7. Star Cemetery – off the 2100 block of Texas Avenue

Star Cemetery was the first cemetery established to serve Shreveport’s African American community, and the only burial ground devoted solely to the black community until the late 1920s. Oral tradition suggests that slaves were interred in this cemetery prior to its official establishment in 1883. The cemetery is not planned on a grid, but has randomly placed markers, of which there are approximately 1300. The local community believes that up to 10,000 people may actually be buried there. Most burials are below ground, with small, often hand-crafted markers, although there are a few more elaborate, commercially produced markers. Hand-crafted markers display folk motifs, such as a hand with finger pointing toward heaven, the lamb, and the dove. Symbols of important fraternal organizations and benevolent societies are also used as decorative motifs on a number of headstones, with emblems reflecting membership in the Masons, the Odd Fellows, Knights of Pythias, and so forth. The Star Cemetery is no longer used, but remains an important cultural property of the African American community in Shreveport. The Star Cemetery was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2002.

Region 2