This quaint, tiny church cemetery is similar to hundreds of others scattered throughout the South. It was originally built as a little church in the wildwood, but now development has surrounded both church and graveyard. Ironically, the cemetery is on Wildwood Rd., and has the name Moultrie Creek Wildwood Cemetery. It is less than a mile from our home.
Friday, March 27, 2009
-Cemeteries of St. Augustine- March 27, 2009
St. Augustine is unparalleled in early U.S. History. Due to its being the oldest U.S. city, it also has the oldest graves. Because the Spaniards defeated the French for possession of the area back in the 1500's, it still has a very Spanish look, and much Catholic influence. I wish I had been invited to participate with the Friday Shootouts earlier, so that I could have been more comprehensive in scope with the cemeteries.
As I strolled within the walls, I almost stumbled over Mary Jackson's tombstone. It was a very poignant moment for me. From the appearance of the marker, it seems that she has been completely forgotten by family and friends. Soon, her tombstone may be below ground with her, and also forgotten. After viewing the photo in an enlarged size, I felt it was ironic that on the ground, resting against the front face of the stone, was an acorn.......a symbol of new life. (Click on photo to see it.)
As I walked back to my vehicle I did step on a broken stone that was almost completely obscured, face down. In a moment of protest, I stood the small stone, along with another that I found, against the tree a few feet away.
Who was this James Cornaley who died over one hundred years ago? What was his life like? Does his thirty two years of life on earth deserve this neglect? As of this posting, he is finally (posthumously) gaining a degree (no matter how small) of international notoriety. I am comforted to believe that, in death, he has gained happiness and will receive his just reward from a merciful God.
Near the oldest section of St. Augustine is a very small National Cemetery. The tombstones, row on row, remind me of this famous poem.
In Flanders Fields, by John McCrae
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely, singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe;
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep,
though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.