Friday, July 23, 2010

Friday in an Ohio Cemetery

My blogger friend, Scott at "Finding Another View,", has a Phun Phriday challenge that I can tackle.  He wants photos of anything phun, weird or creative.  You get it don't you?  Photography....phun?  Those shutterbugs.  They are a phunny bunch.

As it happens, today I did something phun and weird in my little part of Ohio.  Creative?  More like phoolish.  O.K., I'll stop that.

Even though it is 100 degrees outside, I was willing to walk in the woods, but then I saw this on my patio.

I wasn't about to put a ruler next to this monster to impress you with its span.  Let's just say that my size nine shoe wasn't big enough to cover it.

Seriously.  Sort of.  Anyway, I realized that fighting my way through the woods could put me in contact with one of these.  It could ride home in my hair.

Shoot, I could ride home on it.

So, I did the wise thing and went for a walk in Sugar Grove Cemetery in Wilmington, Ohio. 

I'm just inside the gate, and I'm already sweating like a pig.  No, pigs don't sweat.  How about sweating like a pack of menopausal women in July?  I hope that paints the picture.

I raised my boys in Wilmington, Ohio.  When they were little guys, I would take them for walks in this cemetery. 

What?  It wasn't creepy.  They loved it.

There are cannons in the cemetery.  Every little boy wants to play with a cannon.  Hang on, but I'm going to give you a little history lesson, and this is from someone who flunked History 100 twice in college.

This is Soldier's Point, a triangular section of 60 graves that honor Civil War veterans who had no other means for burial.  In 1927, the GAR (Grand Army of the Republic) erected this monument and flanked it with two cannons made in 1861.

To back up a little, Sugar Grove Cemetery was organized in 1857 by a group of Clinton County residents who saw the need for a centralized burial location.  People were just planting their loved ones willy-nilly all over the place before the founding fathers put their heads together.  They started with 22.5 acres but after additional purchases, it now covers 110 acres. 

Cemeteries are interesting places.  I'll prove it to you on my little tour.

The smallest section of the cemetery is reserved for pets.  There are 144 dogs, cats and a skunk buried here.

 Don't pack up Fluffy.  There aren't any spots left.

I have no idea why the cross is in the tree, but it's interesting, right?
This is the Charity Section, established in the 1860s for transients...people who died with no identification.

They have numbers.

Remember to keep your I.D. on you or you could be number 108.

On a serious note, I was sad to see how shabby the cemetery is looking.  Wilmington has had a huge loss of jobs, and I'm sure there have been cuts.

This monument is surrounded by a branch.

All of the headstones seemed crooked or something.  Don't these seem sort of crunched together?

 And nothing had been mowed or trimmed.

Don't you think that when a tree has one branch left, it should be cut down?

This is a yucca plant gone wild.

I'm going back with pruning sheers.

Bear with me on this.  It's noon, it's 100 degrees, and I have sweat pouring in my eyes.  Mascara is running down my cheeks.  I smell like I should be a permanent resident here.

I know you can't really see it, but that black spot on a headstone is a vulture. 

I swear.  I tried to get closer for the sake of my art, but it flew away.  I think it was looking for me.  I think I smelled too bad.

O.K., Scott.  Is this phun enough for you?

I did go home and shower just in case the vulture followed me.  You all can stop holding your noses.

Check in tomorrow for Tales From the Flea.  I'll be working at my scrub store at Caesar Creek Markets and there are always photo ops. 


  1. I think you could put a saddle on that spider, unbelievable!

    I think cemeteries make amazing subjects for photography and I think it's good that you took your boys there for walks. They should know that it's a place that's (usually) safe to visit and holds a world of memories. If you visit my site, it starts with a slide show. Slide #4 has a pretty creepy cemetery show :-)

  2. I love cemeteries too though the last time I was taking photos in one, the cemetery "guy" told me the dead people don't like their photos taken. I was pretty sure that was a projection.
    Hope your weekend if phunphilled.

  3. Woody...I've spent a lot of time walking in that cemetery. Great place to think. I forgot to mention that I taught one of my boys to drive there. He was a little frightened on the road. Love your photography.
    Janell...Hope you weekend is phun too. Stop annoying dead people.

  4. That definitely qualifies on the weird side of Phun, but I can always count on you to be a little weird and a lot phunny. I really enjoyed your post because I too love cemeteries. For years I said that someday I would do a coffee table book on cemeteries, but I haven't even started yet. Maybe when I'm a permanent resident I'll have a different angle.

  5. Scott-- that was a terrible 2/3rds of a pun.


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