Sunday 24 July 2011

This Way In!

It was a damp day in Blackburn, Lancashire. Things brightened up when I saw this slab of stone. The word 'entrance' and the initials 'TRP' were engrave upon it. I wonder if it is the entrance to a vault that serves the large memorial to which it is attached? The light conditions were very poor when I photographed it and the damp was reflective when I took an image of the inscription. I must return for another look.

Saturday 23 July 2011

Headless Angels

Looking through my collection of cemetery images, I was struck by the growing number of 'beheaded' cemetery angels I come across. I wonder why people feel the need to do such awful things?

And to scale

A Very Grand Memorial

This impressive memorial in the St John the Evangelist Roman Catholic church in Kirkham, Lancashire, marks the grave of Joseph Gillow and his wife. Gillow was a Justice of the Peace and a Catholic Politician.

Thursday 21 July 2011

Hidden Entrance!

This impressive memorial is in my local graveyard. It commemorates many members of the Smith family. I think there must be a very large vault underneath as someone has cleared away the grass to reveal part of the entrance stone (photo 3, below). You can just read Entrance to and the word Smith. I am tempted to peel back the turf to reveal all the words, but wonder whether I should?

Rudolf Hess to be Dug up!

The body of Rudolph Hess is being dug up, burned and then dumped in the sea. More politely than some of the headlines: The body of Rudolph Hess has been exhumed, will be cremated and then his ashes will be scattered at sea. This will stop neo-Nazis using his Bavarian grave site as a place for pilgrimage. Hess was found hanged in Spandau prison in West Berlin in 1987.

I once had an assignment in West Berlin and met a chap who was responsible for the burial arrangements for Rudolf Hess. He realised one day that there was no coffin available, should Hess die in Spandau Prison. He went out and bought one. Within a few days, Hess died! A couple of years later, I went on a battlefield pilgrimage and the chap sitting behind me on the coach was Hess's guard for many years, when it was the Britain's turn to guard him. What luck to find two people with such interesting stories to tell.​d/2011/jul/21/rudolf-hess-body​-removed-nazi

Big Stink in Clinton County Cemetery!

Not for sensitive souls.

If you read the history books that talked about the way burials were handled years ago and how, for example, terrible smells emanated from the graveyards, you might have sympathy for these townsfolk. On the bright side, the smell they are dealing with is from one body. Imagine how it was long ago, when there were hundreds of decaying bodies in graveyards.

Here is the story to read. Click HERE.

Tuesday 19 July 2011

Only Half the Story!

This headstone caught my eye. It is in Preston Cemetery in Lancashire. Something is missing from the top - maybe a cross - as the fixing peg is visible. The top half of the stonework bearing the main inscription has fallen away and . . . oh, I wish I knew what on the damaged ceramic badge near the top?

Monday 18 July 2011

My Grave Addiction: All Souls Rising

Is this the answer to the mystery of the stars on the heads of angel statues in cemeteries. A new blog and well worth a visit and to follow!

My Grave Addiction: All Souls Rising: "'Thro' the noises of the night, She floated down to Camelot: And as the boat-head wound along The willowy hills and fields among, The..."

Latest Cemetery News

Find the latest cemetery news on Graveyard Detective's Facebook page. Some of it is quite fascinating! Click HERE to visit.

Saturday 16 July 2011

Bayside Cemetery Damage

Let me simply say: I am shocked! Read the article HERE.

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The Morrison Plot

Looking at my collection of photographs taken in the Confederate Cemetery in Fredericksburgh, I noticed a large collection of markers all commemorating members of the Morrison family. How many can you see? The large marker, front right and also posted in close-up, is to Robert Reed Morrison who died of apoplexy in 1894. His obituary describes him as a prominent and successful farmer.

Click HERE to view a photograph and obituary on Find A Grave.

Wednesday 13 July 2011

Now Only Partly Remembered

I am always sad when I see headstones where most of the lettering has eroded away. Especially in this case. I wonder who she was and who else was, at one time, commemorated on the stone. It looks like the surname was Snook. Can any one complete the saying: "Her Children Rise Up And . . ."

Abbey Cemetery, Bath

Saturday 9 July 2011

How to Make your own Headstone

How to make your own headstone. Click HERE for details.

Staggering Statistics!

I read in the Orlando Business Journal, yesterday, that a 2002 Cornell University study reported that:

Each year, conventional burials entomb 827,000 gallons of embalming fluid, 1.6 million tons of concrete, 90,000 tons of steel and 2,700 tons of copper six feet under.

Now that is a staggering! I wonder if anyone has tried to work out how many flowers are laid at the graveside every year?

Perrymead RC Cemetery, Bath

Wednesday 6 July 2011

Military Funeral

Three images of a British Army funeral procession, probably in India in the 1930s. In the second photograph, a seriously large number of wreaths are being carried.

Sunday 3 July 2011

AP Exclusive: US Ignores Vet Graves in Philippines - ABC News

AP Exclusive: US Ignores Vet Graves in Philippines - ABC News

I was pretty amazed to read this story. While the destruction of cemeteries by Hurricane Katrina was well-documented, it hadn't occurred to me that volcanic eruptions have also caused lasting damage. A very sad story, but nice to know some public spirited people are taking an interest!

Saturday 2 July 2011

Rescued from a Slave Ship

A gravestone in Locksbrook Cemetery in Bath, England raises a number of questions. It bears the following inscription:

In Memory of MUMU, a deaf and dumb African girl. She was rescued in child-hood from a slave vessel and taken to the Church Missionary School at Charlotte, Sierra Leone, from where she was sent to England for education and remained 11 years in the Bath Institute for the Blind and Deaf and Dumb.

She was baptised Dec 28 1857 and received the christian names of Annie Jan Elwin. After a short illness, she fell asleep in Jesus May 16 1866 aged 25 years.

Also in memory of George Spear, a blind boy, a native of Cape Palmas, West Africa. He was educated in the above institution and died in peace Sep 26 1866 aged 11 years.

He led them forth by the right way, that they might go to a City of Habitation

Also in memory of Ann Etoone, a deaf and dumb pupil in the same institution. She died Dec 10 1866

Also in memory of Elizabeth Wise who died 1872.

Locksbrook was opened in 1864 and closed for general use in 1937 after over 30,000 burials there. Today, it is designated as a Nature Conservation Site by the local council which owns it.

Thinking about the young woman's story, I keep wondering whether she was removed from other family members on the slave ship, where was it bound, how much her life was improved by being sent to England and kept in an institution? And George Spear, too. What of his life? How did he get to Bath? So many questions!

Welcome to the Graveyard Detective

An illustrated look at the World of Graveyards and Cemeteries. There are many Stories behind the Stones that Stand in them. Who knows what we might find?


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