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Showing posts from 2017

Kohen Hands and the Letters Peh Nun (פנ) in a Jewish Cemetery

To put it simply (and this may even be an oversimplification) a set of hands carved and placed over a tombstone in a Jewish cemetery are called Kohen (or Kohain, or Kohanim) hands, and represent a priestly blessing.The staff at explain that a kohen "is a descendant of the sons of Aaron who served as priests in the Temple in Jerusalem."Lorne Rozovsky at delves further:According to the Torah, Jacob had twelve sons. Each son was the founder of one of the twelve tribes of Israel. Each tribe had a separate territory, with the exception of the tribe of Levi.During the Exodus, when the Israelites made the Golden Calf, only the Levites refused to worship it. As a result, they were appointed servants to G‑d. Of the members of this tribe, those who were descended from Aaron, brother of Moses, became the kohanim. Aaron was the first kohen, and also the first high priest.The priestly blessing is a ceremonial prayer recited by the kohanim, wherein their ha…

Requiem Aeternam Dona Eis (Even More Latin in the Cemetery)

Image taken April 2011 at Rose Hill Cemetery in Macon, Bibb County, Georgia.Joseph Paul Powell, III (1959-2010)Mr. Powell, son of Christine Harkness Powell, was a member of the Sons of the American Revolution and the Sons of Confederate Veterans.  Two lines on his granite ledger marker are in Latin:Requiem Aeternam Dona Eis.
Domine: Et Lux Perpetua Luceat Eis.
This prayer for the dead translates to English as follows:Grant Them Eternal Rest, O Lord.
And Let The Light Shine Upon Them.

Our Soldier Boy, David G. Slappey (Tombstone Tuesday)

The remains of David G. Slappey rest at the Marshallville City Cemetery in Macon County, Georgia.  D. G. died at Portsmouth, Virginia in 1862 or 1863, in the service to his country.Our Soldier BoyDavid G. Slappey
Died in Portsmouth, Va
April 30, 1862
In his 19th YearHe died a Martyr to his COUNTRY.Twas hard to bid a long adieu,
To one we loved so well;
Ah hard to say that bitter word,
That bitter word farewell.
Amiable and beloved son, farewell!
Thy years were few, but thy virtues
were many; they are recorded not
on this perishing stone,
but in the Book of Life, and in the
hearts of thy afflicted Parents, and FRIENDS.

Y is for the Youngest Mayor of Rome, GA: Benjamin Yancey (A to Z)

Benjamin Cudworth Yancey was born 16 January 1877/8 in Rome, Floyd County, Georgia.  He was a son of Hamilton Yancey of Edgefield District, South Carolina and Florence Patterson of Fort Valley, Georgia.  Ben was also a "grandson of Colonel Benjamin C. Yancey, once minister to Brazil, and grand-nephew of the south's celebrated orator and statesman, William L. Yancey, of Alabama."Ben C. Yancey received a law degree from the University of Georgia, but was engaged in the insurance business prior to becoming Rome's city recorder.  He held the latter position for two years before becoming Mayor in 1912.  Following from the Dalton Citizen (Georgia):It is with pleasure that we note that our good friend, Benjamin C. Yancey, has been elected mayor of Rome.  Mr. Yancey is only thirty-three years old, being the youngest mayor Rome ever had.  Ben will make good as mayor of Rome just as he made good as city recorder.  The Citizen congratulates both the city of Rome and Mayor Yance…

W is for Warren Grice, Jr. Oh, Those Toes! (A to Z, It's Sort of Personal)

Warren, Jr. was the son of Warren Grice and Clara E. Rumph.  Remains of the little one rest at Marshallville Cemetery in Macon County, Georgia.Macon Telegraph (Georgia)
Sunday, 22 July 1906 - pg. 1 [via GenealogyBank]WARREN GRICE, JR., 3 YEARS OLD DIESMARSHALLVILLE, Ga., July 21. -- Warren, the 3-year-old son of Col. and Mrs. Warren Grice, of Hawkinsville, died here while on a visit to his grandfather, Mr. S. H. Rumph, and was buried in the cemetery here today. The parents have the sympathy of their numerous friends here and in Hawkinsville.(You might remember, Mr. Samuel H. Rumph was mentioned earlier on this blog – for the letter O, as the Originator of the Georgia Peach Industry.)I don't know who the carver was of this memorial placed for little Warren, but the detail is pretty amazing.  Just look at those toes!Resting near Warren the younger is Warren the elder.  This Mr. Grice, a judge, was the son of Washington Leonidas Grice and Martha V. Warren."He that loveth his bro…

V is for Veiled in Mystery: James Mooney Killed in the Line of Duty (A-Z)

Someone got away with murder.Rome Tri-Weekly Courier (Georgia)
21 April 1874 -- pg. 3THE BLUDGEON.THE MYSTERIOUS KILLING OF POLICEMAN MOONEY.…Rome has been thrown into much excitement in consequence of the mysterious taking off of Policeman Mooney, an officer of quiet and orderly habits, faithful in the discharge of his duties, and known as a reliable man and a good citizen.  The circumstances of his death are still veiled in mystery, the Coroner's inquest having developed no clue as to how and by whom the deceased came to his death.  It seems to be one of those well-laid plans of crime which leave no trace of the perpetrator or perpetrators.  So far the Coroner and his jury have been unable to unravel the mystery or to get on track of any information that promises to lead to the development of the crime.Mooney's body was discovered late one Saturday night "along the track of the Rome Railroad, at the foot of Etowah street, almost directly upon the bank of the Etowah rive…

Under the Urn Rest the Shorters (A to Z Challenge, Tombstone Tuesday)

The remains of Alfred and Martha B. Shorter rest at Myrtle Hill Cemetery in Rome, Floyd County, Georgia under a remarkably clean tombstone topped with a draped urn.  Martha was born 25 January 1799, and died 22 March 1877.  When her funeral services were conducted at the Baptist Church, it was said by the Rome Weekly Courier to be the largest congregation "ever known to have assembled on a week day."Alfred, born 23 November 1803, lived five more years without Martha.  His obituary ran in the 20 July 1882 Cedartown Advertiser:Death of Col. Shorter of Rome.
On Tuesday at 2 P. M. Col. Alfred Shorter in his 79th year died at his home surrounded by his friends and kindred.  For more than a year his physical strength has been failing and by degrees death took possession of his frame, the vital flame burned itself away and his noble form was left cold and pulseless.  His biography would be the history of Rome, for forty years he has lived among his people, been identified with her …

T is for Thomas James Berry, a Soldier & a Man (A to Z Challenge)

Standing proud and tall, with a laurel wreath – a symbol of victory over death – draped over it's top, is a monument to the career soldier Thomas James Berry.  The four sides and panels tell the story of his supreme sacrifice in body and a life cut short.In Memory of
Thomas James Berry
Born October 28, 1835
Who Died At Newnan, The Place Of His Birth, The 16th Day Of October A.D. 1865.A Graduate Of The United States Military Academy At West Point, N.Y. Class Of 1857.
He Served As Lieutenant Of Dragoons In The U.S. Army Till 1861.
A Soldier In The Southern Army He Was Wounded In Seven Battles.No Country E'er Had A Truer Son --
No Cause A Nobler Champion;
No People A Braver Defender,
Than The Dead Soldier Who Sleeps Here!A Man Tried,
In Many High Offices And Critical Enterprises;
And Found Faithful In All.
In His Honor Impregnable;
In His Simplicity Sublime.An Obituary from 21 October 1865 edition of NewnanHerald (Georgia):DIED,At the family residence in this place, on Monday, the…

S is for the State Seal of Georgia on Tom Owen's Tombstone (A to Z)

An arch which bears the word Constitution is over three pillars, representing the three branches of government, on the State Seal of Georgia.  Banners around each pillar contain the words Wisdom, Justice, and Moderation – Georgia's official motto.  Here is the simplified version of this seal on Captain Tom Owen's tombstone.Capt. Tom Musgrove Owen was born in Coweta County, Georgia 10 October 1834.  He enlisted in the 4th Texas Regiment, C.S.A. 7 May 1861 at Grimes County, Texas.  His service proved fatal when little over a year later the captain received a gunshot wound in the Battle of Gaines Mill (noted as "farm" on his tombstone) near Richmond, Virginia.  Capt. Owen died as a result 3 August 1862 at Richmond.The following is from Sid Johnson's Texans Who Wore the Gray as transcribed and shared by James Douglas here:Just before we were ordered into line of battle, and while heavy firing could be heard in our front and on each flank, Captain Owens of our regimen…

R is for Resting in Hope of a Glorious Resurrection (A to Z Challenge)

Husband and wife (and father and mother) Shadrach Ware and Clarissa Shine rest together at Marshallville City Cemetery in Macon County, Georgia.Father and MotherShadrach Ware
Feb 17, 1808
Sept 1, 1873Clarissa
Wife of S. Ware
Feb 18, 1820
Aug 3, 1880Resting in Hope of a Glorious ResurrectionSomething extra-special about the Ware's elaborate tombstone is all the symbolism. Sitting on top is a floriated cross and anchor.  A floriated cross bears arms with three "projections" on the ends, representing the Trinity.  The anchor is a symbol of hope. Next is wheat.  It could represent a long and fruitful life, as well as immortality and resurrection.  Wheat is also a popular Masonic symbol.Lastly, we have an urn and flame.  This could represent eternal life of the soul.Other symbols on the stone (not pictured) include a fern and lily.  The fern represents humility and sincerity.  The lily represents purity, and the casting off of earthly things.This is a wonderfully intricate s…

Q is for the Quigg Family & a Son's Supreme Sacrifice (A to Z Challenge)

What else could I do for the letter Q, but introduce you to the Quigg family.  Three members rest at Myrtle Hill Cemetery in Rome, Floyd County, Georgia – father, mother, and son.I like the sentiment here – Ever she looked for good, ever she found it.Always Faithful, Mr. Quigg.  I thank you for your service.

Are you wondering what's up with all the "letter" posts? I am participating in the Blogging from A to Z Challenge (links to official page). This challenge lasts through the month of April, with Sundays off.  Each day follows a different letter prompt, in order, from A to Z.  Click here to see all my letter posts on one page (in reverse order). This blog as a whole is one of my themes – telling the tales of tombstones, primarily from those found in the Southern United States and usually the State of Georgia.  You may follow along with me by email and other social media platforms listed at the top of the sidebar.  I and other bloggers in the challenge on Twitter will al…

P is for the Prominent Minister of Newnan Who Passed Away: J. H. Hall

Rev. James Hamilton Hall, a Doctor of Divinity, was born 16 April 1836 in Greenville, Meriwether County, Georgia to Alexander and Elizabeth "Betsy" Brown Hall.  James's grandfather was the Irish born Hugh Hall.Alexander was in a position of "financial ease," and thus provided his son James with the "best educational advantages." Yet in a biography of the good reverend, published 1912 in Men of Mark in Georgia, it was written that James led "an aimless and dissipated life."The young man arrived at manhood and became, through a certain philosophic trend of mind, imbedded in the meshes of unbelief.  He even went so far as for a time to lead an aimless and dissipated life.  He had one strong anchor in the shape of the young lady to whom he was engaged, Miss Sarah E. Hall, of Greene county.  She was a woman of strong Christian character, and while she positively refused to marry him during this period of his life, she yet did not let him entirely…

O is for the Originator of the Georgia Peach Industry, Samuel Rumph (A-Z)

Question:  "What's the top fruit crop in the state of Georgia?"Answer:  "Blueberries."Is that not what you were expecting? It's really a relatively recent development.  In the last dozen years, blueberries have bested peaches as the top fruit crop in Georgia.  But that in no way diminishes the impact the humble peach had (and still has) on this state.Georgia earned it's "Peach State" nickname in the decades following the Civil War, when annual production expanded to reach a height of about 8 million bushels by 1928.  One of the people we have to thank for that is Samuel Rumph:Samuel Henry Rumph, a middle Georgia peach grower during the late 1800’s, is credited with being the “Father of the Georgia Peach industry” as he revolutionized the industry with a new variety which he named after his wife Elberta. This yellow-fleshed peach was of superior quality and shipped better than previous varieties. Not only did he breed this superior variety but …

N is for Nunc Requievit in Patris Domo (A to Z Challenge, Today's Epitaph)

Standing in Myrtle Hill Cemetery at Rome, Georgia is an obelisk placed for Dr. Eben Hillyer, his wife Georgia E. (Cooley) Hillyer, and their daughter Ethel Hillyer Harris Brown.I'd like to share the Latin phrase that is part of the epitaph for Eben."Nunc requievit in Patris domo" translates to English as "Now rests in his Father's house."(If you're like me, and don't know Roman Numerals past X=10, Eben was born 12th August 1832, and died 20th December 1910.)An obituary for Dr. Eben Hillyer from the 24th December 1910 edition of Georgia's Augusta Chronicle follows [via GenealogyBank]:DR. EBEN HILLYER DIED IN ROME, GA.Brother of Mr. Carlton Hillyer, of Augusta, Passed Away Tuesday Night – Was of Old Southern Family.Dr. Eben Hillyer, of Rome, Ga., died at his home Tuesday evening at 6 o'clock.The immediate cause of Dr. Hillyer's death was hypostatic pneumonia, following a fracture of the right thigh, sustained less than a week before.The fu…

Meet Mary Lee (A to Z Challenge, Letter M)

This is Mary Lee Renfus.  Isn't she the cutest?Census records suggest Mary was born in Georgia.  Her granite tombstone provides the year of 1895.  About or before 1916, Mary Lee married a farmer named James Renfus.  They had at least six children.  In the Spring of 1935, Mary and James were living in Dooly County, Georgia.  Five years later, they were in Peach County.Mary lost James in December of 1960.According to the Social Security Death Index, Mary died in Bibb County, Georgia at the age of 90 years.  Her remains were returned to Dooly County and now rest beside those of her husband at Evergreen Cemetery in Pinehurst.Are you wondering what's up with all the "letter" posts? I am participating in the Blogging from A to Z Challenge (links to official page). This challenge lasts through the month of April, with Sundays off.  Each day follows a different letter prompt, in order, from A to Z.  Click here to see all my letter posts on one page (in reverse order). This b…

L is for Lydia. Her End of Life was Like the Close of a Summer Day. (A–Z)

Such a Death is Like the Close
of a Summer Day,
Mellow and Peaceful
the Heart Though in Tears
Utters No Protest and Says
"All is Well"
I think you can see in the shadow-laden image at right, the tombstone (in the style of a ledger marker) for Lydia Beavers is quite unremarkable.  The words engraved, and repeated above, are what struck me so.  The rest of Lydia's epitaph and obituary follow, providing a small glimpse into her life story.Sacred to the Memory of
Lydia Reid Beavers -
Born in Greene County, Georgia 2 May 1802. The Daughter of Henry Martin Reid and Edith Harrison. Married James Beavers in 1818 in Greene County, Georgia. They had Thirteen Children. He was Born in Georgia 14 September 1797, Died in Coweta County, Georgia 26 November 1842. Buried in Unmarked Grave [at] Welcome Community, West of Newnan. She Departed this Life 24 June 1890 After a Long Pilgrimage of 88 Years.Since Lydia's stone is a relatively new one, I think it's interesting the similarity…

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)