Sunday, August 31, 2014

Divining the Stones

Hare Family Plot - Oakwood Cemetery, Simcoe, Ontario.
The Hare Memorials like most gravestones tell a story, which through the symbols and inscriptions we can begin to piece together.

For even the son of man came not to be ministered unto,
but to minister and to give his life a ransom for many.
-Mark 10:45 King James Bible

Left: Doctor Dora Hare Dec. 26, 1894 - Sept. 13, 1945
Right: Lena May Hare R.N. June 28, 1904 - May 27, 1994

We have two women close in age, who both worked in the field of medicine but what connects these two women? A variation of the Chi Rho with interlocking wedding bands carved upon both their memorials tells us these women were both married but to who?

At the foot in between these women's memorial rests the gravestone of Robert B. Hare.

Robert B. Hare F.R.C.S Jan. 18, 1891 - Nov. 12, 1976
Here are interred, the ashes of the above, between the
two women, who have given me more love and
comfort than most men receive or deserve.

To the left of Robert's stone at the foot of Dora's grave lays Michael Hare's memorial.

Michael Hare Oct. 5, 1931

After reading these memorials it's easy to surmise that Dora was Robert's first wife and that together they conceived Michael. Based on what little information was given on Michael's stone I believe he either did not make it to term or died shortly after being born. Sometime after Dora's passing Robert married his second wife Lena May. Of course this is all conjecture, the next step is to use the names and dates to search local archives to find solid facts through obituaries, marriage, birth and death records. So far I have been able to locate an Obituary for Dora Hare which supports my conclusion that her and Robert were indeed husband and wife.

R.N. -Registered Nurse
F.R.C.S. -Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons
Source: Canad. M.A.J Nov. 1945 , vol.53  pg. 513 Obituaries

"Thank you for sharing your beautiful photos of these lovely and heart warming stones. Michael Albert Hare died 5 October 1931 surviving only 6 hours after his birth. (Death registration #025223 Norfolk County). His parents' residence at the time of his death was listed as 132 Norfolk Street South, Simcoe, Ontario.Robert Hare and Amy Dora Adams were married in Toronto on 15 September 1921. He was 30 and a medical student and she 26. No occupation was listed for her on the registration. (Archives of Ontario MS932, Reel 566, County of York). The Toronto Star death notice for Dr. Amy Dora Adams Hare did not list any children" -Readers Comment

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Forever Friends

On April 28, 1944 while out riding their bikes cousins Frank Kondas (left) and Andy Kish (right) were killed instantly when struck by a New York Central mail train. Frank was born March 8th 1938. Andy was born July 28th 1936. Frank and Andy are buried together in the Catholic section of Tillsonburg Cemetery - Goshen St. entrance.

Ingersoll Tribune, Thursday, May 04, 1944 Pg: 1 Col: 6 Friday, April, 28, 1944 Kondas, Frank  Kish, Andy Tillsonburg

Friday, August 29, 2014

William Locks' Epitaph

March 13. 1857
William Lock's gravestone is located in Upper (Town Hall) Cemetery. A curious cemetery that resembles the foundation of a building long since atrophied, located on a hill and surrounded by a white picket fence, but that's another post altogether.

The epitaph on William's stone is part of a hymn written by Charles Wesley and composed Edwin Moss.

Original Hymn

Thy presence, Lord, the place shall fill; My heart shall be thy throne; Thy holy, just, and perfect will, Shall in my flesh be done.

I thank thee for the present grace, And now in hope rejoice, In confidence to see thy face, And always hear thy voice.

I have the things I ask of thee; What more shall I require That still my soul may restless be, And only thee desire.

Thy only will be done, not mine, But make me, Lord, thy home; Come as thou wilt, I that resign, But O, my Jesus, come!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Reunited After 47 Years

Hattie Elvira Wife of J.W. Brittain died April 9. 1904. in her 29th year. There is rest in heaven.
John Wesley Brittain died Apr 27 1951 in his 79th year.

John P.M. Son of J.W. & H.E. Brittain
Died Jan. 28. 1905 Aged 10 Mo's & 11 D's

It's not often that I come across headstones were the couples deaths are so far apart. Most widows this young would have remarried and been buried with their latest spouse. 

John Wesley Brittain and Hattie Elvira Winegarden married on October 21, 1891. They had four children together Jesse who married Barney O'Conner, Florence who married Percy Baldwin, Catherine -named after her grandmother Catherine Brittain (Robbins)- who married Lennard Gibbons  and John who passed away at ten months old. 

It's possible that Hattie died due to childbirth complications -John passed at ten months old, ten months after his mother died.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Pamela Williams: Cemetery Sculpture Photographer

"GLIMPSE is a photo of a statue of an 1880's woman visiting
her husbands' death bed. She grasps his hand & lifts up the
shroud covering him - to see if he is really dead!
This image is in the "IN THE MIDST OF ANGELS" book."
-Pamela Williams
Almost a decade has passed since I was first introduced to the works of Pamela Williams through her exhibit "Last Kiss". Reading about her photography in the local newspaper I was compelled to venture to the Woodstock Art Gallery but no article could have prepared me for how eloquently animated her photographs are.

Pamela Williams is a Canadian photographer who has traveled worldwide to capture cemetery sculpture from the Victorian Era. Her photographs have graced the covers of books including Timothy Finley's "Dust to Dust" and Margaret Laurence's "Stone Angel". Exhibits of her work have been shown across North America and in Italy. Recently I had the opportunity to interview Pamela.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Cemetery Symbolism - The Rose

Roses on memorials can hold several meanings depending on a variety of characteristics. A broken stem symbolizes an untimely or premature death while how much the rose has blossomed can indicate how old the deceased were when they passed away. Broken stems and rose buds are frequently used on children's headstones, often accompanied by a variation of the epitaph budded on earth to bloom in heaven. The rose also represents mourning, love, innocence, beauty, hope, spiritual bliss and eternal life.

Monday, August 25, 2014

The O'Heron Children and Contribution

Children of M & C O'Heron
(ordered by year of death)

The O'Heron monument gives us a glimpse into the tragic timeline of this family. Four children departed within fifteen years of each other -the oldest being four years old, the youngest eighteen days old. The sorrow from the loss of their children is inconceivable. The O'Heron's never got to experience the joys of watching these children grow into adults. As a parent my heart just sank when I began to read the inscriptions on this white bronze monument. Too many of the graves I've visited are that of children who had passed during the nineteen hundreds. All I can say is, I'm grateful for the medical advancements our society has accomplished within the last century and am surprised by how often life is taken for granted.

I was touched when Jon Armstrong the great grand son of Morris and Catherine O'Heron contacted me after reading my post The O'Heron Children. He shared with me information about his families history which I've been given permission to post. Thank you Jon, it was a pleasure learning more about the O'Herons.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Georgiana Machon (Fisher) - White Bronze

Blessed are they that do his commandments,
That they may have right to the tree of life,
And may enter in through the gates into the city.
Rev. 22:14
Georgiana Machon was the daughter of John and Jean Machon, and wife of Donald Fisher. She was born in Vittoria on November 28th 1860 and died there on December 20th 1901 in her 41st year. Her husband Donald was the son of Donald Fisher and Matilda Montross; he was born on November 8th 1849 and died in 1927. Georgiana and Donald had three children together: Vivian Ethel (b. May  16 1885, d. November 14 1930), Estella Grace (b. August 23 1887, d. 1937) and Christina Lea (b. April 18 1890, d. 1970). All of which are interred at St. Andrew's Cemetery in Vittoria with the exception of Estella , I have yet to be able to verify her location.

Source: Descendants of Jean Machon

Innes Family Tree

As one of the more unique memorials erected in Lynnville Cemetery the Innes monument demands attention. Trees are regarded as a symbol of life while tree trunks with limbs cut off represent a life cut short. The amount of cut branches often signifies the number of family members interred. The thistles suggest that the Innes family was of Scottish descent. Legend has it, over seven hundred years ago a thistle saved Scotland from a surprise invasion. In the dark of night, a shoeless Dane stepped upon a thistle and let out a cry thus alerting the Scots of the impending invasion.

DIED APRIL 8, 1896
JANE DIED AUG. 31, 1877

Children of John & Elizabeth

Friday, August 22, 2014

Articulo Mortis

"in the moment of death"
An angel hovers over the dying as a messenger of God, offering this soul the comfort of eternal life while acting as an escort to heaven. Deathbed scene discovered in Greenwood Cemetery.