It’s not a ghoulish fascination attracting me to cemeteries – it’s a love of history.
From the time I was a child I enjoyed trailing behind my father when he’d visit his family cemetery in Georgia. Reading the tomb stones and imagining the people and what their lives were like was captivating. The older the headstone the more interesting their story.
On my first trip to Ireland a friend laughed and asked, “why is it ye Americans come all the way over here and the first thing ye want us to take ye to see is the graveyard?”
I love history is the simple answer to his question. However more than that – I’m a romantic. There are love stories, tragedies and more within the gates of cemeteries.
I’ve found myself with tears rolling down my cheeks contemplating a birth date in relationship to a death date upon realization this person died far too young.
I’ve welled up reading poignant epitaphs.
I’ve learned stories of many ordinary people who were once important contributing members of their communities, loved by their families and are now gone.
Spending an hour in a cemetery is a wonderful history lesson and the reason frequently on vacation I find myself roaming graveyards.
In Raleigh, North Carolina Historic Oakwood Cemetery is a treasure trove of the city’s history.
I spent a couple hours on a chilly November day strolling the grounds. Oakwood is the final resting place for nearly 20,000 of the city’s famous and not so famous citizens. While visiting Raleigh it’s worth taking time to explore beautiful and historic Oakwood Cemetery.
Here is a piece I wrote about Oakwood for Examiner.com.
Downtown Raleigh is replete with historical significance on virtually every corner. One site not to be overlooked is tucked in the Historic Oakwood Neighborhood. Within walking distance of the State Capital and beautiful Victorian homes of the Oakwood section of the city is Historic Oakwood Cemetery. Chartered in 1869 it’s Raleigh’s oldest, private non-profit cemetery.
If you plan on getting outdoors and taking a tour of the Oak City, a stroll through Oakwood Cemetery is a leisurely walk through Raleigh’s rich history.
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