litter, and drainage issues.


Annual Meeting held on Jan 30th, 2014

The annual meeting of the Calcasieu Historical Preservation Society (CHPS) was held January 30, 2014 at the historic Calcasieu Marine Bank building.

AC Boudier presents Landmark PlaquePresident Nancy Moss welcomed attendees and reported that earlier that day three markers were unveiled at the locations of Lost Landmarks in Calcasieu Parish

AC Bourdier, chairman of the Landmarks Register announced that two structures were nominated and selected for 2014 Landmarks

Photos and more...

Lost Landmarks Section Added to Website

Since the re-connection of CHPS with the Southwest Louisiana Historical Association, one of the major heritage projects of the organization is the marking of sites important to telling the story of Southwest Louisiana. Towards that end, CHPS has instituted the “Lost Landmarks Program”.

Special newspaper edition, 1905This program continues the tradition of identifying sites and structures that helped to shape the economic, social and cultural life of the area.

section has been created within's Historic Areas Menu to recognize these Lost Landmarks here on

The project is to mark the site of now lost landmarks with custom cast metal markers to identify the site and to inform the interested public and tourists of the role played by the now missing landmark.

CHPS arranges for the research, the sign copy, the site coordination, and the promotion of the program.


Annual Meeting to feature Lost Landmarks

For release to the extended membership of CHPS:

The Calcasieu Historical Preservation Society invites you to witness and share in the unveiling of three markers at the sites of Lost Landmarks in Calcasieu Parish:

postcard ryanstreet IMG 4525Thursday, January 30th, 2014

5:00 pm, corner of Enterprise Boulevard Extension and St John Street, Lake Charles-- the site of Ball's Auditorium

5:45 pm, corner of Bilbo and Pujo Streets, Downtown Lake Charles--the site of the Majestic Hotel

6:15 pm, westside of the 800 block of Ryan Street--the site of the Arcade, the Miller Building, the Paramount Theatre and the Weber Building and a reception to follow at the historic Calcasieu Marine National Bank building, 844 Ryan Street, Lake Charles.

The Lost Landmarks signing project is made possible by a grant from the Lake Charles and Southwest Louisiana Convention and Visitors Bureau.


All Soul's Day Cemetery Clean Up

Pujo Grave, "After"Volunteers from The Calcasieu Historical Preservation Society (CHPS), The Catholic Cemetery Restoration Project, and Immaculate Conception Church joined forces on Saturday, November 2nd for a traditional All Souls' Day cemetery cleanup of the Catholic Cemetery on the corner of Iris and Common Streets.

While the day was a tremedous success and all left with a feeling of accomplishment, much remains to be done to complete the effort.

The "during" and "after" photo gallery that follows as well as the "before" photos were all taken by CHPS member, Virginia Webb.


Researching Historic Homes

On October 1, Adley Cormier, a local historian and City of Lake Charles Historic Preservation Commissioner (HPC) gave a presentation on researching historic homes and building historic districts. This was part of the ongoing "Tidbits of History" program of the Southwest Louisiana Genealogy and Historical Library, a branch of the Calcasieu Public Library System.

The presentation was also videoed for broadcast on C-Gov, the Parish's television channel. Cormier's presentation offered practical advice on how to explore and document building and neighborhood history. He provided this transcript of the presentation

More about the Catholic Cemetery Restoration Project

The Calcasieu Historical Preservation Society (CHPS) and The Catholic Cemetery Restoration Project are sponsoring a traditional All Souls' Day cemetery cleanup morning at the Catholic Cemetery on the corner of Iris and Common Streets.

Pujo grave. Photo by Virginia WebbAnyone interested in helping maintain this holy and historic place can meet at 9:00AM on November 2, 2013.

A light breakfast will be provided.

Bring gloves, your favorite bug spray, and wear gardening clothes and a hat.

Take the time to check out these "before photos" by Virginia Webb.


CHPS November Quarterly Meeting Set for Sat., Nov.2

A special morning Quarterly Meeting will be held on Saturday, November 2 from 9 am to noon at Old Catholic Cemetery, corner of Iris and Common Street in Lake Charles.

There will be breakfast served on the grounds, a short memorial ceremony to the memory, round-table discussion of historic cemetery issues and challenges, informational walks through the cemetery to inspect conditions, and work opportunity to correct existing problems.

There will be a census sheet of documented burials available for review. CHPS members and members of the interested general public, as well as concerned neighborhood residents, are urged to attend.

We are grateful to Rhino Real Estate and Development for helping with this quarterly meeting.


June 27, 2013 Membership Meeting

The June Quarterly Meeting of the Calcasieu Historical Preservation Society will be held on Thursday, June 27, 2013 at the Masonic Temple, 717 Hodges Street, Lake Charles, Louisiana. Social at 6:30 pm, program at 7 pm.

LighthouseProgram Speakers will be Carolyn Thibodeaux of the Cameron Preservation Alliance and architect Lauren Harrell. They will address preservation of the historic 1856 Sabine Pass Lighthouse located in Cameron Parish.

In addition, there will be a memorial presentation to honor the victims and survivors of Hurricane Audrey on the 56th Anniversary of the storm, along with behind the scenes tours of the Masonic Temple, plus information about the Southwest Louisiana Historical Association, upcoming projects of CHPS, a report from the new Lake Charles Historic Preservation Commission, and a recap of the successful 38th Annual Palm Sunday Tour.