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The Journal o f the 
Association for 
Gravestone Studies 



The Journal of the 
Association for 
Gravestone Studies 

David Watters, Editor 



Copyright © 1983 by 

University Press of America,™ Inc. 

4720 Boston Way 
Lanham, MD 20706 

3 Henrietta Street 
London WC2E 8LU England 

All rights reserved 

Printed in the United States of America 

ISBN (Perfect): 0-8191-3464-3 
ISBN (Cloth): 0-8191-3463-5 

Co-published by arrangement with 
the Association for Gravestone Studies 

Dedicated to 

Jessie Lie Farber 
Daniel Farber 




David Watters, Editor 

F. Joanne Baker Jessie Lie Farber 

Peter Benes James A. Slater 

Manuscripts may be submitted for review for future 
volumes to the editor, Department of English, University 
of New Hampshire, Durham, NH 03824. Manuscripts should 
conform to the MLA Stylesheet and be accompanied by 
glossy black and white prints or black ink drawings. 
Copies of MARKERS I may be ordered from Betty Slater, 
373 Bassettes Bridge Rd., Mansfield Center, CT 06250. 
Please include payment of $15. For information about 
the Association for Gravestone Studies, write Eloise 
West, 199 Fisher Rd . , Fitchburg, MA 01420. 

The editor wishes to thank Professor Lennard A. 
Fisk, Jr., Director of Research, University of New 
Hampshire, for a Research Initiation Fund grant to sup- 
port the preparation of this volume. The editor also 
thanks Carol L. Demeritt for her expert and patient 
work in preparing the typescript. 






Sue Kelly and Anne Williams 1 


Betty Willshire 105 


David Watters 115 



Michael Cornish 133 


Vincent F. Luti 149 


Charles Bergengren 171 


Phil Kallas 187 


Robert Prestiano 203 

INDEX 221 



Sue Kelly and Anne Williams 

For centuries people have been examining mint 
marks, the bench marks of silversmiths, or turning over 
chairs in hopes of finding a Hitchcock signature. In 
the field of gravestone carving, however, comparable 
interest and research dates back a mere 50 years, to 
Harriette Merrifield Forbes. Her extensive research 
and excellent photography of more than 1400 gravestones, 
now at the American Antiquarian Society, Worcester, 
Massachusetts, are a gift not only of record, but of a 
standard of investigation. By tedious combing of pro- 
bate records, Mrs. Forbes, and, later, Dr. Ernest Caul- 
field in Connecticut, identified perhaps a hundred of 
the major pre-1800 New England gravestone cutters. The 
kind of authentication revealed by probate records is 
usually recorded as payment received by or paid to an 
individual for gravestones. A single reference to money 
paid for gravestones is not conclusive evidence that the 
named individual was a stonecutter. Similar payments 
recorded in other estate papers might strengthen the 
evidence. Conversely, many payments received for grave- 
stones would substantiate a theory that this individual 
was in the business of making gravestones. Such infor- 
mation is generally accepted as proof of a carver's 
identity . 

Another way of identifying the maker of a particu- 
lar image or inscription is by searching out the rare 
stone that bears the signature of the carver. The dis- 
covery of a signature is very compelling in its direct- 
ness: One can see and touch the written record of not 
only the stone maker, but also his design. This list 
included here documents gravestone carvers working be- 
tween 1670 and 1800, and it includes some 346 signatures 
representing 85 carvers. The geographical range is 
essentially limited to New England, although stones from 
South Carolina, Nova Scotia, New York and New Jersey are 
included when cut by a man known for his work in New 
England . 

There is a wealth of information that can be 
gleaned from signatures. Numerous signatures include 
the town of residence of the carvers; the Ebenezer Cox 
stone, 1760, Hardwick Massachusetts, is signed, "Samuel 
Fisher of Wrentham;" the Booz Stearns stone, 1796, in 
Mansfield Center, Connecticut, is signed "S. Spaulding 
Killingly." A few stones have been helpful in verifying 

the movement of an individual cutter. Zerubbabel 
Collins was born in 1733 in Lebanon Crank, Connecticut, 
and took up his father's carving trade there, and many 
stones are probated to him. But a stone for Rachael 
Burton, 1790, Manchester Center, Vermont, is signed 
"Z. Collins of Shaftsbury," confirming that sometime 
before this date Collins had moved to Vermont. 

Other personal information occasionally included 
with a signature is the age of the carver. Abigail 
Manning's wonderful marker in Scotland, Connecticut, is 
signed, "Made by Rockwell Manning Aged 13 years." 
Rockwell's father, Josiah, a prolific and preeminent 
Connecticut carver, felt his age worth noting, too, 
when he carved on the back of his own stone, "This monu- 
ment I made in the year 1800; in my 76th year." The 
long career enjoyed by Beza Soule is noted on the stone 
of Ebezer Clark, 1830, Chaplain, Connecticut, "engrav'd 
by Beza Soule Aged 81 years." 

Signatures also help to define the nature of the 
stone cutting business as a family trade. The prepon- 
derance of Manning style stones in Connecticut is 
explained by the fact that Josiah had two sons who 
shared and carried on his carving trade, Frederick and 
Rockwell. That the Collins shop was also a family bus- 
iness is attested to by the signatures of its members: 
Benjamin, Julius, Zerubbabel, and Edward. 

In addition to the literal information given by the 
signers of gravestones, a good deal more can be inferred 
from the signatures. There can be little doubt as to 
the sophistication, training and general competency of 
carvers as G. Allen, Jr., or Samuel Tingley or Cyrus 
Deane, among others, whose names were carved precisely, 
delicately and stylishly. In contrast, from the signa- 
ture of a carver such as James Hovey , it is strikingly 
implied that this carver lacked formal training and 
sophistication. His signature and indeed his images and 
inscriptions indicate the background and workmanship of 
the rural tradition. Seldom did the rural carver attach 
any epithet to his name, while the sophisticated carver 
often labelled himself professionally as "George Allen 
Sculps, it.," "Engrav'd by Abel Webster," or "J. New 
sculpt . " 

There are relatively few prominent signatures be- 
fore 1750 as initials are tucked inconspicuously into 
the design, and names are placed on the footstones or 
back of the headstones. Certainly these signatures do 
not compete with the central images and messages of 

foreboding death. After 1750, the percentage of signed 
stones is much higher. Signatures appear in a greater 
variety of styles, sizes and locations on the stones. 
This trend may signify the increasing secularization of 
the society. The signatures of Stephen and Abel Web- 
ster, John Walden, Richard and Lebbeus Kimball, John 
Marble, and especially Peter Buckland, are hardly incon- 
spicuous, being found on the face of the stones, usually 
within the inscription tablet. One can hardly not 
interpret these signatures as invitations for recogni- 
tion . 

Nevertheless, it is difficult to know why indi- 
vidual carvers signed stones. Why did David Lamb sign 
one and only one stone? Why did Benjamin Collins sign 
over 20? Why did Moses Worcester not sign one? A few 
reasons are apparent. When a carver had an opportunity 
to send a stone beyond the area in which he usually did 
business, he might sign it, including his home town, 
as an advertisement or to indicate pride in his commis- 
sion. There can be little mistaking the commercial 
solicitation in Abraham Codner ' s addendum to the Mary 
Hilton stone in Chebogue , Nova Scotia, "Abraham Codner, 
Next the Draw-Bridge Boston." In the Saint Phillip 
Cemetery in Charleston, South Carolina, there are three 
prominent, finely carved stones signed "Wm. Codner, 
Boston N.E.," "H. Emmes Boston" and "H. Emmes Boston, 
Feet." Boston and Charleston were linked by the busy 
Atlantic trade route, so Charleston residents might 
order another such fine stone from either of the named 
carvers. There are many other examples of this kind of 

Although there are commercial overtones in these 
examples, there is at least one carver whose signatures 
are unmistakably commercial. John Stevens III of New- 
port is said to have signed every stone he cut , from the 
imaginative and technically superior portrait stones of 
Nathaniel Waldron and Johnathan Wyatt to the flat, mass- 
produced images on most of his stones. 

It is hard to draw such clear conclusions about the 
meaning of the signatures of men who signed perhaps a 
dozen or two works — neither the single stone nor every 
stone. Josiah Manning, G. Allen, Jr., John Walden, 
Benjamin Collins, the New family, Beza Soule were all 
prolific and influential carvers. The signatures they 
left undoubtedly spread their recognition and market 
area. The large number of towns with at least one 
signed Manning stone suggest a keen awareness of adver- 
tising. On the other hand, of the twenty-five or so 

legible B. Collins signatures, eight are in one cemetery 
in Pachaug, Connecticut. Certainly Benjamin Collins did 
not hold the same advertising principles that Josiah 
Manning did. 

In addition to commercial motives, carvers may have 
felt stones erected to a town's prominent figures war- 
ranted the signatures of their makers. Both financial 
power and social status were facets of an individual's 
prominence; important roles in the church, military dis- 
tinction, educational achievements or key positions in 
the town's development all accorded social status. 
Thomas Gold's one signed stone is to "Mr. Caleb Hotch- 
kiss a reputable citizen and a man of Religion . . .;" 
one of Samuel Fisher's two signed works is to Capt . 
Ebenezer Cox, "a noble Captain." The inscription 
recounts his military heroism in highly laudatory terms. 
Col. John Goulding's impressive stone, cut by James New, 
Jr., boasts an elaborate coat of arms and, a bit osten- 
tatiously, a portrait of the portly Goulding on the 
footstone. Nathaniel Hodgkins, Jr.'s two signed markers 
are to officers of the church. The signed works of 
George Allen, Sr. and Samuel Tingley are all to men of 
military rank. Signed stones by both Frederick Manning 
and G. Allen, Jr. lament the deaths of promising young 
men whose educational accomplishments at Dartmouth and 
an "English School" are touted in verse. This particu- 
lar body of signed stones to important personages con- 
stitutes by virtue of customized images and/or involved 
epitaphs a unique reflection of social and personal 
values of eighteenth-century New England life. 

Rooted within these 18th century values was a 
strong family bond. This loyalty and familial duty seem 
to be another explanation for a number of family sign- 
ings. Richard Kimball's signed work to his mother-in- 
law, Abigail Holt, is, in fact, one of Kimball's earli- 
est known works. It is small, crudely cut and plain, 
but it bears his signature seemingly as an expression of 
dutiful affection. There is no mistaking the love and 
grief of Thomas Johnson who lost his young wife "ere one 
year revolved" and cut a large stone to her which he 
signed, "And to mourn the Loss of so dear a Partner was 
the unhappy Lot of her bereaved Husband Thomas Johnson." 
One of the more poignant indications of family affection 
occurs on a stone bearing the typical bald effigy of 
John Stevens II, but the stone does not bear a Stevens 
signature. The inscription reads, "This Stone was cut 
by Pompe Stevens in Memory of his Brother Gusse Gibbs." 
Pompe was the Negro servant and shop apprentice to 
John II, and while Stevens never signed one of his own 

works, Pompe ' s unique signature was placed on the stone. 

One of the most challenging and perplexing avenues 
of pursuit in this matter of signed stones leads one 
into the web of inter-relationships of some carving 
shops through apprentices, shared quarries and business 
relationships. On the stone of Mrs. Eun Loveland, 1751, 
Glastonbury, Connecticut, a prominent "H" is carved near 
ground line. The image and lettering are decidedly the 
work of Joseph Johnson of Middletown, Connecticut. 
Johnson employed at least two apprentices whose last 
names began with "H," Hale and Holland, and this mark 
was put on the stone by one of them as Dr. Ernest 
Caulfield suggests. Harriette Forbes refers to several 
Massachusetts stones on which an "S" appears below the 
inscription tablet. All are images of the Park family 
of carvers. Forbes notes that the "S" was probably cut 
by Daniel Shays, an apprentice in the shop of William 
and John Park. Such works raise the question of what 
was the role of the shop apprentice. 

It is generally acknowledged that the Rev. Jona- 
than Pierpont stone, 1709, Wakefield, Massachusetts, is 
the work of Joseph Lamson . However, neatly set in the 
tympanum are the initials "N.L." for Joseph's sixteen- 
year-old son, Nathaniel. It is one of the finest stones 
produced by the Lamson shop, and it is unlikely that 
Nathaniel would have had competence to produce such a 
masterpiece. How authentic, then, is Nathaniel's signa- 
ture? Thus the signature hunter must be wary: "S" or 
"EC" or "NL" or "Pompe Stevens" are true signatures, but 
do not always mean that the work was designed and exe- 
cuted solely by the signer. 

One group of "signed" stones merits special con- 
sideration, for the marks on them are apparently not 
real signatures. All these stones are the work of 
Daniel Hastings of Newton, Massachusetts. More than two 
hundred stones are marked with "dh," "H" or "DH." There 
is no consistency in the placement of the letters on the 
stones; they appear in every location and every con- 
ceivable position. Yet none of the marks seems an 
appropriate signature for Hastings. The majority of his 
stones demonstrate a capacity for very skillful design 
and execution. They were also expensive at the time, 
and had Hastings wanted to sign stones, there seems 
little reason why he would not have done so clearly and 
prominently. A probable explanation for these marks is 
that they are quarry marks. Hastings apparently ob- 
tained much of his fine slate from the Pin Hill quarries 
in Harvard, Massachusetts. Members of the Park and 

Worcester and Dwight families are also known to have 
bought slate from these quarries. Hastings may have 
been an aggressive businessman; perhaps he went into the 
quarry and carefully selected slabs of slate that he 
wanted. Whether it was Hastings himself or a quarry 
worker who marked certain slabs with "H" or "dh" or "DH" 
is unknown. Certainly there is a difference between 
marks such as "H" or "dh" on the backs of stones and a 
distinct statement of the carver's hand in a full sig- 

The stones illustrated have been chosen to present 
the most representative design of each carver. The 
illustrations are photographs by Dan Farber of rub- 
bings by the authors, whose rubbing techniques retrieve 
design features often lost on the stones themselves. 
This list is just a beginning; many sources, including 
written records and field notes. The authors wish to 
thank the many Association for Gravestone Studies 
friends and associates who have carried pen and paper 
into many a burying ground, especially: Michael Cornish., 
Francis Duval, Daniel and Jessie Lie Farber, Alfred 
Fredette, Laurel Gabel, Daniel Hearn, Vincent Luti, 
Avon Neal , Ann Parker, Ivan Rigby, James Slater, James 
Tibensky, Ralph Tucker and David Watters. 

I Erected w mernor?/ of 
I 'who Died j/uhf- 
* 2* I806. in 
the j2-'ifecu r 
of his 

More (offing than thi.sJlone)o)/c! nmrn/jhall k 

yp fen)). L 

\lli\ boHeJhj oj heart. his friend/hip and his J 

mime. ^ 

\Qf uniuerfitf hue. he fnn° injlrfihn his b 

\ - man. fk 

^//7 humble faith ' bleft (ruth *all mm in fhrtjf ^ 

air one. ^ 

r/e ^/*V/M/r//,»j8o8 

Figure 1. Capt . George Earle, 1806, Chester, Vt 


Figure 2. Capt . Samuel Peck, 1736, Rehoboth, Mass 


In Memory o 
Son of M r Jo hnfr M! s Hannah 1 ' 
Cady, who di ed May qi? . 
1783, aged^Year^, f 
■ rr Months, &c 31 .Days. 

His moral Character was good, 
was early placed at the head 
of anEnglifh School, where 
(by his exeelfent abilities) he f 
gained honor to himfelf, 1 
and gave intire fatisfaction tot 
all who employed him. \ 


Figure 3. Benjamin Cady, 1783, Putnam, Ct 


Sacred To The Memory 

Or; Deacon 


Who Died March 2^ f ^u 

^T^CInThe 70*% ah' 

^ if "Of ;Hrs Age. 

w4 gfoW Tnarf idn<iu4n Jln^el 1 tfie/e between 
ifaw f frfrr -fji ebearrizr! ~Uthai divides their fa 
{Perhaps qrnomemi^or perhapi a year. 
t H\\zr\ bei~hat oricetheu lucre uho nou are (jodi 
Ciue arh& Uucd ihcd <jou way < laim {hi sh >e r. 

FLBOOTH, Sculp* 33enviwp(on. 

Figure 4. Jonathan Hunt, 1796, Northampton, Mass. 



•The Remains of M. 
Sffl Eefls. the amiab| 
IConfor^ of the Rey^-M 
Joim Eelfc, who ; ;.| 
Departed i&is Life ^ 
on the ao^Day of 

MovJb. r A.D.J7 7 3, 
intfica^^arofher ; 

Age. ■^■■^:p-m 

\Heavh gives us Fnettds 
tohkfsf prefent Scene* 
f J[Rcfumes them to prepare 
us for the nexf". 

Figure 5. Sibil Eells, 1773, Glastonbury, Ct 


Figure 6. West Children, 1755, Tolland, Ct 



• to the Memory of, 

wife of I 

wh o die d Feb y . \y i 797 
in the 2 6 fc ^year of her age 

She was in Faith unshaken, 
And in Virtue unfeigned. 


Figure 7. 

Honry Hull 

Mary Lawton Vinson, 1797, Portsmouth, R.I. 

Ill Memory of 

j ob, son of jynuoHN: 

i HOWLAND, and 
MARY his Wife. 

he died Ocftober^ - 

r 78^ in the 2J ft year 


j his Age. | 


Figure 8. Job Rowland, 1785, Jamestown, R.I 


Figure 9. Nicholas and Ann Webster, 1750, Berkley, 
Mass . 


Figure 10 

Samuel and Abigail Andrews, 1786, Meriden, 



of T'lrs Tlary Bruftejj 
-Xwl;^ to Nr Jonathan 
Brxifter, who- Died . 
September "the 7 th 
A. D. 774^3 injthe ." 
iTO/: v/ear of her age. 

^aiTare. not asr \x/e, 

as- -wg are fo muftyou be 


Benj* Collins Fecit 




Figure 11. Mary Bruster, 1743, Scotland, Ct 



^well-beloved ri;* 

rit? obs^iends* railed 
Jiaps "Were i^on mantled 
in DaHcnefs (\^ grate 

Pitchey arid Gloonr 
Ihads) V fe felling n^ieep 
in the Cradle of Death. v 
on the 22,- clay of NovernN 
y^ J74C, aged oJ years 
7 rra riTtlis and 6 days 

Vfadd-by J" lbs Collins Lebanon 

Figure 12. Robert White, Jr., 1746, Stafford Springs, 
Ct . 


is facred to the Memory,' of 
Mr. Jacob Galusha who 
died February the 13th 1791, 
"in the 71ft year of his Agfe. 

All you that read with little care, 

V/ho walk away and. leave me hcTe; 
Should, not ^forget that you muft die. 
And. be intnrn^j'd as well as I- 

Z. Collins Sculp. Shaftfbury. 

Figure 13. Jacob Galusha, 1792, Salisbury, Ct 


\klU\T memory of M r ? 
Mindwell Grant who depart- 
ed this life, Oeiber i8*. h 1800 
mine /(Sth year of her age. 

Relentlefs Death v/hofe ironfwa^ 
Reluctant mortals mufi obey-. 

Then be prepared to give up all. 
And meet your fate when death 

fhall call. 

Figure 14. Mindwell Grant, 1800, East Poultney, Vt 






Figure 15. Joseph Phippene, 1712, Fairfield, Ct 


In memory of 
MI S Lois, wife of W, 
D atiiel Pon d , wh o 
died March 17 th , 

7, in y 57 

Year of her acre. 

She fong\I the day Jo go the 
Where aft the living ^ 1 {/Z ; P , 
And ui/b^d the hour of Sou reqri 
To turn to native duff-. 

£yj'airhj7je liv'd in faith Jhe 

Left much behind to teach 
Her hufh and near, if daughter dear 
Such things as none can preach. 

Figure 16. Lois Pond, 1787, West Medway , Mass 



l^miatjT? Confort of Docf r 

■ ,A -i« i "Ail* '■■• v» I K Jt' 

ifefie 1 7 ; th' J3) i736a$eef<i3. 

$nt>Wf/eetino'v,/asHer short I (yd pnfnfc 
Cut of in lifer ^ay and vernal trftie^ 
Ja^ljabtti iqf beao^; a*vrl of YomJi c "t5 

vvhen Hied so fai p : sa-*w£et aRoI 

Figure 17. Desire Allis, 1796, Manchester, Vt 


Here ties Buried 
EZL Hie Body of 

IS! Sarah Sm fek, 

r T ' r 

:who cired Oct. p hrie ^ 

I 7 ^ 6' 

in hRe^c)^ Year oF Her Age. 

Figure 18. Sarah Sloss, 1756, Fairfield, Ct 


Figure 19. James Paine, 1711, Barnstable, Mass 





Figure 20. Ludovicus D ' Allleboust , 1803, Walpole, Mass 


In memory of 
Mr. Lbenezer Lawrence, 
who died October j/ 4.* 1 ] 
. j 9 6. in y -16 th , Year , 
of his A?e. 

Some hearty friend mnv drop a rear, \ 

On my dry bones and fay : j \ 

Tli"|.- mice were ftrong as mine appear. J 
And mine mull be as they." 

S" may my moulilrin;; body learli , ^ /^ | 

Wlm all have need to loam; 
Tor ihrfl and iflirs londeft prearh , 

t^ifoT: ~" r r: 

Figure 21. Ebenezer Lawrence, 1796, Franklin, Mass 


in Memory: of C^pi 
March ^2^1 76 &:m f 
fj£k^ffie& of his A gie ;. 

Beneath this Stone a noble Captain"? laid 
Which for his Kin*/^ Country. wvisDii'p lay •(] 

I his Courage that no Terr ors Cot rl c\ Dilarm - 
Nor when he fae'd; f, Foe .his fear Alarm 

[BuLnowhe,s Conquer d^ % filent \.grx/e ■", ■: 
Can boaft that power ^.French could never have 
Under his care his Soldiers '.we're Secure 
Equal with them all hardfUips he'd Endure 
In SixCampains Intrepid trod p 1 . Field 
Nor to f. Gal 1 i c Power wou Id _pv er Yield 
At: lait he 's V6ne\ve. hope. where Wars do ceafe 
To fpend a whale Eternity in Peace . . 



' Nfocf<> By /■' 
Samuel Tiflie 

.3fflr3^asseffife ^^**® S! 


Figure 22. Ebenezer Cox, 1768, Hardwick, Mass 


Here {ies Buried. the Body: of 

My Seth Sltmtster, " 

who .cficdA&vrir^ 1 7 T F. 
rathe 6[ st Year of. Hrs A^e. : , 

Lament me/not as yompais by, 
• Aisyoir are no\r,.so once vras t^ ... . _ .. .■•', 
As lam now, Cormixft yoii he;.. .':-i . : ;.- - 
AIt:Flettxis"MuT't:aI you may "To . ;^-__; . 


Figure 23. Seth Sumner, 1771, Milton, Mass 


17 10 


Figure 24. Lt . John Mackintoshe, 1710, Boston, Mass 


Figure 25. Mary Marshall, 1718, Quincy, Mass 


'M r €ALEB;vJ' 


a reputable Citizen; and: i 
a man of Religion.whoj 
was (lain by trie eneity 
when they inyefied |£ 
and plundered theTowri 
of NewHavenJuly' ^ 
the 5^/0 177^). in the 68 
Year of his- age^ ; \: 


Figure 26. Caleb Hotchkiss, 1779, New Haven, Ct 


Figure 27. Rhoda Chaf ee , 1786, Providence, R.I 


In Me m o r y of }] 

wh o dep ar te dps< 
>:;•■ ..tins -Life- W'A 
Dec enber 

Year of his 

a £ e 


Figure 28. Samuel Watson, 1781, West Thompson, Ct 


Louifa Bianchard 

Laughter of M? John k 
MT s Dorcas Bianchard 

died March 3o,i8or. 
TEtatis 4. 

JVeJcfirce enjoy the balmy p (ft 
But mourn tie fileafure gone. 

Figure 29. Louisa Bianchard, 1801, Boston, Mass 


In Memory of Mrs. 
Efther. Confort of. 
C apt. Rofwel Bumham 

Who died Sep/' 27*1 
175)4. in. the ag.' 1 
Aear of her age: j 

. Farewell 'my v fi-;ends^ -. 
Dry up K your teaEs: ' " ;.■••■■'! 
Ny drift :' , lies here l* . "' 
Till ,'", Clirifi appears; ; ; 

Cut Jby N. ilvd^nsr/^^tm 

Figure 30. Esther Burnham, 1794, Ashford, Ct 


; frrr\?S : V: -nOVPU - -{?. 1 

Figure 31. Margaret Toplift, 1740, West Willington, Ct 




In Memory of 

ij Sarah Johns oK [J 

v>bo departed this Lif% May jg, Jjgo p k 

Altai 24.. L 

^/4t7 ajniableDifpofiiiori^friendfyf/ecrt, g 

a vir tuousBch aulcu r, filia I Pie ty ^ 
and conjuga/ Tendevvefs 
made all bar Friends IcmentherDeath 
with in <? xprefiihle Grief 
M fhort and vain are our f once ft /topes i(j 
of jublunary Blifsi 

-in the connubial ftate, 
ere one i/ear revolved 

Figure 32. Sarah Johnson, 1799, Durham, Ct 


Iri Memory of 5 
Who Departed 
This Life :Axigus 

[77 iear of his* 

Is kuirfecl in ihc didl 
Prepare for clea^h 

Cut. by LehbeLuK/niball 

Figure 33. John Fuller, 1777, Hampton, Ct . 



fe Memory- of ^ 

Decon Samuel ^ 
StmmerWho ^ 
0kd -Pecirf Jr 8* 

t^8t in J?' 8a year 



1 K*r& 

Figure 34. Samuel Sumner, 1781, Pomf ret , Ct 


H&e ; t- yes Bunea 


liritHe ^{h^earof 


made W — David L ambl 

Figure 35. Hopstill Tyler, 1762, Preston City, Ct 


Here Lyes ikei 


k h i7i<;'lnf ail 

Figure 36. Joseph Grimes, 1716, Stratford, Ct 


Figure 37. Ephraim Beach, 1716, Stratford, Ct. 


Figure 38. Benjamin Kimball, 1716, Ipswich, Mass 


Mr. Daniel Field, 
died April 10* 1795, 
in f 6s!-l&sj: of 
his a£e. 

rn Gtilby A L beams Coventry jft* 

Figure 39. Daniel Field, 1795, Vernon, Ct 


In memory of* Timothy 
A Cuffcman }S^M^M 
Mkxtm 8cMrstJd^motiy 
jCtirffiman Me was educatec 

at DartmbatJiGoHedg?.he was 
ofan amiabk-difpofition&La 
very pronrifing geniu^. fie^ 
:died^ itpSI 72^ AJifcp. _± 

Though i uiytucT charwef all z:i 
center in one mmd;~zr i: 
4nd gemif drightdcforn the. 
6fooimng youth, 
77V no defence from Death ; 
the arrow flics, . ~ i. 

Young Cufhman tcrf/V, ana_- 
nature mourns, the I off. ...._"": 

F MannmS 

Figure 40. Timothy Cushman , 1792, Coventry, Ct 



Bf-year&f-iiTs age. 

VtiYevself • \Va tit World 
& frrencfs thaT" \&r<? ep 
for me, Drift Sea 
uiiidow'th efe I 7<?avg» 
'wrtliThG ^ __ _ 

Figure 41a. Josiah Manning, 1806, Windham, Ct 


Figure 41b. Josiah Manning, 1806, Windham, Ct 


'Her Lyes y Body i 
\o Gap * JoJfai Man- 
ning wJioDeparf-; 

,ed this Life July 
30, 1770 iny 75f 

year of JxerAge^ 

The Darme tl-urt Sleeps 
Beneath mis Tombjfiad 
(Rachels face anctLeahs 
iFrutefuH WamhAhxgaih 
Wifdom L,yd rasjenirus I 
Mart Marthas Tuft Care. [ 
A Marys Beater par* . 

IViadc by Rockwell 

Figure 42. Abigail Manning, 1770, Scotland, Ct 


krneii-to:\-' man 

J n ^demory \ of ., 

'&)]'/i&n*ENOCbi Colby 

" °-- : .' ■ .' 

: ;7P»bo deportee] this J/fe. 

* W JQ 


Figure 43. Ens. Enoch Colby, 1780, Bradford, Mass 



ames ^lark juri'P 
wKo died jjjemrv y 


of hi 


8 6; 


Figure 44. James Clark, 1786, West Medway, Mass. 




x body; of 


39 ^ars mm 


Figure 45. Mehetabel Hammond, 1704, Newton, Mass 


■t ^ -- ■ is. 

ton tkv7<Jncfa»-mtf T Fa71; {£- 

Figure 46. Marcy New, 1788, Attleboro, Mass 


In Memory of* 
D 1 ' Richard J 
TempleDie d 

Mov, /j ai? 17 $( 
in jF. 83 ':' 

tear of liis 

Figure 47. Dr. Richard Temple, 1756, Concord, Mass 



Sacrtd to fr? Me- 
mory of Mrs. Sarah 
the Amiable Confort 
WJ>o diedjime$6i7j9 
mjt x/yyearefberog 

01 wbatajwed ktnpcr, 

(and mild; 
Wfren grim death appro - 
(acb'd JbeJmUd. 

tffiot too 'fboH thy date, , 
tfrtuemol rolling fans 
T/jc mind, matures. 

Figure 48. Sarah Smith, 1779, Lanesboro, Mass 


Ill HERE iieth Interdy "Bodyof jk % 
j||theRev? PERU! YHOWEb/ 
'9 Sometime paftor of y*Churchof 
j|iChrrfHhDudley.butlaftofy?fidl &= 
& ! Church of Chi-ift in Kill.ibtci.y. | / 
E] WhoctiedMarchio^ S3 .itiy^r« 
M |4^? Year of his Age. «5 io*h of p 
m his Mitllftl-V. <^^ M 

.7«l'.' lidbcTix. 

Figure 49. Rev. Perley Howe, 1753, Putnam, Ct 


A Memory of M. 
Hannah wife of Cap* 
mt Dwight who died 
Dedaf 1792 In the 84 
year of her age. 

With heartfelt joy [yield my breath 
And quit a life if pain and woei? 




Id live where joys forever flow. 

New trq/ports now inpin my frai^ 
With joys Cclcfial and fib lime 
may you catch that heavehjflam 
Andfocr beyond the reach of time 

e. s. 


Figure 50. Hannah Dwight, 1792, Belchertown, Mass. 


: nS ■ ■ ■-••/■• •«• • ' V-'- ■..•-■.-.;.. 

W /D-en Chrtjt appear r isJG t \f 

\M*. fc?pjctt of bij~ ouuj% 

■ " >y r -ad 

Jngt'''»T>W 6 :>.&;/*<? ft (ti 

Figure 51. Mary Wickham, 1797, West Thompson, Ct . 


J t op reader here a ml •.ontaiwla, 
Hotey short is life, bmo, sure, tin.-, it ate. 
In time he mn st just- 
Ere you are, with the dust. 
Lojmm the. grave their.'* no return* 
Till Christ in 'Amy sound*: the. alarm, 
At. the. sound \he. n7l'*/>fv lU'.t-n 
And grants xhallcleanefi those.that sleep 
Straight shall ascend from their ah ode 
In judgment. stand before their COD 

dhy-C..S„ul,JV u ..,J s to< 

-18 Off- 

Figure 52. Hannah Kingsbury, 1806, Pomf ret , Ct 


In memory ofDeacoi 

Boos Stearns, cnoe 

pf superior natural aLiIi 
ties; .&r a perfon, Who exl 
erted. himself foryi>eni_ 
.fit of civel fy religious io_ 

ciety He was taoniDed 
iharn, State of Maffacli-' 

fy deceafed intlns^own 

Sep- 15'- 1796 intlie^- 

y- of In 5 JE . 

Entirav'd by J? J/zaldino' 


Figure 53. Booz Stearns, 1796, Mansfield, Ct 


// n ff fr 


^ In Memory of 
j ... Mrs. 
rtj who departed this 

ife (2.6.Tami iz 554 7) 
I**! July 1787. 

Figure 54. Martha Moravia, 1787, Newport, R.I. 


Figure 55. Gusse Gibbs, 1768, Newport, R.I 


J of M7 Elif»be*y 

.': wife .of \\Js 

Mi 5 c Months ft 12. -i 

p x J|Rem«riibci-.ine as joiaPk. 
j^jas Ianx now, soyo^r inu^, 
I p re pa. r e f o r D e at h a ™Jp>. 

R '■■ L r follow me r ft 

Figure 56. Elisabeth Bullock, 1786, Rehoboth, Mass. 


Here Iiev littered the 
Body of Lieut)! 


wiiu ut'Udi icu. rui» n.ii~? 

April 24^ I 733^ 
in the 6% w Year of 
his As*e . 

. - - . . o 

Stop here &. read (urviving fried 
Before mausag ray life did end; 
The aeed & the youth not free. 
Prepare {*ov Death. & follow me 

. z&Tri&iT dc/ulr* 

Figure 57 

Lt. Josiah Pidge, 1793, Attleboro, Mass. 


Figure 58. Mary Pearl, 1790, Hampton, Ct . 


In Memory ojt. 

I WUX&VDM who J 

rir)fr\ trite Tr(v . A- 

! •■'■" ' c/£t. 87 years. 

■■ ^ 

\jIJoul pre par'd) t lCi c/r no ifcycyst 

1 /7ie iomcJl\c hunt ',■ J>cf 

[SiJjl'ftcuas his fhpM K fhortc/it rond 

hu itiijixuas his fliohi ic fhortc/it -rad^ 
yicciol'dlns eyes tf, Jena his Cod. 

lour fh 1 n&s rcn \ c m her well* \ , 
f ■ : . : J. Warren So,? ft jl 

Figure 59. Alexander Miller, 1798, Plainfield, Ct . 


Figure 60. Thomas Prentice, 1760, Lexington, Mass. 


v-Here, lies .'Buried, the- - 

the wife of Mr. John Webtten 
who 'departed this L.ife,the 
20. day of November 1760. 
in the 45 • Year "of her Age. 

Hah paflenger, as you go-. by; 
P\emcmber man that you rnuiT die: 
Confider time is runing- fait. 
And Death w'lll Purely come at lafi. 

Figure 61. Hannah Webster, 1760, Chester, N.H, 




To the memory of 

the Honourable 
bo departed this life 
April 2 7 * 1794, 
e 6o' h year 

A/i/- Children dear this place drtzK' nenr, 

A lathers (irciue to '><= ; 

- - ° '.•■•■ 

1 / urns with you 

And fool J vail, be : ritb li.v. 

■J$ ' 

'igure 62. John Taylor, 1794, Douglas, Mass. 


Mite livs bmynd the gravr 


yJhr $}(ifc 

& rmm 



Figure 63. Ebenezer Tinney , 1813, Grafton, Vt 


Figure 64. Xenophon Earle, 1799, Chester, Vt 


'firecfcd in "'memory oj 


jtfjb-INI'ANT fk Amiable 
wrrti child of Mr. 


|«r/» departed ttif life July j 
^ 1808. in the 21? 
year of Ixr 








Figure 65. Betsy Messenger, 1808, Rockingham, Vt 




:z. ^Jri^kxxic^l " 

Life De c^th m% : l^yxh^ &X) 

i lohrr Zuridircr &oner €uStmS'M^ 

«-*= — *. :-». i-. 

Figure 66. Sarah Hawley, 1772, Wilton, Ct 



The carver's full name, dates, and primary location 
are listed when known. The individual stones are listed] 
by name, date, location, material, condition, and dis- 
tinctive style features. An asterisk indicates the 
signed stone selected for illustration, and, when veri- 
fied, the style of signature is given. 


Samuel Bent, 1797, Milton, Mass. (Milton Cemetery) 

SAMPSON B. ADAMS (1779-c. 1815), Rockingham, Vt . 

♦George Earle, 1806, Chester, Vt . (Chester Cemetery); 
slate; excellent; Masonic emblems. "Made by S . B. 
Adams, 1808" 

GEORGE ALLEN , SR. (1696-1774), Rehoboth, Mass. 

Lt. John Hunt, 1716, Rumford, R.I. (City Hall Vault); 
slate. "G. Allen Sculptor" 

*Capt. Samuel Peck, 1736, Rehoboth, Mass. (Peck Ceme- 
tery); slate; surface good, interior crumbling; foot- 
stone signed, but removed from cemetery. "G. Allen 

Rev. M. David Turner, 1757, Rehoboth, Mass. (Rehoboth 
Congregational Church); slate; good. 

GEORGE ALLEN . JR. (1743-?), Rehoboth, Mass. 

Mary Munro, 1770, New London, Ct . (Ancient Burying 
Ground); slate; good. "G. Allen Providence" 

Hannah Spalding, 1771, South Killingly, Ct . ; slate; 

Nathaniel and Joanna Sessions, 1771, Pomf ret , Ct ; slate 
fair. "G. Allen, sculp" 

Thomas Clifford and Esther Wayne, 1778, Charleston, S.C 
(St. Philips Cemetery); slate. "G. Allen" 

Deacon Ebenezer Larned, 1779, Putnam, Ct . (Aspinwall 
Cemetery); slate; good. 

Elizabeth Angell, 1780, Providence, R.I. (North Burial 
Ground); slate. "G*A Sculp" 

Rosabellah Chace, 1781, Providence, R.I. (St. John 
Cemetery); slate; fair. "G. Allen Sculps it" 


Mary Dagget , 1781, Edgartown, Mass. (Tower Hill Burying 
Ground); slate; excellent. "G-Allen Sc" 

Mary Parker, 1781, Providence, R.I. (St. John Cemetery); 
slate; good. "G+Allen, Scup . " 

Anne Hopkins, 1782, Providence, R.I. (North Burial 
Ground); slate. "G. Allen" 

Benjamin Cady, 1783, Putnam, Ct. (Aspinwall Cemetery); 
slate; good. "G. Allen, sculpt" 

Jane Postell, 1786, Charleston, S.C. (St. Philip Ceme- 
tery); slate. "G. Allen" 

Seth Paine, 1792, Brooklyn, Ct . ; slate; excellent. "G. 
Allen Sculp*" 

Daniel Trowbridge, 1795, Abington, Ct.(01d Abington 
Burying Ground); slate; good. "G. Allen Sculp" 

Mary Smith, 1795, Charleston, S.C. (Congregational 
Church Cemetery); slate. "G. Allen" 

Sarah Hunt, 1799, Rumford, R.I.; slate; excellent. "G. 
Allen , sc." 

ROGER BOOTH (? - 1849), Bennington, Vt . 

'Deacon, Jonathan Hunt, 1796, Northampton, Mass. (Bridge 
St. Cemetery); marble; poor. "R. Booth, Sculp*. Ben- 

SETH BREWER (1738-?) 

John Beech, 1785, Cheshire, Ct . ; sandstone; tympanum 
image completely eroded, stone cracked and sunk, signa- 
ture not visible. 

PETER BUCKLAND (1736-1816), East Hartford, Ct. 

Deacon Daniel House, 1762, East Glastonbury, Ct . (East- 
bury Cemetery); sandstone; good. "MAD: BY" PETER: BUCK- 

"Sibil Eells, 1773, Glastonbury, Ct . (Green Cemetery); 
schist; fair. "P. BUCKLAND" 

Abigail Merick, 1773, Glastonbury, Ct . (Green Cemetery); 
schist ; fair . 

Isaac Moseley, 1773, Glastonbury, Ct . (Green Cemetery); 
schist; fair. 


WILLIAM BUCKLAND, JR. (1727-95), East Hartford, Ct . 

Rachel Lothrop, 1754, Tolland, Ct . (Tolland Cemetery); 
sandstone; good. "W.m Buckln^" 

♦West Children, 1755, Tolland, Ct . (Tolland Cemetery); 
sandstone; good. "Made by W m - Buckland Ju r Harfo rd " 

HENRY BULL . Newport, R.I. 

♦Mary Vinson, 1797, Portsmouth, R.I. (St. Mary Cemetery) 
slate; excellent. "Henry Bull" 

John Howland, 1798, Jamestown, R.I. (Cedar Cemetery); 
slate; poor. "H. Bull" 

Mary Carr, 1800, Jamestown, R.I. (Cedar Cemetery); 
slate; poor. "H. Bull" 

Damaris Hopkins, 1800, Jamestown, R.I. (Cedar Cemetery) 
slate; poor; no image. "H. bull" 

JOHN BULL (1734-1808), Newport, R.I. 

Charles Bardin, 1773, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; good. "J.B." 

Elizabeth Sisson, 1774, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; good. "J. Bull" 

Simon Ray Littlefield, 1780, Block Island, R.I. (Block 
Island Cemetery); slate; excellent; no image. "J.B." 

John, William and Dandridge Savage, 1784, Charleston, 
S.C. (Congregational Church Cemetery). 

Langley Children, 1785, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; good. "cutt by J. Bull" 

♦Job Howland, 1785, Jamestown, R.I. (Cedar Cemetery); 
slate; excellent. "cutt by J. Bull" 

John Hilliard, 1786, Stonington, Ct . (Hilliard Ceme- 
tery); slate; good. "Jn° Bull Sculp tn 

William Coggeshall, 1792, Taunton, Mass.; slate. "J. 
Bull, Newport" 


♦Nicolas and Ann Webster, 1750, Berkley, Mass. (Fox Ceme 
tery); slate; fair. "J.B." 

James Briggs, 1753, Dighton, Mass. (Elm St. Cemetery); 
slate; fair. "J.B." 

Cornealius White, 1754, Taunton, Mass. (Blake Cemetery) 
slate; poor. "J.B." 



Maria Wright, 1810, Grafton, Vt . ; slate. 

*Ebenzer Tinney, 1813, Grafton, Vt . (Town Cemetery); 
slate; good; urn. "Made by A. Wright, & A. Burditt, B. 
Falls, AD, 1813" 

ABRAHAM CODNER ( ?-c . 1750), Boston, Mass. 

Mary Hilton, 1774, Chebogue, Nova Scotia; slate. 
"Abraham Codner. Next the Drawbridge Boston" 

WILLIAM CODNER (1709-69), Boston, Mass. 

Nathan Bassett, 1738, Charlestown , S.C. (St. Philip 
Cemetery); slate; poor. "w m - Codner Boston NE" 

ISAAC COLES (1762-1802), Meriden, Ct . 

*Samuel and Abigail Andrews, 1786, Meriden Center, Ct . ; 
sandstone; fair. "I. Coles Sculp" 

BENJAMIN COLLINS (1691-1759), Columbia Ct . 

Hannah Tyler, 1726, Pachaug, Ct . 

Stephen Tucker, 1726, Pachaug, Ct . 

James Danielson, 1729, Danielson, Ct . 

Elizabeth Gager, 1730, Columbia Ct . ; schist; poor, 
cracked. "B. Collins. Fecit" 

?, 1737 or 1739, Lebanon, Ct . (Trumbull Cemetery); very 
poor. "B. Collins. Lebanon Crank, fecit." 

Simeon Mearritt, 1739, Columbia, Ct . ; schist; fair. "B 
Collins. Fecit" 

Joseph Coit, 1741, Pachaug, Ct . 

Obadiah Hosford, 1741, Hebron, Ct . 

Jacob Baker, 1742, Tolland, Ct . 

Mary Tyler, 1742, Pachaug, Ct . 

♦Mary Bruster, 1743, Scotland, Ct . ; schist; poor. 
"Benj?- Collins Fecit" 

Timothy Peirce, 1744, Plainfield, Ct . 

Deacon Nathaniel (or Thankful) Wales, 1744, Windham, 


Capt . Joshua Huntington, 1745, Norwichtown, Ct . (Old 
Norwichtown Burying Ground); schist; good. "Made by 
Benjamin Collins, Lebanon" 

Hannah Belcher, 1745, Pachaug, Ct . 

Hannah Tucker, 1746, Pachaug, Ct . 

Samuell Post, Jr., 1746, Norwichtown, Ct . (Old Norwich- 
town Burying Ground); granite/schist; good. "B. Collins 
Lebanon fecit" 

Mary Fober, 1749, Preston, Ct . 

Humphrey Davenport, 1751, Coventry, Ct . (Nathan Hale 
Cemetery); schist; fair. "B. Collins. Sculp." 

Ruth Thomas, 1753, Scotland, Ct . 

Abigail Griswold, 1754, Norwichtown, Ct . 

Jonathan Brewster, 1753, Scotland, Ct . 

Ebenzer Peck, 1755, Franklin, Ct . 

Sarah Wales, c. 1757, Lebanon, Ct . 

? Marsh, Plainfield, Ct. 

John Tyler, Pachaug, Ct. 

Eleazer Fitch, 1748, Lebanon, Ct . (Trumbull Cemetery); 
schist; very poor. "B. Collins. Sculpt" 

JULIUS COLLINS (1728-58), Lebanon, Ct. 

Richard Curtice, 1739, Hebron, Ct . (Church of England 
Cemetery) . 

♦Robert White, Jr., 1746, Stafford Springs, Ct . ; schist; 
poor. "Made by Julius Collins Lebanon" 

ZERUBBABEL COLLINS (1733-1797), Lebanon, Ct . and 
Shaftsbury, Vt . 

Mehetabel Hubbel, 1770, Bennington, Vt . (Old Bennington 
Cemetery); marble; excellent. "Z. Collins fecit" 

Mary Cochran, 1777, Bennington, Vt . (Old Bennington 
Cemetery); marble; good, anchored in cement, signature 
barely visible. 

Rachel Burton, 1790, Manchester Center, Vt . (Factory 
Point Cemetery), marble; good. "Z. Collins Sculp. 
Shaftsbury. " 

♦Jacob Galusha, 1792, Salisbury, Ct . (Chapinville Ceme- 
tery); marble; good. "Z. Collins Sculp. Shaftsbury, 



♦Abigail and Rebecca Andrews, 1796, Meriden Center, Ct . ; 
sandstone; good; abstract scroll design. "R. Cowles" 


♦Mindwell Grant, 1800, East Poultney, Vt . (East Poultney 
Cemetery); marble; good. "E.C." 


Elizabeth Sande, 1711, Marblehead, Mass. (Old Burial 
Hill); slate; good. "W.C." 

Richard Gross, 1711, Marblehead, Mass. (Old Burial 
Hill); slate; good. "W.C." 

Thomas Lanyon, 1711, Boston, Mass. (Granary); slate; 
good. "W.C." 

Mary Rickard, 1712, Plymouth, Mass. (Old Burial Hill); 
slate; fair. "W.C." 

♦Joseph Phippene, 1712, Fairfield, Ct . (Old Burying 
Ground); slate; good. "W.C." 

William Hanes, 1712, East Norwalk, Ct . (East Norwalk 
Historical Cemetery); slate; good. "W.C." 

William Thomas, 1714, Plymouth, Mass. (Old Burial Hill); 
slate; fair. "W.C." 

James Allen, 1714, West Tisbury, Mass. (West Tisbury 
Burying Ground); slate; fair. "W.C." 

John Edey, 1715, West Tisbury, Mass. (West Tisbury 
Burying Ground); slate; fair. "W.C." 


Christopher Paul, 1761, Berkley, Mass. (Center Ceme- 
tery); slate; poor. "By Cyrus Deane" 

Eunice Dean, 1785, Mansfield, Mass. (Center Cemetery); 
slate, good. "Cyrus Dean" 

♦Lois Pond, 1787, West Medway , Mass. (Evergreen Ceme- 
tery); slate; good. "Cyrus Deane Sculpt" 

SAMUEL DWIGHT (1743-c. 1810), Bennington, Vt . 

♦Desire Allis, 1796, Manchester, Vt . (Dellwood Cemetery); 
marble; good. "Samuel Dwight , Sculp." 


HENRY EMMES , Boston, Mass. and Newport, R.I. 

Elizabeth Simmons, 1740, Charleston, S.C. (St. Philip 
Cemetery); slate; excellent. "H. EMMES Boston" 

John Neusville, 1749, Charleston, S.C. (Huguenot Church- 
yard) ; slate . 

Elizabeth Rowland, 1753, Fairfield, Ct . (Old Burying 
Ground); slate; excellent. "HEm's Boston" 

Isaac Holmes, Esq., 1751, Charleston, S.C. (Congrega- 
tional Churchyard); slate. 

♦Sarah Sloss, 1756, Fairfield, Ct . (Old Burying Ground); 
slate; excellent. "HEm's Boston, sculpt" 

Col. Benjamin Marston, 1754, Manchester, Mass. (Washing- 
ton St. Cemetery); slate; excellent. "HEmm's Boston" 

Sarah Lewis, 175?, Fairfield, Ct . (Old Burying Ground); 
slate; poor, cracked in half. "HY Em's Boston" 

Solomon Milner, 1757, Charleston, S.C. (St. Philip 
Cemetery); slate; excellent. "HEmmes, Boston Feet" 

Thomas Sturgis, 1763, Barnstable, Mass. (Lothrop 
Cemetery); slate; good. "Henry Emmes , Newport" 

NATHANIEL EMMES (1690-1750), Boston, Mass. 

Arthur Mason, 1708, Boston, Mass. (Granary); slate; 
poor. "N.E." 

♦James Paine, 1711, Barnstable, Mass. (Lothrop Cemetery); 
slate; good. "NE" 

Mary Morse, 1780, Norwood, Mass. (Washington St. Ceme- 
tery); slate; good. "DF" 

Joseph Grant, 1783, Wrentham, Mass. 

♦Ludovicus D'Allleboust , 1803, Walpole, Mass. (The Old 
Burial Place); slate; good. "DF" 


♦Ebenezer Lawrence, 1796, Franklin, Mass. (Center Ceme- 
tery); slate; excellent. "L.F." 

SAMUEL FISHER . Wrentham, Mass. 

Samuel Pond, 1746, Millis, Mass. (Bare Hill and Prospect 
Hill Cemetery); slate; fair. "Samuel Fisher Wrentham" 


♦Ebenezer Cox, 1768, Hardwick, Mass.; slate; good. "Made 
by Samuel Fisher in Wrentham" 

HENRY CHRISTIAN GEYER ( ?-c . 1793), Boston, Mass. 

♦Seth Sumner, 1771, Milton, Mass.; slate; excellent. 
"H. Geyer Fecit" 

JOHN JUST GEYER, Boston, Mass. 

Annah Lyon, 1791, West Woodstock, Ct . (Bungay Hill 
Cemetery); slate; good. "J.G." 

Mrs. Mary Duggan , 1795, Boston, Mass. (Granary); slate; 
good; urn. "Geyer, Fecit." 


Rev. Edward Thompson, 1705, Marshfield, Mass. (Winslow 
Burying Ground); slate footstone, location unknown. 

Zacheus Barton, 1707, Salem, Mass. (Burying Point); 
slate; good. "J.G." 

Thomas Kellon, 1708, Boston, Mass. (Copps Hill); slate; 
fair. "J.G." 

Benjamin Pickman, 1708, Salem, Mass. (Burying Point); 
slate; good. "J.G." 

Mary Green, 1709, Boston, Mass. (Granary); slate; fair. 
"J.G. 1708" 

*Lt. John Mackintoshe, 1710, Boston, Mass. (Granary); 
slate; fair. "J.G." 

Abigail Allen, 1710, West Tisbury, Mass. (West Tisbury 
Cemetery); slate; good. "J.G." 

Samuell Russell, 1711, Marblehead, Mass. (Old Burial 
Hill); slate; excellent. "J.G. 1711" 

Samuel Holbrook, 1712, Boston, Mass. (Granary); slate. 


♦Mary Marshall, 1718, Quincy, Mass. (Hancock Cemetery); 
slate; excellent. "W.G." 

THOMAS GOLD (1733-1800), New Haven, Ct. 

♦Caleb Hotchkiss, 1779, New Haven, Ct . (Grove St. Ceme- 
tery, Superintendent's office); sandstone; good. "M^ 
by Tho? Gold" 


CHARLES HARTSHORN (1765-1832), Providence, R.I. 

♦Rhoda Chafee, 1786, Providence, R.I. (North Burial 
Ground); slate; in fragments on ground. "C. Hartshorn" 

STEPHEN HARTSHORN (1737-1812), Providence, R.I. 

♦Samuel Watson, 1781, West Thompson, Ct . ; slate; good. 
"S. Hartshorn" 

John Kinnicut, 1783, Warren, R.I. (Kickemuit Historical 
Cemetery 3); slate; fair. "S--HARTSHORN" 

Elizabeth Ballou, 1783, Providence, R.I. 

NATHAN HASTINGS (1782-?), Newton, Mass. 

Capt . John Guliker, 1789, Marlborough, Mass. (Spring 
Hill Cemetery); slate; good; urn. "N. Hastings, stone- 
cutter, Newton" 

♦Louisa Blanchard, 1801, Boston, Mass. (Boston Common); 
slate; good. "N. Hastings. Newton" 

Rev. Josiah Bridge, 1801, Wayland, Mass. (North Burying 
Ground); slate, good; urn. "Nathan Hastings, Stone 
Cutter. Newton. 1803" 

NATHANIEL HODGKINS (1761-1839), Hampton, Ct . 

♦Mrs. Esther Burnham, 1794, Ashford, Ct . ; schist; excel- 
lent. "Cut by N. Hodgkins, Hampton" 

Samuel Dorrance, 1799, Hampton, Ct . (North Cemetery). 

Dorothy Sumner, 1800, Abington, Ct . (Old Abington Burial 
Ground); marble; fair; urn. "Cut by Nathaniel Hodgkins, 

Daniel Tyler, 1802, Brooklyn, Ct . ; marble; good; urn. 
"N. Hodgkins" 

Jonathan Kingsbury, 1802, Hampton, Ct . (North Cemetery). 

Joseph Baker, 1804, Brooklyn, Ct . ; marble; good; urn. 

Benjamin Clark, 1804, ashford, Ct . ; marble; urn. 

Eli Kenal, 1808, Ashford, Ct . ; marble; urn. 


Deacon Roger Williams, 1821, Brooklyn, Ct . 


Samuel Huntington Lyon, 1823, Abington, Ct . (Old 
Abington Burying Ground); marble; fair; urn. "N.H." 

Rev. Josiah Whitney, 1824, Brooklyn, Ct . ; marble; fair; 
no image. "N. Hodgkins Jr. Engraver" 

Samuel Kies, 1824, Brooklyn, Ct.; marble; poor; urn. 
"N. Hodgkins Jr. Engraver" 


♦Margaret Toplift, 1740, West Willington, Ct . ; schist; 
very poor. "James Hovey" 

Thomas Marsh, 1753, Mansfield Center, Ct . ; schist; very 
poor. "James Hovey" 

Eleanor (?) Cummins, 1754, Ashford, Ct . ; schist; very 
poor. "James Hovey" 


♦Sarah Johnson, 1790, Durham, Ct . ; sandstone; good. 
"Thomas Johnson" 

CHESTER KIMBALL (1763-1824), Lebanon and New London, Ct 

Anna Lord, ?, Old Lyme, Ct . (Duck River Cemetery). 

?, ?, Brooklyn, Ct . ; marble. 

Dan Webster, 1785, Chipman's Corner, Nova Scotia; sand- 
stone. "Chester Kimball, N. London" 

LEBBEUS KIMBALL (1751-1832), Pomf ret , Ct . 

♦John Fuller, 1777, Hampton, Ct . ; iron slate; good. 
"Cut by Lebbeus Kimball" 

Elisabeth Arnold, 1783, Lebanon, Ct . (Trumbull Ceme- 
tery); iron slate. "L. Kimball" 

Peter Robinson, 1785, Scotland, Ct . ; slate; good. 

RICHARD KIMBALL (1722-1810), Pomf ret , Ct . 

Abigail Holt, 1752, Hampton, Ct . ; schist; poor. "Maid 
by Richard Kimll" 

Hannah Fuller, 1780, Hampton, Ct . (North Cemetery); 
schist; fair. "Richard Kimball" 

Solomon Griggs, 1781, Pomf ret , Ct . ; schist; poor. 
"Richard Kimball" 

♦Deacon Samuel Sumner, 1781, Pomf ret , Ct . ; schist; fair. 
"Richard Kimball" 



Frances Treat, 1703, Milford, Ct . (Milford Cemetery); 
iron slate; poor. "B.L." 

DAVID LAMB (1724-73), Norwich, Ct . 

*Hopstill Tyler, 1762, Preston City, Ct . (Preston City 
Cemetery); sandstone; fair, encased in glass. "made by- 
David Lamb" 

CALEB LAMSON (1697-1767), Charlestown , Mass. 

Mary Reed, 1713, Marblehead, Mass. (Old Burial Ground); 
slate; good. "CL" 

♦Joseph Grimes, 1716, Stratford, Ct . (Cemetery behind 
library); slate; excellent. "M. By Caleb Lamson" 

Prudence Turner, 1717, Marblehead, Mass. (Old Burial 
Ground); slate; good. "CL" 

John Mitchell, 1717, Maiden, Mass. (Bell Rock Cemetery); 
slate; good. "CL" 

John Rogers, 1719, Portsmouth, N.H. (Point of Graves); 
slate; good. "CL" 

Benjamin Allcock, 1720, Portsmouth, N.H. (Point of 
Graves); slate; fair. "CL" 

Joseph Small, 1720, Portsmouth, N.H. (Point of Graves); 
slate; good. "CL" 

Richard and Lydia Webber, 1721, Portsmouth, N.H. (Point 
of Graves); slate; good. "CL" 

Margaret Gardner, 1725, Portsmouth, N.H. (Point of 
Graves); slate; good. "CL" 

William Grimes, 1766, Lexington, Mass. (Old Burying 
Ground); slate; excellent, recut . 

NATHANIEL LAMSON (1693-1755), Charlestown, Mass. 

Samuel Blanchard, 1707, Andover, Mass. (West Parish 
Burial Ground); slate; excellent. 

Rev. Jonathan Pierpont, 1709, Wakefield, Mass.; slate; 
good. "NL" 

Hannah and Mary Shutt, 1709, Boston, Mass. (Copps Hill); 
slate; good. "NL" 

Capt. and Mrs. Pyam Blower, 1709, Cambridge, Mass. (Old 
Town Burying Ground); slate; excellent. 


Mercy Oliver, 1710, Cambridge, Mass. (Old Town Burying 
Ground); slate; excellent. "NL" 

Mary Rous, 1715, Charlestown , Mass. (Phipps St. Burial 
Ground); slate; excellent. 

Thomas Sewall, 1716, Cambridge, Mass. (Old Town Burial 
Ground); slate; excellent. 

♦Ephraim Beach, 1716, Stratford, Ct . ; slate; good. "NL" 

EZEKIEL LEIGHTON (1657-1723), Rowley, Mass. 

♦Benjamin Kimball, 1716, Ipswich, Mass. (Old Burying 
Ground); shale slate; poor. "M by EL" 

Richard Kimball, 1716, Ipswich, Mass. (Old Burying 
Ground); shale slate; poor. "M by EL" 

Martha Nason , 1716, Ipswich, Mass. (Old Burying Ground) 
shale slate; "M by EL" 

Sarah Glasiar, 1716, Ipswich, Mass. (Old Burying 
Ground); shale slate; poor. "M by EL" 

Elisebeth Smith, 1717, Ipswich, Mass. (Old Burying 
Ground); shale slate; poor. "M by EL" 

AMASA LOOM IS (1773-1840), Coventry, Ct . 

Mrs. Ester Loomis, 1742, and Mrs. Mary Loomis, 1744, 
Lebanon, Ct . (Trumbull Cemetery); schist; poor. "Cut 
by Amasa Loomis Coventry" 

Mary Wheeler, 1792, Andover, Ct . 

Hannah Rich, 1794, West Stafford, Ct . (Boyer Rd . Ceme- 
tery); schist; fair. "Cut by A. Loomis, Coventry" 

♦Daniel Field, 1795, Vernon, Ct . ; schist; good. "Cut by 
A. Loomis Coventry" 

FREDERICK MANNING (1758-1810), Windham, Ct . 

Ephraim Trowbridge, 1773, Abington, Ct . 

♦Timothy Cushman, 1792, Coventry, Ct . (Nathan Hale 
Cemetery); marble; good. "F. Manning" 

Daniel Talcott, 1807, West Willington, Ct . , schist; 
good; urn. "Made by F. Manning Windham" 

JOS I AH MANNING (1725-1806), Windham, Ct . 

John Cates, 1697, Windham, Ct . (Old Burying Ground); 
granite; good, reproduction. 


Jane Tyler, 1741, Brooklyn, Ct . ; sandstone; excellent. 
"J. Manning" 

Hannah Scripture, 1760, West Willington, Ct . ; schist; 
poor . 

Hannah Enas, 1760, Union, Ct . (Union Cemetery); schist; 
poor. "J.M." 

Deliverance Edgerton, 1762, Franklin, Ct . 

Elijah Hurlbutt, 1763, West Woodstock, Ct . (Bungay Hill 
Cemetery); schist; fair. "Josiah Manning" 

Tabitha Hall, 1764, Mansfield Center, Ct . (Old Mansfield 
Cemetery); schist; good. "Josiah Manning" 

Mrs. Simeon Waterman and child, 1764, Norwichtown , Ct . 
(Old Burying Ground); schist; fair. "J. Manning" 

James Luce, 1765, Scotland, Ct . ; schist; good. 

Stephen Fuller, 1767, Hampton, Ct . (Old Litchfield 
Burial Ground); "J.M." 

Ebenezer Smith, 1767, West Woodstock, Ct . (Bungay Hill 
Cemetery); schist; fair. "Josiah M." 

Ebenezer Backus, 1768, Norwichtown, Ct . (Old Burying 
Ground); schist; good. "J.M." 

Stephen Durkee , 1769, Hampton, Ct . (South Cemetery); 
schist; fair. "J.M." 

Jonathan Knight, 1770, Hanover, Ct . "J.M." 

Jedediah Dewey, 1776, Bennington, Vt . (Old Bennington 
Cemetery); marble; good; signature obscured by cement. 

* Josiah Manning, 1806, Windham, Ct . (Old Burying Ground); 
schist; fair. "This Monument I made in ye year 1800: 
in my 76th year. JM" 

ROCKWELL MANNING (1760-1806), Norwich, Ct . 

♦Abigail Manning, 1770, Scotland, Ct . ; schist; poor. 
"Made by Rockwell Manning Aged, 13 years" 

Sarah Gardiner, 1777, North Kingston, R.I. (Historic 
Cemetery 36); marble; good. "Made by R. Manning in 

John Hurlburt, 1778, East Hartford, Ct . (Center Burying 
Ground); schist; fair. 

John Johnson, 1804, Canterbury, Ct . (Cleveland Cemetery); 
marble; fair. "Made by R. Manning" 


JOSEPH MARBLE (1726-1805), Bradford, Mass. 
JOHN MARBLE ( 1746[ 9?]-1844) , Bradford, Mass. 

♦Enoch Colby, 1780, Bradford, Mass.; slate; excellent. 
"Engrav'd by John Marble Bradford" 

Rebecca Hills, 1795, West Newbury, Mass.; slate; excel- 
lent. "J. Marble sculptor Bradford" 

Eunice Webster, 1822, Plaistow, N.H. 

Sarah Thurlow, 1825, West Newbury, Mass. 

Joseph Hills, 1829, West Newbury, Mass. (Walnut Hill 
Cemetery); slate; good; urn. "J. Marble, Bradford" 

Annah Noyes , 1830, Atkinson, N.H. 

Mary Ann Stickney, 1830, Merrimack, Mass. 

Judith Sargent, 1831, Merrimack, Mass. 

LEVI MAXCY . Attleborough, Mass. 

* James Clark, Jr., 1786, West Medway , Mass.; slate; stone 
split in half. "Maxcy ' s Sculpt" 

Stephen Collins, 1793, Liverpool, Nova Scotia; slate; 
good. "L. Maxcy, Sc, Salem, Massachusetts" 


Rev. Ichabod Wiswall, 1700, Duxbury, Mass. (Miles 
Standish Burying Ground); slate; excellent. "JN" 

Sarah Dolbeare, 1701, Boston, Mass. (Copps Hill); slate; 
now lost . 

Martha Hall, 1701, Roxbury, Mass. "JN" 

John Cleverly, 1703, Quincy , Mass. (Hancock Street 
Cemetery); slate; excellent. "JN" 

*Mehitabel Hammond, 1704, Newton, Mass.; slate; good. 


Rev. Edward Thompson, 1705, Marshfield, Mass. (Winslow 
Burying Ground); slate; excellent. "JN" 

John Woodcock, 1718, Dedham, Mass. (Old Parish Burying 
Ground); slate; good. "JN" 

JAMES NEW II (1751-1835), Wrentham, Mass. 

Ralph Pope, 1750, Stoughton, Mass. "J. New sculp" 
Robert Lathe, 1774, Grafton, Mass. "J.N." 
Edward Goddard, 1777, Shrewsbury, Mass. "J. New" 


Mary Monk, 1784, Stoughton, Mass. "J. New" 

Eunice Willis, 1787, Brockton, Mass. "J. New" 

♦Marcy New, 1788, Attleborough , Mass.; slate; fair. 
"James N" 

Col. John Goulding, 1791, Grafton, Mass.; slate; good. 

Edy Clark, 1792, Bellingham, Mass. "J.N." 

Gardner Waters, 1793, Sutton, Mass.; slate; excellent. 
"James New Sc. 1796" 

?, ?, Upton, Mass.; stone smashed. 

Joseph Bacheller, 1797 (?), Grafton, Mass.; slate; good 
urn. "J.N." 

John Drury , ?, Grafton, Mass.; slate; slate; poor. 

James McClallan, 1794, Sutton, Mass. (Dodge Cemetery); 
slate; excellent; urn. "James New Sc . 1796" 

JOHN NEW (1722-?), Wrentham, Mass. 

♦Richard Temple, 1756, Concord, Mass. (Hillside Burying 
Ground); slate; good. "John New, Wrentham" 

Jeremiah Millard, 1776, Attleborough, Mass.; slate; 
good. "J* New Ingraver 44 shillings" 

PAUL NOYES, Newburyport, Mass. 

Deacon Parker Noyes, 1787, Newburyport, Mass.; marble; 
poor. "Paul Noyes fec tn 

ENOCH NOYES . Newburyport, Mass. 

Ann Pearne, 1788, Portsmouth, N.H. (North Cemetery); 
slate; good. "Enoch Noyes S9 NPort" 

Mary Pearne, 1788, Portsmouth, N.H. (North Cemetery); 
slate; good. "E. Noyes S c , NPort" 

ELIJAH PHELPS (1761-1842), Lanesborough , Mass. 

♦Sarah Smith, 1779, Lanesborough, Mass.; marble; fair. 

Elisabeth Garlick, 1783, Hoosick, N.Y.; marble; poor. 


DANIEL RITTER (1746-1828), East Hartford, Ct . 

Chloe Meigs, 1788, Hammonassett , Ct . 

Samuel Munson, 1791, Northford, Ct . 

Thomas Gold, 1800, New Haven, Ct . (Grove Street Ceme- 
tery; urn. 


*Rev. Perly Howe, 1753, Putnam, Ct . (Aspinwall Cemetery); 
slate; good. "Jo 1 ? Roberts. Sculpt" 

Mary Cady , 1767, South Killingly, Ct . 

Sgt . Joseph Parker, 1771, Oneco, Ct . (Stirling Ceme- 
tery); slate; fair. "J n Roberts, Sculpt" 

Rev. Samuel Dorrance, 1775, Oneco, Ct . ; slate; fair. 
"Roberts Sculpt" 

C. and/or E. SIXES , Belchertown, Mass. 

Margaret Shepard, 1769, Westfield, Mass. (Old Burying 
Ground); schist; excellent. "E(C). S." 

♦Hannah Dwight, 1792, Belchertown, Mass.; marble; fair. 

Joshua Dickinson, 1793, Belchertown, Mass.; marble; 
fair. "E(C) Sikes Sculptr- 

Theodosthia Bard, 179?, Belchertown, Mass.; slate; good. 

BEZA SOULE (1750-1835), Middleborough , Mass. and 
Brooklyn Ct. 

Sybil Allen, 1773, Brooklyn, Ct . (Trinity Cemetery); 
marble; excellent; urn. 

Thomas Bates, 1777, West Thompson, Ct . ; slate; good. 
"Engrav'd by B. Soule" 

Seth Dean, 1782, Putnam, Ct . 

Betsy Dorrance, 1782, Brooklyn, Ct . (Trinity Cemetery); 
slate; good. "Engrav'd by B. Soule" 

Deacon Williams, 1766, and Mrs. Sarah Williams, 1786, 
Brooklyn Ct . (Trinity Cemetery); slate; good; urn. 
"B. Soule fecit" 

James Dorrance, 1786, Brooklyn, Ct . ; slate; good. 
"Ingrav'd by B. Soule" 

Lucia Sharpe, 1790, Pomf ret , Ct . ; slate; good; urn. 
"Made by Soule" 


Pearley Grosvenor, 1791, Pomf ret , Ct . ; slate; excellent. 
"Made by B. Soule" 

Simeon Dean, 1791, Eastford, Ct.; slate; good. "B. 
Soule Sculpt" 

Sarah Grosvenor, 1793, Pomf ret , Ct . ; slate; good. 
"B.S. " 

James Adams, 1795, Brooklyn, Ct . (Trinity Cemetery); 
slate; excellent, "B. Soule fecit." 

Abilena Grosvenor, 1796, Putnam, Ct . ; urn. 

*Mary Wickham, 1797, West Thompson, Ct . (West Thompson 
Rd. Cemetery); slate; poor. "Ingrav'd by B. Soule" 

Arba Adams, 1798, Brooklyn, Ct . 

Prudence Cady , 1798, Putnam, Ct . (Old Killingly Burial 
Ground); slate; good. "B. Soule Fecit" 

Anne Hutchens, 1798, South Killingly, Ct . ; slate; good. 
"Ingrav'd by B. Soule of Brooky" 

Isaac Sharpe, 1798, Pomf ret , Ct . ; slate; good. 
"Ingrav'd by B. Soule" 

James Barrett, 1799, Brooklyn, Ct . ; slate; good. "B. 
Soule Sculptor" 

Phileanea Barrett, 1799, Brooklyn, Ct . ; slate; poor. 
"B. Soule Sculptor" 

Luenda Goodell, 1799, Abington, Ct . (Old Abington 
Burying Ground); slate; fair. "B. Soule Sculptor" 

Lt . Zechariah Goodell, 1799, Abington, Ct . (Old Abington 
Burying Ground); urn. "Engrav'd by B. Soule" 

Amos Grosvenor, 1799, Pomf ret , Ct . ; slate; poor. 
"Ingrav'd by B. Soule" 

Joshua Grosvenor, 1799, Abington, Ct . (Old Abington 
Burying ground); slate; fair. "B. Soule Sculptor" 

Pinsent Coles, 1799, Pomf ret , Ct . "B. Soule Sculptor" 

Eunice Dean, 1800, Eastford, Ct . ; slate; good. "B. 
Soule Sculpt" 

Jonathan Sabin, 1800, Pomf ret , Ct . ; urn. "Ingrav'd by 
B. Soule" 

Ebenezer Clark, 1830, Chaplin, Ct . ; slate; good. 
"Engrav'd by Beza Soule Aged 81 Years" 

Ezra Clark, 1830, Chaplin, Ct . 



♦Hannah Kingsbury, 1806, Pomf ret , Ct.; slate; good; urn. 
"Engrav'd by C - soule. Woodstock 1806" 

Capt . Stephen Tucker, ?, East Woodstock, Ct . (East 
Woodstock Cemetery); slate; excellent. "By. C. Soule" 

STEPHEN SPALDING . Killingly, Ct . 

Sarah Copp, 1790, Putnam, Ct . (Aspinwall Cemetery). 

Asa Day, 1795, South Killingly, Ct . ; slate; poor. 
"S. Spalding, Sculpt" 

♦Booz Stearns, 1796, Mansfield Center, Ct . ; slate; good. 
"Engrav'd by S. Spalding Killingly" 

Timothy Prince, 1798, Brooklyn, Ct . (Trinity Cemetery); 
slate; fair. "Engrav'd by S. Spalding Killingly" 

Susannah Sabin, 1801, Pomf ret , Ct . ; slate; good. "by S. 

Lemuel Holmes, 1803, Pomf ret , Ct . (South Cemetery); 
slate; good. "Engraved by Stephen Spalding Killingly" 

Joseph Sabin, 1803, Pomf ret , Ct . ; slate; fair. "Stephen 
Spalding Sculpt" 

Zeruviah Pierce, 1808, Plainfield, Ct . ; slate; good. 

JOHN STEVENS III (JR.) (1753-?), Newport, R.I. 

George Downer, 1760, New London, Ct . (Ancient Burying 
Ground); slate; good. "Cut by John Stevens, Jun r ." 

Norbert Felicien Wigneron, 1764, Newport, R.I. (Common 
Burying Ground); slate; good. "Cut by John Stevens Jr." 

Samuel Rhodes, 1769, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; good. "Cut by John Stevens, jun r ." 

Capt. Nathaniel Waldron, 1769, Newport, R.I. (Common 
Burying Ground); slate; good. "Cut by J. Stevens Jr." 

John Cass, 1770, Wickford, R.I.; slate; fair. 

Hannah Byles, 1771, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; good. "Cut by John Stevens jun r ." 

Mercy Buliod, 1771, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; fair; now missing. "Cut by John Stevens 

Sarah Hammond, 1771, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; excellent. "J. Stevens Jun r ." 

William Rogers, 1772, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; excellent. "Cut by John Stevens jun r ." 


Violet Hammond, 1772, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground) ; slate . 

Pompey Brenton, 1772, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; fair. "Cut by J. Stevens, jun r ." 

Thomas Brenton, 1772, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; fair. "Cut by J. Stevens, jun r ." 

Abraham Cooper, 1773, Southampton, N.Y. (North End 
Cemetery); slate; poor. "Cut by John Stevens JunT" 

Esther Haliock, 1773, Mattituck, N.Y. 

Ruth Wanton, 1773, Newport, R.I. (Trinity Cemetery); 
slate; fair. "Cut by J. Stevens, Jun r ." 

Joyce Rhodes, 1773, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; good. "Cut by J. Stevens" 

Abigail Otis, 1774, Storrs , Ct . ; slate; fair. "Cut by 
Jh°. Stevens, junr." 

Mehetable Coit, 1774, Pachaug, Ct . 

Johnathan Wyatt, 1775, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; good. "J.S." 

Thomas Carr, 1776, Jamestown, R.I. (Cedar Cemetery); 
slate; poor. "Jn°. Stevens" 

Phebe Shackmaple, 1776, New London, Ct. (Ancient Burying 
Ground); slate; good. "Jn°. Stevens" 

Martin Howard, Esq., 1776, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; fair. "Cut by John Stevens, jun r ." 

Sarah Rogers, 1776, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; fair. "J.S." 

Mary Cooper, 1779, Southampton, N.Y. (North End Ceme- 
tery); slate; poor. "J.S." 

Capt . William Burke, 1780, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; excellent. "J. Stevens" 

Elias Foster, 1780, Southampton, N.Y. (North End Ceme- 
tery); slate; fair. "J. Stevens" 

Col. William Ledyard, 1781, Groton, Ct . (Col. Ledyard 
Cemetery) . 

Robert Casson, 1783, Newport, R.I. (Trinity Churchyard); 
slate; fair. "J. Stevens" 

Betty Pearce, 1783, Warren, R.I. (Historical Cemetery 3); 
slate; poor. "J. Stevens" 

Mary Wall, 1783, North Kingston, R.I. (Historical Ceme- 
tery 36) ; slate. 


Elizabeth Allen, 1783, New London, Ct . (Ancient Burying 
Ground); slate; poor. "Jn°. Stevens" 

Isaac Post, Esq., 1785, Southampton, N.Y. (North End 
Cemetery); slate; poor. "J. Stevens" 

John Tanner, Esq., 1785, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; very poor. "J. Stevens" 

Ebenezer Richardson, Esq., 1785, Newport, R.I. (Common 
Burying Ground); slate, poor. "J. Stevens" 

Robert Porter, 1786, Stonington, Ct . (Evergreen Ceme- 
tery); slate; poor. "J. Stevens" 

Mary Eldred, 1787, Jamestown, R.I. (Cedar Cemetery); 
slate; poor. "J. Stevens" 

"Martha Moravia, 1787, Newport, R.I. (Touro Cemetery); 
slate; good. "J. Stevens" 

Josias L. Willson, 1788, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; fair. "J. Stevens" 

Mary Post, 1788, Southampton, N.Y. (North End Cemetery); 
slate; fair. "J.S." 

Isaac Church, 1789, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; good. "J. Stevens" 

Capt . John Howland, 1790, Jamestown, R.I. (Cedar Ceme- 
tery); slate; poor; no image. "J. Stevens" 

Abigail Cahoone , 1791, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; good. "J. Stevens" 

David Melvill, 1793, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; excellent. "J. Stevens" 

Robert Lightfoot, 1794, Brooklyn, Ct . (Trinity Cemetery); 
slate; fair. "J. Stevens fecit" 

Bathsheba Church, 1795, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; poor. "J. Stevens" 

Capt. Johnathan Weeden , 1795, Newport, R.I. (Arnold 
Burying Ground); slate; poor. "J. Stevens" 

Martha Duncan, 1795, Newport, R.I. (Trinity Churchyard); 
slate; fair. "J. Stevens" 

Samuel Carr, 1796, Jamestown, R.I. (Cedar Cemetery); 
slate ; poor. "J.S. " 

Abigail Phillips, 1798, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; fair. "J. Stevens" 

Patience Bennet , 1798, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; fair. "J. Stevens" 


Demaris Carr , 1798, Jamestown, R.I. (Cedar Cemetery); 
slate; fair; no image. "J.S." 

James Cary , 1799, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying Ground); 
slate; poor. "J. Stevens" 

Hannah Willson, 1801, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; poor. J. Stevens" 

Elizabeth Childs, 1802, and Nathan Childs, 1787, New- 
port, R.I. (Common Burying Ground); slate; fair. "J. 

Capt . John Coggeshall, 1802, Newport, R.I. (Common 
Burying Ground); slate; poor. "J. Stevens" 

Capt. John Coggeshall Almy, 1802, Newport, R.I. (Common 
Burying Ground); slate; poor. "J. Stevens" 

Elizabeth Coggeshall, 1803, Newport, R.I. (Coggeshall 
Burying Ground); slate; excellent. "J. Stevens" 

Capt. James Duncan, 1803, Newport, R.I. (Trinity Church- 
yard); slate; fair. "J. Stevens" 

Elder William Bliss, 1808, Newport, R.I. (Newport 
Historical Society); slate; fair; no image. "J. Stevens" 

Mrs. Mary Almy, 1808, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; poor; no image. "J. Stevens" 

Isaac Howland, 1810, Jamestown, R.I. (Cedar Cemetery); 
slate; good; no image. "J. Stevens" 

POMPE STEVENS . Newport, R.I. 

Pompey Lyndon, 1765, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying 
Ground); slate; poor. "Cut by P.S." 

*Gusse Gibbs, 1768, Newport, R.I. (Common Burying Ground) ; 
slate; poor. "This Stone was cut by Pompe Stevens" 

JONAS STEWART . Claremont, N.H. 

Betsy Hurd, 1818, Newport, N.H. 


Robert Strobredge, 1790, Lakeville, Mass. (Thompson 
Hill Cemetery); slate; very poor. "Cephas Tomson , 

LT. WILLIAM THROOP (1739-1817), Bristol, R.I. 

♦Elizabeth Bullock, 1786, Rehoboth, Mass. (Palmer River 
Cemetery); slate; fair. "W. Throop" 


Hannah Thomas, 1790, Swansea, Mass. (Thomas Cemetery). 

Alexander Gardner, 1818, Swansea, Mass. (Old Warren Road 
Cemetery); slate; fair; urn and willow. "W. Throop" 

SAMUEL TINGLEY (1752-1848), South Attleborough , Mass. 

Lt . Josiah Pidge, 1793, Attleborough, Mass.; slate; 
excellent. "S. Tingley Sculpt" 

JOHN WALDEN II (1734-1807), Windham, Ct . 
JOHN WALDEN III (1752-1824), Windham, Ct . 

Esther Palmer, 1754, Scotland, Ct . ; schist; poor. 
"Engraven by John Walden" 

Mary Pearl, 1790, Hampton, Ct . (Trumbull Cemetery); 
schist; poor. "Cut by J. Walden" 

Anna Dorrance, 1792, Sterling, Ct . (Oneco Cemetery). 
"Cut by J. Walden. Windham" 

Josiah Hammond, 1793, Woodstock, Ct . (Woodstock Hill 
Cemetery ) . 

Lydia Safford, 1793, Westminster, Ct . ; marble; fair. 

Trumbull Children, 1794, Norwichtown, Ct . (Old Norwich 
Cemetery); schist; good. "Cut by John Walden, Windham" 

Susannah Bingham, 1795, Lisbon, Ct . (Versailles Ceme- 
tery) . 

Joseph Bordman, 1796, Griswold, Ct . (Rixton Cemetery). 

Urania Lyons, 1797, North Woodstock, Ct . (Amity Ceme- 
tery) . 

Jonathan Maples, 1798, Norwichtown, Ct . (Oak Street 
Cemetery) . 

Disire Maples, 1798, Norwichtown, Ct . (Oak Street Ceme- 
tery); schist; good. "Cut by J. Walden, Windham" 

Annah Hude , 1801, South Canterbury, Ct . (Woodstock Hill 
Cemetery) . 

Bethiah Peck, 1802, Franklin, Ct. 

Nicolas Justen, 1804, South Canterbury, Ct . (Baldwin 
Cemetery ) . 

Elihu Adams, 1804, South Canterbury, Ct . "J + W" 

Lydia Safford, 1804, Canterbury, Ct . (Westminster Ceme- 
tery); marble; fair. 

Reuben Peck, 1811, Hanover, Ct . 


Mary Follett, 1814, Windham, Ct . ; schist; good. "Cut 

by J.W." 


Elijah Park, 1793, Preston, Ct . (Avery Cemetery); slate; 
poor. "J. Warren Sculpt" 

♦Alexander Miller 1798, Plainfield, Ct . ; slate; good. 
"J. Warren Sculpt" 

ABEL WEBSTER (1726-1801), Hollis, N.H. 

Lt. John Kendall, 1759, Dunstable, Mass.; slate; good. 
"Engrav'd by A. Webster 1761" 

*Thomas Prentice, 1760, Lexington, Mass. (Old Burying 
Ground); slate; excellent. "Engrav'd by Abel WEBSTER. 

STEPHEN WEBSTER (1718-98), Chester, N.H. 

♦Hannah Webster, 1760, Chester, N.H.; slate; excellent. 
"By, Stephen Webster of Holies 1762" 

EBENEZER WINSLOW (1772-1841), Uxbridge, Mass. 

David and Elias Taf t , 1790, Mendon , Mass.; slate; good. 

Hezekiah Cutler, 1792, Putnam, Ct . (Aspinwall Cemetery); 
slate; tympanum broken off. "By E-r Winslow Uxbridge" 

Gershom Carpenter, 1793, Providence, R.I. (Swan Point 
Cemetery); slate; excellent. 

*John Taylor, 1794, Douglas, Mass. (Rte. 16 Cemetery); 
slate; good. "Made by E. Winslow of Uxbridge - 94" 


Amos Carroll, 1792, East Thompson, Ct . ; urn. 

ALPHEUS WRIGHT (1792-1857), Rockingham, Vt . 

*Ebenezer Tinney, 1813, Grafton, Vt . (Town Cemetery); 
slate; good. "Made by A. Wright, & A Burditt, B. Falls, 
AD, 1813" 

Ruth Adams, 1814, Rockingham, Vt . (Rockingham Meeting 
House Cemetery); slate; good. "Made by Alpheus Wright, 
of Rockingham, VT — price 12,50" 


MOSES WRIGHT (c. 1758-?), Rockingham, Vt . 

♦Xenophon Earle, 1799, Chester, Vt . (Chester Cemetery); 
slate; excellent; urn. "Made by Moses Wright of 
Rockingham price 17 Dollars" 

Zilpah Kilborn, 1804, Keene , N.H. 

John and Margaret Gilmore, 1806, Rockingham, Vt . 
(Rockingham Meeting House Cemetery); slate; good; urn. 
"Made by M. Wright" 

SOLOMON WRIGHT . JR. (1785-1851), Rockingham, Vt . 

♦Betsy Messenger, 1808, Rockingham, Vt . (Rockingham 
Meeting House Cemetery); slate; fair; urn. "Made by 
Solomon Wright JunT" 


♦Sarah Hawley, 1772, Wilton, Ct . (Sharp Hill Cemetery); 
sandstone; poor. "John Zuricher Stone Cutter, N,Y" 

Ananias Rogers, 1775, Huntington, N.Y.; sandstone; 
good. "Iohn Zuricher Stone Cutter" 

Catherine Norss Crook Shank, 1776, Middletown, N.J.; 
sandstone; good. "Iohn Zuricher Stone Cutter N.Y." 




Abington: G. Allen, Jr.; Nathaniel Hodgkins; Nathaniel 
Hodgkins, Jr.; Frederick Manning; Beza Soule 

Andover: Amasa Loomis 

Ashford: Nathaniel Hodgkins; James Hovey 

Brooklyn: G. Allen, Jr.; Nathaniel Hodgkins; Nathaniel 
Hodgkins, Jr.; Chester Kimball; Josiah Manning; Beza 
Soule; Stephen Spalding; John Stevens III 

Canterbury: Rockwell Manning; John Walden 

Cheshire: Seth Brewer 

Columbia: Benjamin Collins 

Coventry: Benjamin Collins; Frederick Manning 

Danielson: Benjamin Collins 

Durham: Thomas Johnson 

East Glastonbury: Peter Buckland 

East Hartford: Rockwell Manning 

East Norwalk: W.C. 

East Thompson: B. L. Winslow 

East Woodstock: Coomer Soule 

Eastford: Beza Soule 

Fairfield: Benjamin Collins; Henry Emmes 

Franklin: Benjamin Collins; Josiah Manning; John Walden 

Glastonbury: Peter Buckland 

Griswold: John Walden 

Groton: John Stevens III 

Hammonassett : Daniel Ritter 

Hampton: Nathaniel Hodgkins; Lebbeus Kimball; Richard 
Kimball; Josiah Manning; John Walden 

Hanover: Josiah Manning; John Walden III 

Hebron: Benjamin Collins; Julius Collins 

Lebanon: Benjamin Collins; Lebbeus Kimball; Amasa 

Lisbon: John Walden 

Mansfield Center: James Hovey; Josiah Manning; Stephen 


Meriden Center: Isaac Coles; Roswell Cowles 

Milford: B.L. 

New Haven: Thomas Gold; Daniel Ritter 

New London: G. Allen, Jr.; John Stevens III 

North Woodstock: John Walden 

Northfield: Daniel Ritter 

Norwichtown: Benjamin Collins; Josiah Manning; John 

Old Lyme: Chester Kimball 

Oneco: Jonathan Roberts 

Pachaug: Benjamin Collins; John Stevens III 

Plainfield: Benjamin Collins; Stephen Spalding; Jotham 

Pomf ret : G. Allen, Jr.; Richard Kimball; Beza Soule; 
Coomer Soule; Stephen Spalding 

Preston: Benjamin Collins; Jotham Warren 

Preston City: David Lamb 

Putnam: G. Allen, Jr.; Jonathan Roberts; Stephen 
Spalding; Beza Soule; Ebenezer Winslow 

Salisbury: Zerubbabel Collins 

Scotland: Benjamin Collins; Lebbeus Kimball; Josiah 
Manning; Rockwell Manning; John Walden II 

South Canterbury: John Walden 

South Killingly: George Allen; Jonathan Roberts; Beza 
Soule; Stephen Spalding 

Stafford Springs: Julius Collins 

Sterling: John Walden 

Stonington: John Stevens III 

Storrs: John Stevens III 

Stratford: Caleb Lamson; Nathaniel Lamson 

Tolland: William Buckland, Jr.; Benjamin Collins 

Union: Frederick Manning 

Vernon: Amasa Loomis 

West Stratford: Amasa Loomis 

West Thompson: Stephen Hartshorn; Beza Soule 

West Willington: Frederick Manning; Josiah Manning 


West Woodstock: John Just Geyer 

Westminster: John Walden 

Willington: James Hovey 

Wilton: John Zuricher 

Windham: Benjamin Collins; Josiah Manning; John Walden 

Woodstock: John Walden 


Andover: Nathaniel Lamson 

Attleborough: James New II; John New; Samuel Tingley 

Barnstable: Henry Emmes; Nathaniel Emmes 

Belchertown: C. and/or E. Sikes 

Bellingham: James New II 

Berkley: J. B.; Cyrus Deane 

Boston: W.C.; Nathaniel Emmes; J.G.; John Just Geyer; 
Nathan Hastings; Nathaniel Lamson; J.N. 

Bradford: John Marble 

Brockton: James New II 

Cambridge: Nathaniel Lamson 

Charlestown: Nathaniel Lamson 

Concord: John New 

Dedham: J.N. 

Dighton: J.B. 

Dunstable: Abel Webster 

Douglas: Ebenezer Winslow 

Duxbury: J.N. 

Edgartown: G. Allen, Jr. 

Franklin: L.F. 

Grafton: James New II 

Hardwick: Samuel Fisher 

Ipswich: Ezekiel Leighton 

Lakeville: Cephas Tomson 

Lanesborough: Elijah Phelps 

Lexington: Caleb Lamson; Abel Webster 


Maiden: Caleb Lamson 

Manchester: Henry Emmes 

Mansfield: Cyrus Deane 

Marblehead: W.C.; J.G.; Caleb Lamson 

Marlborough: Nathan Hastings 

Marshfield: J.G. ; J.N. 

Mendon: Ebenezer Winslow 

Merrimack: J. Marble 

Millis: Samuel Fisher 

Milton: B. Adams; Henry Christian Geyer 

Newburyport : Paul Noyes 

Newton: J.N. 

Northampton: Roger Booth 

Norwood: D.F. 

Plymouth: W.C. 

Quincy : W.G. ; J.N. 

Rehoboth: George Allen; William Throop 

Roxbury : J.N. 

Salem: J.G. 

Shrewsbury: James New II 

Stonington: John Bull 

Stoughton: James New II 

Sutton: James New II 

Swansea: William Throop 

Taunton: J.B.; John Bull 

Upton: James New II 

Wakefield: Nathaniel Lamson 

Walpole: D.F. 

Wayland: Nathan Hastings 

West Medway : Cyrus Dean; Levi Maxcy 

West Newbury: J. Marble 

West Tisbury : W.C. ; J.G. 

Westfield: C. and/or E. Sikes 

Wrentham: D.F. 



Atkinson: J. Marble 

Chester: Stephen Webster 

Keene : Moses Wright 

Plaistow: J. Marble 

Portsmouth: Caleb Lamson ; Enoch Noyes 

Newport : Jonas Stewart 


Middletown: John Zuricher 


Hoosick: Elijah Phelps 
Huntington: John Zuricher 
Mattituck: John Stevens III 
Southampton: John Stevens III 


Chebogue : Abraham Codner 
Chipman's Corner: Chester Kimball 
Liverpool: Levi Maxcy 


Block Island: John Bull 

Jamestown: John Bull; Henry Bull; John Stevens III; 
Pompe Stevens 

Newport: John Bull; John Stevens III 

North Kingston: Rockwell Manning; John Stevens III 

Portsmouth: Henry Bull 

Providence: G. Allen, Jr.; Charles Hartshorn; Stephen 
Hartshorn; Ebenezer Winslow 

Rumford: George Allen; G. Allen, Jr. 

Warren: Stephen Hartshorn; John Stevens III 

Wickford: John Stevens III 



Block Island: John Bull 

Jamestown: John Bull; Henry Bull; John Stevens III; 
Pompe Stevens 

Newport: John Bull; John Stevens III 

North Kingston: Rockwell Manning; John Stevens III 

Portsmouth: Henry Bull 

Providence: G. Allen, Jr.; Charles Hartshorn; Stephen 
Hartshorn; Ebenezer Winslow 

Rumford: George Allen; G. Allen, Jr. 

Warren: Stephen Hartshorn; John Stevens III 

Wickford: John Stevens III 


Charleston: G. Allen, Jr.; John Bull; William Codner; 
Henry Emmes 


Bennington: Zerubbabel Collins; Josiah Manning 

Chester: Sampson B. Adams; Moses Wright 

East Poultney: E.C. 

Grafton: Abel Burditt; Alpheus Wright 

Manchester: Samuel Dwight 

Manchester Center: Zerubbabel Collins 

Rockingham: Alpheus Wright; Moses Wright; Solomon 




Betty Willshire 

The most common gravestone design in early New 
England was the winged skull, or death's head, yet its 
sources and its meaning prove elusive. Popular in New 
England, it is rare in England, unknown in parts of the 
Continent; the only strong analog for the New England 
design is a handful of monuments carved in Scotland. 
Nevertheless, these few sources provide some indication 
of the associations of images of death and time which 
may have crossed the Atlantic in the minds of carvers 
who would produce winged death's heads in New England by 
the 1670s. 

The first question to be asked is why should a 
skull, so long accepted as the representation of what 
happens to the body after man's death, take to the air? 
One epitaph suggests the winged skull is an image of the 
Resurrection : 

Like a bare giant that's thrown into the earth 
Dead for a while and mix'd to kindred dust 
The body lyes. But at the awful blast 
Of God's last trumpet, teeming with new life 
Shall rise in noble splendour God's great, 
Now weak, corrupt, dishonorable, natural, 
Powerfull then, Immortal, Glorious, Spirituall. 

(Dougla Wright, 1770, 
Exmagirdlle, Perth) 

However, at that time Presbyterian doctrine held 
that the body would be clothed anew, clothed "in the 
flesh." Many inscriptions on headstones and slabs in 
Scotland refer to Job 19:25: "And though after my skin 
worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see 
God." The most common Scottish seventeenth- and eigh- 
teenth-century portrayals of the Resurrection show 
naked bodies rising upward. Given the teachings of the 
Presbyterian Church in the seventeenth and eighteenth 
centuries, and the epitaphs and images inscribed on the 
stones, one concludes the Scottish carvers did not 
associate the winged skull with the Resurrection. 

The interpretation of this image is further compli- 
cated by the fact that it is a comparatively rare emblem 
in Europe. There is no evidence of its use as a mor- 
tuary emblem in Germany. It is difficult to assess its 
frequency on English memorials as compared with 


representations of the skull, but it would seem to be 
low. Frederick Burgess makes only one reference to a 
winged skull, and Kenneth Lindley notes: "Skulls are 
occasionally winged, or enclosed within a scallop which 
fits into the headstone. nl 

Even in east Anglia, the home of so many New 
Englanders, there are no winged skulls. Two winged 
skulls appear at St. Kew , Cornwall. One is found on the 
memorial for Susanna Symons who died in 1729, aged ten 
(Fig. 1). The epitaph runs, "Death with his dart / Did 
pierce my heart / When I was in my prime." The other is 
for John Laing, who died in 1742, age 28, with the 
epitaph : 

My friends forbear to grieve for me so sore, 
I'm gone from hence, youl never see me no more 
My life was short, (youl say), gone like a blast 
But now my troubles o're my pains are past. 

In Surrey, there is another headstone with a carving of 
this type of winged skull, with the last two lines of 
this epitaph, dated 1773. This coincidence suggests a 
significant link between this symbol and sudden and 
untimely death. 

In Scotland, there is evidence of a seventeenth- 
century winged skull tradition which predates these 
English examples and provides a clear analog to New 
England designs. Three city burial grounds were estab- 
lished soon after the Reformation. There are no winged 
skulls at Greyfriars, Perth, and at the Howff, Dundee, 
but at Greyfriars, Edinburgh, is a collection of enor- 
mous mural monuments dating from early in the 1600s, 
with carvings which are fantastic in the range of 
imagery. Robert Louis Stevenson wrote: 

We Scotch stand, to my fancy, highest among nations 
in the matter of grimly illustrating death. We 
seem to love for their own sake the emblems of 
time and the great change; and even around country 
churchyards you will find an exhibition of skulls 
and crossbones, and noseless angels, and trum- 
pets pealing for the Judgement Day. Every mason 
was a pedestrian Holbein; he had a deep con- 
sciousness of death, and loved to put its terrors 
pithily before the churchyard loiterer; he was 
brimful of rough hints on mortality. . . . 
The classical examples of this art are in 
Greyfriars . ^ 


Figure 1. Susanna Symons , 1729, St. Kew , Cornwall. 

Figure 2. John Byres, 1629, Grey friars, Edinburgh 


True, for here we see strange scenes where Father Time 
and the King of Terrors stride over a harvest of skulls; 
among the armoury of death and the tokens of resurrec- 
tion are three memorials which bear winged skulls, for 
John Byres of Coittes, 1629 (Fig. 2), Thomas Barratyne, 
1638 (Figs. 3a, b), and John McLurg, 1717. In each case 
there are also the emblems of the skull, and bones, and 
Father Time with hourglass and scythe. The last memor- 
ials commemorate people taken in their prime, but Byres 
was sixty. 

Other examples can be found at the Cathedral Burial 
Ground at St. Andrews, Fife. In 1910, A. Reid wrote: 
"Chronologically it is more than usually rich, for it 
exhibits . . . the rudest of early gravemarks , the 
elaborations of the medievalists, the florid evolutions 
of later centuries, and the more sound achievements of 
modern times. "3 He states that a date of 1380 is legi- 
ble on a slab, and that the earliest skull and bones 
appear on a rectangular slab to Canon James Eliot, who 
died in 1513. Sir George MacDonald also describes in 
detail many of the eighty-two items dating from pre- 
Reformation times to 1707.4 Many of these are elabor- 
ately carved, but in the entire collection there are 
only three depictions of winged skulls. One is on a 
coped stone memorial to Judith Nairne, who died aged 80 
in 1646; on this stone there are scenes from Quarles 
Emblems , including one with Father Time, hourglass on 
head, scythe in hand, accompanied by the inscription, 
"Everything hath an appointed time." Another winged 
skull on the stone of Elizabeth Dickson, who died in 
1643 aged 61, also has Father Time; the third is on a 
1617 slab with the figure of Death with scythe. 

While the age factor seems variable, there is lit- 
tle doubt that in the few examples we have the emblem of 
the winged skull is closely linked with the conception 
of time. Thus it appears that the skull and the winged 
skull may have had different meanings. The plain skull, 
often accompanied by bones, was the accepted memento 
mori . Shakespeare uses the term in Henry IV . Part 2, 
when Falstaff says, '"Do not speak like a death's head; 
do not bid me remember mine end'" (II, iv, 234). This 
death's head appeared in illustrations, carvings, 
painting and memorials from the fifteenth century. 
Horst Janson states that the skull was first used as a 
mortuary emblem early in the fifteenth century: 

The greater consistency of Italian art in the 
representation of life and death as contrasted 
with the preference for the living skeleton in 


Figure 3a, 
Figure 3b 

Thomas Barrantyne, 1638, Grey friars 


Thomas Barratyne, 1638, Grey friars, 

Edinburgh . 


the North finally produced in the early Renais- 
sance, the human skull as the most condensed 
symbol of death. The corpses of the Camposanto 
had been merely its more elaborate forerunners. 
Although not yet symbols of death but rather con- 
crete examples, they had only to undergo a pro- 
cess of abbreviation and abstraction to be trans- 
formed into the striking formula of the skull. 
. . . The artist to be credited with its intro- 
duction is Giovanni Boldu, a Venetian medallist, 
who in 1458 designed a medal with the portrait 
of a naked youth contemplating the figures of 
Faith and Penitence, and at his feet a skull 
symbolizing Death. 5 

In a footnote to this passage, Janson writes: "The sur- 
face of the medal is badly scratched, so that the de- 
tails of the skull are barely recognisable. It seems 
however, that a pair of wings is attached to the sides 
of the death's head, denoting perhaps eternity." Is 
Janson suggesting that this is a conjoined symbol--the 
skull of death and the wings of the soul? Yet wings did 
not appear on subsequent medals, and while the notion 
may have been transmitted from this original, it was the 
death's head in the form of the unwinged skull which 
became the popular symbol. 

Guy de Tervarent suggests another interpretation of 
the winged skull: "il arrive que le squelette la mort 
soit aile pour nous rappeler combien elle peut etre 
rapide" (It eventuated that the skeleton death was 
winged to remind us that it could come swiftly). His 
source is given as H. S. Beham, of Hollstein, Germany. 
One must also consider the early emblem of the winged 
skeleton; two examples may be found in Panofsky's Tomb 
Sculpture , one on the memorial of Allesandro Valtrini at 
S. Lorenzo in Damaso, Rome, the other on the tomb of 
Pope Urban VIII at St. Peter's, Rome; in both cases the 
wings are heavily feathered 7 What a threatening figure 
is the winged Death, the personification of active, not 
passive Death. There is no proof that the winged skull 
was an abbreviation of this figure, yet it would seem 
likely if one considers the source of the plain skull. 

Thus it seems necessary to make distinctions be- 
tween (1) the Italian representation of active Death, to 
be seen at the Camposanto, Pisa, dated 1350--the figure 
of a witchlike female with batwings , talons, long hair 
and armed with a scythe; (2) the passive death figure, 
representing man's fate after dying, appearing as decom- 
posing bodies and skeletons, and then only in the 


<••-:''*'- ■■■■ • • ' ,-.- . : ' ■■■■■ ■ • - "'-...' •.. 

( <t\ 

Figure 4. Buchanan Family, 1751, Logie Pert, Angus 


skeleton form, this last continuing in Scotland well 
into the eighteenth century; and (3) the Northern Death 
figure, the living skeleton, originating from the depic- 
tion of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, with the 
last, Death, in the form of a skeleton, as shown on the 
Buchanan stone, 1751 (Fig. 4). One sees the contrast 
between passive and active Death, skull and winged 
skull, on the Barratyne stone (Fig. 3). 

A further confirmation of the association of active 
Death and Father Time is in the use of bat wings on 
skulls and hourglasses. Often the bat is associated 
with the evil, predatory power of Death. Shakespeare 
uses the image of bats in unholy situations: 

' . . . are the bat hath flown 
His cloistered flight, ere to black Hecate's 

The shard-borne beetle with his drowsy hums 
Hath rung night's yawning peel, there shall be 

A deed of dreadful note! 

( Macbeth . Ill, ii, 40) 

Kenneth Lindley describes a carving on a stone at Little 
Dean on which a serpent ring encloses a winged hour- 
glass: "One of the wings is that of a bird (Day), the 
other that of a bat (Night). The scaled and feathered 
wings could also be interpreted as a representation of 
the angelic and the devilish, but this is less likely."^ 

In Stones, there are two possible representations 
of bats on stones. At Careston , Angus, an epitaph re- 
veals the emotive association of death and night: 

As our shorter day of light 

Our day of life posts on, 

Both show a long course to the night , 

And both are quickly run. 

Both have their night, and when that spreads 

Its black wings over day, 

There's no more work, all take their beds 

Of feathers or of clay. 9 

The association between active Death and Father 
Time is a common feature in Francis Quarles' Emblems, 
the design source for the figures of Death and Father 
Time on the Joseph Tapping stone, 1678, Boston. Quarles 
is quoted on a Scottish stone in Alford, Aberdeen, as 
late as 1751: 


Expect but fear not Death, Death has not power 
To cut the Threed, till Time point out the hour, 
Death's patent's void, till Time's hand sets the 

From whose joint sentence there is no appeal. 

Thus it may be that the skull got its wings from 
Father Time, Death's accomplice. This image would be a 
neat abbreviation for a headstone. At Grey friars the 
symbol is in use early in the seventeenth century, with 
the figures of Father Time and Death. We must also con- 
sider that the hourglass was often winged, and that this 
may link it with the winged skull. 

In conclusion, the evidence from Scotland suggests 
that we look at one group of emblems associated with the 
memento mori theme (the skeleton without weapons, the 
skull, the bones, the coffin, the shroud, the dead bell, 
the sexton's tools), and distinguish it from another 
group linked to the theme, "The King of Terrors who dare 
withstand" (the living skeleton and his sword, dart, and 
scythe, his associate Father Time, the hourglass, and 
the winged skull). 

It is remarkable that this apparently rare emblem 
was available to, and was adopted by, the early carvers 
of New England. By strange chance, or by conscious 
choice, here was a symbol which readily lent itself to 
the subtle and gradual transformation to the soul image 
which distinguishes the development of several New 
England carving traditions. While we may never deter- 
mine exactly which carvers were responsible for the 
transference of this image to New England, it is clear 
that the Scottish images of the late sixteenth and early 
seventeenth centuries make Scotland a likely source for 
those carvers' designs. 


1 Frederick Burgess, English Churchyard Memorials (London: 
Lutterworth, 1963), p. 172; Kenneth Lindley, Of Graves and Epitaphs 
(London: Hutchison, 1965), p. 100. 

2 Robert Louis Stevenson, Edinburgh Picturesque Notes (London: 
Seeley & Co., 1903), pp. 52-53. 

3 A. Reid, "The Churchyard Memorials of St. Andrews," Proceedings 
of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland , XLV (1910-11), 488-550. 

4 George MacDonald, "Post-Reformation Tombstones in the 
Cathedral Graveyard, St. Andrews," Proceedings of the Society of Anti- 
quaries of Scotland , LXX (1935-36), 488. 

5 W. Janson, "The Putto with the Death's Head," The Art Bulletin , 


19 (1937), pp. 423-49. 

6 Guy de Tervarent, "Attributs et Symboles dans l'Art Profane, 1450- 
1600," Travau x d'Humanisme et Renaissance (Geneva: n.p., 1958), pp. 366, 

7 Erwin Panofsky, Tomb Sculpture : Its Changing Aspects from 
Ancient Egypt to Bernini (London: Thames & Hudson, 1964), Figs. 435, 436. 

8" Lindley, p. 99. 

9 Betty Willsher and Doreen Hunter, Stones : 18th Century Scottish 
Gravestones (Edinburgh: Canongate, 1978), p. 28. 



David Watters 

In adorning the frontispiece of Gravestones of 
Early New England with a photograph of the John Cleverly 
stone, Harriet Merrifield Forbes paid tribute to the 
finest stylist of early American gravestones, an unknown 
craftsman who signed a handful of stones "JN" in the 
Boston area in the late seventeenth century. 1 Allan 
Ludwig and the Tashjians confirm Forbes' high opinion 
of this sophisticated carver's work, yet JN stones pre- 
sent these authors with difficulties of interpretation, 
because JN's identity remains unknown, and because most 
of his gravestone designs are outside the standard rep- 
ertoire of the memento mori tradition of New England 
stonecarving.2 If, as E. McClung Fleming suggests, "By 
means of its materials, construction, design, and use 
of symbols, the artifact functions as a vehicle of com- 
munication, conveying status, ideas, values, feelings, 
and meanings," then it is particularly important to 
identify JN and his design sources. 3 While I have been 
no more successful than earlier researchers in estab- 
lishing conclusively who JN was, I can suggest that he 
was a silversmith. Moreover, I intend to show here 
that while his designs have meanings consistent with the 
memento mori tradition, they are more significant in 
defining the status of JN's patrons, members of Boston's 
rising merchant class. 

JN designs can be divided into four groups. The 
first group follows the example of the marker for Rev- 
erend Ichabod Wiswall, 1700, of Duxbury, with a death's 
head in the tympanum flanked by foliated pilasters. 
Stones for Martha Hall, 1701, Sarah Dolbeare, 1701, 
Mehitabel Hammond, 1704, and John Cleverly, 1703, can 
also be placed in this group (Fig. 1). A second design 
group with a cherub in the tympanum, cut only for women, 
includes stones for Deborah Thomas and Mrs. Cleverly. 
The third group contains stones with a central floral 
design, represented by the signed Edward Thompson stone 
of Marshfield. From this stone, the Ruth Carter and 
Thaddeus Maccarty stones of the Granary, Boston, can be 
assigned to JN. The fourth group is the largest and 
most striking, with a tympanum design which Forbes 
called the "Urn and Mermaid," although Ludwig and the 
Tashjians rechristen the mermaids "dagons" (Fig. 2). 

It seems unlikely that gravestone carving was JN's 
sole means of support, since his stones are few in num- 
ber, and they were carved during brief periods of 


„._. j^ayioi 

Figure 1. Lt . John Cleverly, 1703, Quincy, Mass. 


Figure 2. William Button, 1693, Portsmouth, N.H. 


activity, 1693-98 and 1700-05. A variety of evidence 
points to the silversmith John Noyes as a likely person 
to identify as JN. Their dated works follow a close 
pattern, and their works point to common design sources. 
Most importantly, JN and John Noyes had the same pa- 
trons, patrons who would have understood the sources and 
meanings of their images on silver and stone (See 
Appendix) . 4 

Born in Boston in 1674, John Noyes was a descendant 
of the distinguished Reverend James Noyes of Newbury, 
Massachusetts. He married Susanna Edwards, the sister 
of the silversmith John Edwards, in 1699. Noyes af- 
firmed his standing as one of the up and coming members 
of the Boston craft community when he helped found the 
Brattle Street Church in December, 1699. He is men- 
tioned occasionally in church and town records, and in 
Samuel Sewall's diary, but he died intestate in 1749. 
While little of Noyes' silver has survived, he did ob- 
tain several important commissions. He made beakers for 
the Newbury church and was one of five silversmiths 
chosen to make matching flagons for the Brattle Street 
Church in 1711. His masterpiece is a pair of candle- 
sticks made for Peter Bowdoin. 

John Noyes' apprenticeship would have ended some- 
time between 1693 and 1695, and it is at this time that 
the first JN stones, in the Urn and Dagon group, appear. 
Several of these stones are backdated, but stylistically 
they relate to stones carved in the 1693-95 period. The 
marvelous Benjamin Hills stone, 1683, was probably 
carved in 1695 when his estate finally cleared probate. 
Similarly, the estate of Asaph Eliot, whose stone is 
dated 1688, was not settled until 1693, when the sum of 
h 4.7 was paid for the work at the grave and the stone. 
Thus the dates of the group four stones coincide with 
the end of Noyes' apprenticeship, at a time when major 
commissions for his silver were not forthcoming, for he 
competed with such master silversmiths as Dummer, 
Sanderson, Coney, Dwight, Edwards and Winslow. Noyes' 
first important commission was the Bowdoin candlesticks, 
ca. 1695-70, a period of little gravestone carving 
activity for JN. Several JN stones are dated 1700-05, 
but after 1705, when Noyes received the important 
Brattle Street commission for flagons, there is little 
stonecarving by JN . 

If the designs of the early group four JN stones 
indicate a concern for high-style elegance, the pattern 
of patronage indicates that socially conscious Boston- 
ians turned to these stones to make statements about 


their position in the community. The surviving JN 
stones exhibit a strong patronage correlation with the 
members of the Artillery Company and the Brattle Street 
Church, two entrances to Boston status. John Noyes 
himself is a prime example of upward mobility in Boston. 
As a silversmith, he gained entrance to Boston society, 
and with his membership in the prominent Noyes clan, it 
was natural that he become a member of the Artillery 
Company. Both Noyes and JN found patrons in this group, 
and most group four stones were cut for its members, 
including Asaph Eliot, William Greenough, Thaddeus 
Maccarty , Elizur Holyoke, and members of the families 
of Benjamin Hills and Michael Martyn. The signed group 
two Cleverly stone in Quincy commemorates yet another 
member of the Company. In fact, a majority of JN stones 
are connected to the Company (See Appendix). 

Further connections between JN patrons and Noyes 
can be traced through Noyes' family and his silver 
patrons. In 1700 the Brattle Street Church "Ordered 
that Deacon Barnard be presented with a piece of plate 
of ye value of Twelve pounds & that T. Brattle do speak 
to Mr. Noyes to make a silver tankard of that value. "° 
Later, the tankard was inscribed to commemorate the 
marriage of Barnard to Sarah Martyn in September 1715, 
which locates the Martyn family as part of the Brattle 
Street community. The Martyn family provides another 
link between Noyes and JN stones. The Michael Martyn 
stone, dated 1682 but probably carved in 1693, stands 
in Copp ' s Hill and is from JN's hand. And Martyn ' s 
wife, Susannah Holyoke, was the niece of Elizur Holyoke, 
an Artillery Company member with a JN stone. The 
William Button marker of 1693, Portsmouth, New Hamp- 
shire, can also be traced through the Martyn family. 
Button was buried by his brothers Thomas and Clement 
Lempriere, but Richard Martyn, uncle of Michael Martyn, 
and the great uncle of Sarah Martyn, attested the in- 
ventory of Button's estate. The other stones in group 
four similarly point to a man with Noyes' craft con- 
nections. One was cut for Timothy Dwight, a silver- 
smith, and another for Matthew Pittom, whose father was 
a pewterer. 

The strongest evidence relating JN stones to the 
work of a silversmith is stylistic, because the full 
repertory of JN design innovations is found on silver. 
The Lamson family and the Charlestown carver used, in 
their pilasters, the vegetation and cherubs common to 
mannerist silver objects of the late seventeenth cen- 
tury, but only JN placed urns, flowers, peacocks and 
dagons in his tympanum designs. All of the discrete 


elements of JN stone des 
made by or known to John 
Noyes bears a delicate 1 
to that found in the pil 
stone of 1696. 10 Noyes' 
are delicately gadrooned 
acanthus leaf scrolling 
flagon and on a salver r 
pilasters (Fig. 3a, b, c 
was common both to grave 
made in England and sold 
death's heads and dagons 
group four stones featur 
resembles silver cups or 

igns can be found on objects 

Noyes. A small gold clasp by 
ily with a striking resemblance 
asters of the Deborah Thomas 
candlesticks for Peter Bowdoin 
as are the JN urns, and the 
found on Noyes' Brattle Street 
esembles the swags in JN 
). Moreover, the cherub face 
stones and silver, and spoons 
in America commonly featured 
. The central designs of 
e a two-handled urn which 
salt cellars. 

Figure 3a. John Noyes, Gold Clasp, ca. 1700, The Garvan 

Collection, Yale University. 
Figure 3b. Deborah Thomas, 1696, Marshfield, Mass. 
Figure 3c. John Noyes, Flagon, 1711, Museum of Fine 

Arts, Boston. 

But it is the combination of the elements of vege- 
tation, cup and dagons on stone and silverware alike 
which is most striking. A plate by John Coney displays 
an elegantly carved cherub and flowers, and John Coney's 
caudle cup (c. 1690), presents a dagon identical to that 
found on group four stones (Fig. 4). Coney's chubby 


Figure 4. John Coney, Caudle Cup . 1690-1700, Boston 
65/388. Bequest of Mrs. Edward Jackson 
Holmes. Courtesy, Museum of Fine Arts, 

Figure 5. Thomas Heywood, The Hierarchie of the 
Blessed Angells , p. 111. 


anaraorphic dagon figure, the particular flowers, the 
shape of the handle, combine in a visual repertory which 
point to JN's familiarity with such designs. 

If, on the evidence of dating, design and patronage 
patterns, we accept the possibility that JN was John 
Noyes, then we must consider a range of problems of 
identification and interpretation of silver and grave- 
stone designs. Harriet Forbes first ascribed Christian 
meanings to JN designs, and Allan Ludwig and Ann and 
Dickran Tashjian continue Forbes' speculation. 1,3 They 
convincingly argue that the group four cherub is a 
dagon, the half-human, half-fish or vegetable figure 
receiving its name from the idol of the Philistines, 
and by the seventeenth century "dagon" was the generic 
term for any idol. While convincing in identifying 
these forms, none of these writers explain why these 
designs appear on both gravestones and silverware. 
Indeed, the supposedly idolatrous dagon even appears on 
the standing cup given by John Winthrop to the First 
Church of Boston in 1630. Either we must assume that 
these designs were purely decorative, with no meaning 
whatsoever, or that viewers were sophisticated enough 
to understand that identical designs have meanings which 
depend upon their location and their use in certain 

It is this second possibility that I wish to pur- 
sue by arguing that the JN carver expected his patrons, 
who were among the most educated and socially-conscious 
of Bostonians, to recognize the fitness of his designs 
for commemoration of the dead. And I will also argue 
that a silversmith such as John Noyes would have been 
aware of the meanings of such images. 

It is clear from studies of seventeenth-century 
silver that certain objects and designs held ritualistic 
significance. Porringers with tombstone handle designs 
were used by women to drink a fortifying gruel after 
childbirth, an experience which brought women close to 
the grave; christening spoons were decorated with 
death's heads and had "Live to Die" and "Die to Live" 
engraved on opposite sides of the stem. Silver sugar 
boxes were decorated with emblems celebrating fertility 
and harmony in marriage, since sugar was believed to 
quicken children in the womb. Certainly John Noyes 
understood such ritualistic uses of silver when Samuel 
Sewall awarded him for his marksmanship a silver cup, 
inscribed " Euprhratem Siccare potes . " a reminder as he 
quenched his thirst that the drying up of the Euphrates 
would presage the coming of the kingdom of heaven. 5 


Moreover, Company members were told in sermons that 
earthly warfare foreshadowed a larger spiritual warfare 
between good and evil which would culminate in Arma- 
geddon. 1 ° Samuel Sewall's apocalyptic proclivities 
were well-known in print, and he also chose to express 
his ideas when commemorating contemporary events with 
silver objects. 

A knowledge of heraldry would also have prepared a 
silversmith to make use of iconographic designs. The 
surge of interest in heraldry in the late seventeenth 
century caused the publication of such books as John 
Guillim's A Display of Heraldry , with thousands of hand- 
colored engravings, and in status-conscious Boston the 
possession of a coat of arms represented the height of 
fashion. 17 The elaborate traditions of heraldry 
assigned specific meanings to each element of the crest, 
and a family crest often commemorated a historical event 
in which a family member exhibited the qualities the 
crest represented. The Bowdoin family ancestor who 
sacrificed himself to save the King is symbolized in the 
family crest by a pelican vulning itself, and the crest 
is displayed on the Noyes candlesticks and on the family 
tomb.- 1 -" The pelican is also a common symbol for Christ, 
or for any Christ-like person who sacrifices for others; 
thus epitaphs in Boston refer to the pelican in commem- 
orating dead persons who were particularly self-sacri- 
ficing. The pelican symbol also reveals a hope for 
resurrection purchased by Christ's sacrificial blood. 

Seventeenth-century Bostonians frequently used 
heraldic designs to express different meanings in dif- 
ferent ritualistic contexts. The crest could be used 
as a badge of social status, identifying proudly the 
family in possession of such a lavish article of silver 
as the Noyes candlesticks. The crest could be engraved 
on wedding plate to symbolize the unification of 
families. Or, the crest, or hatchment, could be used 
as an integral part of funeral rituals. 9 Hatchments, 
whether painted or embroidered, were hung on the front 
door when the head of the family died; indeed, some 
hatchments were made from hair clipped as mementoes of 
the dead. Finally, they were carved on the tomb itself, 
as the Bowdoin crest graces the Bowdoin tomb in the 
Granary . ° 

Nearly every design element on Noyes' silver and 
on JN ' s stones can be found in standard books of 
heraldry, and silversmith and gravestone carver alike 
would have been familiar with the meanings of designs 
their patrons desired. John Guillim offers detailed 


explanations of all heraldic elements, dividing them 
into various categories. All the herbs and flowers 
found on the Reverend Thompson, Ruth Carter and Thaddeus 
Maccarty stones are placed under the heading "Herbs 
Coronary or Physical." He comments, "Coronary herbs are 
such, as in respect of their odiferous smell, have been 
of long time, and yet are used for decking and trimming 
of the body, or adorning of houses, or other pleasurable 
use for eye or scent;" he lists roses, gillif lowers , 
slipped bluebottles, cinquefoils, daisies and fleur-de- 
lis. - 1 - These flowers adorning the bodies of both the 
living and the dead are fitting for funeral rituals, 
but they have heraldic meanings appropriate to thoughts 
on death as well. 

For example, the viewer of the cinquefoil should 
recall, in Guillim's words, that 

The number of the leaves answers to the five 
senses in a man; and he that can conquer his 
affections, and master his senses, (which sen- 
sual and vicious men are wholly addicted unto) 
he may worthily, and with honour, bear the 
Cinquefoil, as the sign of his fivefold victory 
over a stronger enemy than that three-headed 
Monster Cerebus . 

While commenting on the slipped bluebottle, he sums up 
the meaning of all such herbs and flowers: 

Doubtless they are the admirable work of the 
most Omnipotent God, who has sent as many kinds 
of Medicines, as of Maladies; that as by the 
one we may see our own wretchedness, so by the 
other we might magnifie his goodness towards 
man, on whom he hath bestowed Fruit for meat . 
and Leaves for medicine . 

I would suggest, then, that far from being merely 
decorative, flowers were carved on stones with care as 
to their heraldic significance and appropriateness to 
the funeral ritual. Decking the body and coffin with 
flowers symbolizing the age, sex and religious status 
of the deceased was an ancient practice in England and 
America, and stonecarvers such as JN merely placed 
these flowers on the gravestone as well. 24 Families 
not entitled to a crest could still place designs with 
heraldic significance on the gravestones of dead family 
members, thus sharing in the status associated with 
heraldry . 


Guillim's treatise exposes the richness of visual 
sources available in Noyes' time, and the heading of 
each chapter consists of the common seventeenth-century 
design of vegetation, dagons and urn found on JN group 
four stones. Another popular design sourcebook in the 
seventeenth century, Thomas Heywood ' s The Hierarchie of 
Blessed Angels , displays chapter headings with vegeta- 
tion, dagons, urn and peacocks, such as those gracing 
the Cleverly stone (Fig. 5). 5 

Forbes notes that peacocks often represented the 
resurrection, but a seventeenth-century viewer who saw 
peacocks with dagons might have had other ideas on the 
subject. " Heywood associates Adonis and Anamelech, 
idols bearing the form of a cock peacock, with dagon 
under the general heading of idolatry. Thomas Wilson, 
in A Complete Christian Dictionary . notes the dual 
nature of the peacock, a strange combination of beauty 
and benevolence with vanity and hatred towards mankind: 
"It doth love man, reverence him, and helpeth him when 
it seeth him hurt by other beasts," but "It's said to 
have the voyce of the Devill, (its voyce is terrible) 
the head of a Serpent (which being combed and weak, it 
resembleth) and the pace of a theef, being still and 
without noyse."^' The peacock displaying its tail 
represents earthly vanity, but the peacock with tail 
down signifies the overcoming of the flesh. 

In the Heywood illustration, dagons lasso the pea- 
cocks with tails spread to indicate that pagan idols 
capture vain beings. In a delightful emblem by the 
popular Otto Van Veen, cherubs of divine love busily 
beat down the tail of a cock peacock (Fig. 6). The epi- 
graph to the illustration reads, "divine love weighs 
down pride. / he who has more humility also has more 
humanity." The peacock on the Cleverly stone is a 
cock peacock, with tail down, and when seen in con- 
junction with the hourglass reminding the viewer of 
mortality, it seems fitting to interpret peacocks as 
emblems of both humility and resurrection. 

In turning to the dagons on group four stones and 
on silverware, it should be kept in mind that seemingly 
idolatrous figures may have been used to deflate human 
pride. While status-conscious Bostonians desired ele- 
gant tombstones and silverware, they deferred to the 
religious principles of the day by displaying images of 
humility. The Van Veen emblems of sacred and profane 
love provide, with their focus on the double nature of 
human love, an analogy to the paradoxical desire for 
elegance and humility in JN group four patrons. To 


Figure 6. Otto Van Veen, "Svperbiam Odit," Amoris 
Divini Emblemata , p. 112. 


Figure 7. Otto Van Veen, "Animae sal est amor," Amoris 
Divini Emblemata , p. 104. 


illustrate that "The salt of the soul is love," two 
cherubs carry a covered salt cellar to show that divine 
love and salt are two things which preserve against cor- 
ruption (Fig. 7). 29 Bostonians viewing the winged 
dagons carrying an urn on JN stones may have thought 
that the urn represented both an elegant silver covered 
salt cellar and a funerary urn. Cotton Mather connected 
salt and the ashes of the dead by speculating that salts 
obtained from the cremation of the body may revivify the 
body at the Resurrection. ° The design could refer at 
once to the conflict between idolatrous self-love and 
divine love. The dagons seem both to bow down before 
and to display the urn, and they have wings, usually 
reserved for cherubs, to indicate the double nature of 
human love. 

Besides being popular figures in the decorative 
arts of the seventeenth century, dagons figured prom- 
inently in seventeenth-century American literature. 
While the Tashjians show that New Englanders associated 
dagons with Thomas Morton's men who frisked with Indian 
maidens in the 1620s, writers contemporary with JN 
assigned new meanings to dagons. Puritans knew Dagon 
was the idol of the Philistines in the Book of Samuel. 
Chapter three recounts the disastrous loss of the ark 
of the Lord to the Philistines, when Phineas and Eli die 
and the nation itself is threatened with extinction at 
the hands of pagans. When Phineas' wife dies in child- 
birth, the child is named Ichabod, "the glory depart- 
ing." Yet God intervenes miraculously by striking down 
Dagon ' s image after the ark has been presented to it. 
The Philistines return the ark to Israel to escape God's 
wrath. Increase Mather invokes this text to decry the 
departing glory and waning piety of New England in his 
famous Ichabod . 31 and he sees the fall of Dagon before 
the ark as a symbol of the renewal of the gospel needed 
in the pagan American wilderness. 

If it is our Duty to Pray that the Kingdom of 
Christ may be inlarged, then we ought to Pray 
that that may be done by means whereof the Lords 
Kingdom is inlarged. Now this is accomplished 
by the Preaching of the Gospel, ... as being 
the great Instrument by which the Kingdom of 
Christ is Propagated in the World. In places 
where the Gospel comes and is submitted to, 
Satan's Kingdom falls, as Dagon fell to the 
Ground before the Ark of the Lord, 1 Sam. 5. 
4. And Christs Holy Kingdom is built on the 
Ruines of it. 


Mather continues his treatise with a discussion of the 
fruitfulness prayer can bring to the wilderness once 
Dagon has fallen, for "When the desolate Souls of Sin- 
ners are Converted, A Wilderness becomes a Fruitful 
Field . "3 3 In Mather's eyes, group four stones would 
show how dagons fall before the urn containing the ashes 
of someone who helped bring the gospel into the wilder- 
ness, and the vegetation would represent both fertility 
for living saints who pray for Dagon ' s fall and new life 
to deceased saints. Ironically, JN's patrons for these 
stones wanted to display their elegant, increasingly 
secular taste, and they posed the greatest threat to 
Mather's vision of a Bible commonwealth restored by 
prayer and preaching. 

While JN designs do share in the general themes of 
New England stonecarving, they also reveal the tastes 
of a changing Boston society. Many writers have com- 
mented on the secular trends of late seventeenth- 
century Boston, represented by the rising merchant class 
which populated the Brattle Street Church and threw its 
political strength behind Elisha Cook in his struggle 
against the Boston religious establishment. The JN 
stones confirm these trends both in the dimunition of 
the stark memento mori motif, and in the elegance of his 
designs. The connections between his work and that of 
John Noyes , the relationships between silver design, 
heraldry and gravestone design all attest to the social 
as well as the religious significance of New England 



Urn and Dagon Stones 



Michael Martyn 


Benjamin Hills 


Asaph Eliot 


Jacob Eliot 


William Greenough 


William Button 


Matthew Pittom 


Timothy Dwight 


Elizur Holyoke 


Relationship to Noyes 

Artillery Company family 
Brattle Street Church 

Artillery Company family 

Artillery Company member 

Artillery Company family 

Artillery Company member 

Probate attested by 
Richard Martyn, uncle of 
Michael Martyn 

Son of pewterer 

Goldsmith, silversmith, 
fellow apprentice 

Artillery Company member 
Brattle Street Church 

Other JN Stones 

Martha Hall 1701 

Sarah Dolbeare 1701 

Lt. John Cleverly 1703 

Mehitabel Hammond 1704 

Thaddeus Maccarty 1705 
Rev. Edward Thompson 1705 

Artillery Company family 

Pewterer 's family 

Artillery Company member 

Artillery Company family; 
perhaps related by mar- 
riage to Elizabeth Noyes, 
cousin of John Noyes 

Artillery Company member 

Born in Newbury, home of 
Noyes clan 



1 Reverend Icabod Wiswall, 1700, Duxbury, Mass.; Martha Hall, 1701, 
Roxbury, Mass.; Sarah Dolbeare, 1701, Boston, Mass.; Lieutenant John 
Cleverly, 1703, Quincy, Mass.; Mehitabel Hammond, 1704, Newton, Mass.; 
Reverend Edward Thompson, 1705, Marshfield, Mass. 

2 Graven Images (Middletown, Ct.; Wesleyan University Press, 
1966), pp. 296-300; Memorials for Children of Change (Middletown, Ct.: 
Wesleyan University Press, 1974), pp. 89-92, 158-62, 170-73. 

3 E. McClung Fleming, "Artifact Study: A Proposed Model," 
Winterthur Portfolio , 9 (1974), p. 158. 

4 See Diana William Combs, "Ventures as an Artisan: The Multiple 
Talents of Eighteenth-century Gravestone Carvers," Ms. AGS Collection at 
the NEGHS Library, Boston, Mass., 1978, for a discussion of another silver- 
smith-carver in New England. 

5 For Noyes' life and works, see Kathryn C. Buhler, American Silver 
1655-1825 jn the Museum of Fine Arts , 2 vols. (Boston: Museum of Fine 
Arts, 1972); Kathryn C. Buhler, "A Pair of Candlesticks by John Noyes, 1695- 
1700," Bulletin of the Museum of Fine Arts , LIII (1955), pp. 25-29. 

6 Probate Records 1285 and 1420, Suffolk County, Massachusetts. 
See Zechariah Whitman, The History of the Ancient and Honourable 

Artillery Company (Boston: John H. Eastburn, 1842), and Roll of Members 
of the Military Company of the Massachusetts now called the Ancient and 
Honorable Artillery Company of Massachusetts , with a Poster of the Com - 
missioned Officers and Preachers , 1638-1894 (Boston, n. p., 1895). 
° Buhler, American Silver , I, pp. 112-13. 

9 Noyes used two touchmarks, "IN" in an ellipse and "IN" surmounting 
cross-crosslet in a shield. See Buhler, American Silver , pp. 110-115. 

10 The clasp, in the Garvan Collection at Yale University, is illus- 
trated in The Magazine Antiques (1965), p. 838. 

H See Buhler, American Silver , I, pp. 114-15. 

12 These thumbpieces were usually imported from England. For 
spoon designs, see Mrs. G. E. P. How, "Seventeenth-Century English Silver 
and Its American Derivatives," in Arts of the Anglo-American Community 
in the Seventeenth Century , ed. Ian M. G. Quimby (Charlottesville: Univer- 
sity Press of Virginia, 1975), p. 195. 

1 3 Forbes, pp. 121-22; Ludwig, pp. 296-98; Tashjian, pp. 89-92. 

1 4 See Anthony N. B. Garvan, "The New England Porringer: An Index 
of Custom," Smithsonian Annual Report 1958 (Washington, D.C.: Govern- 
ment Printing Office, 1959), pp. 543-52; Mrs. G. E. P. How, p. 195; and 
Edward J. Nygren, "Edward Winslow's Sugar Boxes: Colonial Echoes of 
Courtly Love," Yale University Art Gallery Bulletin 33, no. 2 (Autumn 1971), 
pp. 39-52. 

1 5 The Diary of Samuel Sewall 1674-1729 , ed. M. Halsey Thomas, 2 
vols. (New York: Farrar, Straus, Giroux, 1973), I, p. 467. 

1 6 See, for example, Samuel Nowell, Abraham in Arms (Boston, 1678). 

1 7 (London, 1679). 

18 For a discussion of the Bowdoin coat of arms, see Gerard J. Brault, 
"Pierre Baudouin and the Bowdoin Coat of Arms," The New England Histori - 
cal and Genealogical Register (October, 1960), pp. 243-69. The pelican was 
thought to vuln, or wound itself, in the breast to feed its blood to its young. 


19 See Lloyd Grossman, "Heraldic Design on New England Grave- 
stones," Old Time New England , 64 (Fall, 1973), pp. 55-60. 

20 See, for example, the John Fowle stone, 1711, Charlestown, Mass., 
and the Captain Samuel Peck stone, 1736, Rehoboth, Mass., for especially 
elaborate coats of arms. 

21 Ibid ., p. 106. 

22 fold., p. 110. 

23 Ibid ., p. 111. Even the iconographically elusive squirrels (which 
may in fact be griffins) on the Benjamin Hills stone have heraldic signifi- 
cance. The squirrel's tail which shadows his body makes him "like one, who 
carefully keeping the love and affection of his followers and retainers, is 
sure thev will stick to him, protect and shadow him, in time of need" (p. 

24 For decking of the body and coffin, see "Description of England 
and Ireland, in the 17th Century: By Jorevin," The Antiquarian Repository , 
eds. Francis Grose and Thomas Astle (London, Edward Jeffrey, 1809), IV, 
pp. 663-64. 

25 (London, 1635). 

26 Forbes, pp. 123-24. 

27 (London, 1661), p. 149. 

28 Amoris Divini Emblemata Stvdio et Aere Othonis Vaeni Concinnata 
(Antwerp, 1640), pp. 112-13. These emblems were frequently reprinted 
throughout Europe. 

29 Van Veen, pp. 104-05. 

3 " Jane Donahue Eberwein explains this common seventeenth- 
century speculation in " 'In a book, as in a glass': Literary Sorcery in 
Mather's Life of Phips," EAL , X, no. 3 (Winter, 1975-76), pp. 289 : 300. 

31 (Boston, 1702). 

32 A Discourse Concerning Faith and Fervency in Prayer (Boston, 
1710), p. 60. 

33 Ibid., p. 65. 




Michael Cornish 

The aesthetic problem of filling formulary spaces 
with genre decoration in a craft product is intriguing. 
When the number of variables in a design is very lim- 
ited, excellence can be achieved through the subtle 
variety of interplay between elements. In the case of 
early New England gravestones, the areas of decoration 
consist of a semi-circle and two thin bands. It is sur- 
prising to see what has been accomplished within such a 
rigid format. In the vicinity of Medway , Massachusetts, 
is a small group of eighteenth-century gravestones which 
utilize only a sparse vocabulary of design elements made 
up of arches and other compass play, tiny symmetric 
trees, and graceful, flanking "fronds," but the designs 
are composed with such cleverness and diversity that 
each seems completely unique. 

The carver of these stones was Joseph Barbur, Jr. 
of West Medway, who cut the well-known Polly Coombes 
marker in Bellingham, Massachusetts. Good historical 
evidence and a number of probate entries have estab- 
lished his shop as the origin of this work.l Now that 
all of his carvings have been mapped and cataloged, this 
body of sculpture records a gifted and restless imagina- 
tion exploring the possibilities in abstract single- 
plane relief design within a slate semi-circle (Fig. la, 

Nothing about Joseph Barbur 's life hints at his 
remarkable talent as a designer. So far as is known, he 
did not practice any other type of artisanry, although 
his great-grandfather had been one of the region's early 
furniture makers. ^ He was a country husbandman, a sim- 
ple yeoman for whom carving could only have provided a 
modest second income, since he produced only four to 
eight stones a year. Son of a deacon and co-founder of 
Medway, Joseph was born there in 1731 and remained in 
West Medway until his death in 1812. He was impressed 
into the service of the King during the French and 
Indian wars in 1754, and again in 1758. In 1757 he 
married Rebecca Clark and by her had seven children, at 
least two of whom died as infants and one at birth. He 
served in the American army during the Revolution and 
answered alarms at Lexington in 1775 and Warwick, Rhode 
Island, in 1776. In 1797, at age 66, he married 
Hepzibeth Haven, a woman five years his junior who out- 
lived him by nine years. 





Woonsocket, R.I. 

Figure la. Massachusetts location of Barbur stones 
Figure lb. Concentration of Barbur stones. 


Figure 2. Meriam Fairbank, 1779, West Medway , Mass 

Figure 3. John Haven, 1785, Holliston, Mass 



Figure 4. Mary Dorr, 1776, Mendon, Mass 


He apparently started making gravestones during the 
time he served as a private with the Medway company 
under Captain Adams, as his earliest productions date 
from 1774-75. It is nearly impossible to get a sense of 
the man from the genealogies available, but an indica- 
tion of his character is left us by Abner Morse who 
recollects that Barbur was "an eccentric but righteous 
man. "3 He did not hold any public office as had his 
colonial forebears. 

The first years of carving appear to be fraught 
with experiment, although the foundation for his mature 
work is present almost from the start. During the first 
decade he created a number of distinct designs which 
were never repeated and several small groups of related 
designs which he discontinued after this early phase. 
These include whimsical adaptations of a design by 
another stonecutter in the area 4 (Fig. 2); thick, 
highly-abstracted bas-relief trees (Fig. 3); death's 
heads (Fig. 4); compass-plotted configurations of inter- 
locking half circles (Fig. 5); and embryonic "frond and 
hillock" designs (Fig. 6). Though these motifs do not 
appear in their original form after the 1780s, Barbur 's 
repertoire never really excludes them: intaglio trees 
are incorporated in many later carvings; the skulls 
develop "human" features; 5 the geometric patterns become 
common border decorations, and the fronds elaborate into 
wonderful stone bouquets which are the carver's most 
significant achievement. A handful of late gravestones 
carry unique decorations which resemble devices employed 
early in his career. 

Two main design themes dominate Barbur 's mature 
work of the 1790s: the spirit effigies (Fig. 7), and 
the abstract compositions for which a generic descrip- 
tive name might be "frond and hillock" (Figs. 8-10). 
The effigies are certainly delightful creatures, and 
they are often complemented by very ornate and beautiful 
borders of leaves and flowers on undulating vines, but 
there is a uniformity to their conception which does not 
mirror the invention lavished on the frond and hillock 
type. Nothing accounts for the antithesis between these 
conventional (if unusually animated) effigies and the 
unfamiliar arrays of fronds, circles, arches, lobes, 
collapsed triangles, and rosettes which compose the 
other designs. There does not appear to be a relation- 
ship between designs and the doctrines of local 
churches, for both types are always found in the same 
graveyards and they are contemporary. It is debatable 
whether the curious frond and hillock designs have 
specific iconographic meaning. 


Figure 5. Elisabeth Cutlar, 1785, West Medway, Mass 

Figure 6. Benjamin Kingsbury, 1787, Walpole , Mass 


Figure 7. Susanna Adams, 1789, West Medway , Mass 


Iconographic content can be found on a badly eroded 
gravestone by another carver in Holliston for Kezia 
Park, 1742, which depicts trees flanking and overhanging 
a pile of balls. This pile of balls, which is also 
found in concert with fronds on gravestones in the Taun- 
ton area, is, according to C. A. Weatherby , a symbol for 
Calvary." This stone was undoubtedly seen by Barbur 
when he placed his work in the Central Burying Ground of 
Holliston, and it predates his earliest efforts, so it 
is possible that his embellished and stylized versions 
of the design refer to Calvary. Small trees sometimes 
incised into the central element, then, may signify the 
Resurrection promised by Christ or the Tree of Life in 
Paradise attainable through His sacrifice (Fig. 10). 
Two gravestones carved by Barbur in the early nineteenth 
century portray this scene in a more naturalistic fash- 
ion; conifers or palm-type fronds arch gracelessly over 
unarticulated mounds on the atypical markers for Sarah 
Cutler, 1806, and Mary Cutler, 1806, both in West Med- 
way's Evergreen Cemetery. It is, of course, possible 
that these odd designs may be no more than space-filling 
ornament, with detailing such as the trees revealing a 
partially developed horror vacui. They may actually be 
imitations of fashionable urn and willow designs. It is 
also possible that the frond and hillock carvings are a 
simplified, idiosyncratic copy of a peculiar design type 
prevalent in Bristol County, Massachusetts. It is pos- 
sible that the dramatic stone for Amos Adams, 1792, 
represents the Tree of Life (Fig. 11). 

Regardless of any meaning these designs may have, 
their importance lies in the success with which Barbur 
solved the formal problem of organizing decoration in a 
semicircle. It is especially clear from rubbings or 
drawings, which isolate the design from the artifact, 
that the stonecutter possessed a profound sense of 
balance and a keen eye for creating pleasing negative 
shapes in his relief surface. Many of the frond and 
hillock compositions can effectively be read backwards 
from the negative space. This attention to negative 
space was also a concern in earlier carvings, and a 
small group of stones from the 1770s and 1780s have 
playful positive/negative borders wherein relief ele- 
ments alternate with cut outs on a scrolling stem. 

Barbur worked at the end of an epoch enriched by a 
tradition of original designs from the hands of individ- 
ual craftsmen. His last gravestones date from the early 
nineteenth century when almost all carvers in eastern 
Massachusetts were affected by the popular neoclassical 
mode, yet, except for the aforementioned rare 


Figure 8. Moses Thompson, 1794, West Medway, Mass 


Figure 9. Nathan Adams, 1800, West Medway, Mass 

^& ' jr -*" »-^^H 

Figure 11. Amos Adams, 1792, West Medway, Mass 


Figure 10. Elial Metcalf, 1792, West Medway , Mass 


exceptions, his designs remain unchanged in conception 
from those of the previous decade. It could be that, as 
an old man, he was intractable in his ways. He may have 
seen no reason to conform to fashion, just as he never 
saw reason to eliminate the antiquated long "s" from his 
lettering. His market dwindled in the last years to his 
own town. This may be the result of residents patron- 
izing their only local carver as a thrifty alternative 
to importing stones, or the result of Barbur's unwil- 
lingness or inability to transport his gravestones and 
install them farther away than Evergreen Cemetery, di- 
rectly adjacent to his shop. It is reasonable to sup- 
pose that his work was not much sought after, not being 
in the current vogue in decoration, and it seems sure 
that his weakened condition in these years would not 
have allowed him to accommodate many orders. 7 Loyalty 
or conservatism on the part of his customers may account 
for some of the final sales, as many of his customers 
over the years were relatives. 

In conclusion, Barbur's mature art derives from two 
different local prototypes. His death's head and effigy 
represent the mainstream of gravestone design, and he 
shifts to the effigy as did carvers all over New Eng- 
land. The effigies are, however, endowed with vernacu- 
lar traits which set them apart from the baroque pro- 
ducts of such workshops as the Lamson ' s in Charlestown, 
Massachusetts, or the Stevens' in Newport, Rhode Island 
The abstract designs, on the other hand, probably mimic 
a regional invention which grew out of the acanthus 
scroll family of designs. Barbur gave these an original 
interpretation. While many of the other frond or 
tendril carvers filled the tympanum with a clutter of 
multi-lobed, overlapping vines, lozenges, hearts, tu- 
lips, confusing drill-holes, and diaper patterns, his 
are realized with restraint and an instinct both for 
balancing masses and for proportion. ° While this whole 
school of frond carving deserves careful analysis, by 
virtue of the ingenious interplay of figure and ground, 
Joseph Barbur was surely one of its leading exponents. 


Sites of Barbur Stones 

Bellingham, North or Oak Hill Cemetery 12 

Holliston, Central Burying Ground of the First 

Congregational Church 16 

Hopkinton, Central Burying Ground 1 

Medfield, Vine Lake Cemetery 7 

Mendon , Old Cemetery 4 

Milford, Vernon Grove Cemetery 3 

Millis, Bare Hill or Prospect Hill Cemetery .... 20 

Sherborn, Boggistowe Farms Burying Ground 1 

Sherborn, South Cemetery 2 

Sturbridge, Old Burying Ground 1 

Upton, Old Town Cemetery 11 

Walpole, Old Burial Place 6 

Walpole, Plain Street Cemetery 2 

West Medway, Evergreen Cemetery 51 

Total 137 

This list does not include some undecorated stones where 
identification based solely on lettering would be prob- 
lematic, or footstones which are found only in Belling- 
ham, Holliston, Medfield, Sherborn, Upton, and Walpole. 



Probated Barbur Stones 

Name Date 

Nathan Adams 1800 

James Clark, Jr.* 1786 

Mary Brick 1788 

Meriam Fairbank 1779 

Elihue Harding 1796 

Lydia Harding 1795 

Elias Hayward 1783 

Eliel Metcalf 1792 

Moses Thompson** 1794 


Location (County) Number 

West Medway (Norfolk) 169 

West Medway (Suffolk) 18852 

Sherborn (Middlesex) 2516 

West Medway (Suffolk) 17059 

Millis (Norfolk) 3760 

Millis (Norfolk) 8780 

West Medway (Suffolk) 18073 

West Medway (Suffolk) 20133 

West Medway (Norfolk) 18289 

* This stone has been replaced with one signed by Levi 
Maxey . 

** The payment in this case accounts for two grave- 
stones. The second is either that for Kezia, wife of 
Moses, or for Moses, Jr. who died of smallpox in 
Sturbridge and was buried there. 

Nine unspecified payments were made to Barbur in other 
accounts, and these may represent gravestone purchases. 



1 Both a memorandum to Barbur's genealogy in Ephraim Orcutt 
Jameson's The History of Medway , Mass ., 1713-1885 (Providence: J. A. & 
R. A. Reid, 1886), p. 453, and his entry in "The Descendants of Captain 
George Barbour of Medfield" manuscript, New England Historic Genealogi- 
cal Society, state that the man was a maker of gravestones. Harriette 
Forbes' notation in her appendix of stonecutters to Gravestones of Early New 
England (Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co., 1927) that Barbur's work is identi- 
fied, in addition to probate evidence, on the basis of signed or initialed 
examples cannot at present be substantiated. Forbes' notes at the American 
Antiquarian Society do not provide information to support her published 

2 No product of George Barber's craftsmanship is known to have sur- 
vived to the present day, although he was a close neighbor of John Thurston 
whose carved furniture is well documented. Joseph decorated the grave- 
stone for Amos Adams, 1792, West Medway, with a similitude of a carved 
chest panel by Thurston which may, in fact, be a copy from his forebear's 
furniture handed down in the family (See Fig. 11). 

3 A Genealogical Register of the Inhabitants and History of the Towns 
of Sherburn and Holliston (Boston: Damrell & Moore, 1856), p. 13. 

4 The model for this design, which differs markedly in detail from 
Barbur's stripped down version, shows that the central element is a sheaf of 
wheat. The preponderance of gravestones using this motif, which Vincent 
Luti attributes to a member of the New family of carvers, is found gener- 
ally to the south of Medway. 

5 The earliest effigy, for Sarah Perry, 1786, retains the "lightbulb" 
skull shape as well as the triangular nose. It is the only such head without 
hair, with a mortality slogan, "My Glass is Run," and with a frowning mouth. 
Another early effigy for Nathan Whiting, 1790, still uses the bone-shaped 

6 C. A. Weatherby, "Old Tombstones," manuscript, Vol. 2, p. 32, New 
England Historic Genealogical Society. 

7 It can be seen in carvings dated 1806 and 1809 that Barbur was 
enfeebled since the decorations and inscriptions are only scratched in. In 
some of his last carvings, the chisel was walked across the stone to produce 
shallow diaper backgrounds, and the recessed band borders discernibly wob- 
ble. The signature he applied to his will, drawn up in 1807 when he was 
already "weak in body," is very unsteady. It is not known whether his son 
Joseph was at this time assisting with the business. Joseph III neither 
inherited the carving tools nor succeeded his father in the craft. 

8 David Linkon (Lincoln), an early stonecutter using the typical frond 
designs, produced a great number of gravestones from his shop in Norton, 
Massachusetts. Jabez Carver from Raynham, Ebenezer Winslow from 
Berkley, another Ebenezer Winslow from Uxbridge, Cyrus Deane, Barney 
Leonard from Warrentown (Middleboro), and Leonard Deane from Taunton or 
Rehoboth, all made gravestones decorated with arrangements of naturalistic 
and geometric shapes including these typical, unchanging fronds. For an 
initial study of the frond school, see my "Bay Colony Tendril Carvers" manu- 
script, Association for Gravestone Studies Archives, New England Historic 
Genealogical Society. 




Vincent F. Luti 

Narragansett Bay area slate carvers in the eigh- 
teenth century produced some of the finest gravestones 
in New England. The Hartshorn, Allen and New families 
all drew heavily on designs from the dominant Stevens 
family shop in Newport, Rhode Island, and also borrowed 
freely from each other. For this reason, and because of 
possible apprenticeship ties among the families, it is 
often difficult to distinguish the works of one carver 
from those of another. In the case of Stephen Hartshorn 
and his son Charles, it is possible through probated 
and signed stones to compile a list of stylistic ele- 
ments which define Hartshorn stones. With this evidence 
in hand, a group of unusual and beautiful stones in 
Rhode Island can be traced to the Hartshorn shop (Fig. 

Stephen Hartshorn of Providence, "stonecutter," 
was directly descended from Lt . John Hartshorn, stone- 
cutter, of Essex County, Massachusetts. Stephen's 
father, Jacob, the grandson of Lt . John Hartshorn, was 
born in Haverhill, Massachusetts in 1701. 2 He married 
Martha Frye in Boston in 1723 and first appears in 
Rhode Island documents with the birth in Bristol of his 
first child in 1725.3 He next appears in Providence in 
a deed of July 6, 1729, for the purchase of a dwelling 
house and small lot at the southern end of town (what 
is now South Main St. at Fox Point). 4 He is listed as a 
mason, and there is no evidence that he was ever a 
stonecarver . 

His third son, Stephen, the only one who appears to 
have been a stonecarver, was born in 1737 in Providence. 
He was a mason like his father. 5 He married Silence 
Ingraham of Newport (or possibly Bristol), Rhode Island, 
in Newport in 1760. 6 Stephen had a brother, Charles, 
born 1735, who is listed by Dr. Ernest Caulfield as a 
carver, but there is no documentation given for this 
claim.' He is not even mentioned in his father's will 
which lists every living son and daughter by name. He 
may have left his family and home before his father's 
will was made, or, he may have died young. His brother, 
Stephen, however, named one of his own children Charles, 
and this Charles (1765-1832) was indeed a carver, the 
one that Caulfield mistakenly refers to as a brother. 8 
Charles' work is a pale reflection of his father's, 
limited in output, and, barring a few exceptions, dull. 


® fv'endon 

West © 



Providence- ® 
Cranston- (5 
Warwick- © 

E. Greenwich 


©/ Dlghton 

Figure 1. Location of cemeteries with Hartshorn stones 

Figure 2. Elizabeth Kinnicutt, 1754, Warren, R.I 


Father and son worked together briefly in Provi- 
dence until about 1788 when the whole family disappears 
from the records. They left Providence at the time of a 
large emigration of Baptists and Quakers from south- 
eastern New England to the counties east and west of 
Albany, New York, in the 1770s and 1780s. 9 They seem to 
have settled in the area around Johnstown, New York. 
Charles was apparently the only one to return to 
Providence. 10 A Stephen Heartshorne was listed as liv- 
ing in Montgomery County, New York, in the 1810 Federal 
Census Index. His death on January 8, 1812, is recorded 
in Providence records, but he probably died elsewhere. 
Silence, his wife, lies alone in the Hartshorn plot at 
Swan Point Cemetery, Providence. 

The earliest documented payment for a Steven 
Hartshorn stone is that for Abigail Becknall, who died 
November 26, 1772. An entry of June 28, 1773, for this 
stone payment is in Joseph Tillinghast ' s Account Book. 
There is only one earlier reference to Stephen Hartshorn 
in a burial account for Obadiah Brown, 1764, in the 
Obadiah Brown Account Book. Hartshorn was paid for 
"picking and laying the stones" for the tomb which could 
only be masonry work. This date of 1764 is probably 
close to the time he actually started carving. His 
stones are backdated to as early as 1710, but stylistic 
evidence and the number of stones dated 1764-70 give 
broad evidence that he started carving at this time. 

Jacob Whitman's Account Book, in the Rhode Island 
Historical Society Library, was kept by Stephen Hart- 
shorn's brother-in-law, and it includes the following 
tool references in Stephen's account. They indicate he 
was a working mason, if not already a stonecutter, by 

Apr. 23, 1767 to mending a crowbar and chisel 
Nov. 13, 1770 purchase of two steel chisels 

1772 payment for pair of gravestones 
for Stephen Jenkins 
Apr. 6, 1772 to mending of chisels 
Jan. 25, 1773 to sharpening 10 chisels 

He was 22 when his father died in 1769, but Jacob Hart- 
shorn's gravestone bears stylistic evidence that it was 
carved some ten years later, when Stephen was in his 
early thirties. From these account books and from pro- 
bate records, the following list of attributions to the 
Hartshorn shop forms the basis for the identification 
of Hartshorn designs (Figs. 2-7). 




Obadiah Brown 


Providence , R.I. 


Abigail Becknall 


Barrington , R.I. 

Allin Brown 
Providence, R.I. 

Amos Bowen 


East Providence, R.I 

Elizabeth Bowen 


Urial Bowen 


Samuel Watson 


West Thompson, Ct . 

Elisabeth Ballou 
Providence, R.I. 

Martin Thurber 


Providence , R.I. 

John Kinnicutt 


Warren , R.I. 

Elizabeth Kinnicutt 


Lydia Kinnicutt 


Samuel Thurber 



Rhoda Chaffee 
Providence, R.I. 

Joshua Ashton 
Providence, R.I. 



O. Brown Account Book, RIHSL, 
payment to Stephen Hartshorn 
for "picking and laying 
stones," 1764 

Joseph Tillinghast Account 
Book, RIHSL, estate of A. 
Becknall, payment to Stephen 
Hartshorn for gravestone, 1773 

Unspecified estate payment to 
Stephen Hartshorn, Providence 
Probate A1024, 1779 

Estate of Amos Bowen, payment 
for three sets of stones to 
Stephen Hartshorn, Taunton, 
Mass. Probate 26:323, 1780 

Signed "S. Hartshorn 1783" 

Signed "S. Hartshorn" 

Estate payment to Charles 
Hartshorn for gravestones, 
Providence Probate A1164, 1783 

Signed "S. Hartshorn," estate 
of John Kinnicutt, payment for 
all three stones to Charles 
Hartshorn, Warren, R.I. Pro- 
bate 1:504, 1784 

Estate payment to Stephen 
Hartshorn for gravestones, 
Providence Probate A1230, 1787 

Signed "C. Hartshorn" 

Estate payment to Stephen 
Hartshorn for gravestones, 
Providence Probate A1255 , 1791 




Jacob Hartshorn 
Providence , R.I 

Lydia Hartshorn 
Providence , R.I 

Father of Stephen Hartshorn 

Daughter of Stephen Hartshorn 

The documented and signed stones of Stephen and 
Charles Hartshorn provide a list of designs (numbers 
1-20) used for primary authentication purposes. Stones 
carved for immediate and related members of the Hart- 
shorn family, but not documented or signed, are desig- 
nated numbers 21-24 for secondary authentication. Com- 
binations of any elements 1-24 are believed to be suf- 
ficient to attribute a stone to Stephen Hartshorn. 
Other aspects of the stone (lettering, numbers, stone 
type) can be used to give more weight to an attribution. 
Once having confirmed, by elements of primary and sec- 
ondary authentication, a stone's "identity," it is then 
possible to add to the repertoire of attributed designs 
any new element that appears on subsequent stones. Six 
such derived elements are numbered 25-30. In this way 
some 173 stones can be attributed to the shop of Stephen 
and Charles Hartshorn. This is by no means a final 
count, but it is a sufficient number upon which to base 
a study of the distinctive character of the shop's work. 


Bo wen. 


1. Hourglass 

UfUil Bowen- 
3. Spread acanthus 

Elizabeth. Bowen. 
2. Profile rose 

Lydia. Kinnicul 



Amos Bowen. 
5. Drilled pegholes 


6. Wig with knob and coil 

Sa/nuel Watson. 
7. Wig with bump and 



8. Straight feathers in 

Elirabe\KKinnicutt $a,mue I Watson. 

9. Straight feathers 10. Chevron marks 

with stubby overlay 



11. Rolled, etched 

12. Link with button and 


13. Peacock fan 


14. Scroll with carrot top 



15. Scroll with 
f iddlehead 


16. Scroll with coil 


17. Scroll with 

flowering fig 


18. Scroll with fig 


19. Rose-rod vine 

John. Kinnicutt 
20. Portrait effigy 

Jacob HarUKom, 
21. Wig with straight 
hair, bump and 

22. Portrait effigy 




23. Pineapple 

6tflio<A, >&/ 

25. Rolled parchment 
with foliate 


24. Flat scroll with coil 
and hook 


26. Deep-cut scroll 

Lyafa, Sheldon. 
27. Frontal rose 

Abigail Becknell 
28. Pear-shaped bald head 

Lydia Williams 
29. Coined feathers 

Susannah Hoar 
30. Roseate rod with 
pineapple finial 


Figure 3. Abigail Becknall, 1772, Barrington, R.I 

Figure 4. Samuel Watson, 1781, West Thompson, Ct 


Figure 5. John Kinnicutt, 1783, Warren, R.I 

Figure 6. Jacob Hartshorn, 1759, Providence, R.I. 


Figure 7. Lydia Hartshorn, 1776, Providence, R.I 

Figure 8. Hartshorn eye designs 


Given the similarity of many of the design elements 
of the Hartshorn shop to those of the Stevens' shop in 
Newport and the Allen shops of Providence and Rehoboth, 
close attention should be paid to facial features and 
border scrolls. A careful observor of Narragansett 
Basin stonecarving will notice essential features which 
help to distinguish the Hartshorn style. 

The pear-shaped head and the eyes are of particular 
importance in identification. Careful comparison shows 
that George Allen uses the pear-shaped head only for 
cherub figures. All his other effigies present adult 
proportions, and thus cannot be confused with those of 
the Hartshorns which are pear-shaped. John Stevens I 
and II employ the pear-shaped head, but their stones 
lack any other details of design and lettering which 
might be confused with Hartshorn carving. Similarly, 
the eyes cut by the Hartshorns are strikingly distinct 
from those of the Aliens and the Stevens. The distance 
from eye to chin is short and child-like in Hartshorn 
designs, but the Aliens present adult proportions here. 
Moreover, Allen eyes are modeled in a naturalistic 
fashion, with the eyeball and lid correctly modeled. In 
contrast, the eye of Stevens stones are stylized slits. 
Between these extremes lie the Hartshorn eyes, which are 
too large for the ( ir sockets, and carved in a crude, 
bulging fashion. The drilled hole for the pupil 
increases this effect. On some stones, the eyelids meet 
in the outer corners and turn up sharply, creating a 
slant-eyed effect (Fig. 8). 

The Hartshorn border scrolls can be used in con- 
junction with primary and secondary elements to attrib- 
ute several important groups of stones to the shop 
(Fig. 9). However, the scrolls are useful for identi- 
fication only in conjunction with other elements, since 
many Narragansett Basin carvers used similar designs. 
The Hartshorn scrolls were probably derived from those 
of George Allen, although he apparently never used the 
fig-like element favored by Hartshorn. It was probably 
borrowed from William Stevens, reflecting Hartshorn's 
familial connections with Newport. After 1770, when 
George Allen died, the scrolls of Gabriel Allen closely 
resemble the work of the Hartshorns. 

The Mary Buliod stone (Fig. 9e) is verified as a 
Hartshorn stone since its tympanum is the same as that 
of the Abigail Bicknall stone. The Mary Blackmar stone 
(Fig. 9d) has an identical panel, which then helps 
authenticate the rose-in-ring finial design found on 
many Hartshorn stones. The Mary Blackmar stone is part 


Figure 9. Hartshorn border scrolls. 

9a. Nathan Arminton, 1768, Providence, R.I 
9b. Elizabeth Hynes, 1750, Providence, R.I 
9c. Patience Arnold, 1765, Warwick, R.I. 
9d. Mary Blackmar, 1724, Providence, R.I. 
9e. Mary Buliod, 1763, Newport, R.I. 

Figure 10. Sarah Swan, 1767, Bristol, R.I 


of a group of ten stones carved for Roger William's 
decendants, in the small Williams Family cemetery in 
Providence. This group of Williams stones is further 
confirmed as Hartshorn work by other primary and 
secondary design elements. The Elisabeth Hynes border 
(Fig. 9b) leads to a group of ten stones which all have 
double-ribbed stems in the border, a design taken from 
George Allen. 1 ! They in turn have both primary and 
secondary design elements that tie them to the corpus 
of Hartshorn work. 


These are six gravestones in the Narragansett 
Basin with unique designs, unmistakably related by 
carving details (Figs. 10-13; 19-20). These six stones 
are widely distributed like advertisements around the 
region, and on the basis of the repertoire of documented 
design elements, they can be attributed to the Hartshorn 
shop. The problem is not so much to prove that they are 
from the Hartshorn shop as it is to place them in the 
chronology of Hartshorn work. The six stones are pre- 
sented in chronological order, with the first three dis- 
cussed as a group because of the close ties between 
them. The fourth stone is shown to connect all four to 
the Hartshorn design repertoire, and then the last pair 
is presented in relation to the main body of the shop's 
work . 

The first three stones are for Sarah Swan, 1767, 
and Mehethbell Wardwell, 1764, Bristol, Rhode Island, 
and for Molley Danforth, 1769, Taunton, Massachusetts 
(Figs. 10-12). Each stone has some aspects which can 
be considered "old fashioned" at the time, such as the 
heavy baroque carving technique which was giving way to 
a newer, low relief style throughout the Basin. They 
also display biblical and mortuary symbols such as Adam 
and Eve, skull, scythe, and hourglass. However, it is 
on the basis of archaic lettering forms that the stones 
can be shown to be the work of the Hartshorn shop. The 
first three stones probably date to the earliest stage 
of Stephen Hartshorn's career, 1767-70, since lettering 
archaisms disappear from all stones carved after 1770. 
Archaic letter forms all but disappear over the course 
of the carving of these three stones. 

The stone with the earliest date, that of 
Mehetabell Wardwell, has a "y" with sweeping, curled- 
under tail; a hooked "r"; a hooked italic "1"; an "s" 
with hooked serif; and a "t" with an open triangular 
cap. The other letters match those of authenticated 


Pv <^S i 



Figure 11. Mehethabell Wardwell, 1764, Bristol, R.I 

Figure 12. Molley Danforth, 1769, Taunton, Mass 




Figure 13. Rev. Richard Round, 1768, Rehoboth, Mass 

y^iiirvitCCC Z&J768S 

Figure 14. Hartshorn letters and numerals. 


— "SmT^iii i V> i H" ' i» .%<u» u 

Figure 15 

Hannah Tucker, 1767, Warwick, R.I. 



Figure 16. Richard Round and Sarah Swan border scrolls 

Figure 17. Sarah Earl, 1768, Providence, R.I. 


Hartshorn stones. These early stones also display 
inconsistencies in the height of the numerals, a problem 
which Hartshorn resolves first by making all numerals 
the same height, and later by carving them with proper 
variations in height. 

The Molley Danforth stone, 1769, was probably 
carved next, since it still has the archaic "y»" "r," 
and "s" and uncertain numeral heights. However, the 
archaic "t" disappears with the exception of the tiny 
letter on the scroll in the tympanum. He now uses a 
simple cross beam "t" until 1775. The Sarah Swan stone, 
1767, has lost the archaic "r," "s," and "y" and the 
uneven letters. It retains only the archaic "t" and 
the italic "1." It does have a misspelling, "hear," 
and an italic "i" which make single appearances later. 
The Rev. Richard Round stone, 1768, Rehoboth, Mass- 
achusetts is the key marker showing the relationship of 
these archaisms to the documented later letters and 
numerals cut by Stephen Hartshorn (Fig. 13). Both 
versions, old and new, of each letter and numeral 
appear in the long epitaph (Fig. 14). Thus by showing 
that the Round stone is from the hand of Stephen Hart- 
shorn, it becomes clear that the earlier group was cut 
by him as well. 

The facial features of the Round stone are clearly 
related to those on documented Hartshorn stones (Fig. 
15). The eyes of the documented Tucker, Hartshorn, 
Blackmar, and Brown effigies are heavy-lidded and 
bulging, with staring, dotted pupils and a slight upturn 
of lid and eyebrow lines, as do the eyes on the Round 
effigy. Moreover, the wigs on the Tucker and Round 
effigies and the wings and feathers are very close in 
style. Clearly, the Reverend Richard Round stone is 
from the hand of Stephen Hartshorn. 

Given this attribution, we can turn again to the 
first group of three stones to find further design 
similarities between them, the Round stone, and other 
Hartshorn work. The panel borders and base runners of 
the Round and Sarah Swan stones are identical, down to 
the number and type of scratch marks on the fig shapes 
(Fig. 16). The Swan footstone has the rolled parchment 
with foliate extension seen on the authenticated John 
Kinnicutt stone. The Mehethabell Wardwell stone effigy, 
with head, wing and supporting scroll is related both 
to the Round stone and to the authenticated Sarah Earl 
stone (Fig. 17). Note the distinctive Hartshorn puffy, 
heavy-lidded, curved eyes and the pear-shaped head. 
The wings on the Wardwell stone are double layered, in 


sk 4 *-** * . ! 

Figure 18. Abijah Hunt, 1769, Providence, R.I 
KM mm 

Figure 19. George Law, 1769, Providence, R.I 

Figure 20. Jeremiah Randall, 1770, Warwick, R.I 


the Hartshorn manner. Finally, the Molley Danforth 
stone presents a variety of Hartshorn designs, from the 
border scrollwork to the trumpeting figure. The back- 
ground stipling is the square shape used frequently by 
Hartshorn; the scales on the parchment scroll match 
those on the Sarah Swan stone snake; and a sun face 
peeps from under the tympanum arch, as on the Swan 
stone . 

The last two singular stones for George Law, 1769, 
Providence, Rhode Island, and Jeremiah Randall, 1770, 
Warwick, Rhode Island, were inspired by a stone George 
Allen cut for Abijah Hunt (Figs. 18-20). The stones 
share the open Bible flanked by scrolls and surmounted 
by an effigy, but the Law and Randall stones could not 
have been cut by Allen. Allen never used the simple 
"t" appearing on the Randall and Law stones; he always 
carved a thickened "t" with serifs. Further evidence 
of Hartshorn lettering is found in the boxy "R" and "D" 
and in the typical Hartshorn spacing of "RANDALL." 

At the base of the Law stone is a rolled parchment 
border seen on the John Kinnicutt stone, and on the Law 
and Randall stones, the effigies have the typical fat 
Hartshorn face. The vine border of the Jeremiah Randall 
stone is the Hartshorn double-ribbed stem type. Final- 
ly, there is the plain difference in quality of carving, 
as the scrollwork on the Hunt stone is elegant and cor- 
rectly modeled in comparison to the work on the Law and 
Randall markers. 

These six stones are the finest productions of the 
Hartshorn shop, and they reveal the inventive nature of 
Narragansett Basin carvers. The stylistic range of the 
Hartshorn shop also displays the increasing sophistica- 
tion of urban gravestone carving in the years before 
the American Revolution. Like their competitors, the 
Allen and the Stevens families, the Hartshorns easily 
blended classical ornament and traditional memento mori 
motifs. As the number of stones attributed to the 
Hartshorns increases, the shop can take its place as one 
of the most prolific centers of early New England grave- 
stone carving. 


1 Probate Records, Deeds, 20:611, Providence City Hall. 

2 Deane and Pearson, Hartshorn Geneology , (Ottawa, 111.: The 
Elliot Press, 1961), pp. 6-8. We are told that Jacob's mother, Hannah, upon 
the murder of her husband, John Jr., in Haverhill, by Indians, remarried to a 
William Smith in 1709 and moved to Providence, R.I., with the family, about 


the same time Jacob and his family moved there from Bristol, R.I., in 1729. 

3 Jacob's marriage appears in the Report of the Records Commis- 
sioners, Boston, 1883, 9:114. The births of his children can be found in 
Town Hall Records, Bristol, R.I., and in James Arnold, Index of Births, 
Marriages, Deaths, Providence 1636-1850, 1:29. 

4 Probate Records, Deeds, 8:231, Providence City Hall. Another lot 
was purchased approximately across the street on the west side in 1772 
(19:170), and was bounded by the salt river. Other transactions for these 
lots are under Stephen Hartshorn's name (20:611; 21:566). However, both 
are sold by 1788, the critical year in which it appears all the Hartshorns 
left Providence. Both lots are shown in H. R. Chace, Maps of Providence , 
Rhode Island (n.p., 1906), Plate I. One building is referred to in Names of 
the Owners and Occupants of Buildings in the Town of Providence from 
1749-1771 (Providence, 1870). 

^Probate Records, Deeds, 19:170, Providence City Hall. 

6 James Arnold, Vital Record of Rhode Island , Newport County 
(Providence, 1893), 4:36. 

7 Ernest Caulfield, "Connecticut Gravestones xii," The Connecticut 
Historical Society Bulletin , 32, no. 3 (1967), 65-79. 

8 Probate Records, Deeds, 26:91-92. Both refer to Charles as a 
stonecutter. There is also the signed Rhoda Chafee stone of 1784 in the 
Providence North Burial Ground. 

9 Chnsfield Johnson, History of Washington Co . N.Y. (Philadelphia, 
1878), 290 ff. In the 1790 New York Census for Caughnawaga in Mont- 
gomery Co., three Hartshorns are listed, Jacob, Richard Sr., and 


10 The 1810 U. S. Census for Providence lists no other Hartshorn 
but Charles. 

11 The double-ribbed stem group: 
Providence, R.I. 
Providence, R.I. 
Warwick, R.I. 
Providence, R.I. 
Providence, R.I. 
East Providence, R.I. 
Providence, R.I. 
Warwick, R.I. 
Warwick, R.I. 
Rehoboth, Mass. 

12 The sweeping tail reappears on the Mary Richmond stone of 1781 
in East Providence and on the Franciss Dumee stone, 1783, Providence. On 
the Dumee stone, the misspelled "hear" of the Sarah Swan stone also 
reappears. The hooked "r" makes a rare appearance on the Jonathan Olney 
stone, 1787, Providence. The Abigail Brown stone, 1766, Providence, has a 
hooked serif "s." The Sarah Earl stone, 1768, Providence, has a hooked "C." 
The James Blackmar stone, 1710,, Providence, has a hooked "G." All these 
stones are the work of the Hartshorn shop. 


Daniel Smith 


Lydia Sheldon 


Hannah Tucker 


George Jackson, 


Joseph Williams 


Sibbell Mason 


Sarah Earl 


Elizabeth Hynes 


Jeremiah Randall 


William Lindsey 




Charles Bergengren 

By the late eighteenth century in America, there 
was anxiety in some circles about the dearth of culture 
and elegance in provincial life in contrast with what 
the colonists knew was available in London. The old 
country was considered to have the ideal cultural cli- 
mate, and the wellspring of its culture was classical. 
American and English artists conceived the highest art 
to be history painting, which celebrated the noble atti- 
tudes of the ancient art of Rome, newly rediscovered in 
excavations at Pompeii and Herculaneum. This class of 
Americans fervently believed in and tried to hasten what 
they called the "translation" of the arts from east 
(Greece) to west (first to Rome, then London, finally to 
America) . 1 

After the Revolution, however, another attitude 
developed in patriotic circles. This sentiment was 
given expression by Timothy Dwight, poet and president 
of Yale College, and was termed by him "the glorious 
contrast." He combined the patriotic fervor of the 
revolution with the continuing Puritan ethos of New 
England. In so doing he emphatically rejected the 
rococo excesses of English taste and the American intel- 
lectual slavery to such aristocratic models. The man- 
ners, the titles, the ostentation of european nobility 
were stilted; American habits, by contrast, he praised 
for their honesty, directness, and plainness. Dwight 
was often caustic about this contrast. He called Eng- 
land a "dy'd serpent," "tinselled outside," "painted 
tomb," "foul harlot," and, most amusingly, "a fribble 
dwindled from a man. "2 Americans, by contrast, were 
"sunny geniuses," "Phoenixes divine," "plain," "frank," 
"practical," and presumably real men, too. The worst 
thing one could do, in Dwight 's opinion, would be to 
poison these American virtues by making a trip to vain 
and corrupt Italy and thereby becoming a "travelled 
Ape. " 3 

The objects one would see on the grand tour, or 
artifacts produced for the aristocrats who indulged in 
the tours, are saturated with the very attitudes that 
Dwight deplored. They are as mannered as possible and 
they are executed in about as high a style as the acad- 
emy ever devised. Grandiose history paintings in par- 
ticular are full of dramatic lighting, agitated brush- 
work, and the full range of academic technique. But 


they are only one extreme of the cultural spectrum; most 
objects exist in a more complex middle range. Rela- 
tively few people are ever influenced by only one cul- 
tural idea or model at a time, be it progressive, con- 
servative, elite, folk or even popular. People and 
their artifacts are usually more interesting than that, 
because the same individuals invoke different patterns 
of behavior at different moments or in different situa- 
tions. The elite, for instance, often rely on some 
traditional patterns even while they concoct other, more 
progressive styles or modes; and the folk are always 
aware of and adopt elements of the latest trends, even 
as they insist on continuity and tradition. In both 
cases people freely choose among alternatives often 
thought to be mutually exclusive. 4 

Thus the majority of artifacts we can study are 
what one might call "multi-valent , " since they contain 
features which simultaneously resonate both folk and 
elite attitudes. Portrait paintings produced in America 
for various classes present familiar examples. The 
works of John Singleton Copley, Ammi Phillips and anony- 
mous folk masters all inherently reflect individuality 
and ego, but they also show the visual and technical 
restraint associated with the egalitarian American 
religious or folk community. 5 The gravestones of late 
eighteenth-century America also exhibit complex aspects 
of this glorious contrast, both when compared to English 
prototypes, and when identified as being carved for 
various classes, religious or folk groups within the 
United States. 

A full continuum of social values can be found in 
the images on gravestones, ranging from a relatively 
high style (corresponding to academic paintings) to a 
relatively folk style (corresponding to the itinerant 
professional folk painters), to the plainly amateur as 
well. As in folk paintings, the imagery on the stones 
more influenced by folk moral and aesthetic attitudes 
tends toward a nonpersonalized, flat, symmetrical and 
abstract style. Stones which are carved to satisfy the 
individualistic and competitive values of the merchant 
elite, or of the intellectual elite yearning for the 
"translation" of the arts and civilization from Europe, 
tend to be ornate and fleshly reminders of, or monuments 
to, accomplishments in this world. Perhaps the clearest 
examples of varying ratios of folk and elite attitudes 
in gravestone art can be seen in the stylistic range of 
the portrait stones. 

At one extreme are the monuments sculpted to the 


Figure 1. Mary Owens, 1747, Charleston, S.C 


Figure 2. Rev. Nathaniel Rogers, 1775, Ipswich, Mass 


tastes of the very rich, the most worldly class of all. 
This class has traditionally favored realism, and the 
most lifelike, lively and naturalistic portrait stones 
that I have found are for a group of wealthy planters 
and/or merchants who are buried in Charleston, South 
Carolina. Their portraits in stone are all exquisitely 
and naturalistically detailed, even to the point of sug- 
gesting the luxuriousness of the fabrics. One can al- 
most see the sheen of satin dresses in the slate. They 
are also exceptionally animated portraits; the very per- 
sonalities of the individuals shine forth as actively as 
the rustling dresses. Note, for instance, the eyes of 
Mary Owens' portrait stone, 1747 (Fig. 1). On other 
stones, academic robes billow or silk scarves wave 
about, adding to the animation. Some of these portraits 
are also beswagged with acanthus (itself a reference to 
classical Greece), and the Elizabeth Simmons stone, 
1740, features her portrait as a Roman-style bust, 
flanked by mourners in togas. Mrs. Simmons thus 
represents the much desired translation of culture to 
these barren western shores. Her portrait can be com- 
pared to that of Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Izard, also of 
Charleston, whom Copley painted in 1775 in a setting 
filled with icons of opulence and antiquity, including 
an ormolu table, statuary and the Coliseum. The oval 
cameo frame and a nearly three-quarters pose, which 
characterizes these Charleston portrait stones, suggests 
that they were executed using ivory miniatures of the 
sitters as a model. But the animated personalities and 
textures alone would lead us to compare them to the most 
corporeal and lively of the academic painters, such as 
Gilbert Stuart. 

It is important to note that these Charleston 
stones were all carved in Boston. The slate alone would 
tell us that they were imported from beyond the sandy 
shores of Carolina, but the Elizabeth Simmons stone is 
also proudly signed, on the top, "H. Emmes, Boston." 
This fact clearly speaks of the far-flung connections of 
these families via the coastal trade, not to mention 
their far-flung aspirations. It also clearly indicates 
the degree of technical virtuosity and nuance achieved 
by Boston carvers, and the sensitivity with which they 
adapted their product to their clientele. For while 
there are a few portrait stones in New England with 
similar displays of personality, the majority are more 
subdued and sterner in character. Emotion and person- 
ality are diminished, or at least presented soberly. 
These stones were for the most part made for ministers, 
and I believe their reserved and formalized qualities 
are not a matter of awkward carving but rather a careful 


Figure 3. Thomas Chester, 1781, Groton , Ct 

Figure 4. Silas Bigelow, 1769, Paxton, Mass 


adjustment to the Puritan religious ethos still pre- 
vailing in this region, and especially in this class of 
patrons such as Nathaniel Rogers (Fig. 2). These carv- 
ings therefore represent the same combination of cos- 
mopolitan, worldly wisdom tempered by a Puritan or 
Yankee communal ethos as is found in the early portraits 
of Copley. The same carvers supplied, by contrast, 
distinctly more lively and academic carvings to the 
Anglican merchants of Charleston. 

Another ratio of folk and elitist values is dis- 
played in the stone for Thomas Chester, 1781, which 
proudly proclaims him to be a sea captain from Groton, 
Connecticut (Fig. 3). The baroque, ornate carving 
creates an effect of worldly opulence; the foliate ten- 
drils and crowns swirl about with the agitation of aca- 
demic atmospheric brushwork. The wings are delicately 
carved, each feather slightly ruffled. The face is 
fully fleshed with three-dimensional modeling, another 
gesture toward high-style realism. But there is no 
personality or even individuality in this face at all. 
The central effigy on this stone is virtually indis- 
tinguishable from countless others by the same carver, 
and very similar to many more by other carvers up and 
down the Connecticut River Valley. As in folk por- 
trait painting, the emotions are neutralized, and even 
the individuality of the sitter seems reduced by the 
egalitarian ethos of the folk community. The strength 
of this ethos is such that even this worldly sea cap- 
tain bows to it on his otherwise baroque stone. 

Some of the portrait stones of ministers were 
actually erected by their bereaved congregations, such 
as the William Young stone for Silas Bigelow, 1769, who 
died just two years after taking over his flock at 
Paxton, Massachusetts (Fig. 4).° This communal action 
on the part of the congregation removes the tinge of 
egotism that such a large stone might suggest. It be- 
comes a symbol of group unity under the minister's 
guidance rather than the monument to earthly attainments 
that it might appear to be. The image is, like all of 
Young's work, and of folk art in general, artistically 
poised between communal and individual values: crea- 
tively variable in details, such as the variety of 
flowers which bedeck other Young stones, but decidedly 
egalitarian in major features, such as the abstract, 
non-personalized face. And though the gesture is 
active, but for his book, our preacher at Paxton is as 
symmetrically arranged as any of the paintings of Joseph 
Davis or even the painted blanket chests of the 
Pennsylvania Germans. 


At the furthest folk end of the spectrum are the 
totally non-personalized masks of the rural ornamental 
style. The portrait per se . and the egocentric atti- 
tudes it embodies, disappear completely. I should 
emphasize that in these by now famous images of the 
rural ornamental style, it is neither the rurality, nor 
the ornamentality , nor, for that matter, the abstraction 
itself which make these stones works of folk art. 
Rather, it is the degree to which individual expression 
is subsumed within the cooperative community of neigh- 
bors. The best example is the spirit mask carved by 
Jonathan Worster, surely one of the most abstract images 
on New England gravestones (Fig. 5). The reduction of 
detail to basic shape seems incredibly powerful to most 
modern viewers. But this reaction is, I think, exactly 
the same as that of the modern artists who collect 
quilts and whirligigs as examples of abstract design. 
What makes it folk is the communal ethos which demands 
abstraction. Abstraction alone, as in a Picasso 
drawing, does not express this value. 

Other features of gravestone carving and style also 
demonstrate the ways in which egalitarian or folk art 
tends to subdue the visual extremes of the high style. 
These tendencies are visible in all early American 
gravestones in the relative shallowness of the carvings. 
Even on the most ornately baroque stones in America, the 
carving is radically flatter than it is in England. 
Ignoring for the moment that there are also folk styles 
in England, as in Maidstone, Kent, the English stones 
are very fully, even robustly carved. ? Many examples 
are undercut, and even the field of the inscription 
bulges on some stones. American gravestones, on the 
other hand, reach a degree of linearity unknown in 
England except on brasses, and even some of the most 
ornate stones, by John Stevens III of Newport, Rhode 
Island, which also contain some of the most overtly 
classical imagery, are incised, not sculpted. However, 
cosmopolitan imagery on gravestones in America still 
shows a greater relative tendency toward bas relief and 
modeling than does the folk imagery. That it is never- 
theless flatter than the English versions reflects, I 
think, more the lingering effects of Puritan restraint, 
than the fact that American carvers had only prints or 
woodblocks to copy. 8 

Classical imagery on the gravestone is one of the 
most specific ways in which the elite classes could sig- 
nal their allegiance to Old World culture, or at least 
to the mercantile empires stretching back to Europe and 
beyond. The stola-clad youths on Nathaniel Waldron's 


stone by John Stevens III in Newport are remarkable, of 
course. More common are the ubiquitous allusions to 
Classical, Federal, or Neoclassical architectural vocab- 
ularies. Though many of these stones are flatter than 
English versions, they lack nothing in ornateness. This 
combination represents one ratio of folk and non-folk 
attitudes. Another ratio, emphasizing the egalitarian 
plainness and simplicity that Timothy Dwight appreciated 
in rural areas, can be seen on the Neoclassical Anna 
Jones stone, 1841, Hillsboro, New Hampshire (Fig. 6). 
The Egyptian obelisk on her stone can hardly be con- 
sidered a local reference, and by this token represents 
a cosmopolitan and fashionable gesture. But look what 
has been done to the willow. The standard willow motif 
is, like the compositions of academic paintings, dynam- 
ically asymmetric, arching over an urn. Here, however, 
the willow is radically simplified, reduced to a hiero- 
glyph of just a few leaves, and rendered in the formal 
and rigid symmetry associated with the folk style. 

In general, the gravestones sold to the merchant 
classes also share qualities of academic paintings, 
including drama, dynamic unbalance, and transitory emo- 
tions or personality to highlight the presumably spe- 
cial, worthy and proud people they commemorate. The 
sense of drama in gravestone imagery is quite distinct 
in folk and cosmopolitan carving. Actual vignettes of 
dramatic action, such as "Death Snuffing the Candle of 
Life" or "Father Time's Arrival," are as rare as hen's 
teeth in New England and are cut exclusively in a 
naturalistic/academic mode. Three-quarters views or 
other asymmetric configurations, such as John Bull's 
scythes cutting hour glasses in Newport, Rhode Island, 
are a bit more common. Broad gestures, such as Dr. 
Munro's reaching hand in Bristol, Rhode Island (Fig. 7), 
are also much more likely to be found on naturalistic 
stones. Such displays of emotion and personality are 
all on the cosmopolitan/academic stones. 

The glorious contrast shows clearly in the folk 
paintings which subdue the visual extremes of academic 
art, and in the gravestones which tend toward abstrac- 
tion and thereby erase the naturalistic depiction of 
earthly flesh, personality and individuality. Many of 
the visages on stones throughout the eastern seaboard 
exhibit totally neutral expressions. The abstract or 
otherwise folk style stones which show animated or 
lively expressions are definitely not images of earthly 
beings as in high style naturalism, but rather they are 
spirit masks. 9 The emotions therefore represent per- 
manent spiritual conditions, not transitory or ephemeral 


Figure 5. Abigail Rugg, 1746, Harvard, Mass 

Figure 6. Anna Jones, 1841, Hillsboro, N.H 


Figure 7. Thomas Munro, 1785, Bristol, R.I 


moods of personality. And any motion in folk gravestone 
imagery, either represented by tilting wings, or implied 
by streaming lines of force or hair, is strictly verti- 
cal. The vertical composition of all of Samuel Dwight's 
stones, with their smiling effigies, makes this direc- 
tion explicit (Fig. 8). By these seemingly timeless 
images, folk gravestones in the Northeast attained a 
degree of humility and subliminity virtually unsur- 

A final instance of the glorious contrast can be 
seen in the distribution patterns of the stones. With 
the possible exception of the Mannings of eastern 
Connecticut, who seem to have sent their stones as far 
away as New Bern, North Carolina, the urban workshops 
are much more likely to have exported their stones to 
the worldly far and wide. The plainer, more simplified 
or abstract styles are likely to have a much more local 
patronage base. This is another feature of folk so- 
cieties; in "the little community" one feels allegiance 
with the people one knows face to face, and usually one 
adopts emblems or markers to signal this local identity. 

As Peter Benes and David Watters have shown in 
several cases, carvers placed their stones very selec- 
tively, according to religious, genealogical or even 
fraternal allegiances . 10 Thus they become identity 
markers for the immediate community, distinguishing the 
members of each area from their neighbors and unifying 
the members of each community as a group. In this way, 
the gravestone functions as does much of material cul- 
ture to distinguish the inhabitants of different locali- 
ties, or to unify the members of a sect. 

Examples of stones with motifs used as markers for 
scattered subgroups abound. For instance, there are 
the Germans with their flowers, their fylfot swastikas, 
and their hearts, as found in Pennsylvania, Virginia and 
North Carolina. Lawrence Krone's stone for Nickolas 
Tarter, 1821, Wytherville, Virginia, combines a sun- 
flower, a tree of life, and a heart-shaped urn (Fig. 9). 
Krone worked in the 1820s and 1830s; the Germanic motifs 
persist in Virginia well into the 1850s, decades after 
Neoclassical uniformity had supplanted vernacular tradi- 
tion in Anglo-American communities. Another example of 
a widespread subgroup would be the Masons, whose stones 
are found throughout America. 

In conclusion, I should remark that the applica- 
bility of these generalizations will come from further 
studies of the social as well as religious attitudes of 




^/\ JMii'V I lutli HvikI/ oiiior' 

Figure 8. Ruth Hard, 1801, Arlington, Vt 


■•> •"•■Vk'.-t:;-. -r 

Figure 9. Nickolas Tarter, 1821, Wytheville, Va, 


the people buried under the stones. Notice that I am 
asking about social contexts and aspirations, not 
religious attitudes alone. While gravestones contain 
overtly religious symbols, and have been studied from an 
essentially iconographic/religious perspective, they 
also exist in the wider context of a social setting. 
Some time ago David Hall suggested that some of our 
preoccupation with religious interpretations may be off- 
base. H It may well be that the general western moral 
tradition to which he alludes significantly differs 
among the folk groups of some areas when compared to the 
official Puritanism taught at Harvard as folk religion 
almost always does differ from official church theology. 
But even more pertinent, but often neglected, are the 
other social manifestations of this same folk attitude. 

Peter Benes has certainly made heroic efforts to be 
more exact about religious nuances, and to bring social 
and even geological factors to bear on gravestone inter- 
pretation, though the essential thrust of his argument 
remains iconographic/religious. It is a commonplace to 
say that the more naturalistic portraits represent a 
more cosmopolitan outlook, but particularly useful are 
his emphases on those factors contributing to egalitar- 
ian, localized traditional attitudes: genealogy, 
occupational groups, or even the sense of local calamity 
in the face of an earthquake or an epidemic. 12 Gaynell 
Levine has brought an even wider spectrum of folklife 
data to gravestone studies, now adding house types, 
garden layouts and town plans to her studies of the 
trade networks of the Long Island New Englanders . 13 

We can't go back and ask those folk what exactly 
their attitudes were. We can only talk to contempor- 
aries like "Vince," the Kentucky chairmaker who said, 
"For myself I want a decent plain-made chair," and pick 
up some good strong hints . 14 There is no literary 
record of the craftsmen's attitudes on aesthetics be- 
cause they didn't leave one. To imply that they should 
have, as Steven Foster does, is to reveal yet another 
high-style bias. 15 But therein lies the great excite- 
ment of material cultural studies: to find tangible 
evidences of the cognitive attitudes of precisely that 
vast majority that did not write down their every 
thought but constructed their world according to those 
thoughts instead. The paintings by the itinerant folk 
masters and the gravestones by the local carvers were 
for the same clientele living side by side in the same 
towns. Though they have different functions, they are 
products of the same world views; though the iconography 
of gravestones is overtly religious, its execution, the 


style, folk or other, is sensitive to a wider social 
and political context. 


1 Kenneth Silverman, A Cultural History of the American Revolu- 
tion (New York: Thomas Y. Crowell Co., 1976), pp. 7-11. 

2 Kenneth Silverman, Timothy Dwight (New York: Twayne Pub- 
lishers, 1969), pp. 47-48. 

3 Ibid ., p. 48. 

4 Folklonsts traditionally insist on this point. See Richard Weiss, 
Volkskunde der Sweiz (Erlenbach-Zhurich: E. Rentsch, 1946); Henry Glassie, 
"Folk Art," in Richard Dorson, ed., Folklore and Folklife : An Introduction 
(Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1972), pp. 253-80; Simon Bronner, 
"Investigating Identity and Expression in Folk Art," Winterthur Portfolio , 

16 (1981), pp. 65-83. 

5 See Linda Sampter, "High Style in Eighteenth Century New England 
and London," American Art Review , 4 (1977), pp. 58-61, 67. 

6 Dickran and Ann Tashjian, Memorials for Children of Change 
(Middletown, Ct.: Wesleyan University Press, 1974), p. 115. 

7 Allan I. Ludwig, Graven Images (Middletown, Ct.: Wesleyan 
University Press, 1966), pp. 262-71; Peter Benes, The Masks of Orthodoxy 
(Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 1977), pp. 75, 105-07, 185-90. 

8 Ludwig, pp. 271, 274-82. 

9 Benes, pp. 178-83. 

10 For example, the Soule family carved both the old "medusa" 
design and the newer "fish-wing angel" during the same period but placed 
them in different towns according to local preference. The JN carver cut 
his urn and dagon design stones primarily for members of the Artillery 
Company. See Benes, pp. 138-39, and David H. Watters, "The JN Carver," 

11 David Hall, "The Gravestone as Puritan Cultural Code," Puritan 
Gravestone Art , Proceedings of the Dublin Seminar for New England Folk- 
life, 2 (1976), pp. 29-30. 

12 Benes, p. 134; Ludwig, p. 337; Tashjian, p. 110; Benes, "A Particu- 
lar Sense of Doom," above. 

13 Gaynell Levine, "The Material Culture of the Southold Plantation," 
AGS Annual Conference, 1980, Bradford, Massachusetts; "Colonial Long 
Island Gravestones: Trade Network Indicators, 1670-1800," The Dublin 
Seminar for New England Folklife, 1978, Dublin, New Hampshire. 

14 Michael Owen Jones, "For Myself, I like a Decent, Plain-Made 
Chair: The Concept of Taste and the Traditional Arts in America," 
Western Folklore , 31 (1972), pp. 27-52. 

T3 Stephen Foster, "From Significant Incompetence to Insignificant 
Competence," Puritan Gravestone Art , Proceedings of the Dublin Seminar 
for New England Folklife, 2 (1976), p. 38. 




Phil Kallas 

The gravesites of early trapping and trading adven- 
turers to Wisconsin's wilderness have over three cen- 
turies been all but lost. Established cemeteries 
appeared with the more permanent, organized settlement 
patterns of the 1820s and 1840s, brought on by the 
arrival and development of lumbering interests and the 
influx of immigrants. During the next fifty years, 
stonecarvers followed the general pattern of Wisconsin 
settlement by setting up shops in the major transporta- 
tion centers. Carving in marble the popular urn and 
willow designs from back east, these carvers show little 
innovation. But they are important in showing the com- 
mercial development of the trade, a process repeated 
throughout the midwest during the nineteenth century. 

Two of the earliest Portage County settlements were 
Plover and Stevens Point, platted in 1844 and 1847 
respectively, and extant cemeteries date from the late 
1840s and early 1850s (Fig. 1). Many early gravesites 
were probably marked by wooden or fieldstone memorials 
on which time and progress have taken their toll, but 
several memorials with 1840s dates are in existence. 
The Amanda Alban stone in Plover Cemetery bears an 1843 
death date but it is probably a cenotaph. Amanda Alban 
is most likely buried in Sauk County, west of Portage, 
where the family resided immediately prior to their 
removal to Plover. Next to her stone is the George 
Alban stone, 1849, which appears to be original. The 
carver of neither of these stones is presently identi- 
fiable . 

Another early memorial is the William H. Johnson 
stone in Union Cemetery, Stevens Point (Fig. 2). 
Johnson, an early frontiersman, died in 1848. Johnson 
and his marker were moved to Union Cemetery at a later 
date, from the original Stevens Point Cemetery, which 
was located in the center of Main Street in what is now 
the central business district. As Stevens Point ex- 
panded, Main Street was extended eastward. The original 
cemetery had to be moved, and the majority of the bodies 
were reinterred in either Union or Forest Cemetery. 

Carvers and their work can be identified by several 
means: obituaries which are rarely helpful; probate 
records which are occasionally helpful; advertisements 
which are most helpful in identifying firms; and the 
stones themselves which, at times, are signed by the 


» Eau Claire 


Stevens Point 
•* Plover, 


, -Jshkosh 
: r 1 1 nl 

^Fond du Lac 
» Brandon 
. Waupun 
5 ortage 


Figure 1. Locations of early Wisconsin settlement 



•• f 


■ t 


/y *> */ 



Figure 2. William Johnson, 1848, Stevens Point, Wis 


carvers. Though early carvers seldom signed their work, 
there were those who either thought enough of their 
carving ability or who used the markers as an advertis- 
ing medium to do so. Most signed markers are found in 
cemeteries outside of the carver's immediate locality, 
thereby giving further credence to the idea of stones as 
advertisements . 

One of the earliest signed stones in Portage County 
is the Edwin W. Bell marker in Plover Cemetery. Bell 
died on 26 February 1853, and his stone was probably 
erected that spring. The carver's name has weathered 
away but the location of his place of business is still 
discernible — Portage. This is the city of Portage 
located in Columbia County and not Portage County in 
which Plover is located. Extant copies of the Fort 
Winnebago River Times do not contain any advertisements 
for carvers or monuments. The first ad appearing in a 
Portage newspaper, the Badger State of 23 September 
1854, is that of Curtis Adams, with Dr. T. E. Best as 
his agent, which makes Adams the probable carver of the 
Bell stone. 

It is logical that this carver worked out of 
Portage. Formerly Fort Winnebago, this settlement was 
one of the earliest in Wisconsin, and played an impor- 
tant role in the development of the Upper Wisconsin 
River region. When the area was officially opened to 
settlement in 1836, lumbermen and others followed the 
river northward to the pineries. Other pioneers used 
the route, but it was, from the southeast, an indirect 
route to central Wisconsin. The "Pinery Road" fell into 
disuse except for rivermen, lumbermen, and other local 
traffic . 

The first reference to a resident stonecutter 
appears in the 22 March 1856 Wisconsin Pinery , published 
in Stevens Point. It reads: "--Stone--There is a stone 
cutter in town--a good opportunity to test the qualities 
of the quarries." He may have been only a quarryman , 
but it is probable that he engaged in such stone work as 
tables, sills, hearths, and gravestones. His identity 
is presently unknown. 

The 1 June 1864 Wisconsin Lumberman , another 
Stevens Point paper, mentions a new advertisement in its 
columns, for the firm of Pedrick and Baldwin, becoming 
later Stuart and Baldwin, and throughout its existence 
referred to as Ripon Marble Works (Figs. 3-4). Appar- 
ently this is the first monument craftsman advertise- 
ment to appear in Portage County newspapers. 


mm i 


Americas & Italuan Marble, 
MoKunwfTa. Head Stores a.nd Fur- 
situ be M abbls Constantly on band 
and made to order. 

|^g~New Patent Cases for Pic- 
tures tarnished to those who may de- 
sire them. f32T Orders promptly 
filled and work warranted. 

Figure 3. Advertisement, Wisconsin Lumberman , 1 June 



X>«aler* in Foreign and Rutland Marble, 
Manufacturers of every variety of Monu- 
ments, Head Stone9 and Furniture Marble. 
AH orders promptly filled. The citizens of 
Portage, Waupaca, and adjoining .counties, 
arc invited to call and examine our work, 
before purchasing. Prices reasonable and 
All work warranted 

Patent cases for Pictures furnished to 
tao^ who desire them. 

Shop on Blossom street, two doors cast of 
the .Vapts House, Pvipon, Wisconsin. 

«ravfl Pennine, it-, n. b.ildwt.v. 25Jy. 

Figure 4. Advertisement, Plover Times . 17 March 1866 


Cyrus Pedrick, born 31 December 1831, in North 
Salem, Westchester County, New York came to Wisconsin 
in 1848 and settled with his father, brother, and their 
families in Ripon in 1849. Pedrick engaged in building 
construction until the fall of 1860 when he began his 
marble business, which he continued until October 1866 
when he sold his interest to Robert Stuart of Oshkosh. 
Pedrick' s interest in stone continued; he became a 
representative of Flint Brothers, marble manufacturers 
of Rutland, Vermont. 

Henry Dwight Baldwin, born 6 October 1837, in 
Victory, Cayuga County, New York, went to Michigan with 
his parents the following year and in 1857 came to 
Wisconsin. His work in the marble business dates from 
1861; in 1864 he joined Cyrus Pedrick. 

H. D. Baldwin was, for a time, the company's 
traveling agent and the one responsible for delivering 
and erecting monuments. As the Wisconsin Pinery of 
18 January 1866 notes, "Mr. Baldwin from the Ripon 
Marble Works was in town a few days since and we had the 
pleasure of seeing some new designs of work which they 
are now finishing. . . . Mr. Baldwin is through the 
country attending to the delivery of work." And from 
the 23 July 1870 Pinery an item that had appeared in the 
Plover Times : "Mr. Baldwin . . . was in town this week 
and showed us a new book of designs which they have just 
received from Chicago. ..." 

The Times of 3 June 1871 makes this comment con- 
cerning the Ripon Marble Works: 

For the past year they have furnished and put 
up more monuments, headstones, &c , in this part 
of the Northwest, than all the rest of the mar- 
ble establishments combined, which shows that 
the people in this section know who to give 
their orders to if they wish to get a good job 
done and they know when they give their order 
to Baldwin and Stuart it will be filled to the 
letter. Some of our best Monuments and head- 
stones in the Plover Cemetery was put up by them 
(and over half in the Plover Cemetery was put up 
by them) which shows who furnishes the best 
marble and does the best work. They have de- 
livered and set up over thirty sets of head- 
stones in Wausau Cemetery this spring and have 
just taken another large order for monuments 
and headstones to be delivered soon, which show 
who the people of Marathon county patronize in 


that line of trade. 

Their work appears as recently as 1890 as seen on the 
Andrew J. Welton monument in Plover Cemetery, a standard 
plinth-style marble marker signed by Baldwin. 

In Forest Cemetery is the Blake-Mitchell monument 
composed of red Swedish granite and dark Barre granite 
(Fig. 5). Erected by R. G. Campbell and Sons of Berlin, 
Wisconsin in 1893, the Stevens Point Journal of 22 July 
refers to it as "one of the finest . . . ever erected in 
this part of the state." The work of Campbell and Com- 
pany, which first appears in area cemeteries in the 
1860s, did not always meet with such high acclaim, as 
witnessed by this account in the 20 May 1871 Plover 
Times , reprinted from Wausau's Wisconsin River Pilot : 
"H. D. Baldwin, of the firm Stuart and Baldwin, marble 
dealers, Ripon, Wis., has been spending several days in 
our town putting up monuments and tombstones in our 
cemetery. This firm manufactures the best work ever 
brought to Wausau. Mr. B. has delivered and set up 
thirty set of headstones here this spring all of which 
have given satisf action--very unlike the firm of Camp- 
bell and Company, Berlin." Other examples of Campbell 
and Company stones are the Arthur and Mary Redfield 
stone in Forest Cemetery; the Moses, Jane and infant 
Finch stone in Union Cemetery; and the Addison Bell, 
Isabelle and John Altenberg, 0. H. P. Bigelow, and James 
Curran stones in Plover Cemetery. 

Before commenting on the probable routes used to 
bring the stones to the region and on Stevens Point's 
first resident carvers, there are other carvers who 
should be mentioned. One is W. F. Cook. A signed 
example of his work is the Lucy M. Clark stone, 1857, in 
Plover Cemetery. Cook was born 21 January 1837 in 
Manchester, Bennington County, Vermont, and it was there 
that he learned stone cutting. In 1855 he emigrated to 
Milwaukee. According to Edward A. Fitzpatrick ' s History 
of Northern Wisconsin, he opened, in April 1856, 
Oshkosh ' s first marble shop. 1 In 1858 Cook moved to 
Sparta, and in 1871 to Eau Claire where his firm by 1880 
employed four men engaged in monument work exclusively. 
His work appears primarily in Chippewa, Eau Claire, 
Dunn, Pepin, and Barron counties--the Indianhead country 
of west-central Wisconsin. 

Another carver is a man named Carpenter who worked 
out of Indianapolis, Indiana. The Charlie Agnew stone, 
1879, in Forest Cemetery, is signed by Carpenter, and 
all that is known of him is that he did have a sales 


Figure 5. Blake/Mitchell Family, 1893, Stevens Point, 


_ _-.-^r. - ,. - MP- 

Figure 6. Charlie Agnew, 1879, Stevens Point, Wis 




GEE & CO., 


Tomb Stones and Tables,! 


Table and Stand Tops, 

AC.. A.<\. JtC., 

All Kinds of Marble, 

First Poor South of the Rostnti, 

Waiipiin, Wi*.. 

\T7"OUI.D n'i»pci'tfu'.ly inf.. mi t!i." citizens «rf 
W Doii^e, Fond du Lao, nnd ailjoinin^rjHii- 
ti»-s, that they have established, in connection 
with tluir main simp on tin* Fund ilu Lap wail, 
h Branch Shop, at the place above iiii>n!itinr-il 
in tlit* ViHn-jr of Waupun, uiiil uro now pro- 
Jpaic i to furnish 


Of .work in tlii . r line on the. mrf>l rt":i*»>nnldf 
term?, nnd -of the fcrjr IjerU quajJAWund tiui.-h. j 
Wo wish it distinctly 

Our Work in Equal to Any in the IStntc, 

While every one will acknowledge that our jui- 
ces ure anions the most reasonable. Ail we iisk 
i» that von (.-.ill tikI examine <\\: eint.'TM of mrt : 
work, wi-ll knowiii-; that you will not only be &at i 
Uficd but plo«rid. Heiiieiiibur the 

ir.i I7V.V .W.I Ulil.K WORKS, 

and pive us n rail. 
Oct. 16, 1857. 



Figure 7. Advertisement, Waupun Times . 20 October 1857 


agent resident in Stevens Point (Fig. 6). 

With the "Pinery Road" falling into disuse, access 
to central Wisconsin in the late 1840s and early 1850s 
was either by a road from Milwaukee to Waupun to Almond 
and then Plover, or from Portage to Montello and north. 
After 1853, and prior to the railroad's arrival in 1871, 
another common route was from Fond du Lac and Oshkosh to 
Gill's Landing near Weyauwega, by Lake Winnebago and the 
Wolf River, whence overland to Stevens Point and beyond. 
By means of this route many monuments came from Berlin, 
Ripon and Oshkosh. 

Monuments from the Ripon Marble Works were 
freighted overland to either Berlin, Oshkosh, or Fond 
du Lac, transferred to water craft, in which they could 
serve as ballast, for the journey to Gills Landing, and 
then returned to freighters for the journey's last leg. 
However, works of the Oshkosh dealers and of Campbell 
and Company avoided overland transport, being located 
near the waterways. 

The 1870s brought the railroads and an increase in 
population and commerce. Perhaps for this reason and 
because of the relative ease of obtaining raw materials, 
in 1876 the Gee family opened Stevens Point's first mon- 
ument works. By 1876 when a portion of the family 
arrived in Stevens Point, the Gee's had already been 
actively engaged in the monument business for forty-five 
years, the last thirty of which were spent in the Waupun 
area. J. S. Gee, born in 1816 in Virgil, Cortland 
County, New York, learned the stone-cutter's trade at a 
young age in Ithaca, New York. He started in business 
in Elmira, and by 1837, went to Frenchtown, New York. 
The next nine years saw him in business in Troy, 
Pennsylvania, Danville, New York, Fredonia, New York, 
and Penn Line, Pennsylvania. He arrived in Waupun in 
1846 and with his cousin George, who arrived the fol- 
lowing year, started Waupun ' s first marble works. 

Born in Virgil, in 1816, George also learned the 
trade at an early age. Possibly the cousins were 
apprenticed together. The firm they established was 
known at different times by a variety of names, but for 
the sake of clarity it shall be referred to as the 
Waupun Marble Works. J. S. resided in Waupun but prob- 
ably had a farm nearby, while George resided on a farm 
in Springvale, only several miles distant from Waupun. 
It is probable that this first marble works in 1847 was 
located on either J. S. or George's farm, because the 
20 October 1857 Waupun Times announces that their firm 


has established a branch ". . .in the building hereto- 
fore known as the Boston House Saloon" (Fig. 7). The 
Gee cousins were staunch Methodists, having married 
sisters who were the daughters of a Methodist minister. 
When a score of years later the Advance Temple of Honor, 
Lodge #21 (a secret temperance society) was organized in 
Waupun , J. S. was a charter member and one of its first 
officers . 

Two weeks after the opening of the branch, the 
Waupun Times tells us that Oscar, a son of J. S. , has 
purchased the interests of the other partners, and that 
the entire business will be conducted by him in the 
village. Less than one year later, 15 September 1858, 
the Times again tells us that the firm has changed 
hands, this time to George. By August 1860 the Prison 
City Item (Waupun is the site of Wisconsin's state 
penitentiary) refers to Oscar as the firm's proprietor. 
According to newspaper ads he remained so until 27 April 
1861. Two weeks later, the ads indicate J. S. is the 
proprietor. J. S.'s son probably turned the business 
back to him because Oscar had joined, as a 2nd Sergeant, 
the Waupun Light Guards, later to become Company D of 
the Third Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry. On 13 June, he 
received orders to march, on the fifteenth, to Fond du 
Lac. He died of exposure, and he was buried at Arling- 

In early July "Gee [probably J. S.] has removed his 
marble works to his old shop, on his farm, about one and 
a half miles out of town." It can be assumed that 
through the war the firm was operated by J. S. and 
George. We do know that after the war Hiram, J. S. and 
George's nephew, returned to Waupun to learn the stone- 
cutter's trade and remained there until 1876 when George 
began the Stevens Point Marble Works with Hiram in 
charge (Figs. 8-9). It may be incorrect to say that 
Hiram "returned" to Waupun. Even though his enlistment 
papers state that he was a Waupun resident, other 
sources tend to indicate otherwise. The 1860 census has 
him residing with his parents in the town of Plover, 
Portage County; the same census also has him residing 
with his cousin Nelson in the adjacent town of Stockton. 
We also know that by 1879 Truman, another of J. S.'s 
sons, was an active partner in the Waupun Marble Works. 

Portage County newspapers shed little light on the 
carvers Gee in Stevens Point from 1876 until 1879, but 
other sources inform us of their activities. In a vil- 
lage near Waupun, the Brandon Times of 18 May 1876 
states that George has opened a marble shop in Stevens 


Figure 8. Hiram Gee, 1864. Courtesy of the Portage 
County Historical Society. 



Garble Works, 

N. E. & J. L. GZE, Proprietors. 

We desire to inform tic peoplo of StsYena Point 
and the surrounding coantry, that having re- 
cently opened a Marble Shop on the South 
Side, we arc prepa.*ed to manufacture 

Monuments, Head Stones 


Of all kinds, from the beslCTadca of Foxelgn and 
American Heroic. 

Granite Work Famished to Order. 

fT7~Ha7in^ had an cspa-iencc of over IS jesra 
in the Marble Cutting busings', we feci ccnUdcnt 
oar work will givu enUro stlsfactlon. 

Figure 9. Advertisement, Waupun Times . n.d, 

Figure 10. Hale Family, 1876, Plover, Wis 


Point. The History of Northern Wisconsin indicates that 
Hiram came to Stevens Point in March 1876 to take charge 
of a marble shop. A signed gravemarker also helps 
verify the Gee presence. The Hale stone, 1876, in 
Plover Cemetery is signed "J. L. Gee, St. P." (Fig. 10). 
This stone may be signed as an advertisement since the 
Gee firm was new to this area. 

Stevens Point tax records for the years 1876-79 
show that the real estate valuation of George Gee and 
Company property, located just south of the Soo Line, 
then Wisconsin Central Railroad tracks, ranged from 
$130 to $150, while personal property valuations were 
minimal. This probably indicates a small basic inven- 
tory of stones, with only the engraving being done 
locally, before cemetery placement. 

"George Gee of Cheney's Corner's has sold out his 
marble shop in Stevens Point," the Brandon Times of 
21 August 1879 informs us, while the Stevens Point 
Journal of 23 August calls our attention to the new 
advertisement of the Stevens Point Marble Works under 
the proprietorship of H. E. (Hiram) and J. L. Gee. It 
would appear that the information furnished in the 
Times is somewhat inaccurate in that the only listings 
in the 1879 Stevens Point tax rolls are for George Gee 
and his company. It is not until the 1880 rolls that 
H. E. and J. L. appear. Thus it would seem that when 
the Times said "sold," it meant that George had disposed 
of his inventory and operational rights, but not his 
property . 

H. E. and J. L. operated the Stevens Point Marble 
Works in partnership until 1881 when the 23 March Por- 
tage County Gazette, published at Stevens Point, informs 
us that the partnership was dissolved and the firm would 
now be operated by J. L. Ten weeks later the Gazette 
tells us that "George Gee, who started the business in 
this city and afterwards leased it to J. L. [is] again 
the proprietor." 

From this point on it appears that George made 
Stevens Point his permanent home, and he alone operated 
the firm, at least until 1889 (Fig. 11). By 1893 the 
Stevens Point City Directory tells us that George is a 
marble cutter (and owner) of the Stevens Point Marble 
Works and that Billington Whiting is an agent, probably 
for his father. By 1895 George Gee and Company became 
George Gee and Son, B. W. , known to his friends and the 
local children as "Uncle Bink," became a full partner. 


Stevens Point Marble Works. 

maiiutactufacl tilers of 

Monuments, Head Stones 

and Fine Marble Work. 

A fine stock of Foreign and American mai> 
l»l c always on hand to select from, and orders 
rilled tor all kinds of granite. Have had 
over 50 years experience in the business and 
can warrant satisfaction. Do not buy until 
you gut our prici s. Special rates on all orders 
received at the shop. 

Church street, south of W. C. traiek. 

Stevens -Point, 


Figure 11. Advertisement, Stevens Point Gazette , 
17 July 1889. 


Even though George died in 1901, the firm continued 
under the name George Gee and Son until after 1904. By 
1907 it was known simply as Gee's Marble Works. The 
company ceased to exist upon "Uncle Bink's" death in 
August 1918. The contracts and inventory were purchased 
by Haertel Monument Service which was established in 
Stevens Point in 1901. Presently, Haertel 's is the 
largest retail monument dealer in Wisconsin. B. W. Gee, 
at the time of his death, was Stevens Point's sixth ward 
alderman. He had been an alderman intermittently since 
1892. His father George had been a county supervisor. 
George's nephew Hiram had been both alderman and super- 
visor. B. W. was actively engaged in the marble busi- 
ness from about 1889, until his death in 1918. George 
was an active carver from about 1830 until failing 
health forced him to curtail his activities in about 
1895. Hiram carved from 1865 until 1881 after which 
time he considered himself a carpenter. It is not known 
when J. L. learned the trade or when he ceased carving. 
J. S. of the Waupun Marble Works was an active carver 
from about 1830 to about 1900. The dates of Truman's 
activity as a carver are unknown. 

Gee family members were engaged in the monument 
business for nearly a century, almost seventy-five of 
which were in Wisconsin. They were the first to estab- 
lish monument firms in at least two Wisconsin cities and 
were actively involved in community service throughout 
their careers. The Gee family and its monument works 
represent the final step in the development of stone- 
carving in Wisconsin from a frontier, itinerant practice 
to a major commercial business. 

1 (Chicago: The Western Historical Publishing Co., 1881), n.p. 





Robert Prestiano 

Though some of the most significant works in the 
history of art have been related to burials, personal 
memorials of our own time seldom receive artistic recog- 
nition. Undoubtedly, the general mediocrity of most 
contemporary markers, as well as the lack of a psycho- 
logically healthy acceptance of death within modern 
culture, have contributed toward this bias.-'- Conse- 
quently, the contemporary memorialist is confronted with 
the challenge to redirect form from the moribund overuse 
of nineteenth-century stylistic prototypes and the 
unimaginative, mass-produced slab shape, toward more 
sculpturally vital expressions of our own time. Among 
the work of the few memorialists in the United States 
who have attempted to meet this challenge, that of D. 
Aldo Pitassi continues to offer new and refreshing pos- 
sibilities. Therefore, a consideration of his most 
expressive work to date, the D'Ascenzo Memorial, 1968, 
in Calvary Cemetery of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (Fig. 
1), and five previous, formative designs may contribute 
to a re-evaluation of the creative potential of the 
contemporary cemetery memorial. 

An understanding of Pitassi 's approach to the 
D'Ascenzo Memorial, and to memorial art in general, 
derives from an explanation of its conception and an 
analysis of its technical, formal and iconographical 
aspects. The D'Ascenzo Memorial took nearly two years 
to complete, for only four days after receiving the 
commission, Pitassi suffered a critical coronary attack. 
The intensity of that experience compelled him to 
approach the memorial not only as another experiment in 
design, but as a deep, personal statement of his own 
close encounter with death. His recollection of the 
moment of inspiration highlights this dimension of the 
work . 

While recuperating from the attack, his thoughts 
began to drift back to a time eight years earlier when 
he had spent four days at Kenneth's Square, near 
Philadelphia. There he had encountered seven huge 
wagons, which were heaped with steaming manure to be 
used as fertilizer in the extensive mushroom caverns 
nearby. Strangely, this sight did not repulse him, but 
stimulated a compulsive appetite for mushrooms. It was 
his artistic sensibility and the beginning of work on 


Figure 1. D'Ascenzo Memorial, 1968, Calvary Cemetery, 

' v 1 1 A ■ 

Pittsburgh, Pa., 8' x 11 

Figure 2. Working drawing for second die 


the monument which allowed this mundane recollection to 
inspire not only images of growth of new life from de- 
cay, but also a personal vision of transcendent life. 
The challenge remained to translate these ideas through 
the inert, formidable material of granite. 

Art is much more than a product; it is the success- 
ful material expression of an individual creative pro- 
cess. Therefore, to appreciate the essential vitality 
of the D'Ascenzo Memorial, some consideration will be 
given to the artist's attempt to stretch the technical 
means available. The search for form paralleled the 
search for technical solution and idea. Each reinforced 
the other. Most notable among the technical devices 
used were enhanced working drawings, a scale model, 
epoxy , and chunk-glass. 

The drawings, each containing three separate views 
of a single component, facilitated the workmen's compre- 
hension of, and sensitivity toward, the total concept 
(Fig. 2). The elegant contours, expressed through the 
negative photostatic copies, emphasized the three- 
dimensional nature of the idea; while a second set of 
drawings helped clarify the textural variants. Pitassi 
has stated: 

I simply express in the blueprint the age-old 
equivalent of the sculptor's final cut before 
reaching the 'skin' of the piece. At this 
point the artist can step in to alter or per- 
sonally direct the finishing process. . . . 
My test for any blueprint is its effect on the 
shop foreman. ... He must have a sense of 
its form and meaning. . . . Therefore I aim 
for drawing which is more than mechanical grada- 
tion of contrasting areas ... .2 

Such drawings helped develop a common creative mind, not 
unlike that produced through the Medieval guild system. 

However, the most complete link between the artist 
and workmen was the plastilene scale model (Fig. 3). 
For Pitassi the model becomes the tangible extension of 
the initial mental sketch. And, it may be that the 
flexible process of shaping the clay model also con- 
tributed to the elastic sense of attenuated form, evi- 
dent in the sculpture. 3 The individual pieces of the 
memorial were cut with an electric saw, and the rough- 
ened surfaces were produced with a pneumatic channeling 
tool. Later, epoxy PC7 was employed to bind the dies 
to each other and onto the base, as well as to fasten 


Figure 3. Plastilene model. 


four pieces of chunk-glass into the granite. 

Pitassi is one of the few contemporary memorialists 
who has experimented with glass for expressive and sym- 
bolic purposes. For this monument he was required to 
make the decisive break in a large single piece of 
glass. An intuitive blow with the splitter hammer 
resulted in six pieces, from which the desired four were 
selected. Afterwards, only slight additional shaping 
with the pneumatic tool was required to achieve the 
flame-like forms, intended to symbolize the human soul 
(Fig. 4). 

Such technical considerations are related inti- 
mately to the meaning of the work; yet it was creative 
imagination which transformed the skills of craftmanship 
into an appropriate artistic expression. The tortuous, 
irregular shapes of the sculpture appropriately express 
the artist's struggle to find meaning in the face of 
death. The sense of struggle is emphatic. Surfaces 
seem gouged out, twisted, and violently fractured. 
These erratic forms appear to push and pull each other 
in a compositional movement which begins with the inter- 
locking lower pieces and continues through the vertical 
thrust of the tall, asymmetrically placed die. Yet, the 
elegant facets of the tall die maintain a sobering con- 
trast with the more jagged forms below. Expressionistic 
distortions and Cubistic fragmentation are held in uni- 
fied tension. 

Thus, the forms of the memorial sculpturally pro- 
claim themselves. The three-dimensional reality of 
stone is affirmed expressively, in contrast to the usual 
frozen paper aspect of most contemporary gravestone 
design, in which stone is artificially conceived as a 
flat surface to be written upon rather than tangible 
substance to be shaped. The D'Ascenzo Memorial is a 
work of modern sculpture, not merely a convenient sup- 
port for an epitaph. 

Since the contemporary sculptor does not have the 
advantage of an on-going stylistic tradition, as did 
earlier memorialists, the formal expressiveness of the 
D'Ascenzo Memorial necessarily was the result of a slow 
yet steady evolution of artistic thought, which was dis- 
ciplined through a creative encounter with the actual 
conditions of individual cemetery sites and numerous 
cemetery regulations. This evolution may be discerned 
through a brief review of five of Pitassi 's most signif- 
icant previous designs. Three of these were used for 
completed monuments, while the earliest and latest 


Figure 4. Chunk-glass affixed to the third die 


Figure 5. Blake Memorial, 1963-64, North Catholic 
Cemetery, Pittsburgh, Pa., 4'6" x 3'2". 

Wuh IhPil liNdfRbUrfS 


Figure 6. Wisniewski Memorial, 1967, North Catholic 
Cemetery, Pittsburgh, Pa., 6' x 4'6". 


remain studies. The most direct relevance of these 
designs, within the present context, lies in their 
demonstration of a more progressive exploration of 
dynamic spatial involvement. 

The earliest of these is the Blake Memorial, which 
was designed in 1963 (Fig. 5). Its rectilinear die of 
Bethel White granite fits snugly into a depression which 
was cut at right angles into the upper right section of 
the base. The Jet Black granite base, therefore, acts 
as a recepticle for the die, which also overlaps the 
base at the top and at the right side. Further, most of 
the front of the base and the entire die incline 
slightly away from the viewer. This deviation from the 
vertical, together with the overlapping, increases the 
viewer's spatial awareness, while the angled positioning 
allows for more complete drainage and self-cleaning. 

A further step was taken in the Wisnieski Memorial 
of 1967 (Fig. 6). Here a tall, acutely angled die of 
Gorman Green granite was placed next to a lower, separ- 
ate surname stone. Both dies, in turn, rest upon a 
tautly angled, multi-leveled base of American Rose 
granite which, along with the angled shapes of the dies, 
tensely and emphatically encourages the eye to move 
around the piece. In addition, a visual dialogue is 
implied through the dramatic positioning of the double 
dies and carried through into the symbolism. The image 
of a stem of roses on the tall die symbolically echoes 
the words on the surname piece. 

Compositionally this work more directly anticipates 
the D'Ascenzo Memorial in that the tall die stands asym- 
metrically to one side and the angled forms are arranged 
in a complex set of visually interlocking directions. 
The difference, of course, is that the components of the 
D'Ascenzo are united within a singular form. It was not 
until the contemporary design for the projected Ali 
Memorial that the unity and expressiveness of the 
D'Ascenzo were most directly predicated (Fig. 7). 

Although the completed Zukiewicz Memorial of 1968 
seems more traditional in its verticality and certainly 
is unlike the D'Ascenzo in appearance, it actually is a 
more complex design, in which four individual pieces of 
granite are fused (Fig. 8). These contain varied sur- 
face textures and more spatially involved angular con- 
tours, which are tightly and dynamically arranged around 
a central, negative space. Unity also is achieved by 
having the compositional lines of the central dies gen- 
erally continue the contours of the base. Thus, except 


Figure 7. Ali Memorial, scale model study 

Figure 8. Zukiewicz Memorial, 1968, North Side Catholic 
Cemetery, Pittsburgh, Pa. 


for its coloristic variations, the work appears to sit 
directly upon the ground as a singular sculptural state- 
ment, indirectly reflecting the rather consistent ten- 
dency within twentieth-century sculpture to eliminate 
the pedestal. The rejection of an obviously separate 
base, the extension of the topmost die beyond the sides, 
and the angular faceting, within and around the central 
space, all contribute to the greater sculptural integ- 
rity of this work. 

Remarkably, the source for many of these ideas 
exists in a much earlier study for the projected Di Cola 
Memorial of 1953-54 (Fig. 9). Though the forms of this 
work also are essentially vertical, the angled base of 
the surname piece, the expressive, vertical chamfering 
of the dies, and the extension of the decorative relief 
work around the sides of the surname piece serve to 
encourage the eye "around the corner," foreshadowing the 
stronger tendency in the works just cited. Moreover, 
the shape of the bottom of the surname die forms the 
basic motif upon which the other memorials are based. 
For example, if one were able to view the surname die 
from below, the shape would relate to the angled cuts on 
the side of the base of the Blake Memorial. Pitassi 
approaches the design of a creative memorial as a con- 
temporary artist approaches a serial piece--each work 
becomes another evolutionary step within a developing 

Therefore, the D'Ascenzo Memorial was heir to a 
formal evolution within Pitassi 's own work; yet the 
particular power of this memorial lies in its greater 
unity of formal expression and iconographical concept. 

The iconographical context is Christian, and it is 
within this context that the more specific meaning of 
the work will be examined. Although no literary program 
was intended in the creation of the D'Ascenzo Memorial, 
the poetry of Gerard Manley Hopkins has been a contin- 
uous influence on Pitassi 's thinking and sensibilities. 
And, since the metaphors within Hopkins' poem, "God's 
Grandeur," so well parallel the intended symbolism of 
the sculpture, Pitassi has indicated to me that refer- 
ence to this poem would not be inappropriate. There- 
fore, the poem will serve as an indirect inspirational 
guide toward an analysis of the memorial's symbolic 
content : 




Figure 9. Di Cola Memorial, scale model study, 1953 


The world is charged with the grandeur of God. 
It will flame out, like shining from shook 

It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of 
Crushed. Why do men then now not reck his rod? 
Generations have trod, have trod, have trod; 
And all is seared with trade; bleated, 

smeared with toil; 
And wears man's smudge and shares man's smell: 
the soil 
Is bare now, nor can foot feel, being shod. 

And for all this, nature is never spent; 

There lives the dearest freshness deep down 
And though the last lights off the black West 

Oh, morning, at the brown brink eastward, 
Because the Holy Ghost over the bent 

World broods with warm breast and with ah! 
bright wings. ^ 

Hopkins' poem begins by stating an existential 
dilemma. It asks rhetorically why men "have trod, have 
trod" in a world where "all is seared and smeared" and 
which "wears man's smudge." Such phrases bring to mind 
not only the dark tortured shapes of the sculpture, but 
also Pitassi's own vivid memory of wagon loads of man- 
ure. Thus, both poem and sculpture were based upon 
experiences of decay and corruption inherent to the 
human condition. Sculpturally, the intermix of varied 
surface textures symbolizes the unpredictability of this 
condition and the mystery which underlies it. The 
polished and honed surfaces, expressing joy and content- 
ment, contrast with the rougher steeled and pointed sur- 
faces, expressing feelings of disturbance and anguish. 

Pitassi has written, "As the stone represents the 
world in both its brilliant and terrible aspects, the 
roughness is as essential to the theme as the areas of 
polish." In life lyric beauty and tenderness are 
mingled with searing tragedy, and the resultant anxiety 
is expressed sculpturally through the negative space 
which "... works its way around, under, and through 
the form and is captured between the third and fourth 
dies. " 

Hopkins' phrase, "the world is charged," further 
describes the undirected, anxious energy within life; so 


Figure 10. D'Ascenzo Memorial 

. «g& 

. ■ < fi\ 




Figure 11. D'Ascenzo Memorial, footstone 


too the agitated shapes of the memorial seem unfamiliar, 
evolving, aggressive, almost primeval. Pitassi, in 
fact, has indicated that the die located behind the tall 
form often reminds him of the shape of a shark, a 
creature which is at once potentially threatening, and 
well adapted for survival. From certain views this 
piece does seem to have a devouring grasp upon the 
taller die. Indeed, the entire work vaguely resembles a 
prehistoric animal. Yet, as productive energy has 
resulted from the remains of such animals, so the 
vitality within the world, though often destructive, is 
potentially creative. Or as Hopkins put it, "It gathers 
to a greatness, like the ooze of oil / Crushed." Not 
only the color of the memorial, but also the vertical 
squeeze of the compositional mass convey visually a 
similar image. 

These forms set the stage, as it were, for the more 
direct Christian symbolism. The four large chunks of 
glass, which extend from various areas of the surface, 
symbolize the transcendent human soul. In a religious 
sense the soul enacts its drama on the world's stage, 
seeking ultimately to transcend physical limitations. 
In the memorial this is expressed through the glass 
pieces which in Pitassi 's view seem to work their "way 
in and out through the lower dies and up the eleven foot 
piece, to be released finally at the pinnacle . . . 
absorbing light as . . . grace." The glass helps give 
visible emphasis to the theme of transcendence, as 
Hopkins' phrase, "god's grandeur," gives causal and 
existential definition to the charged energy within the 
world. The effect of sunlight on the inserted glass 
calls to mind the simile which Hopkins used to describe 
the grandeur of God: "It will flame out, like shining 
from shook foil . . . ." At dusk the glass chunks 
accent the looming masses of granite by catching the 
fading light and throwing it prismatically in various 
directions, creating an image like that in Hopkins' 
final three lines. 

The epitaphs further complement the forms and give 
the work its most specific meaning, found concentrated 
in the words, "I Believe." This phrase, as well as the 
other words and symbols, is highlighted in gold leaf and 
forms the singular statement on the front of the 
memorial which seems locked into the spatial cavity pro- 
duced by the second and third dies (Fig. 10). Their 
placement, together with the personal nature of the 
statement, give graphic immediacy to Hopkins' line, 
"There lives the dearest freshness deep down things. . 
. ." Could this concave section also be a reference to 


the dark mushroom caverns near Kenneth's Square, 

The use of reflective gold leaf on this dark, 
cavernous background not only gives focus to the epi- 
taph, but also symbolically presents the greater theme 
of transcendent life. Hopkins too was attracted by the 
aesthetic qualities of reflective surfaces. In an 
explanation of his use of the term "foil," he wrote, "I 
mean foil in the sense of leaf or tinsel. . . . Shaken 
goldfoil gives off broad glares like sheet lightning . 
. . . "5 Pitassi not only used gold leaf effectively in 
this work, but he has also largely pioneered its use in 
cemetery memorials. Complementing the use of gold leaf 
was the client's decision to use black granite for the 
entire work. Each strikingly reinforces the other. 
Work and form, once again, are distinguished dramati- 
cally . 

The visual impact of the epitaph lies in its 
economy. An awareness of the need to subordinate detail 
to compositional mass grew in the minds of the artist 
and client during continued discussions regarding the 
work. The original version of the epitaph read: 

Ascend Eternal Soul 
Out of the Hollow Darkness of the World 
Into the Infinite Brightness of the Holy Spirit 

The final choice of a single, concise line seems wise, 
for though the original thought was constantly before 
the mind of the artist and is in the nature of a 
traditional epitaph, the number of words would have been 
visually distracting. 

The central epitaph further contains, from left to 
right, the first name of the deceased, the family name, 
and a contemporary symbol of faith. The letters of the 
deceased's first name, Frank, are arranged in the form 
of a Greek cross, again emphasizing the Christian char- 
acter of the work. In addition, the letter "r" at the 
apex of the cross helps form a type of the early 
Christian symbol for Christ, chi-rho . which also is 
related in form to the ancient Egyptian hieroglyph, 
ankh, meaning "everlasting life."" The letters beneath 
the crossbeam, "a n k," are related phonetically to the 
hieroglyph. The letter "r" also helps form an image of 
a shepherd's staff, relating the deceased's role as 
benefactor to that of Christ as a good shepherd. Thus, 
the deceased's faith, the cross of Christ, and the con- 
cepts of everlasting life and benevolent headship are 


combined within one image. 

To the right the name D'Ascenzo is arranged in an 
ascending manner, effecting a calligraphic interpreta- 
tion of a musical crescendo and emphasizing the meaning 
of the family name, "ascension." Of course, both of 
these notions correspond with the theme of transcen- 

Further, the central phrase, "I Believe," carries 
the meaning beyond that of the ordinary epitaph by 
representing the deceased's own voiced affirmation. 
Compositionally , the larger dimension of the letter "I" 
and its end pieces visually seem to embrace the word 
"Believe." This arrangement again emphasizes the per- 
sonal nature of the statement. An abstract symbol 
having the same meaning is found directly to the left. 
This symbol is of contemporary African origin and con- 
sists of a circle with a vertical line through the cen- 
ter. The vertical line represents the individuality of 
the profession of faith and the circle represents the 
timelessness and perfection of the source and goal of 
religious belief. 

On the footslab this symbol is repeated with two 
vertical lines, becoming a symbol of the united faith of 
husband and wife (Fig. 11). The related inscription on 
the footslab begins at the left with a variant of the 
Latin cross, formed by the first names of the couple, 
Irma and Frank. Here, the letter "r" serves to unite 
the two names. The man's name forms the upright of the 
cross, supporting the name of his wife, which in turn 
forms the crossbeam and asymmetrically extends to the 
right, leading to Irma D'Ascenzo' s epitaph. The verti- 
cal situation of the name Frank also gives it a strong 
sense of rootedness in the dates of the man's physical 
existence, engraved below. These devices reinforce the 
meaning of Frank D'Ascenzo's epitaph, "Father-Benef ac- 
to-Peace Maker," which follows to the right. 

The client, Mrs. Irma D'Ascenzo, who was killed in 
an automobile accident about a year after completion of 
the monument, significantly influenced the design of the 
memorial. Not only did she request that the entire work 
be made of black granite, as indicated above, but she 
also suggested that no subsidiary headstone be used for 
other members of the family. Initially a design was 
offered which proposed twelve small stones, stylized as 
theatre seats. These were to relate symbolically to the 
main piece, as members of an audience would to an event 
on stage. This, at first, seemed appropriate, since 


Mr. D'Ascenzo was a co-founder and manager of stage con- 
struction for a theatre guild in Pittsburgh. However, 
the sculpture maintains greater focus and coherence 
without the multiple pieces. Rather than presenting an 
ensemble, symbolically representing a play, Pitassi, 
through this singular form has touched on the essence of 
drama by expressing the very sentiment of playfulness. 
Amidst the cumbersome monuments which surround it, the 
D'Ascenzo appears free and playful, prancing through the 
rigid formality of its ancestors. 

It is hoped that this review will offer substance 
for thought toward a reevaluation of the creative 
potentiality within contemporary memorial design. While 
fantasies about, and exercises in, disposable art and 
disposable culture are of theoretical interest and offer 
stimulating experimental interludes, as well as momen- 
tary celebratory manifestations, most people continue to 
desire, and probably will continue to desire, not only 
permanent homes, relationships, and social systems, but 
permanent memorials as well. Yet, the memorialist need 
not continue to provide us with endless images of bore- 

The use of more expressive and more carefully 
planned, contemporary cemetery art may help make the 
reality of death a more naturally acceptable experience. 
Perhaps, creative memorialization also will help foster 
a deeper awareness of our common humanity as has Pitassi 
in his D'Ascenzo Memorial. 


1 See, for discussion of these attitudes; Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, On 
Death and Dying (New York: MacMillan Publishing Co., 1969) and Death : 
The Final Stage of Growth (New York: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1975); Ernest 
Becker, The Denial of Death (New York: MacMillan Publishing Co., 1973); 
Robert Lifton and Eric Olson, Living and Dying (New York: Bantam Books, 

2 This quotation, and all following without footnote references, are 
from unpublished written statements of D. Aldo Pitassi. D. Aldo Pitassi 
studied at the Carnegi-Mellon University, in Pittsburgh, under Professor 
Joseph Bailey Ellis and received his bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the 
John Herron School of Sculpture, now associated with the University of 
Indiana. He also holds the equivalent of a Masters of Fine Arts degree for 
more than two years of study in the Academy in Florence, Italy. Presently 
he is working as chief designer for the Birk Monumental MFG. in San Angelo, 

* The geometric abstraction of Pitassi's models reflect his early 
training under Professor Joseph Bailey Ellis at the Carnegie Institute. Ellis 
taught design by beginning with abstraction and emphasizing the potentially 


taught design by beginning with abstraction and emphasizing the potentially 
dynamic relationships between such three-dimensional, geometric shapes 
as squares, tetrahedrons, and spheres. These studies promoted a direct 
understanding of the interrelationship of volumes in space and their compo- 
sitional movement. 

Also influential in this regard is the work of the American Region- 
alist Painter, Thomas Hart Benton. The strong impression which Benton's 
painted figures made upon Pitassi, and the fact that Benton used plastilene 
models for the figures in his paintings, encouraged the sculptor to experi- 
ment further with scale models. 

4 The Norton Anthology of English Literature (New York: W. W. 
Norton and Co., 1962), p. 1239. 

5 Ibid , p. 1239. 

° In Christian art this is also called the crux ansata. 




Amos, 142 

Adams , 

B. , 74 

Adams , 

Curtis, 190 

Adams , 

Nathan, 142 


Sampson B. , 74 

Adams , 

Susanna, 139 

Agnew , 

Charlie, 194 


George, 2, 4, 74, 

149, 160, 



G. , Jr. , 2, 3, 74 


Ali Memorial, 211 

Allis, Desire, 23 

D 1 Allleboust , Ludovicus, 26 

Andrews, Samuel and Abigail, 16 

D'Ascenzo Memorial, 204 

B. , J. , 76 

Baldwin, Henry Dwight, 190-92 

Barbur, Joseph, 133-47 

Barratyne, Thomas, 108 

Beach, Ephraim, 43 

Becknall, Abigail, 157 

Bigelow, Silas, 175 

Blake Memorial, 209 

Blake/Mitchell Family, 194 

Blanchard, Louisa, 35 

Booth, Roger, 75 

Brewer, Seth, 75 

Bruster, Mary, 17 

Buchanan Family, 111 

Buckland, Peter, 3, 75 

Buckland, William, 76 

Bull, Henry, 76 

Bull, John, 76, 178 

Bullock, Elisabeth, 63 

Burditt, Abel, 77 

Burnham, Esther, 36 

Button, William, 116 

Byres, John, 107 

C. , E. , 79 
C. , W. , 79 
Cady , Benjamin, 9 
Campbell, R. G. , 193 
Carpenter, 193 
Chafee, Rhoda, 33 
Chester, Thomas, 175 
Clark, James, 51 
Cleverly, Lt . John , 116 
Codner, Abraham, 3, 77 


Codner, William, 77 

Colby, Ens. Enoch, 50 

Coles, Isaac, 77 

Collins, Benjamin, 2, 3, 4, 77 

Collins, Edward, 2 

Collins, Julius, 2, 78 

Collins, Zerubbabel, 2, 78 

Coney, John, 120 

Cook, W. F. , 193 

Cowles, Roswell, 79 

Cox, Ebenezer, 28 

Cushman, Timothy, 46 

Cutlar, Elisabeth, 138 

Danforth, Molley, 163 
Deane, Cyrus, 2, 79 
Di Cola Memorial, 213 
Dorr, Mary, 136 
Dwight, Hannah, 57 
Dwight, Samuel, 6, 79, 181 

Earl, Sarah, 165 
Earle, Capt . George, 7 
Earle, Xenophon , 71 
Eells, Sibil, 11 
Emmes, Henry, 3, 80, 174 
Emmes , Nathaniel, 80 

F. , D. , 80 

F. , L. , 80 

Fairbank, Meriam, 135 

Field, Daniel, 45 

Fisher, Samuel, 1, 4, 80 

Fuller, John, 39 

G. , J. , 81 

G. , W. , 81 

Galusha, Jacob, 19 

Gee, B. W. , 200-02 

Gee, George, 196-97 

Gee, Hiram, 197-98, 200 

Gee, J. L. , 200 

Gee, J. S. , 196-97 

Gee, Oscar, 197 

Geyer, Henry Christian, 81 

Geyer, John Just, 81 

Gibbs, Gusse, 62 

Gold, Thomas, 4, 81 

Grant, Mindwell, 20 

Grimes, Joseph, 42 


Haertel Monument Service, 202 

Hale Family, 199 

Hammond, Mehetabel, 52 

Hard, Ruth, 182 

Hartshorn, Charles, 82, 149-69 

Hartshorn, Jacob, 158 

Hartshorn, Lt . John, 149 

Hartshorn, Lydia, 159 

Hartshorn, Stephen, 82, 149-69 

Hastings , D. , 5 

Hastings, Nathan, 82 

Haven, John, 135 

Hawley, Sarah, 73 

Heywood, Thomas, 120 

Hodgkins, Nathaniel, 82 

Hodgkins, Nathaniel, Jr., 4, 82 

Hotchkiss, Caleb, 32 

Hovey , James, 2 

Howe, Rev. Perley, 56 

Howland, Job, 14 

Hunt, Abijah, 167 

Hunt, Jonathan, 10 

Johnson, Joseph, 5 
Johnson, Sarah, 38 
Johnson, Thomas, 4, 83 
Johnson, William, 189 
Jones, Anna, 179 

Kimball, Benjamin, 44 
Kimball, Lebbeus , 3, 83 
Kimball, Richard, 3, 4, 83 
Kingsbury, Benjamin, 138 
Kingsbury, Hannah, 59 
Kinnicutt, Elizabeth, 150 
Kinnicutt, John, 158 
Krone, Lawrence, 181 

L. , B. , 84 
Lamb, David, 3, 84 
Lamson , Caleb, 84 
Lamson , Joseph , 5 
Lamson, Nathaniel, 5, 84 
Law, George, 167 
Lawrence, Ebenezer, 27 
Leighton, Ezekiel, 85 
Loomis, Amasa, 85 

Mackintoshe, Lt . John, 30 
Manning, Abigail, 49 
Manning, Frederick, 4, 85 


Manning, Josiah, 2, 3, 4, 47-48, 85 

Manning, Rockwell, 2, 86 

Marble, John and Joseph, 3, 87 

Marshall, Mary, 31 

Maxcy , Levi, 87 

Messenger, Betsy, 72 

Metcalf, Elial, 143 

Miller, Alexander, 66 

Moravia, Martha, 61 

Munro, Thomas, 180 

N. , J. , 87, 115-31 

New Family, 149 

New, James II, 87 

New, John, 2, 3, 4, 88, 149 

New, Marcy , 53 

Noyes, Enoch, 88 

Noyes, John, 119 

Noyes, Paul, 88 

Owens, Mary, 173 

Paine, James, 25 
Park, William, 5 
Pearl, Mary, 65 
Peck, Capt . Samuel, 8 
Pedrick, Cyrus, 190-92 
Phelps, Elijah, 88 
Phippene, Joseph, 21 
Pidge, Lt . Josiah, 64 
Pitassi, D. Aldo, 203-20 
Pond, Lois, 22 
Prentice, Thomas, 67 

Randall, Jeremiah, 167 
Ritter, Daniel, 89 
Roberts, Jonathan, 89 
Round, Rev. Richard, 164 
Rugg, Abigail, 179 

Shays, Daniel, 5 

Sikes, C. and E. , 89 

Sloss, Sarah, 24 

Smith, Sarah, 55 

Soule, Beza, 2, 3, 89 

Soule, Coomer, 91 

Spalding, Stephen, 1, 91 

Stearns, Booz, 60 

Stevens Family, 149, 160 

Stevens, John II, 4 

Stevens, John III, 3, 91, 177-78 


Stevens, Pompe , 4, 94 
Stewart, Jonas, 94 
Sukiewicz Memorial, 211 
Sumner, Samuel, 40 
Sumner, Seth, 29 
Swan, Sarah, 161 
Symons, Susanna, 106 

Tarter, Nickolas, 183 
Taylor, John, 69 
Thomas, Deborah, 119 
Thompson, Moses, 141 
Throop, Lt. William, 94 
Tingley , Samuel, 2, 95 
Tinney, Ebenezer, 70 
Thomson, Cephas, 94 
Toplift, Margaret, 37 
Tucker, Hannah, 165 
Tyler, Hopstill, 41 

Van Veen, Otto, 126-27 
Vinson, Mary Lawton, 13 

Walden, John, 3, 95 
Walden, John II, 95 
Walden, John III, 95 
Waldron, Nathaniel, 3 
Wardwell, Mehethabell, 163 
Warren, Jotham, 96 
Watson, Samuel, 34, 157 
Webster, Abel, 2, 3, 96 
Webster, Hannah, 68 
Webster, Nicholas and Ann, 15 
Webster, Stephen, 3, 96 
West Children, 12 
White, Robert, Jr., 18 
Wickham, Mary, 58 
Winslow, B. L. , 96 
Winslow, Ebenezer, 96 
Wisniewski Memorial, 209 
Worcester, Moses, 3, 6 
Worster, Jonathan, 177 
Wright, Alpheus, 96 
Wright, Moses, 97 
Wright, Solomon, Jr., 97 
Wyatt , J. , 3 

Young, William, 176 

Zuricher, John, 97 



Charles Bergenren, a frequent presentor at the Associa- 
tion for Gravestone Studies Annual Conference, is a 
Doctoral Candidate in Folklore at the University of 

Michael Cornish is a graduate of the Art History Depart- 
ment of the Massachusetts College of Art. He has held 
the position of archives vice president for the Associa- 
tion for Gravestone Studies for two years, and is now in 
the first year of a term as conservation vice president. 
He is a woodworker currently making picture frames for a 
large shop in Cambridge, Massachusetts. 

Phil Kallas writes about Wisconsin gravestones, and he 
has been a guest editor of the Association for Grave- 
stone Studies Newsletter . 

Sue Kelly and Anne Williams are noted for their grave 
rubbings of New England stones. Their A Grave Business : 
New England Gravestone Rubbings , A Selection was pub- 
lished to accompany an exhibit of rubbings which has 
travelled to various museums in New England. 

Vincent Luti is a Professor of Art at Southeastern 
Massachusetts University. He has lectured and written 
extensively on the stonecarvers of the Narragansett 
Basin . 

Robert Prestiano is an Associate Professor of Art at 
Angelo State University, San Angelo, Texas. He has pub- 
lished articles on Pitassi and on late nineteenth- 
century architecture in Chicago. He is currently writ- 
ing a book on Oscar and F. E. Ruffini, pioneer archi- 
tects of West and Central Texas. 

David Watters is the author of " With Bodilie Eyes": 
Eschatological Themes in Puritan Literature and Grave - 
stone Art and several articles on early American litera- 
ture. He teaches in the English Department at the 
University of New Hampshire. 

Betty Willsher is the author, with Doreen Hunter, of 
STONES : 18th Century Scottish Gravestones . She is a 
resident of St. Andrew, Scotland.