"If you are walking in Charleston, you are walking on someone's grave."--Sue Bennett, Charleston tour guide

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Sensational Sunny Cemetery Saturday!

Class photo taken by Carly Phillips
Charleston Chamber of Commerce weather ensured a fun and educational outing for my FYE "Beyond the Grave" students yesterday at beautiful and historic Magnolia Cemetery.

Nervous earlier in the week about the chance of rain, I was relieved and we were all rewarded with a gloriously sunny day with temperatures in the low 70s. For a "winter" day in late February, no complaints!

Pictured, right, on the Parker exedra monument are, from left Lexi DeJesus, Kaitlin Dotson, Morgan Bryant-Cook, Bridget McElroy, Leea Whetstone, Carlee Andrews, Spencer Parrish, Liam Ford, Emma Rosenblum, yours truly, and Cammi Calloway.

The dark granite mausoleum has space for 10 crypts

Erected just a couple years ago by the parents of U.S. figure skating champion Tara Lipinski, who won the Olympic gold medal in 1998, the gorgeous and gothic Lipinski mausoleum was clearly a crowd pleaser!

My selfie with the Lipinskis and Beverly Donald

I had the pleasure last summer to meet Patricia and Jack Lipinski who were visiting their site at Magnolia Cemetery.  Also seen in this photo is (second from right) Magnolia Cemetery superintendent Beverly Donald.

In March 2016, American Cemetery and Creation magazine devoted its cover story to the amazing new Lipinksi mausoleum.

FYE peer facilitator Carly Phillips is pictured far left at the Smith Pyramid

The William B. Smith pyramid is one of the cemeteries most impressive and majestic grave markers. Grave marker as a description does not do justice to this unique type of mausoleum, which was built in the 1890s for the wealthy banker and his family for generations to come.

The very first monument I examine in my 2014 book about Magnolia Cemetery is about the Smith Pyramid, a truly iconic piece of funerary art.

Photo by my Mrs- Alesia Harwood

Class photo (right) on the long bridge over Magnolia Cemetery's front lagoon or pond

Heron getting too close for (our) comfort to an alligator

A few us thought we might see the end of this juvenile Little Blue Heron at the hands- or more precisely, the jaws- of an alligator.

The heron kept getting closer and closer to the gator! Finally, it flew away, thank goodness!

Crade or bedstead markers at Magnolia Cemetery

Kind of an aside here. Pictured are examples of cradle graves that also have what can be called die on (or in) socket grave markers.

Inside look at how the die on socket markers are connected

This damaged  marker shows how the type was given the die on socket name. The top headstone part is connected to the base with the bolts that run though socket holes.

Photo by Alesia Harwood

One last group photo:  this one was taken by the front pond. We spent nearly three hours walking around Magnolia Cemetery's 150 acres.

Many thanks for great weather and to the College of Charleston's First Year Experience for funding the transportation by way of the excellent Green Taxi service.

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