06 April 2010

Tombstone Tuesday--East Hesperia (again)

Yes, I know that I previously posted about the East Hesperia Cemetery. But give me a break. I wasn't going alphabetically through the county then. And, knowing that the alphabet was churning toward the H's again, I revisited the cemetery. And while there, with my camera, I captured some shots of newer stones. You know how the style of stones change, from marble to granite, from tall to flat, and everything in between. I promise this will be a different than the glimpse I gave you of the cemetery back on 10 November 2009.To begin with, I was rather surprised to find this grave here in the Hesperia Cemetery. After all, Fremont was originally named Weaverville after this old fellow, Daniel Weaver. He was one of the first settlers in Fremont. Then I remembered my Hesperia roots--Dan'l Weaver was also a leading settler of Hesperia and in fact was the first village president. This stone is remarkable well preserved; on the north side, the name of Emily Weaver still is clearly readable.
This monument is my pet peeve. I call it the twin towers and is remarkably unlike any other stone in the cemetery. A recent addition, it is located in the newer section, just down from my parents. While it does make their grave easy to find, it just seems that the uniqueness of this clashes with the surrounding graves.
While these are not the most modern of stones, I found the proximity and conditions interesting. The large stone of Jane, wife of Thomas Baker while covered in lichens still easy to read. The little one, for Mary, daughter of--someone, its too hard to read--is covered with even more lichens. While you can see that the front of the stone represents a scroll, curling up on the bottom right, the lichens are just too thick to make out the inscription. (As a knitter, spinner and general fiber person, those lichens just make my hands itch and want to scrape them off to dye some wool. As a genealogist, I am aghast at the thought of the damage of taking them off as well as leaving them on.)
You just knew I had to throw one in. In this case a lilac bush planted right in front of the stone will soon have the name covered, once the bush leafs out. For now though, poor John Rings will have to at least reconcile himself that his stone is preserved, if only here and in our picture database.
One thing I noticed here is the absence of bordered family plots. While families clustered together as in this grouping of the Phillips family (mother Marjory, father George, and sons James, Thomas and George), I only noticed one section with any kind of border around the area.
One last stone from the older section. While I have often found pictures of the marble slab type stones with clasped hands, fingers pointing to heaven, lambs and cherubs, I have not seen one with the lovely cross shown on the top of this stone. But the Celtic flavor of the cross is certainly reflected in the name below: James Flarity.
I chose to use this picture because it typifies several characteristics of the more modern memorials. First of all is the military plaque. Many stones, including my parents have the brass plaque attached to the back of the stone, or simply mounted to the face of the granite as the only marking. Here however the plaque is imbedded in front of the stone. The stone itself features a couple of the new features found in cemeteries today. The engraving is laser etched into stone. Some stones in this cemetery feature common scenery typical of the area, pastoral fields with deer, some in summer, others depicting fields of snow. Others even have an engraving of an arial shot if the home farm. And another way this picture is typical of many modern stones is in the little gifts left on the stone. Did you notice the two little birds by the wife's name?
This is an entirely wooden sign. I have seen these in several area cemeteries. While I do admire the way they look, my genealogist side asks, how long will they last?
And finally, I went to the grave of the young farmer who was a friend of my son, he frequently has small Ertle scale model tractors and other momentos on his grave. This time there was nothing there--probably too early in the spring.
But I did find this grave marker. And somehow, I have a feeling that 93 year old George had probably spent a lifetime as a dairy farmer.

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