Sunday, January 31, 2010


Today, January 31, 2010, is the 115th wedding anniversary of my Great-Grandparents, Thomas and Marianna DEL COLLO. Although they may be celebrating in Heaven, I wanted to honor them today. They are buried with other members of my family, including my Grandfather's oldest brother and his family. The first photo shows the front of the stone. My Great-Grandparents are buried behind the stone (second photo). This stone is one of a kind and was the first stone I ever photographed back when I began my genealogical exploits.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

PHOTO 33 - TOMBSTONE OF WALLACE L. BAUSCHER - Bethel Church Cemetery, Bethel, Berks County, PA

A very nice, 118 year old stone with a biblical saying underneath. Genealogists are always pleased to see stones like this which clearly state the name and birth and death dates. The biblical saying also tells you that this person and his family were very religious. This means that there are probably church records available to provide you more genealogical information.

Friday, January 29, 2010

PHOTO 32 - TOMBSTONE OF URIAH GOODRIDGE - Eden Cemetery, Salisbury Cove, ME

A very weather-worn tombstone from a cemetery on Mount Desert, Island in Maine. The epitaph is barely readable on the bottom. A very nice example of an older tombstone.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

PHOTO 31 - TOMBSTONES OF ABRAHAM S. MOYER & ANNA D. MOYER POLLOCK - Shomrei Habrith Cemetery, Cumru Township, Berks County, PA

An interesting pair of tombstones in a beautiful Jewish cemetery. Notice the English and Hebrew inscriptions.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

PHOTO 30 - TOMBSTONE OF SECONTINA RUGGERRI - St. Benedict's Cemetery, Lebanon, Lebanon County, PA

A beautiful stone to a woman whose life ended at the young age of 37. It is in beautiful shape for being 88 years old.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

PHOTO 29 - TOMBSTONES OF GEORGE DOUGLASS & FAMILY - St. Gabriel's Cemetery, Douglassville, Berks County, PA

Today's stones are of George Douglass and his family. Douglassville, the location of St. Gabriel's Cemetery, is named for George. Very interesting how the tablets lay on some concrete foundations. Not sure if they were always there, but they are interesting to look at.

Monday, January 25, 2010

PHOTO 28 - TOMBSTONE & GRAVE OF "LIEUTENANT BOBBY" - Rose Hill Cemetery, Macon, Bibb County, GA

Today's stone is something you normally do not see in a HUMAN cemetery - a dog buried alongside other humans. I do not know much about Lieutenant Bobby but I know he was very loved and his Master and others wanted to give him the ultimate honor of being buried in Rose Hill. The stone is a lovely tribute.

Friday, January 22, 2010

PHOTOS 26-27 - THE PUBLIC VAULT - Congressional Cemetery, Washington, DC

Today's photos are of The Public Vault, built in 1832. This vault has been used to hold the remains of over 3000 people awaiting their final burial. Presidents William Henry Harrison, Zachary Taylor and John Quincy Adams all reposed here while awaiting their final resting places as did First Ladies Dolley Madison and Louisa Adams. All in all, a very neat vault built right into the hillside.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

PHOTO 25 - TOMBSTONE OF DELIA SPRINGS - Settlers' Cemetery, Charlotte, NC

Today's tombstone is of Delia Springs. Delia passed away in April, 1861, on the eve of the Civil War. Her stone is very unique. Take notice of the ornate tree on top of the stone. This is a nice tribute to Delia, who passed at only 25 years.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

PHOTO 24 - WISLER MAUSOLEUM - Laurel Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia, PA

A very nice mausoleum built right into the hillside with an Angel on top keeping watch. I like these types of mausoleums because they seem to blend right in with the natural landscape.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

PHOTO 23 - TOMBSTONES OF BENNEVILLE A. & MARY HATT - Sinking Spring Cemetery, Sinking Spring, Berks County, PA

A nice example of a base shared by husband and wife tombstones. These caught my eye because I thought the name "Benneville" was very interesting. I also love stones that give the exact age of the individual buried beneath. For genealogists, these types of graves are wonderful because they identify the father and mother of the family and because there are usually other family members' graves around.

Monday, January 18, 2010

PHOTO 22 - UNKNOWN GRAVES - Rose Hill Cemetery, Macon, Bibb County, GA

These are two of the most unusual graves I have ever seen. No wording that I could see and both sitting stately upright among the terraced terrain of Rose Hill Cemetery. I am not sure what the material on top of the bricks is made of, but it is certainly ornate. It is also neat how the graves sit literally right into the hillside.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

PHOTO 21 - TOMBSTONE OF MICHAEL ROBERT PHILLIPS - Sinking Spring Cemetery, Sinking Spring, Berks County, PA

Today we have a very nice example of a modern stone with a nice biblical quote and a very pretty angel depicted near the top of the stone. It has a nice shape and stands out among the other stones.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

PHOTO 20 - GRAVES OF THE O'REILLY FAMILY - St. Peter's Cemetery, Reading, PA

A nice collection of graves of the O'Reilly Family, probably of Reading. The white memorial in the back is the "Family Marker" with the specific, individual graves in front of it. There are many early Irish and Italian immigrants buried in this cemetery. Unfortunately, it has fallen victim to vandals in recent times.

Friday, January 15, 2010

PHOTO 19 - TOMBSTONE OF J. JACOB PFEIFFER - Host Church Cemetery, Bernville, Berks County, PA

Today's stone is that of J. Jacob Pfeiffer who served in the Berks County Militia during the Revolutionary War. It appears as if ancestors placed a modern Veterans stone in front of Mr. Pfeiffer's original stone with a concrete base surrounding both stones and holding them in place. A very nice job indeed and a nice mix of modern and ancient tombstones together.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

PHOTOS 17 & 18 - TOMBSTONE OF PETER HULINGS - St. Gabriel's Cemetery, Douglassville, Berks County, PA

Today's tombstone is that of Peter Hulings. As you can see, the inscription on Mr. Hulings' stone wore away decades ago. However, a small memorial plaque was placed in front of the stone to tell us what was once readable on the stone. I think this is a nice way of allowing those of us in the 21st Century to see what was once on a tombstone from the 18th Century.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

PHOTO 16 - TOMBSTONE OF AARON WILBUR - Bonaventure Cemetery, Savannah, Georgia

Today's tombstone is that of Aaron Wilbur, who was born in Barnhard, Vermont in 1821 and died in Savannah in 1869. I love the large Angel on top of the monument pointing upward and signifying that Mr. Wilbur's soul has ascended to Heaven. The Spanish moss all around Savannah and this cemetery makes for lovely and eerie scenes all around. Yes, this cemetery is the one featured in "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil." If you are ever in Savannah, a visit to this wonderful cemetery is an absolute must!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


Another beautiful tribute to 2 children who passed away young, Francesco & Maria Florio. Their names and information are written in Italian and their stone also has cameo photos of them. The other name on the stone, "May," might have been another sister who lived into old age and wanted to be buried with her siblings. I love the angel and the Sacred Heart of Jesus flanking each side of the main stone and the cross nicely framed in the center. Calvary Cemetery in Queens is quite famous as the cemetery used for Vito's funeral scene in "The Godfather" and I also believe it was used for various scenes in "The Sopranos." More stones and more information about this cemetery to come in future posts.

Monday, January 11, 2010

PHOTOS 12-14 - TOMBSTONE OF GEORGE JAMES ROSS - Rose Hill Cemetery, Macon, Bibb County, Georgia

Today's tombstone is that of young George James Ross, the son of George W. and Martha J. Ross of Macon. Young George was only 6 years old when he passed and his tombstone is one of a kind. Children's tombstones are always somewhat heartbreaking and this one is no exception. However, it does indicate that young George's soul is residing in Heaven. Notice the Angel depicted holding George and taking him to Heaven while his empty casket resides below. I also love the Angel residing on top of the stone as if it were guarding and protecting young George's grave from any demons. This stone is absolutely wonderful and a real work of art.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

PHOTO 11 - TOMBSTONE OF PAOLO BALESTRA, St. Benedict's Cemetery, Lebanon, PA

Today's photo is the tombstone of Paolo Balestra. Italian, don't you think? A very nice stone that shows its age. I could not find any legible dates on it. What I like about this stone is that Paolo's picture is in the center of the stone - very much like the graves in Italy. It seems Paolo's relatives continued the tombstone custom here in the United States.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

PHOTO 10 - TOMB OF CAROLINE WILSON - Rose Hill Cemetery, Macon, Bibb County, Georgia

Today's photo is the tomb of Caroline Wilson. This tomb dates from 1840 and the monument in front of the grave states at the bottom that it was Rose Hill Cemetery's very first interment. This grave caught my eye while I was researching the graves of my ancestors who are buried in the gated area behind Caroline's grave. I will write more about Rose Hill Cemetery as this blog develops, but let me say that it is one of the great cemeteries in the United States.

Friday, January 8, 2010

PHOTO 9 - TOMBSTONE OF CATHARINE HENINGER - New Bethel Zion Cemetery, Grimville, Berks County, PA

Today's tombstone is that of Catharine Heninger. Her husband is buried right next to her. Very neat inscribing work and it also looks like the stone was broken and repaired a while ago. Inscription is also written in German. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

PHOTO 8 - TOMBSTONE OF CADWALADER EVANS - Laurel Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia, PA

Today's photo is of the tombstone of Cadwalader Evans. A very interesting name, don't you think? I do not think I have ever seen a tombstone with the dates inscribed in Roman numerals. Very neat indeed. Laurel Hill Cemetery in Philadelphia is a classic cemetery that has wonderful stones and nice vistas. If you are ever in Philadelphia, make it a point to visit Laurel Hill!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

PHOTO 7 - TOMBSTONES OF THE JAMES W. PAUL FAMILY - Laurel Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia, PA

Today's photo is of the main tombstone and smaller tombstones of the James W. Paul Family. This was a random set of tombstones that I photographed on a trip to Laurel Hill Cemetery in Philadelphia. Notice the intricate detail of the tops of the columns and the detail around the top of the main stone. Another interesting tombstone!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

PHOTO 6 - TOMB OF ELBRIDGE GERRY - Congressional Cemetery, Washington, DC

Today's photo is the tomb of former Vice-President of the United States Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts. He was a signer of the Declaration of Independence and died as Vice-President on his way to the United States Capitol on November 23, 1814. Gerry's name is the root of the infamous political term "Gerrymandering," which will figure big next year after this year's 2010 census. A nice tomb to honor a patriot. The surrounding square-sized memorials surrounding Gerry's tomb mark the graves of other members of the United States Congress.

Monday, January 4, 2010

PHOTO 5 - MAUSOLEUM OF FREDERICK LAUER - Charles Evans Cemetery, Reading, Berks County, PA

Today's photo is the mausoleum of Reading Brewer Frederick Lauer. This mausoleum is one of the most unique I have ever seen. Perhaps Mr. Lauer was fascinated by Egyptian history? Very nice detail on the door and above the door. "F. Lauer" is inscribed above the door. There is a statue of Mr. Lauer in City Park in Reading just down from the Columbus statue on Perkiomen Avenue. For more information on Frederick Lauer and his life and statue, click here. Cheers!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

PHOTO 4 - TOMBSTONE OF "FANNIE" - St. Gabriel's Church Cemetery, Douglassville, Berks County, PA

Today's photo is the tombstone of "Fannie." Fannie was probably a girl who died well before her time. The epitaph on the bottom is partially readable. Fannie's parents and family are probably buried aside and/or around her. This stone stands out in St. Gabriel's Church Cemetery.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

PHOTOS 1-3 - TOMBSTONES OF ANDREW ROBESON - St. Gabriel's Church Cemetery, Douglassville, Berks County, PA

We start off this blog with the tombstones of Andrew Robeson. Yes, there are two stones. The first photo is a good example of an early 18th century headstone. It is the larger of the two stones and features an interesting design and a small epitaph that identifies Andrew's death date as February 19, 1720. There is also a semi-readable epitaph on the back of the headstone (not pictured). A more modern memorial is placed at the bottom of this headstone and it gives us some more information on Andrew and his wife. The second photo is the foot stone of Andrew's grave and it features the very recognizable skull and crossbones and the words, "Remember Death" at the bottom. Be sure to also notice Andrew's initials on either side of the skull. The final photo features both stones. The foot stone is to the left and the headstone is to the right. St. Gabriel's Church Cemetery contains very good examples of tombstones from the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries and I will feature more photos from this cemetery as this blog evolves.