Posts Tagged ‘cemetery visits’

Rocky Hollow

January 17, 2011 3 comments

I don’t like cemeteries. They give me a serious case of the creeps. Even walking or driving past a cemetery creeps me out. Before this class the only time I’d ever actually visited one was for my uncle’s funeral when I was 13.  Having visited two in the last week, I can accurately say that a cemetery isn’t even the last place I want to go.

When I drove up to Rocky Hollow Cemetery one of the first things I saw was a historical marker which named the cemetery and gave the approximate date of its earliest known charter, but also said that the earliest burial site marked in the cemetery was that of a Confederate veteran buried there in 1865. I wondered if perhaps this was hinting that there may be some unmarked graves in the cemetery from before 1865, but I obviously couldn’t be sure. Another thing which struck me about the historical marker was that it used the phrase “anglo pioneers.” This reminded me of the marker in Old Georgetown Cemetery which referred to “pioneer citizens,” but the fact that this historical marker referred to the “anglo pioneers” buried there seemed much more exclusive and closed off. It made it sound as though African Americans were either completely unwelcome or unacknowledged at this cemetery. Looking across the cemetery from the fence near the historical marker, it initially seemed to me that the graves were pretty widely spaced. I also noticed several flags, flowers and other memorials or markers which looked as though they had been placed there very recently.  As I got closer and started walking away from the fence back to the left, however, the graves seemed to be much closer together. I felt almost claustrophobic as I was walking through the cemetery and I found it difficult to navigate a path without stepping on a grave in some places. There seemed to be a large gap somewhere around the middle of the cemetery (in relation to the historical marker), and the graves to the right did seem much more widely spaced.

One object which particularly creeped me out was a gravesite dated 2010. The dirt was still highly mounded over and grass had just barely started to peek through in some areas. The more I looked around the more I noticed several similar gravesites, all dated from the 2000’s which were still fairly highly mounded with very little grass cover. A lot of these graves looked pretty recently visited and several had fake flowers or religious statuettes and monuments nearby. Another object which stuck me was a small rectangle of stones which I assume encircled a grave. At the head of this rectangle was a stone cross and within the rectangle at the foot was a small statue of the Virgin Mary. I  didn’t notice any sort of marking or memorial on the cross or the stones to indicate who might be buried there. There seemed to be a small metal marker which had fallen text-down within the rectangle, but it seemed too morbid and inappropriate to attempt to move or otherwise disrurb anything around this grave.

Maybe it was just the weather (it was, afterall, overcast and cold when I visited Rocky Hollow), or maybe it was how far out of Georgetown toward the middle of nowhere I had to drive to get there, or it could even have been my own personal feelings about cemeteries, but visiting Rocky Hollow gave me some serious creeps. I scrawled the word “CREEPY” in all caps on my paper next to the question about what strikes me about the cemetery. Aside from a few places, however, the cemetery itself looked very well attended. I can only imagine how eerie it would be to visit a cemetery as overgrown and neglected as Love Cemetery.

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