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Folk Gravestones at Black Oak Cemetery, Dekalb County AL

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

I have family buried at Black Oak Cemetery in Dekalb County, and I was there last week to take pictures and get good dates for my genealogy projects.

Besides the usual markers....marble, granite...were these wonderful hand-made markers. This first one below is for John L.A. Brown - he was born September 19, 1800 and died October 19, 1818 (Alabama wasn't even a state until 1819). His marker as well as some of the others feature this tree motif. What else this particular one includes is heart shapes, and a hand pointing up.

I have a friend whose relative passed away (just a couple of years ago), and their family members dug the grave themselves, with shovels, not machinery - not because they couldn't afford to hire someone else to do it, but because they wanted to - as a kind of service in itself. I'm pretty sure you couldn't do that at a big city cemetery, but this was beside a small country church.

The family members who made these monuments below decorated the gravestones by hand either because they couldn't afford a professional stone, there was noone nearby to do the job, or because they felt it was their duty. In whatever case, these stones in particular seem so much more *real*.

John L.A. Brown 9.12.1800 - 10.19.1818, Black Oak Cemetery, Dekalb County AL
John L.A. Brown

To the Memory Of...  Black Oak Cemetery, Dekalb County AL
To the Memory of...

Monument, Margaret ... Black Oak Cemetery, Dekalb County AL
Margaret

Joel T. Thacker Monument ... Black Oak Cemetery, Dekalb County AL
Joel T. Thacker

Son of Thacker ... Black Oak Cemetery, Dekalb County AL
Son of Thacker
Monument with Tree Design ... Black Oak Cemetery, Dekalb County AL
Tree design

Tree Motif ... Black Oak Cemetery, Dekalb County AL
Another...tree motif

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