Price: $19.95164pp,140 b&w photographsSigned by the authorMatching bookmark
Are you among those who enjoy strolling through cemeteries, especially old overgrown ones, looking at last century’s gravestones? Maybe you’ve even practiced making rubbings. Have you ever wondered about the mystery surrounding the “ lady in the glass case” at Lakeview Cemetery in Jamestown, New York? If so, you will enjoy a multimedia presentation entitled “Reflections: 19th Century Gravestones” presented by Rebecca Jo Rosen, noted author and anthropologist.Frequently when a person dies, so does his legacy. However, within the boundaries of our local cemeteries, their personal marks on history are preserved, never to be forgotten. The ability to interpret gravemarkers of past generations teaches one a great deal about humanity in general. Often, when we pass a cemetery we wonder why someone would have carved such odd motifs such as pointing fingers, willows, urns, cherubs on these memorials. Cemeteries are not just places where people are buried, but rather outdoor museums. Behind every gravestone waits a wonderful story ready to be told.Gravestones motifs reflect the social, religious and political atmosphere of the time period in which they are set. In addition to historical background information, Miss Rosen touches upon vandalism, education, cemetery etiquette, gravestones rubbing techniques and gravestone fundamentals. Motifs include cherubs, angels, sunbursts, hourglasses, birds, lambs, hands portrait and scene stones carved by early local carvers. Also included in the presentation is six 19th century portraits of individuals whose gravestones are included in Miss Rosen’s book. Of particular note is the legendary glass-enclosed Grace Galloway statue in the Lakeview Cemetery in Jamestown. Miss Rosen lectures in an early 19th century mourning dress.One final note: Our local cemeteries serve as a constant reminder of our nation’s rich and colorful heritage. By exploring these outdoor museums one realizes that the gravestones serve as markers along a trail blazed by our ancestors whose lives are gone but not forgotten.Rebecca Jo Rosen is an anthropologist, noted author and lecturer on the historical importance of cemeteries and gravestones. Her book “Reflections” is a user friendly guide to Chautauqua County gravestones.