Graveyard

Graveyard
Cedar Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia, PA

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Indeed, It Doth Pass Quickly

Easton Cemetery, Easton, PA



"Time flies, death urges, knells call, Heaven invites, Hell threatens."
                                    Night Thoughts, Edward Young, (1683-1765)

Edward Young was an English poet who wrote Night Thoughts in 1742.  Even though it is a more of a collection of "stream of consciousness" thoughts, some of them are very insightful.  His work was very popular in his time, and received a new audience when it was mentioned by Edmund Blunden's WWI memoir,  Undertones of War in 1928.  Blunden said he read it while in the trenches, and it brought him comfort.  Some other lines that still hold true today:

      “Tired nature’s sweet restorer, balmy sleep”!
      “Procrastination is the thief of time.”
      “All men think all men mortal but themselves.”
      “At thirty, man suspects himself a fool.  Knows it at forty, and reforms his plan.”
      “A death bed’s a detector of the heart.”

I so understand the fourth one at this point in my life.  But I am most interested in the first line I copied from Young, starting with "time flies."  I would have thought that phrase was more modern, but Young penned it in the middle of the 18th century.  In the late 18th century and early-to-mid-19th century, a symbol of that phrase, "time flies," appeared on tombstones to illustrate the swiftness of human life as it passes through the universe.  The hourglass filled with a finite amount of sand depicts the passage of time in a mortal's life.  Add the angelic wings from the Divine, and time does fly, past the man who is unable to stop its flight, and with God overseeing its course.  

I haven't found a bounty of the hourglass, winged or plain, but I have uncovered some examples.  I hope you enjoy them, and keep in mind something Edward Young almost 300 years ago:  "Wishing, of all employments, is the worst."  And it wastes that most precious thing--the time we have left.

Hourglass on the base, Laurel Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia, PA

Dr. Sidney Phoenix Williams, born in Mass., died in Philadelphia at age 35, Laurel Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia, PA

Close-up of last photo, also note the sycthe of the Grim Reaper/Father Time, Laurel Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia, PA

Zinc Tombstone, Bethany Presybeterian Cemetery, Bethany, PA

Laurel Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia, PA

Zinc Tombstone, Bethany Presbyterian Cemetery, Bethany, PA

David D. Wagener was the president of Easton National Bank, and served 4 terms in Congress.  In 1860, the year he died, the census estimated his estate at $300,000.  Easton Cemetery, Easton, PA


Similar to above...same carver?, Laurel Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia, PA

Hourglass above angel, mother and child, Easton Cemetery, Easton, PA

From Mausoleum, West Laurel Hill Cemetery, Bala Cynwyd, PA

From Mausoleum, Laurel Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia, PA





























































Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Another Look at the Zinc Tomb"stone"

Overfield Cemetery, Meshoppen, PA
 
As I travel around, visiting cemeteries in eastern Pennsylvania, I have found many zinc monuments, made by the Monumental Bronze Company of Bridgeport, CT.  Here is the link to the first blog I wrote about the company:  Heavy Metal Memories

This week, I'll show off some of my finds, especially ones that I've found in the little towns of Wayne, Susquehanna and Wyoming Counties.   Since many of the early settlers of these areas came from Connecticut around the time of the American Revolution, it stands to reason they may have kept in touch with family still residing in Connecticut throughout the 1800's.  And when the Monumental Bronze Company began selling their zinc cemetery markers in the late 19th-century, through salesmen living in different parts of the country...well, it's a hypothesis of mine that Pennsylvania salesmen were told about the opportunities to be realized selling these monuments from their relatives in the home state of the manufacturer.  Someday I will do the research to try to prove it.  But in the meantime, enjoy the Zincs...some of these are the earliest produced by Monumental Bronze.

Bed Tombstone, East Bangor Cemetery, East Bangor, PA

Bed Tombstone, Falls Cemetery, Falls Township, PA

Bed Tombstone, Union Dale Cemetery, Union Dale, PA


One of only Two Crosses I've Seen, Bristol Cemetery, Bristol, PA

Family Plot with Monument, Footstones on either side, and Four Ball-Shaped Plot Markers, Thompson Cemetery, Thompson, PA

Zinc Monument--probably purchased before 1912 (when the MBCo. stopped making them).  But the company continued to sell the metal plates that screwed on (note the death dates of 1929 & 1925), Overfield Cemetery, Meshoppen, PA

   The "vase" on top might really be an urn missing its top.  Scotch Presbyterian Burial Ground, Martin's Creek, PA

Aldenville Baptist Cemetery, Aldenville, PA

Bible on a Pulpit, Overfield Cemetery, Meshoppen, PA

Church Hill Cemetery, Martin's Creek, PA

Ephraim Leach Cemetery, Chinchilla, PA

Laurel Grove Cemetery, Port Jervis, NY

Laurel Grove Cemetery, Port Jervis, NY

Laurel Grove Cemetery, Port Jervis, NY

Lewis Cemetery, Dalton, PA

A recent storm felled the tree lying inches from this monument, Milford Cemetery, Milford, PA

Odd Fellows' Cemetery, Philadelphia, PA

Overfield Cemetery, Meshoppen, PA

Pittston Avenue Cemetery, Scranton, PA    This cemetery was for the German Presbyterian Church nearby, and the inscription on this monument is in German.

Prospect Hill Cemetery, Peckville, PA

Riverview Cemetery, Portland, PA

Stark Cemetery, Starkville, PA

Large Zinc Statue, Laurel Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia, PA

Sunnyside Cemetery, Tunkhannock, PA

Tunkhannock Cemetery, Tunkhannock, PA

West Laurel Hill Cemetery, Bala Cynwyd, PA

Bethany Presbyterian Cemetery, Bethany, PA
Laurel Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia, PA


Lemon Cemetery, Lemon, PA

Overfield Cemetery, Meshoppen, PA

Union Cemetery, Blakely, PA

Lake Winola Cemetery, Lake Winola, PA

Bethany Presbyterian Church, Bethany, PA

Bethany Presbyterian Church, Bethany, PA

Bethany Presbyterian Church, Bethany, PA

Bethany Presbyterian Church, Bethany, PA

Bethany Presbyterian Church, Bethany, PA

Bethany Presbyterian Church, Bethany, PA

Clinton Center Baptist Cemetery, Clinton, PA

Dixon Cemetery, Tunkhannock, PA

Laurel Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia, PA

Morrisville Cemetery, Morrisville, PA

Morrisville Cemetery, Morrisville, PA

Overfield Cemetery, Meshoppen, PA

One of the handful I've seen that have been painted silver.  Blech!  I am sure it's well-intentioned, but let your loved ones rest under the soft steel-blue-gray of the weathered zinc.  NO MORE SILVER!                            Union Cemetery, Blakely, PA

St. John's Union Cemetery, Nazareth, PA