Thursday, December 30, 2010

New Article on the GYR Online Journal


This week in A Rabbit's Tale column Gale wraps up 2010. Hop on over and read the article on the GYR Online Journal.

Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

New Article on the GYR Online Journal


This week in our Rabbit's Tale column Tammi poses the question "What to do with all these photographs?"

Hop on over to the GYR Online Journal to read the column.

From your Editor:
There are those of us that have cemetery albums on Picasa and/or flickr. Share your album links in a comment post. And, if you do something different please share that in a comment post too.

Merry Christmas,
Gale Wall

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Don't Forget to Vote

Vote for your fellow rabbits. Click on the badge below to go to the survey form. Voting ends 12/20.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

New Article on the GYR Online Journal


This week in our International Rabbit column Janet shares with us about winter deaths and storage until burials can take place.

Hop on over to the GYR Online Journal and read the article.

Meet Angela L. Burke, author of "Headboards of Stone - A Mississippi Graveyard Rabbit Blog"


The seventy third in a series

featuring a member of

The Graveyard Rabbit Association


ANGELA L. BURKE


I was very honored to be asked by Sheri Fenley about featuring my blog. I have really enjoyed writing the articles and sharing some of my experiences and places I have visited as a Graveyard Rabbit Blogger.

My interest in Cemeteries goes back to my childhood prior to the age of 7. I spent many sun filled happy times as a little girl, visiting the Shiloh Baptist Cemetery in Lafayette Co Mississippi, with my grandparents and parents. To some that might sound strange, but I never felt scared or intimidated by the cemetery and I actually enjoyed reading the old stones and trying to imagine in my mind what the person might have looked like or what kind of life they might have had. I would go around the surrounding field and pick wild flowers to leave on my favorite stones. Most of whom I didn't know personally. I was always drawn to certain stones in the cemetery that I thought were interesting or beautiful. Even as a child I would sometimes sit near a favorite stone and talk to the person interred as if I expected them to hear me. Maybe they did, maybe they didn't. But I always felt as if they heard me and appreciated my visits.



In my grade school years, my parents frequently took my younger brother and I on camping trips at PickWick Dam near The Shiloh Battlefield and the area of the Tennessee River where the Civil War Battle of Shiloh took place. My younger brother and I use to chase jack rabbits across what once was a bloody battlefield. Unknown to us the events that had taken place there. But on one visit when I was around 8 years old, I had a personal experience there that would change my way of looking at and respecting hallowed ground. At the Bloody Pond , I saw the reflection of a young wounded Union Soldier standing behind me and when I turned around to look at him, he was gone. Now that might seem like a tall tale, but to me it was as real as I am sitting here and it would have a major impact on my life and my interest in death and the afterlife.




The year I entered the third grade our family moved to Chattanooga Tn. We lived at the base of Missionary Ridge, where a large battle was fought during the Civil War for control of the Chattanooga Valley. My brothers and friends and I use to play in the old Civil War trenches that wound their way to the top of the Ridge where large cannons stood facing the Valley, where they once fired deadly cannons on the heads of the enemy troops. I use to sit on top of them as a child and watch the sunset behind Lookout Mountain and I would sometimes daydream and wonder about how such a beautiful place could ever have seen such death and bloodshed. Even as a young child I would sometimes surprise myself at the overwhelming feelings of sadness I would feel in these places. Yet I was fascinated by the them.

We would often visit the Chickamauga Battlefield on school field trips and the energies and feeling I felt as a young child, when I would visit these places, left a lasting impression on me.

I remember when I was about 12 , our church youth group visited some Native American Burial Mounds on the Natchez Traceway. I was mesmerized by them and the energies I felt when I approached them. While others my age were running and playing, I sat on the top of the mound daydreaming and wondering what the place was like when it belonged to the Indians. I would take in the nature around me and listen to the birds chirping and katydids singing. Odd I know. I never was a so called normal child.

As a teenager I was offered the opportunity to work as an apprentice to the Mortician of our town funeral home. I was excited to do it , but my Dad was not so thrilled. He said it was “ too morbid of a job for a young lady” and he encouraged me to pursue other options. I have sometimes regretted that I missed the opportunity to learn something about the trade. But my Dad's fears of a morbid profession were soon replaced by a somewhat humorous replacement, instead to his dismay, I became a nurse.
A choice I do not regret. I had many interesting encounters and met people from all walks of life that I would not have otherwise met.

However, it was not all charity, compassion and happy endings. I was also exposed to horrific pain and suffering, unsightly deformities and wounds and of course, death. During the twenty years I spent working as a nurse, I sat with the terminally ill, I watched many people, young and old, pass on. I was exposed to death on a frequent basis. But it did not traumatize me as some might expect. It instead, aroused my curiosity about death and the subjects related to the afterlife.

In the past five years , since leaving the nursing field, I have spent a great deal of time studying subjects related to death and dying. From cultural death rituals, haunted legends and historical places, I have been fascinated with cemeteries and places that I consider to be hallowed ground and sacred sites, such as battlefields, which sometimes became final resting places for the unknown and the forgotten. Many a body was laid in the ground, sometimes stripped of their boots, left with no headstone to mark their resting place and some buried without even the dignity of a coffin. With no mourners to weep at their passing or to remember them in years to come. Some even tossed into mass graves one on top of the other. I think that this has lead me to appreciate the graves that I visit. It has encouraged me to document the old and forgotten country cemeteries that no one remembers or cares for anymore. I somehow sense that it is my duty to remember the dead in anyway I can contribute. I also have a deep interest in Historical Preservation and I try to combine my interest in preservation and documentation by somehow trying to find out about the persons buried in the places I am drawn to. I do volunteer headstone photos for Find A Grave and I am working on compiling an updated list of Marshall County Cemeteries for a future book project publication.

I enjoy taking beautiful pictures. I have found that cemetery photos can be beautiful works of art and I enjoy playing with the light reflections, statues and photographing the carvings that are frequently found on the older headstones. I am by no means a professional and mostly just like to take them for my own pleasure.

I also have an interest in claims of hauntings, legends and lore. I study the paranormal and am a Co Founder and History Research Manager with a volunteer paranormal group known as the Mississippi Society of Paranormal Investigators. I I am also the website manager for our website: www.mississippi-spi.com . When I started my Graveyard Rabbit Blog, it was my intention to try and incorporate a little bit of each of my interest into articles that I could share with others with similar interest.

Poetry is another passion I have and I have found much inspiration for my poems in cemeteries. I published a book entitled "Hauntings In My Head A Collection of Ghostly Southern Poetry", in 2009. The poems in the book were inspired by some of the cemeteries I have visited, stories I have heard or that have been passed down to me and some from my own personal experiences with the unexplained. I think that cemeteries are very inspirational places for writers and artists.

I appreciate the opportunity to share my blog with others who have an interest in cemeteries, whether it be for preservation, historical, artistic or paranormal interest. I hope that anyone who visits my blog site will come away with something interesting and informative. Thanks again to Sheri Fenley for including me in the line up. I appreciate everyone who takes the time to visit and read my Graveyard Rabbit Blog at www.headboardsofstone.blogspot.com.






Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Attention Michelle Kratts

Michelle Kratts...

Please contact Gale Wall at digitalcemeterywalk@gmail.com regarding the 2011 GYR Online Journal schedule.

Your email is bouncing.

---sorry folks, but I need to reach her---

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

VOTE: 2011 Family Tree Magazine 40 Best Genealogy Blogs

Nominations were made and many of us GYR members have blogs up for a vote, including me [Digital Cemetery Walk]! Our GYR Online Journal is also on the list. Please vote for your fellow members.


You can choose 5 from each of the following categories:
  • Everything
  • Cemeteries
  • Technology
  • Heritage Groups
  • Research Advice / How-To
  • Local / Regional Research
  • New Blogs
  • My Family History
***VOTE HERE***

Thanks!
Gale Wall
GYR Online Journal Editor

Thursday, December 9, 2010

New Article on the GYR Online Journal


This week in our Rabbit's Tale column Tammi shares with us her "gravin gadget". Hop on over to the GYR Online Journal and read her article.

As we prepare to enter 2011 we have 50 of our 52 weekly columns filled. We have two open slots and both are on Mausoleums or Columbariums in June and September of next year. If you would like to commit to write an article for one please email your editor at digitalcemeterywalk@gmail.com.

A big thank you to our authors for 2011:

Angela Lucius
Anna Wilder
Denise Olson
Dorene Paul
footnoteMaven
Gale Wall
Henk van Kampen
Janet Iles
Janice Hays
John Grant
Kim Sawtelle
Kim Zunino
Linda Hagen
LisaMary Wichowski
Michelle Kratts
Randy Seaver
Russ Worthington
Ruth Burks
Stephanie Lincecum
Tammi Thiele
Tess Conrad

Thursday, December 2, 2010

New Article on the GYR Online Journal


This week in our Photo Monument column I ask you about gifts for the departed.

Do you leave them? Hop on over to the GYR Online Journal and share your experience.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

New Article on the GYR Online Journal

This week in our Tech T.I.P. column Denise writes about digital libraries.

Hop on over to the GYR Online Journal and read the article.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

New Article Available In The GYRabbit Online Journal







“Mary Todd Lincoln's Bloody Cloak”

by footnoteMaven

"'Biohistory'—the combination of biological testing and history—is one of the most exciting new fields of scientific inquiry."
~ Lori Andrews ~


On the evening of April 14, 1865, Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln attended a performance of "Our American Cousin" at Ford's Theatre in Washington, D.C. Here, as we are all aware, President Lincoln was shot in the back of the head by assassin John Wilkes Booth.

Two physician's were attending the performance and rushed to the president's box where they tried desperately to save President Lincoln's life. One of those physicians, Dr. Charles S. Taft, cut away a small patch of Lincoln's hair in an attempt to treat the bullet wound.



You'll find the rest of this article from the History Hare in
the Graveyard Rabbit Online Journal.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

New Article on the GYR Online Journal


This week in our Graveyard Guru column Stephanie shares with us an essay on Victorian children's gravemarkers.

Hop on over and read the article on the GYR Online Journal.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Call For Submissions - GYRabbit Carnival

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The topic for the January 2011 edition of the Graveyard Rabbits Carnival is: How long have they been there.

This topic was submitted by the Association. Post a photograph of the oldest tombstone in your family collection, your local cemetery, or one you just happened to bump into in your Rabbit travels. That would be the oldest burial date! All the Rabbits will be interested in your fascinating finds. See you at the carnival.

The holidays are upon us and we have decided to suspend the Carnival until the New Year! Submit your post to the carnival using the submission form. Submissions for this edition are due by January 25. Be sure to include a short description of your post in the “remarks” section of the submission form.

Recently we've experienced problems with the Blog Carnival submission form. While you may have received a receipt, no submissions made it to the carnival administrator.

Just to be on the safe side, copy the blog carnival submission information and drop it in an email to me - footnoteMaven@comcast.net. Better safe, than missing the carnival. Thank you!

Graveyard Rabbit Carnival - November 2010

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The topic for the November 2010 edition of the Graveyard Rabbits Carnival is: Genealogy On The Tombstone.

This topic was submitted by Diane Wright, who authors three GYR blogs: The Kansas Rabbit, The Wright Graveyard Stew, and The Grave Yard Rabbit Travels Wright. Does the tombstone tell a family history? Have we found some genealogy clues embedded in stone? Is there a brick wall breaker located in the cemetery? Show us the genealogy. We are all interested, so share with all the rabbits!

Dorene Paul presents Graveyard Rabbit of Sandusky Bay: Terry Family Monument at McPherson Cemetery posted at Graveyard Rabbit of Sandusky Bay, saying, "A quick walk through Clyde's McPherson Cemetery will inform you of a great deal of family history relating to the Terry Family."

Stachia presents Graveyard Rabbits Carnival: Genealogy on the Tombstone posted at Wandering Shades, saying, "Even a tombstone can be genealogical paydirt! Take, for example, the Willis family. This one tombstone gives us information on eleven people as well as clues for further research."

Carol presents Tell Me About Yourself, Clues Inscribed In Stone posted at Reflections From the Fence, saying, "I highlighted three stones/memorials from my data base in my post, showing some clues inscribed in stone. In the process I got a bit of a genie gift, names in full, where before I only knew surnames. Clues for sure."



That concludes this edition! Thank you to all the contributors. Submit your blog article to the next edition of the Graveyard Rabbit Carnival using our carnival submission form. Past posts and future hosts can be found on our blog carnival index page.

And while you're here, take a look at past carnivals, there's so much interesting information to be found when you explore cemeteries with a Graveyard Rabbit:

Friday, November 5, 2010

Meet Kellie Walton, author of "She Finds Graves"

The seventy second in a series
featuring a member of the
Graveyard Rabbit Association




KELLIE WALTON

She Finds Graves

It was my dad that sparked my interest in both cemeteries and genealogy, despite the fact he didn’t particularly like either. By profession, he was a land surveyor and spent most of his days in the field often doing large state contracts for subdivisions and road additions. At dinner he would try to engage us kids in conversation about his day, often embellishing and joking to keep our attention. One day he was telling us how he was tromping through a marshy area when he stumbled upon some bones, we all looked up with great interest. “What kind of bones?” my brother asked – and without missing a beat, my dad said “Indian” and then laughed.

Today, I’m relatively sure that the reason he was laughing was because he was joking and it was really just a cow or pig he had found that met an untimely death. But at the time, I was convinced it was because he knew we were going to be rich and famous. In my head, I could totally visualize the cover of National Geographic that featured my family and the long lost Indian bones my dad had just unearthed – which surely were billions of years old. Billions. What I didn’t know as a 2nd or 3rd grader was that the mere hint of the discovery of Indian bones could quickly halt a land development before it even began – tying up money, work and really - a huge issue which could potentially cost millions. Fortunately, my home room teacher wasn’t quite so believing and explained to me that while it was *possible* that my dad found Indian bones, it wasn’t very probable… especially because the bones were just laying there – not buried.

My interest in family history was founded around my dad pulling our legs, yet again. I was in 4th grade and started a heated debate in my history class insisting the teacher was wrong about the name of a local lake – which my dad had told us was called Jensen Lake after his family, early settlers in the town I was born and raised. Not only was the lake not named Jensen Lake, it wasn’t a lake at all. It was a man made swimming hole created a few years after I was born – and founding family, mine was not. My punishment for arguing with the teacher was to write a paper about the TRUE origins of my family, basically debunking the tall tales my dad had told us for years. While I was gutted that my familiar history wasn’t what I always thought it to be – what it actually was, was quite interesting to me on its own accord. The nice thing about genealogy is that you can put it away for several years when your life isn’t conducive to spending hours creating family trees and scanning photographs – it waits for you nicely and is easy to get back into when the time comes that you are ready. In my own life, it seemed those times were after a family member died. If only I would have taken that interest BEFORE they died, rather than after – but my timing has never been very good. I’m trying to be better about that.

What Graveyard Rabbit site(s) do you run?

She Finds Graves. My blog is very new, so there isn’t much there yet – but I am committed to writing at least a few times a week. Honest.

What first interested you in joining the GYR Association?

I’ve been a blog stalker for several years and truth be known - it’s nice to find a community that are so welcoming and share my same interests. While I’m very fortunate to have fabulous friends and a great family – not very many of them understand that my ideal afternoon is spent waiting for the perfect amount of sunlight to reflect off a almost lost grave marker allowing me to read that which hasn’t been read for many, many years. *squee*

Did you always have a fascination with cemeteries? Or did this develop out of your genealogy work?

Always. The grade school I attended was next to our largest town cemetery – sometimes during gym class the teacher would take us over to run along the road through the cemetery. I was in all my glory. I attempted to “get lost” once so that I didn’t have to go back to class but another girl in my class ratted me out. As an adult, I share a love/hate relationship with the idea of a cemetery. I worry that as a planet we aren’t doing the responsible thing by continuing chemical embalming and burial but I can’t deny the pleasure it gives me to walk into a cemetery and see a name that I recognize. Even when I don’t recognize the name – reading the stone and figuring out how old that person was when they died, wondering what they did for a living and what sort of personality they had while they were alive. That is my idea of perfect escapism. I would much rather spend an hour walking through a cemetery than in a crowded mall shopping for things I don’t really need in the first place. (But let’s not tell my husband that!)

Do your family members think you are a “little off center” with respect to your cemetery obsession?

Very much so. Not even my husband really gets it – though over the course of the last few years he’s gotten a little more accepting since the discovery that many cemeteries now hold geocaches. Both of my grown children like cemeteries but have tired of the length of my visits, which I can understand – a “quick visit” can often turn into a few hours – in particular if the temperature is right and the bugs aren’t bad.

Which situation evokes an immediate response of “Oh! Oh! Stop the car!”- you spy a yard sale in the distance- you notice a cemetery from ¼ mile away- you see a sexy man on the side of the road- from afar you spy Elvis with your eye

Definitely the cemetery – though because my family is rarely tolerant of my obsession, it usually results in my making a mental note about the location, some good ‘ol Googling when I get home – followed by a trip back on my own at another time.

What advice do you have for anyone considering joining GYR and creating their own GYR-affiliated blog?

Do it. A sense of community is important. We all have a story to tell and not one is more important than another.

What advice would you have for would-be cemetery rabbits?

One of my biggest personal obstacles is getting side tracked. It doesn’t take much – an interesting headstone, a funny epitaph, a tragic story. Any of which could cause me to spend hours if not days searching for more information on someone else’s family. That’s not really conducive to getting my own family research done – so I’ve found a happy medium that I wrote about on my blog earlier this week. The 15 minute Google! It’s brilliant – whatever I don’t find after 15 minutes isn’t my problem. You’d be amazed how much information you can dig up in 15 minutes – it satisfies my curiosity, hones my investigative skills and doesn’t side track me for weeks on end. Perfect.

Giving back and doing your part whether it be signing up to do random acts of genealogy kindness, joining an historical society or taking photographs for memorials on Find-A-Grave is important. You’ll be amazed at the number of people you’ll meet (including in my case long lost relatives) and it feels great to contribute.

I also have learned the hard way that when recording a cemetery – relying solely on my photos is often a huge mistake. Even with digital – until you see that image on your computer, you really don’t know the quality. Many times I’ve returned home only to find that what I thought was clear – was definitely not. I’m famous for shadows covering dates or a part of a name, and I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had my camera set on landscape mode resulting in all my photos being fuzzy. Even though it takes longer and seems repetitive, I use a spreadsheet on my Blackberry in addition to my camera to record. I long for the day that camera phones are decent enough resolution so I can ditch a separate camera!

I hope you’ll stop by my blog and say hi!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

New Article on the GYR Online Journal


This week in our Digging for Answers column Randy tackles the following question:
Why are bodies buried facing certain directions (east-west, north-south, etc.), or in certain attitudes (head up, head down, etc.)?
Hop on over to the GYR Online Journal to read his answer.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

A Halloween CARD for The Rabbits


At midnight in the museum hall

The fossils gathered for a ball
There were no drums or saxophones,
But just the clatter of their bones. . .

Amid the mastodontic wassail
I caught the eye of one small fossil.
"Cheer up, sad world," he said, and winked ~
"It's kind of fun to be extinct."

~ Ogden Nash ~

Select Image or This [LINK]
To view Video

Thursday, October 28, 2010

New Article on the GYR Online Journal


This week in our Rabbit's Review column LisaMary shares her review on Pioneer Cemeteries Sculpture Gardens of the Old West by Annette Stott.

Hop on over and check it out!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

2011 GYR Online Journal

Last call...

Hopefully! We have 3 openings in our 2011 GYR OJ schedule. We need someone to contribute articles on the following:

Mausoleums or Columbariums 6/6 and 9/5
A look inside or out

A Rabbit's Tale 11/14
A little of this, a little of that

Please volunteer to share on a cemetery or tombstone in your area.

We have 13 columns rotating in 2011 and are excited to welcome new authors!

A Rabbit’s Review - How a rabbit sees it

Digging for Answers - Your questions answered

Graveyard Guru - Interview with an expert

The History Hare - The Hare of the history that bit you

Tech T.I.P. - Technology you can use

Photo Monument - A Grave photo essay

A Rabbit’s Tale - A little of this, a little of that

The International Rabbit - Rabbits 'round the world

Cemetery Spotlight - Your favorite cemetery featured

Mausoleums or Columbariums - A look inside or out

Famous File - Local or national

Cemetery Art - Beauty you see in the cemetery

Final Word - Epitaphs to share


To volunteer please send an email to your editor

Thursday, October 21, 2010

New Article on the GYR Online Journal


This week in our International Rabbit column Henk shares with us about rented graves. Hop on over to the GYR Online Journal to read his article and see some great photo examples.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Happy Anniversary Association of Graveyard Rabbits

October, the month when the spirits of the dead are abroad revisiting their former haunts marks the birth of the Association of Graveyard Rabbits.


October 1, 2008, The Association of Graveyard Rabbits made its first appearance on the internet. Two years ago today the first online invitation to join this Association was posted. In 2009 The Association was honored to be one of Family Tree Magazine's 40 Best Genealogy Blogs in the Cemetery category. Where else would you find a Graveyard Rabbit?

In the coming year the Association will expand the Online Journal adding several new authors and columns. I think Father Rabbit would be proud.

The Association Of Graveyard Rabbits – dedicated to the academic promotion of the historical importance of cemeteries, grave markers, and the family history to be learned from a study of burial customs, burying grounds, and tombstones; and the social promotion of the study of cemeteries, the preservation of cemeteries, and the transcription of genealogical/historical information written in cemeteries.

It is most appropriate that the month of All Hallows Eve is the birth month of our Association. October, the month when the spirits of the dead revisit their former haunts and the month when the Association whose haunts are the final homes of those dead came to life.

Our greatest resource is our members and the work they do in their communities and on their blogs. A very special thank you to Gale Wall, Diane Wright, Sheri Fenley, Henk van Kampen and all the Graveyard Rabbit Online column authors; Denise Olson, Tech T.I.P.; Stephanie Lincecum, Graveyard Guru; Gale Wall, Photo Monument; Randy Seaver, Digging for Answers; footnoteMaven, The History Hare; LisaMary Wichowski, The Rabbit's Review; Various Authors of The International Rabbit and A Rabbit's Tale; for their tireless work in furtherance of the Association.

The Association continues to grow. The members never cease to amaze us with their contributions to their communities and this Association. Well done!

Join us in this celebration as we look forward to the next year in the history of The Association of Graveyard Rabbits. The best is yet to come.

Oh, and there is no end to the
Association of Graveyard Rabbits.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

New Article in the GYR Online Journal

This week in our Rabbit's Tale column Joe Whitfield shares with us his random acts in the cemetery. Hop on over to the GYR Online Journal to read his article.

Note from Editor - for some reason I am having my scheduled posts save as drafts. The article posted by this notification didn't.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Call For Submissions - GYRabbit Carnival November 2010

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The topic for the November 2010 edition of the Graveyard Rabbits Carnival is: Genealogy On The Tombstone.

This topic was submitted by Diane Wright, who authors three GYR blogs: The Kansas Rabbit, The Wright Graveyard Stew, and The Grave Yard Rabbit Travels Wright. Does the tombstone tell a family history? Have we found some genealogy clues embedded in stone? Is there a brick wall breaker located in the cemetery? Show us the genealogy. We are all interested, so share with all the rabbits!

Submit your post to the carnival using the submission form. Submissions for this edition are due by October 25. Be sure to include a short description of your post in the “remarks” section of the submission form.

Recently we've experienced problems with the Blog Carnival submission form. While you may have received a receipt, no submissions made it to the carnival administrator.

Just to be on the safe side, copy the blog carnival submission information and drop it in an email to me - footnoteMaven@comcast.net. Better safe, than missing the carnival. Thank you!

Graveyard Rabbit Carnival - October 2010



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The topic for the October 2010 edition of the Graveyard Rabbits Carnival is: An Occupation Or Hobby Memorialized in Stone. This topic was submitted by Diane Wright, who authors three GYR blogs: The Kansas Rabbit, The Wright Graveyard Stew, and The Grave Yard Rabbit Travels Wright. So sit back, let's see what the Rabbits have chosen!

Carol A. Bowen Stevens presents Trucking Through Hillside Cemetery posted at Reflections From the Fence, saying, "Hobbies and occupations are being seen more frequently here in my county, however, BIG trucks are not that common here even though I live in rural community. Have a look at what I found in just one cemetery."

M. Diane Rogers presents GYRabbit Carnival - Occupations and Hobbies posted at The Graveyard Rabbit of British Columbia, Canada, saying, "Whether Kathleen Booth sewed for love or from necessity, we know she was likely never idle."

Tammi Thiele presents Hobbies and Occupations - GYRabbit Submission posted at Escape to the Silent Cities, saying, "A collage of Hobbies, occupations & sports."

Linda Hughes Hiser
presents Graveyard Rabbits Carnival--October 2010 posted at Flipside, saying, ""I think the "Hog" lovers are my favorite." "

Note: Doreen and Ruth. Neither of your links was for the correct Carnival. I ran a search and could not find either of them. Please send the corrected links and I will gladly add. -fM




That concludes this edition! Thank you to all the contributors. Submit your blog article to the next edition of the Graveyard Rabbit Carnival using our carnival submission form. Past posts and future hosts can be found on our blog carnival index page.


And while you're here, take a look at past carnivals, there's so much interesting information to be found when you explore cemeteries with a Graveyard Rabbit:




Thursday, October 7, 2010

Meet Sue Jones, author of "Sleeping Gardens and other final resting places . . ."

The seventy first in a series
featuring a member of the
Graveyard Rabbit Association



SUE JONES





Hello, it’s a pleasure to meet you.........

My name is Sue Jones and I live in Saffron Walden in Essex, England. I have only been a member of the Association of Graveyard Rabbits since the beginning of this Summer, however my interest in the subject goes way back to childhood.

As children, my cousin and I would slip off to enjoy the peace and quietness of the local cemetery as it was far more interesting and a whole lot less dangerous than a boisterous playground. We would search for the graves of other children to discover their ages and also any headstone that described a particular cause of demise. We also knew, as children so often do without having to be told, that these were places of quiet respect and usually the domain of visiting adults. So we invented an excuse, should we happen to be challenged about our presence there, for we would simply adopt a Grandmother on our way in and say that we had simply dropped in to see her. They wouldn’t deny us that surely ?




For children have a natural curiosity of things of a morbid nature, and love nothing more than to listen to ghost stories and legends of things that ‘go bump in the night’, even though they remained scared of the dark and needed to sleep with the light-on well into adulthood. My Grandfather had a superb sense of the theatrical, and filled my head with all sorts of nonsensical yarns. These tales simply fanned the flames that fascinated and terrified me in equal measure all the more.
But growing up and putting childish things aside, as you do when raising a family of your own takes over for a while. Then after they have grown and leave to raise families of their own, you can indulge yourself in those simple pleasures that strolling through a cemetery or churchyard can bring. Only now that you are an adult, no one will question your motive for being there, even though you arrive with a camera instead of flowers and flit from tomb to tomb taking photographs and making notes, rather than visiting just the one relative.



I am most fortunate that my husband, also enjoys these visits of discovery, although it must be said, that his interest is prone to wane far sooner than my own. However we have a cunning plan, by firstly locating the nearest Pub before entering the chosen ‘Sleeping Garden’ so that when he is done with looking around, he heads off for a beer.
Or two.........


Over the years my family and friends have all gone along quite readily with many of my other quirky little interests, so I think that they have resigned themselves to accept me and my foibles rather than go to the effort of raising a quizzical eyebrow. They are an open minded and tolerant bunch on the whole and my close friends will even offer to stop the car when they spot a tombstone or two themselves, without any prompting from me, even when we are supposed to be on a shopping trip at the time. They think it’s rather cute to see my face light up when I find a little treasure – a Tutankhamen moment - and so they have even accompanied me on a visit at times, at their own suggestion I may add.



I was interested in joining the GYR association, because I had always believed that I was rather alone with my interest in things funereal. I had bunches of photographs, but just like ‘Billy no Mates’ I had no one to share them with, for they were not generally appreciated when shown as a part of your holiday ‘snaps’ collection.

I was quite happy though, just to wander in the tranquillity of the great outdoors and enjoy the monumental masonry, especially that of the Victorian era, for they really knew a thing or two about making a lavish statement.So it was the serene Art of these places that lured me back into visiting them again as an adult and as my husband and I travelled the world, we would often locate a cemetery of interest and go along for a look and take a ‘few’ pictures.
I have not yet been bitten by the personal genealogy bug, but I do find it fascinating to dip into the past of others, like a bran tub, you never know what you may end up pulling out. It’s a bit like being an Historical Detective and good old ‘google’ is a wonderful magnifying glass for revealing some of the stories behind the names on the headstones.




Up until I became a member of the association of GYR, my collection of tombstone pictures had been no more than a collection of images. It was only through reading the fascinating blogs of others and what they had discovered, that I realised that each headstone was like the first page of the novel of someone’s life story. So I felt that I should really know a little more about the owners of the gravestones that I had taken photos of and now I’m hooked, line and sinker.

And if you were wondering where my blog name Holisticrocs comes from, it is because of the work I do, as I am an Holistic Therapist and I’m currently training as a Shamanic Practitioner, so please feel free to have a look at my other blog ‘Banging the Drum’ which has a link on ‘Sleeping Gardens’. And if you should care to follow my blog, then I look forward to meeting you then.

Blessings
Sue






















New Article on the GYR Online Journal

This week in our Photo Monument column I bring you a photo of memento mori and its location. Hop on over to the GYR Online Journal to read all about it.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Meet Jezebel, author of "Just An Untamed Taphophile"

The seventieth in a series

featuring a member of the

Graveyard Rabbit Association







JEZEBEL






When I received the invitation to have me and my blog, “Just an Untamed Taphophile”, spotlighted here on GYR, I was blown away. “Wow… how cool is THAT?” Yet, after a brief happy dance (we all have one - don’t deny it!), I kind of panicked. How in the world was I going to discuss my blog – myself! – for the Rabbit readers? Self-promotion? Definitely, not one of my strong suits. So, with Sheri’s unwitting help (Would you believe I actually considered for a nano-second trying to compete with Johan Mathiesen's post - as if anyone could! That was absolutely stellar!), I decided to take the coward’s way out by pretending that some invisible phantom was interviewing me. So, after quite a bit of time trying to think of questions/topics said phantom might pose that I hadn’t already covered over on “…Taphophile" the end result is this post.


TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT THE WOMAN BEHIND THE BLOG:


Well, I’m not a comedian, yet I can, and will, find a reason to laugh every day. I’m not a singer, yet you will always catch me singing with abandon at every red light. I’m not a dancer, yet I do dance down the aisles to that tired old, supermarket music – every time. I’m not an artist, yet you can find the story of my life inked across my flesh in images torn from my own soul. I’m not a writer, yet I find comfort in the very act of unlocking the words within me and physically strewing them about. I’m not a photographer, yet often I would much rather observe the world through the camera’s lens than with harshness of my naked eye. I think that’s my personality in a nutshell – let’s move on, shall we? I do so hate delving THAT deep into myself!


DID YOU REALLY HANG AROUND THE CEMETERY ALONE AT 8 YEARS OLD? WHAT WAS YOUR MOTHER THINKING?!



I did… and I don’t KNOW what she was thinking. No, seriously, I grew up in what used to be a very small, close-knit community in New Hampshire (where I still reside, although it's not so small anymore). Our neighbors, the ones that weren’t related to us, were all friends and no one thought a thing about being gone on our bikes from dawn until dark. The cemetery in question was not far from home and, in truth, had become a favorite spot of mine well before I was “old” enough to ride solo or felt the need for a private sanctuary of sorts. Now, over 25 (fine… 35!) years later, it remains a favorite of mine both as a Cemetery Trustee and a crawler.





HOW DO YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY FEEL ABOUT YOUR OBSESSION? WHAT ABOUT OTHERS – DON’T YOU WORK IN THE PUBLIC EYE, AFTER ALL?


Besides being a Cemetery Trustee, I do kind of work in the public eye and visitors to my office are subjected to the trappings of my obsession all around my space. My favorite shots hang on the wall, and even my mouse pad and coffee mug are taphophile friendly. It is also so at home – with cemetery photos interspersed with pictures of my kids. My family has never taken issue with it or found it bizarre, nor have my friends, and all enjoy browsing through my photo albums (well, at least they pretend to find it enjoyable!). In fact both my daughters on occasion, out of view of their friends, openly share my affinity and have been known to accompany me on crawls. Similarly, my co-workers are not overtly weirded out by my choice of decor.


Everyone else? As is the case for most us, I’m sure, the reaction of others to my penchant for cemeteries often leans heavily toward disbelief and the all-too-common “ick face” as I affectionately call it. I'd like to think, however, that as time passes and the number of blogs, articles, Associations, and the like continues to swell out here on the interwebs, a shift in perception will follow. Crawling is, in my humble opinion, as universal an activity as, oh, I don’t know – bird watching - despite being less recognized or accepted. I think it's fair to say that there are taphophiles on every continent and that they range in age from pre-schoolers to great-grandparents. They also span all social classes, and all manner of personalities from “Emo” to “CEO”. Not too shabby statistics for a purportedly ghoulish past-time.


IS THERE ANYTHING YOU WON’T PHOTOGRAPH WHILE CRAWLING?


I do tend to stay away from “new” graves/sections, and I also don’t photograph my own family’s plots. I know the latter could certainly be construed as hypocritical, and I make no excuse for it other than it’s a weird superstitious, personal "thing" I have. The former is simply because the pain of loss is far more palpable there and that, for me, is not what I’m seeking during my crawls.


WHAT DO YOU MOST LOVE/HATE TO SEE IN THE CEMETERY?


I love to see babies remembered decades after they pass. The picture below, which I’ve creatively dubbed “Flowers for Baby”, is one of my personal favorites. Over thirty years gone when I snapped this photo, and someone still cares enough to bring him fresh flowers. That, to me, just surpasses sweet.




Hate? The only thing I could say I hate to see is vandalism. Grief is a keenly personal emotion, and I could never imagine being offended by or disliking anything placed on a grave to memorialize a loved one. I can also stomach neglect to a great extent, but malicious acts drive me nuts! Stone tipping, spray paint, and even innocent “chalking”, which some photographers do to raise the lettering on older stones; all make me crazy. For the record, a spritz of water and a mirror to direct the sunlight works as well, if not better, to make the stone legible and ultimately does no harm (thus ends my rant... my apologies lol).



DO YOU HAVE A FAVORITE AMONG ALL THE MONUMENTS YOU’VE PHOTOGRAPHED?


It’s very hard for me to choose from the thousands I've shot, as all of them “spoke” to me for one reason or another – or I wouldn’t have photographed them. I'm as fickle as a toddler when it comes to favorites, and they change like the wind with each new cemetery I enter. If I had to pick today I would have to stay with the “Dane” monument below. I must confess, though, it was not the easiest overall capture given the lighting when I visited (read: lame excuse for a bad photo). Beyond that, I don't believe the expressiveness in her face CAN be fully grasped in a photo - she is a monument that needs to be seen in person.






IF YOU COULD VISIT ANY CEMETERY, ANYWHERE, WHICH WOULD IT BE?


There is no single answer to this question. My dream vacation crawl would start at Bonaventure, travel to New Orleans, extend overseas to Augsburg, and end with a leisurely stroll through each of the Magnificent Seven in England. THAT would be heaven!


WHAT ABOUT GENEALOGY? (Ha! Always a popular GYR question so I threw it in here for good measure.)


I am, in fact, the keeper of my family’s history. I became obsessed with it years ago after hearing the story of how my Great-Grandfather stowed away on a ship bound for Nova Scotia from Germany and, to date, have compiled obnoxious amounts of data (that doesn't even pertain to my elusive Great-Grandfather :sigh:). Similarly, I have sorted and chronicled boxes of old family photos and letters into some semblance of continuity. In short, yes, I’m equally obsessed with tracing my family’s roots and preserving whatever I can for those who come long after we’re gone.



ANY OTHER FASCINATIONS/OBSESSIONS?


Indeed, I have a boatload of them. Amongst others, I find the paranormal incredibly interesting and love stumbling across abandoned places/buildings. I also adore “Sleeping Beauty” photographs, although I don’t currently have any in my collection. Unlike crawling, that last obsession DOES seem to creep out not only my daughters but others, as well... but that's an entire other post!






LAST QUESTION! WHEN ARE YOU GOING TO BRING “JUST AN UNTAMED TAPHOPHILE” UP TO DATE?


Soon… very soon! I mean, really, how can I let it lie idle now?




AND THAT, MY FRIENDS IS THAT. Thank you to Sheri, GYR, and you, the readers of this post, for letting me take up a bit of your day.
Until we meet again... crawl with care.
Jezebel...





Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Shades The Magazine - Mourning Issue - 2010

This issue of Shades Of The Departed, The Magazine is dedicated to an area near and dear to the hearts of Graveyard Rabbits.


Table Of Contents:

Columns

The Year Was
The Year Was 1871

Appealing Subjects
Death Upon The Record

The Future of Memories
At The Cabin

Captured Moments
Record and Share

Saving Face
Professional Development

Penelope Dreadful
A Dreadful Coincidence

In2Genealogy
The Evidence Of Life

Features

A Revolutionary Pursuit
Maureen Taylor

Celebrating Dead Fred
Joe Bott

In The Gloom & The Gleam
Photographs In The Cemetery

Photography & Mourning
footnoteMaven

Behind The Camera
Post-Mortem Photography

MoĆ­ses Rojo of Sinovas, Spain
Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Monday, October 4, 2010

The Graveyard Rabbit Carnival Isn't Working!

I received no carnival submissions through BlogCarnival and only one by email. I know of several, but the submissions are not being received.

If you submitted to the September 25 GYRabbit Carnival, please leave a note in the comments with the url of your post, your blog, and remarks.

Thank you!

2011 GYR Online Journal


The 2011 schedule for the online journal is looking good. We have a great list of authors that will contribute articles on 13 topics.

We still have 3 openings to completely fill our weekly schedule. Please consider writing an article on the following:

Mausoleums or Columbariums
6/6 and 9/5

Rabbit's Tale [pretty open topic]
11/14

Thank you to our great volunteers!

If you have questions or interested in one of these openings please send your editor an email at digitalcemeterywalk@gmail.com

Thanks,
Gale Wall
GYR Online Journal Editor
http://digitalcemeterywalk.blogspot.com/
Cemetery Walk: An afternoon of discovery.
Every stone has a story. And they are waiting to be told.