Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Cape Cod Gravestones

Cape Cod Gravestones. OK, maybe this site is a bit on the morbid side but it is very interesting. This site displays photographs of old gravestones in Barnstable County, Massachusetts. The dates on the tombstones are from 1683-1860 from fifteen town cemeteries.

As I was growing up, I lived close to a cemetery in Dowling, Ohio. I spent a lot of time playing games and exploring that cemetery. I got to know many of the tombstones and had my favorites. As I have gotten older, I no longer feel as much desire to visit cemeteries. However, I still like to stop by and walk that old cemetery whenever I get back to my hometown. I guess this is a reason I found this site so interesting.

One fun epitaph from the site is form the tombstone of John Rogers who died in 1760. It reads, "In Memory of Mr JOHN ROGERS who was educated and took the Degree of Master of Arts at the University of Glasgow and was Grammar School master in this Town about Thirty six Years Deceased Jan'ry 2d 1760 in the 80Year of his Age." How is that for putting your resume on your tombstone?

Even some of the more humble tombs had some memorable epitaphs. Here is the one of Jesse Bourne who died in 1737, "Here lieth Jesseye Son of Merina Negro Servant to Melatiah Bourne Esq died Septye 17 1737 Aged 2 Years and 6 Mo."

From the site:

A major goal is to photograph and display the most interesting old gravestones in Barnstable County before they are lost to the ravages of time. A related goal is to provide reasonably complete gravestone records from the earliest in 1683 up to 1860 or later for all Barnstable County cemeteries. Information about the gravestone carvers and gravestone styles is included. Reference sources for cemetery surveys done over the last one hundred years are provided for further research.

1 comment:

doughnuts said...

I was enthralled by my trip to Boston where I had the opportunity to visit some historical graveyards. Being from Australia, where I have never personally seen anything with a 1700 date on it, (we were the new-New World) I had to force myself to believe the well preserved head stones were real and not replicas. It is very impressive the way you keep your history alive.