Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Cemetary Trip #1

I visited Rosehill Cemetary a few weekends ago, on the North Side of Chicago. I wasn't looking for anything in particular, just taking pictures of things that were interesting and that looked cool. I hope to do a bunch of quick, photo-taking trips like this.

Here they are: Rosehill.


Dinabear said...

Rosehill is my favorite cemetery. Graceland is also very cool--there are a lot of famous Chicagoans buried there. Rosehill, however, has the most beautiful cemetery monument I have ever seen; it's located on the east side of the cemetery, and it is a sculpture of a woman reclining with a small child. It is for the grave of Frances Pierce and her baby, both of whom died during child birth. Pierce's husband had the monument erected in honor of his lost wife and child, and I have read in several places that it is considered the best cemetery monument in Chicago. I don't doubt it. It's haunting; at some point I am planning on posting a short piece I wrote about Frances Pierce seven years ago, because I'm just that damn weird.

You can see more photos of Rosehill, including the monument of Frances Pierce and child, here:

Frances Pierce is the large photo on the left. Also, you can find more photos/info on Rosehill here:

Including some better photos of the Frances monument.

Of course, Kurt, if you are going to be visiting cemeteries in the Chicago area then I must absolutely insist that you visit Bachelor's Grove, said to be one of the most haunted cemeteries in the world. More importantly, however, Bachelor's Grove is a symbol of tragedy; the last burial occurred there twenty years ago but the cemetery itself has been shut down for closer to forty. It is completely desecrated: in the seventies and eighties teenagers would sneak into Bachelor's Grove late at night and turn over gravestones, move monuments around, and a lot of the gravestones were tossed into the small lagoon that joins the cemetery. It is a very sad place, but it is still worth a visit. After all this time there are a small handful of graves that remain intact, including a little stone that reads "Infant Daughter." People often leave gifts and flowers for this particular grave.

The hauntings actually stem from all the abuse the cemetery has endured over the years. There have been rumors of satanic rituals that have occurred within the cemetery, including dogs sacrificed and left hanging from the trees. There have been accounts of ghost sightings as well, including a famous photograph taken of a celestial woman sitting on the base of a ruined monument. Other people have claimed feeling the temperature suddenly drop or seeing a house in the near distance where a house has never been. There are lots of stories, who knows if they are true but it certainly adds to the ambiance of the cemetery, doesn't it?

Regardless, it is a place in which the entrance is chained off with a sign that warns you not to trespass (so be careful not to get caught), but it should not be neglected by those who simply want to visit. More photos/info on Bachelor's Grove:

This link leads to a website created by Matt Hucke, who wrote "Graveyards of Chicago" with Ursula Bielski. It's everything you'll need to know about local cemeteries, and even not-so-local cemeteries.

Okay I could go on (don't get me started on Resurrection Cemetery on the southside), but I digress.

Good luck!

Kurt Chiang said...

Thanks, Dina. I will look at these places, and I was looking to get that book over the inter-W. Jessica told me about the Francis Pierce site; apparently, her mom and her would have picnics infront of it when Jessica was a little girl.

Also, is Bachelors closed from the public at all times of day? So, one would have to sneak in no matter what?

Dinabear said...

I will lend you my copy of Graveyards of Chicago. I think there is no trespassing allowed at all times for Bachelor's Grove; so yes, sneakiness is necessary but since Halloween is long past you are less likely to see a squad car camped out in the parking lot across the street. I recommend going during the day (obviously), it is also less likely that you will get caught. I think when you go, though, I'd like to go with you; I actually never entered BG before, and it's only about two miles away from my parent's house, so I know how to get there. People sneak in and out of there often, so don't feel deterred by the "No Trespassing" aspect of it. You can't have a cemetery that's known as one of the most haunted places in the world and NOT have it be often visited by graveyard and ghost-hunting enthusiasts.

Anonymous said...

I would love to go too. Please wait till I am back from DC and we can all sneak in together in one large clump, that won't be suspicious at all... or maybe. Well... if would be great to go as a group, so we can share the experience.