View Full Version : Historical Archaeology - 19th c tombstones

12-24-2011, 09:23 PM
I have a post in historical genre with pictures of a type of tombstone I'm finding in one of our local cemeteries - central Ohio, cemetery active from about 1850 to 1900. If you have knowledge of tombstones and inscriptions (these are I S), this is the link to my post in historical and I would very much appreciate ideas on what these were for. Puma


Wayne K
12-26-2011, 05:55 PM
Connecticut has a gravestone association of some kind. I'll look for it


There ya go. Maybe Ohio, or the town might have something similar

Wayne K
12-26-2011, 05:57 PM
I used to have a t-shirt of theirs :)

12-26-2011, 07:33 PM
Thank you for the reply, Wayne K. I just looked at the Connecticut site. Lot of information. Puma

Wayne K
12-26-2011, 07:38 PM
Any time :)

12-27-2011, 10:30 AM
One of your problems is what the tombstones are made of. In the midwest during the 19th-century it was common to make gravestones out of marble, which was more readily available at the time. Marble, however, weathers and corrodes rapidly, and marble grave markers more than a century old tend to degrade into illegibility. I grew up in Iowa, and am personally familiar with this. My father was an Odd Fellow, and when I was a kid, used to take me out to cemeteries on Memorial Day to plant flags on the graves of veterans.

Granite gravestones are far more resistant to weathering, but didn't come into common use in my home area until maybe the early 20th century. And in New England, gravestones made of slate were common in the 18th century; most of those still remain fairly legible (I've been to Boston and visited the historic cemeteries there).


12-27-2011, 06:23 PM
Thanks for the response, Blacbird. Yes, the marble stones are real problems now. Pre 1900, the majority of our stones are actually a type of limestone/sandstone that's holding up much better than the marble. These IS stones are a type of limestone/marble so still very readable. Puma