Thursday, March 1, 2012

Willow and stars

The gravestone for Abigail Root (d. 1835) stands out among the older markers in Stantontown Cemetery: The willow, the stars, and the inscription all have a just-carved crispness.

On top of that, unlike nearby stones, the Root gravestone shows no visible signs of algae or lichen, which often make a stone difficult to read.

Yes, it is a siltstone marker.

wife of
died 8 Feb. 1835
in her 67 year.

The epitaph is only partly visible, but it is not difficult to fill in the blanks. Visible are the words Hail! ye sighing sons of sorrow.

The words are from the first verse of an old hymn, “The Mouldering Vine,” usually attributed to composer James P. Carrell (b. 1787, d. 1854). The lyricist is not identified.

Hail! ye sighing sons of sorrow,
Learn from me your certain doom;
Learn from me your fate tomorrow,
Dead—perhaps laid in your tomb!
See all nature fading, dying!
Silent all things seem to pine;
Life from vegetation flying,
Brings to mind “the mould’ring vine.”


But look closely at the photo below. The first line of the epitaph matches “The Mouldering Vine,” but the mostly hidden second line does not.

The Root epitaph clearly came from a different version.

Stantontown Cemetery, Morrow County, Ohio

1 comment:

  1. I can see what you mean about siltstone gravestones. It looks almost new. I wonder how the composition is different than some of the other stones used for markers and what makes it hold up so well. Hmmm.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...