Friday, April 03, 2009
[Topic: Cemetery Preservation]
The Association for Gravestone Studies offers expert information about the repairing of gravestones and the restoration of whole cemeteries and should be the first place to look for information.
If this work is interesting to you, then you should plan to join this organization and attend their yearly conference where you can educate yourself in the proper method of preservation.
Most people are aware that vandalism is a reason for broken gravestones. Some states have laws against vandalism in graveyards.
What many people do not know that you can get arrested for trying to fix a gravestone, make gravestone rubbings or even touch a gravestone to photograph it! This might not always seem be common sense but it is important to know the law and stay out of trouble.
This is the grave of Henry A. Denison that I found in the beautiful and well kept large cemetery in Mystic, CT. As I am assistant to the genealogist for the Denison Society, I am always seeking data from gravestones to add to our database of information.
Naturally, I am also preserving gravestone history by taking photographs of stones. I took this photo on 04 Aug 2007 and when I went back to the cemetery, I discovered that this stone's two pieces had been put back together. That is the true meaning of Perpetual Care. I did not take another photo because I found Henry in the database with his information intact.
The smaller family cemeteries that I visit and photograph are in shockingly bad condition because there may be no single person in charge of that cemetery. As I am no longer young, I don't think I will be taking a course in restoration but feel that I am doing my part by just photographing stones.