Cemeteries: Genealogists understand the full value of cemeteries and appreciate them in ways most others can’t see. Share a cemetery or cemetery experience for which you are most thankful. What makes this place special? What does it mean to you and your family history?
Two summers ago, I met a cousin from the west coast in our “ancestral” land of Pitt County, North Carolina. The highlight of the quick get-together was visiting the small, roadside, family cemetery that holds our great and great-great grandparents. This cemetery obviously was once on family land. Now it just sits on the side of a country road. Some of the visible landmarks that I used the first time I visited the site were gone (torn down after some devastating hurricane damage). The land around the cemetery is being farmed again (there were many more tree last time).
This type of cemetery is very common in the south. Usually marked off by a chain link fence, you see plowed land around them. They may be so close to the current road that you can see the small print on the headstone, or way off in the distance, surrounded by beans or corn. The cemetery tells the story of the land. You can see the families that worked and suffered for it. Human tragedy and joy are recorded in cemeteries. Visiting the cemetery of my family brings them to life for me in a way I can never experience in any other way. I will never meet my great-grandparents in this life. But at the place they are buried, I stand on land they stood on. They mourned family there certainly, but they also sweated into the soil, raised their children to the best of their ability, went to church, and lived everyday very close to that place. It brings them closer to me than I could ever physically be.
Here is a link to google maps with the cemetery tagged http://goo.gl/rMc5x ,