Posts Tagged With: epitaphs

Spending the Afterlife in Key West

Looking for somewhere to spend Eternity? Look no further than the Key West Cemetery. If you’d like to preview your everlasting rest stop, start at the entrance at Passover Lane and Angela St. and pick up a free map at the office.

The cemetery was built in 1847 after the original cemetery was washed away in a hurricane a year earlier. Bodies were discharged from the sandy graves and drifted down the street. Some reported that even after the waters subsided, there were bodies stuck in trees around the city. To prevent the horrors of the flood, the new cemetery was built on the highest ground in Key West. Some of the new gravesites are above ground like in New Orleans.

Walking around the cemetery gives you the impression that this is it’s own little city. Populated by the dead, chickens and iguanas.

Here lie the graves of Key West’s famous residents. See if you can find “Sloppy Joe” Russell, Hemingway’s fishing guide and famous bartender. Popular epitaphs located around the grounds showcase the eccentricities of the Key West population.

If you “Remember the Maine” stop near the entrance where there is a fenced in area that contains the remains, known and unknown of many of the 260 sailors killed in Havana Harbor on February 15, 1898. An explosion occurred by accident and not a Spanish mine, as was originally thought. William Randolph Hearst and other newspapers shouted ‘Remember the Maine!’ and was the beginning of US involvement in the Spanish-American War.

Visit the grave of Norm Taylor aka Captain Outrageous. He legally changed his name to run as mayor of Key West. Visitors to the gravesite often leave offerings of Mardi Gras beads to let him know that he is remembered.

A giant Florida Conch marks the grave of Sir Peter Anderson, Secretary General of The Conch Republic. Sir Peter was one of those colorful people that made Duval Street so much fun.

As you wander among the graves and enjoy the sun bleached marble headstones, look carefully and pick out your future spot.

The Friends of Key West Cemetery website has information on the famous and infamous buried here. Check it out below…

http://www.friendsofthekeywestcemetery.com/

A memorial to Captain Outrageous can be found here…

https://captainoutrageouskeywest.blogspot.com/

Categories: Photography, Travel, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The oldest church in Norway

Stavanger Cathedral is the oldest church in Norway that is still in use. Construction began on the church in 1123 by a Benedictine Monk named Bishop Reginald from Winchester in England. Stavanger1_

Stavanger1_-2In medieval times the church was quite different than it is today. Around the church interior were different altars dedicated to different saints. Daily masses were held around these altars. The St. Swithun relic, an arm bone from an English bishop could be found in the choir. The cathedral also had several relics during this time, these included a cloth with Jesus’ blood, a piece of Jesus’ cross and other relics connected to different saints.Stavanger1_-12

Stavanger1_-3New lighting for the cathedral was installed in the 1920’s. Emanuel Vigeland designed six chandeliers in the nave and eight lamps on the side walls. The lamps were designed with an angel figurine that holds a hanging lamp.Stavanger1_-4The chandeliers look like thorn bushes and vines. Stavanger1_-5

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Stavanger1_-9Faces in the Medieval portion of the church reflect the Norse heritage of the craftsmen.Stavanger1_-10The ornate pulpit was a gift from the feudal overlord Henrik Below, in 1658, created by Scottish sculptor Andrew (Anders) Smith. As one of the biggest pieces in Norwegian baroque style the pulpit is an example of cartilage baroque.  The base of the pulpit is the biblical character of Samson facing down a lion. Stavanger1_-11

Stavanger1_-8The various carvings display stories of the bible starting with the Garden of Eden towards the bottom and ending with a triumphant Jesus at the top.Since many people at the time couldn’t read, the carvings were used to tell the tales.Stavanger1_-6Five large and elaborately carved memorial plaques are epitaphs for known men in the community. Their hanging in the cathedral brought honor to their families. Many rich and powerful families wanted to mark their position and make their presence known within the church. These families often received preferred seats in the front rows. This practice was popular in the 1600 and 1700’s.Stavanger1_-13

 

LINKS

Stavanger Cathedral

Stavanger Cathedral (Official)

Categories: Church, Europe, Photography, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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