Old Churchyard Cemetery

Support this blog by using my Amazon.com link

I stopped at the Strawberry Festival being held in Hollis, NH on Sunday. There was a long line so I opted to visit the graveyard behind the Congregational Church.

Stones by John Poltrack on 500px.com
Stone wall with graves


Hollis Graveyard by John Poltrack on 500px.com
Classic urn motif on grave encrusted with lichens




Support this blog by shopping at Amazon.com

A number of the older cemeteries in our area have decorative cast iron fencing and gates around family gravesites. These photos were taken at a cemetery in Greenville, NH.

This fencing also acted as a mortsafe and prevented grave robbing. However the decorative fencing itself is often the target for thieves.

Ironwork by John Poltrack on 500px.com


Ironwork by John Poltrack on 500px.com


First Parish Burying Ground

Find books about New England Gravestones at Amazon.com

I never pass the opportunity to visit older graveyards in the surrounding towns. The slate stones are still quite legible and many have stories to tell. The epitaphs on the limestone gravestones have eroded away, victims of acid rain.

This photo was taken behind the First Parish Unitarian Universalist Church in Ashby, Massachusetts.

Ashby First Parish Burying Ground by John Poltrack on 500px.com
Leaning Stones


Tragic Epitaphs – Gilman Spaulding

Discover newest products from Startups at Amazon.com

Modern grave markers tell very little about the deceased, usually just a name, lifespan and family role. Some of the older cemeteries in New England  have gravestones with a lot more information such as the ones found at Village Cemetery on Main St. in New Ipswich, NH.

Mr. Gilman Spaulding
Mr. Gilman Spaulding


“Mr. Gilman Spaulding was kill’d with an ax by an insane Brother, Sept. 19,1842, AEt. 38.” 

Read more about this this tragedy on Janice Brown’s excellent blog www.cowhampshireblog.com.

The Vermont Phoenix for September 23, 1842 recorded this affair of a Sunday morning—

Melancholy Occurrence.— Mr. Charles Spaulding of New Ipswich, N. H. who has been insane for the last few years, wandered from his home a short time since and came to Windham in this State. On the 20th inst. he was found by his brother, who was about to take him home. In the mean time the insane man slyly took an axe unnoticed by his brother, knocked him down, and then struck him several times with the axe, which wounded him so that he survived but a short time. The insane man was immediately taken and placed in the jail in this County. He now appears to be wholly unconcerned, says he is glad that he killed him and intends to kill another brother and a sister.


Smithville Cemetery

Support this blog by using my Amazon.com link

It is the last weekend of September and Saturday’s photo theme is #CemeterySaturday. These photos were taken at Smithville Cemetery in New Ipswich, NH.

It appears that one gravestone is whispering to the other
chipped gravestone
The ravages of time and weather
Standing stones

Memorial Day 2015

Find decorations for graves at Amazon.com
Memorial Day originated as Decoration Day in 1868 when a group of Union Veterans established it as a time to decorate the graves of the war dead with flowers

Photograph Okinawa Cemetery by John Poltrack on 500px

Temporary Cemetery in Okinawa in WWII. Later the remains were returned to the states.

Photograph New Hampshire State Veterans Cemetery by John Poltrack on 500px

These photos were taken at the Veterans Cemetery in Boscawen, NH in 2011

Photograph Veterans Cemetery by John Poltrack on 500px

Photograph Veterans Cemetery by John Poltrack on 500px

Memorial Day in New Ipswich 2015 – Morning Ceremonies

Find decorations for Memorial Day at Amazon.com

Peter and Bonny Jo Aho
The morning Memorial Day parade forms on Goen road in New Ipswich. Peter and Bonny Jo Aho have been hosting a coffee and nisu social for the parade participants since 1977.
Porta Potty & Nisu
Nisu is a traditional Finnish Bread, absolutely delicious
What is a parade without a classic car? This VW had a red, white and blue surfboard. Selectman Woody Meiszner
Selectman and Vietnam veteran Woody Meiszner
Smithville Cemetery Ceremony
Veterans decorate the crosses with wreaths
Boynton Middle School Band
We had a marching band! Thanks to the students at Boynton Middle School
Decorating the Waters
Decorating the waters as the Navy Hymn is played
Memorial Day Rifle Salute
Rifle Salute by Donald Poirier & Post 13
Ollie Niemi raises the flag
Master of Ceremonies Ollie Niemi raises the flag in Smithville (New Ipswich).
New Ipswich Veterans
Morning Parade veterans. (I marched but stepped out to take photos)