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Showing posts from March, 2011

Photo Editor Playtime (Wordless Wednesday)

A Kind Mother of Six Children (Tombstone Tuesday)

Mollie G.
Wife of Pennal Jackson
Daughter of M. L. & M. W. Sammon
Born Oct 12, 1858
Died Sept 15, 1888

And Little Dau. Mollie
Born Aug 10, 1888
Died Apr 16, 1889
Aged 8 Mos. & 6 Dys.

A faithful Christian and kind mother of six children.
"Be kind to my little children."


Fairview Presbyterian Church Cemetery
Lawrenceville, Gwinnett County, Georgia

Photo © 2010/1 S. Lincecum

Larry J. Williams (Military Monday)

Larry Jean Williams
US Marine Corps
World War II
Aug 6, 1916 ~ Oct 18, 1996

Fairview Presbyterian Church Cemetery
Lawrenceville, Gwinnett County, Georgia

Photo © 2010/1 S. Lincecum

Census records suggest Larry was a son of Roland R. and Minnie E. Williams, also buried at Fairview Presbyterian.

Symbolism of Wheat on a Tombstone (Wisdom Wednesday)

"A sheaf of wheat on a tombstone is often used to denote someone who has lived a long and fruitful life of more than seventy years...It denotes immortality and resurrection because of its use as a harvested grain...A sheaf of wheat is a popular Masonic emblem as well." - Douglas Keister in Stories in Stone: A Field Guide to Cemetery Symbolism and Iconography.

Photos © 2011 S. Lincecum. Taken at Evergreen Cemetery in Perry, Houston County, Georgia. Zinc marker memorializes H. B. Felder (1828-1878), son of Samuel and Ann Felder.


Father and Son Apply for Presidential Pardons (Tombstone Tuesday)

The FELDER family of Perry, Georgia seems to have been pretty prominent in their time. There are two family plots side-by-side in Evergreen Cemetery that contain the remains of some of the family members. The patriarch of the family is Samuel Felder of South Carolina. He was born 24 November 1796 and died 3 October 1867. Samuel was married to Ann, born 25 August 1803 and died 8 September 1890. Also buried nearby is Samuel's son Henry B. (1828 - 1878).


The next plot full of ledger markers with exception of one is dedicated to Edward Lewis Felder (1826 - 1872) and his family. Edward was a son of Samuel and Ann Felder. His first wife was Ada, born 27 June 1831 and died 25 May 1858. Edward later married Charlotte "Lottie" Swift, born 11 April 1841 and died 5 January 1888. Four of Edward's children were laid to rest in this plot: Lucy (1871-1961), Thomas S. (1867-1941), Kate (1863-1940), and Edward Jr. (1856-1893).

When poking around about the Felders, I found Co…

Absolutely and Irretrievably Lost

My Facebook friend, Sid Graves of CemeteryPrints, just posted this quote less than an hour ago. It sums up "why I do what I do" so well. Coincidentally, he paired the quote with an image of his that is almost exactly like one I took some years ago at Bonaventure Cemetery in Savannah, GA:

The deep pain that is felt at the death of every friendly soul arises from the feeling that there is in every individual something which is inexpressible, peculiar to him alone, and is, therefore, absolutely and irretrievably lost. ~ Arthur Schopenhauer
The goal of this Southern Graves blog is to preserve that inexpressible something found with every tombstone and the life for which it stands.

Emalee's Time - Is That a Pocket Watch I See?

Depicting the passage of time on a tombstone is a common theme. Rosebuds (Gather ye Rose-buds while ye may), Father Time, and the much more common hourglass (sometimes seen with wings) are several symbols from which to choose if you want to express the connection of rapidly passing time with death. But a pocket watch was a first for me. At least that's what it looks like to me atop Emalee Roberts' stone. What do you think?


Emalee Roberts
Born Nov 8, 1876
Died Nov 8, 1882

"A precious one from us has gone,
A voice we loved is stilled.
A place is vacant in our home,
Which never can be filled."


Fairview Presbyterian Church Cemetery
Lawrenceville, Gwinnett County, Georgia

According to the 1880 U.S. Federal Census for Gwinnett County, GA, "Emma L." is the daughter of William B. and Margaret Roberts.

Photos © 2010/1 S. Lincecum

To the Asylum Goes the Murderess Julia Force (Tombstone Tuesday)

Ever read about someone in a magazine and feel the need to visit their burial place? Yep, me too. Such was the case with Julia Force. I read about her in the Summer 2010 edition of Georgia Backroads magazine. A great article by Gaynie G. Guy and Hugh T. Harrington entitled "Julia Force: Victorian Murderess" told of a crime that had the whole nation following along to find out Julia's fate.

In February 1893, Julia Force shot and killed her two sisters, Florence and Minnie, in Atlanta, GA. She was subsequently tried for murder. Julia was not convicted, however, by reason of insanity. She spent the rest of her life in the Georgia Lunatic Asylum located at Milledgeville, GA, where she died 30 March 1916. As to whether or not Julia was truly insane is debatable.

During her time at Milledgeville, Julia befriended a matron of the women's building named Johnanna Mitchell Darnell. ("Sent to Milledgeville," maybe with a raised eyebrow, is all anyone has to sa…

A Ruined Necropolis: Macon's Old City Cemetery (Wordy Wednesday)

The Old City Cemetery in Macon, Georgia has grabbed my attention once again. I think my feelings of sadness and anger are what keep bringing me back, though no one who may be considered responsible for its ruination is even remotely around for me to direct those feelings towards. Bibb County, GA was established in 1822, and the city of Macon, the county seat, was chartered in 1823. The Old City Cemetery was laid out soon after, being used between the years of (roughly) 1825 and 1840. As you might imagine, the pioneers, founders, and builders of Macon were interred there. I've been reading old newspaper articles about the cemetery and have seen numbers as high as 700 regarding interments. I can document less than 60 burials, and there are even fewer than that with visible markers.

In a February 1891 article in the Macon Telegraph, a sad story of the then-current state of the cemetery was told.
The morning sun never touches those long forgotten graves, save where the beaten path…

The Citizens Consider this Afflictive Dispensation as a Public Calamity (or, Elisha Hammond's Obituary & Amanuensis Monday)

I enjoy transcribing early 19th century obituaries. The language of the time is almost lyrical. I do dislike the run-on sentences, though!

The subject of this obituary is Mr. Elisha Hammond, a known educator in South Carolina and Georgia. He was also the father of James Henry Hammond, governor of South Carolina 1842-1844. According to an 1893 newspaper article, Mr. Hammond was buried in Macon's Old City Cemetery upon his death. His interment is mentioned again in an article from 1907. However, it seems any marker he had is not to be found today. Unless it is one of the few still standing that are completely illegible. The following photo shows the current cemetery landscape. You would never guess there were possibly as many as 700 burials there.


Macon Telegraph (Georgia)
11 July 1829
Obituary
COMMUNICATED. Departed this life, on Thursday the 9th instant, after a painful illness of seven days, Mr. ELISHA HAMMOND superintendent of the Macon Academy, in the 53d year of his age.

M…

Bank Failure Results in a Man Charged with Murder. Sound familiar? (Tombstone Tuesday)

While the headline might seem familiar, this incident actually happened more than 175 years ago. -- Thomas Ellis was born about 1798.  His "untimely exit" came way too soon, about 34 years later, and under some interesting circumstances. His obituary ran in the Georgia Telegraph, Macon, on Wednesday, 10 October 1832:
Awful Catastrophe! -- Early on Wednesday morning last, in a rencontre with Henry Byrom, Mr. Thomas M. Ellis, long known as one of the most industrious and enterprising men in Macon, received a pistol ball in his abdomen, of which he died in about three hours. This afflicting occurrence has thrown a gloom over the whole town. Mr. Ellis was greatly respected for his moral virtues, his uprightness of conduct, his enterprising genius, and his untiring industry. One of the first settlers of Macon, the town owes much to him for its rapid growth and unprecedented prosperity. What Girard died for Philadelphia, Mr. Ellis was doing for Macon. He pried into every depa…


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The hand of the Lord came upon me and brought me out in the Spirit of the Lord, and set me down in the midst of the valley; and it was full of bones. Then He caused me to pass by them all around, and behold, there were very many in the open valley; and indeed they were very dry. And He said to me, "Son of man, can these bones live?"

So I answered, "O Lord God, You know."

Again He said to me, "Prophesy to these bones, and say to them, 'O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord!' Thus says the Lord God to these bones: 'Surely I will cause breath to enter into you, and you shall live...'" (Ezekiel 37:1-5, NKJV)