Leaving a stone at a gravesite

amtrak7 057.jpg

The Jewish  faith, as well as some others, have a wonderful and thoughtful custom of leaving a small stone on the grave.  Placing a stone on the grave is an act of remembrance and serves as a sign to others that someone has visited the grave. It also enables visitors to honor the burial and the deceased.

Why stones you ask?  Stones are lasting and fitting symbols of the lasting presence of the deceased’s life and memory. Why not Flowers?   Flowers are a good metaphor for life. Life withers; it fades like a flower. For that reason, flowers are an apt symbol of passing, but while flowers may be a good metaphor for the brevity of life, stones seem better suited to the permanence of memory. Stones do not die. Continue reading “Leaving a stone at a gravesite”

An Elevator in a Cemetery!

205benhOne of the most unusual buildings in a Chicago area cemetery is one that consists of  just an elevator. It is a beautiful structure with stained glass windows and could easily be thought of as a small chapel.  The questions most often asked are where and why. Continue reading “An Elevator in a Cemetery!”

Funeral Streetcars

Funeral streetcars were found in major cities including Chicago, San Francisco, Detroit, Los Angeles, and others.  The Metropolitan Chicago transit system built two streetcars in 1910 built specifically for funeral service, each having drapes on the windows and a special compartment for the casket. Continue reading “Funeral Streetcars”