Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Cemeteries

"My luck is so bad that if I bought a cemetery, people would stop dying."

-Ed Furgol

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Take a picture of, or in, a cemetery. Your local cemetery is a good, but if you've been to, say, Paris, to see Jim Morrison's grave, or took some arty shots of an ornate headstone elsewhere, something like that works too.

-John Scalzi (By The Way)

I don't find this subject morbid at all. As a matter of fact, I find cemeteries fascinating. I have been photographing them for years. Whenever I get the chance I try to visit different cemeteries, around the Bay Area. I am hoping to maybe get across the bay, sometime this coming autumn, to the town of Colma, which is just outside San Francisco. 73% of the town land is made up of cemeteries, and according to Wikipedia, there are 17 in all, including one pet cemetery. Why so many cemeteries you ask? Well, see, an ordinance was passed in California, in the late 1880's that prohibited burials anywhere, other then in established and recognized city or county cemeteries.

By the time this law passed, the gold rush had begun in California, which brought an influx of new citizens to California, and the city of San Francisco. But with the new population, also came disease and the city was also affected by the Pandemic of the early 20th century. With all the cemeteries in San Francisco filled, and new area just south of the city was designated for the new cemeteries. Colma, became the "City of the Dead." Among some of the most famous buried there is Wyatt Earp. His grave can be found in the "Hills of Eternity" cemetery. I am hoping to do a more in depth posting about the town, sometime soon, so stay tuned. For now however, I have some shots from other cemeteries I have come across in my travels. Hope you find them interesting. :)

El Carmelo Cemetery, Pacific Grove, California

Golden Gate Cemetery, Presidio, San Francisco, Ca.

Silver Terrace Cemetery, Virginia City, Nevada

Mount Saint Joseph Cemetery, Hayward, California

Note: The Silver Terrace Cemetery is reputed to be haunted. You can read about it here.

El Carmelo Cemetery, Pacific Grove, California
Autumn, 2006


Karen Funk Blocher said...

The Golden Gate one looks less interesting than the others because the markers are all the same - and yet the photo itself looks awesome! Great variety here.

MyMaracas said...

Love that first one. And I agree, old cemeteries are fascinating places.

Barry said...

Great pics, as usual.
Love the Silver Terrace pic, it looks a proper 'boot hill'.
B. x