Rose Hill Burial Park - Fairlawn, Ohio

Last October, we started a series called Cemetery Sundays, in which we went around to local cemeteries and photographed all of the beautiful, old tombstones. We figured the photos could be used as a great reference for other home haunters looking to create an authentic, old stone for their haunt.

The series had great response, so we've decided to continue it for 2012.

First up is Rose Hill Burial Park, located in Fairlawn, Ohio. I live near this cemetery and have passed by it almost daily, but I have never ventured inside. From the front, it never looked very interesting and all of the stones looked pretty new. That all changed on a whim last week...

We finally ventured in, camera in hand, to see what this cemetery had to offer. And were we blown away! What Rose Hill lacked in age it more than made up for in beauty.

The first thing we noticed was the large amount of trees and shrubbery, showing off their blazing Autumnal colors, growing throughout the grounds. It gave a personal and private feel to each plot, something that I hadn't witnessed in other cemeteries, and a warm feeling as you walked through each section with an almost Easter egg-like sensation as we hunted around, looking for the next tombstone. 

Also, there were many non-traditional tombstones that were more like sculptures, which added further to the unique beauty of the grounds.

This family plot headstone must have stood ten feet high and was sculpted from two different colors of marble. It was stunning to see this rising out from the middle of a section of other stones.

There was a large section of Jewish gravestones, too. We noticed that many of the stones had small rocks arranged across the tops, something I had had never seen before.

According to a quick yahoo search:

Jews have the custom of placing rocks (as opposed to flowers) on a grave that they've come to visit. This stems from the Jewish custom of not having flowers at a funeral.

One reason for this is that flowers used to be used to cover up the smell of a dead body, since it is the Jewish custom to not let the dead stay unburied overnight, (or at least bury them as quickly as possible) you don't need flowers for the aromatic aspect.

Also, it is Jewish custom to have simple funerals, and flowers are considered expensive, excessive, and they only last a few days.

The symbolism of placing a rock on the grave is that there will be an eternal reminder that someone who cared about the deceased has visited. 


Unknown said...

Enjoyed this post!We like to amble through cemeteries too, must be a DNA thing in all of us haunters.

Lisa said...

Wow - those are some amazing stones! it's like an art gallery!

I was just at one this weekend with the same thought & discovery! Didn't look like much (too new) til I got in there. The trees & the unusal stones & even the unique fonts really made it stand out.

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