Saturday, July 9, 2011

Two columns—of text, that is

The marker at the grave of three Smothers infants has no intricate carvings, but it caught my eye immediately. It is wider than normal, but rather than being a double (triple?) gravestone with somewhat matching side-by-side inscriptions, it strikes me as a simple tablet gravestone with a two-column inscription.

And of course now that the idea is in my head, I will forever think of this gravestone as the two-column gravestone—text, not architectural columns.



In
Memory of

George son
of John &
Rosa Linda
SMOTHERs
DIED
dec. 11,
1826, aged
5 weeks.
   
Also, two
Infant sons
the first of
which died
in the year
1831.
second, in
the year
1833.


The sweet epitaph, a popular one for infants and children during this time period, is from the hymn “Thy Life I Read” by Samuel Stennett (b. 1727, d. 1795).

I take these little Lambs saith he
And lay them in my breast
Protection they shall find in me
In me be ever blessed.


Red Bank Cemetery, Delaware County, Ohio

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