Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The Fort Jackson Cemetery

I'd just finished a photo tour of Wilber's Hardware store and was on my way back to the farm when I passed the Hopkinton Ft. Jackson Cemetery. It was a gloomy, overcast day and threatening to rain at any moment, so I thought it would be a good time for me to stop and take a closer look. Who knows? I may be buried there some day:

I became so enthralled with studying the headstones that I took sixty or more photos. Winnowing them down to twelve was not easy, let me tell you. But here's a sampling of what I saw, beginning with the grave site of Floyd and Maude Eakins. I was particularly moved by the adjoining small headstone for their baby who died way back in 1917:

Some of the marble was exquisitely colored and some of the engravings had been painted:

The Converse/Abel family's grave sites included a very touching headstone for a little girl who had lived for only two years. What drew my attention was what was probably supposed to be booties atop the headstone but which, from a slight distance, had the macabre look of hacked-off feet:

A sad angel perched atop a headstone:

This man died way back in 1929 but was so beloved that someone is still putting flowers on his grave:

There were many graves for babies and children from the 1800s and 1920s. Times were hard back then:

And women were given names such as Silence:

I found a section of the cemetery dating back to the 1800s and was particularly touched by this marker for an twelve year old boy who died in 1851:

And that same year, 1851, a woman died whose parents had named her Truth:

Archie Mulligan was buried with his first wife, who died very young, and their baby. His second wife was also buried there. It reminded me of a line from Longfellow's A Psalm Of Life: "Life real! Life is earnest! And the grave is not its goal":

The cemetery was laid out in a long strip between the county road and a deep ravine through which a small river coursed. I had taken over sixty photos but narrowed it down to twelve. I hope I've presented you with a thoughtful look at the local cemetery and the area's settlers:

2 comments:

  1. The Converse/Abel graves are my grandparents and great-grandparents. Mary Jo (who would have been my aunt!) was hit by a car when she was two.

    The back of their graves are also interesting: my grandparents have the names of all their children engraved and Mary Jo's has "Squeaky", her nickname.

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    1. Thank you. It adds texture and meaning to know more of the human stories which go along with the gravestones.

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