I have names and dates and locations of people and places. Currently, this novice detective is trying to pinpoint his exact route that led to his demise. Today, I took the kids to the Summerville Cemetery to find the Hickman graves. His father, H.H. Hickman, has about the largest grave in practically the middle of the cemetery. He was easy to spot.
The kids were with me. The kids are always with me and I can already my sister-in-law saying, "What is it with you and graveyards?" I pulled up a picture of Dr. & Mrs. Hickman's gravestones and showed them to Birdie. Those hawk eyes looked up and said, "There it is, Mommy!" And off we ran.
Chas, his wife- Blanche, and spinster daughter- Gladys are buried on a slightly smaller plot than his father's- northwest from H.H; directly west/adjacent of Chas' plot is the plot of his brother, Tracy.
Tracy, his wife and also spinster daughter are buried there with a different style but equally as extravagant gravestone.
What does the burial have to do with the marriage? Not a lot, honestly. BUT- I think it speaks to the camaraderie between the brothers; that they wanted to be neighbors in both life and death. I don't read anything into the brothers not being buried on their father's large plot. There were other people buried on H.H.'s plot that weren't Hickman by name- probably Hickman by blood, though.
I started writing this blog to show the marriage certificate between the Blanche and Charles:
Check. Marriage certificate shown.
Edwin Weed was the rector and makes me wonder if Weed Street, over on the other side of town is named after this guy. But, no, I'm not jumping down that rabbit hole. Let me know what you find out. I've got my own rabbit hole over here.
Speaking of holes...
These are the graves on H.H. Hickman's plot:
There are Harpers, Waltons, Whatleys, Morris, and- of course- Hickmans. I don't know who these people are or if they are even consequential in this moment.
|Close up of grave above. This is the daughter of HH and Sarah, dying ... I think at about 5 years old.|
Hard to tell.
And these are the graves on Tracy I. Hickman's plot:
Anna, wife of Tracy
Ellen, daughter of Tracy
And these are the graves on Dr. Charles W Hickman's plot:
In all this, I thought I would feel sorry for Gladys, Chas' daughter. I can't imagine what it would be like to have your father ripped from you so suddenly. But, isn't death always sudden? As I dig, the less sympathetic I feel towards Gladys- not like a loathing- but, children are supposed to bury their parents, not the other way around. No, the one I really hurt for is Blanche. She lived until she was in her 80s, burying both her husband and then her daughter. Her existence as a widow extended for 34 years, 7 of those surviving after she buried her daughter. Not to mention, that she buried her brother-in-law, sister-in-law, and niece ... all before she buried herself.
Now, here's something both creepy and interesting. Probably more creepy than interesting. Check this out. Don't worry, no dead bodies. BUT, it could absolutely lead to some accidental crypt removals.
"The location of the record book is unknown or if it even exists..." At some point, the perpetual care money disappeared and, along with it, the sexton records for the cemetery. One of the finest things my crazy, corrupt city did was take over the care of this cemetery years ago.
What's a sexton record? Excellent question:
All the plots that are sold, available, empty, unmarked, paid for, etc are part of the sexton record. Let that sink in for a minute. Every time they open a grave, they are making a HUGE assumption that it is, well, empty. Otherwise, they're picking up someone's Great Great Dead Aunt Irene accidentally.
"Sorry Aunt Irene, Let me... just... yeah, ok. Tuck you back in there, where'd your hand go? There it is..... GUYS! We're gonna need another plot!"