Need more excitement in your life? Nothing good on T.V.?
Tune in tonight,( September 15th) at 10 p.m. for the first ever (but not the last) So you think you know Oak Grove Cemetery? Jeopardy-style online quiz.
Questions and photo identifications will be posted in rapid fire, each going up after the previous one has been correctly answered. There will be one winner, with difficult brainbusters in case of a tie. Join us at Friends of Oak Grove Fall River tonight. A prize will be awarded to the winner- and the competition will be fierce! How well do YOU know Oak Grove?
One type of monument especially popular from the Civil War through 1900 is the white bronze or zinc monument. White bronze is a misnomer, for the monument is not made of bronze, but rather zinc or more rarely, iron. The final patina is whitish to pale blue to darker blue, and the great benefit of this type of monument is that the embossed metal panels and ornaments hold epitaphs and images in sharp relief for a very long time. They seem to take the weather, moss and lichen growth and acid rain exceptionally well. The only drawback is that attached elements, such as a top urn, can be easily snapped off, and seams, especially at the base, can separate. With the proper method of repair, however, this is not much of a problem, but trouble results when concrete is used as a filler. The zinc monument offers a good crisp image for monument rubbing using rice paper and soft heelball wax. For more information on zinc monuments, visit these two links below. Oak Grove has many beautiful examples of this monument type.
The first sight which captures the eye when passing under the great granite arch of Oak Grove is the obelisk given by Colonel Richard Borden in memory of fallen Union soldiers. Row upon row of simple white marble markers are reminders of the dark days of the Civil War and those who made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty. This is a peaceful place at sunset when shafts of golden light fall through the trees upon the pale stones.
Abide With Me, tune Eventide by William H. Monk 1861 Words by Henry F. Lyte
Abide with me; fast falls the eventide;
The darkness deepens; Lord with me abide.
When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
Help of the helpless, O abide with me.
Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day;
Earth’s joys grow dim; its glories pass away;
Change and decay in all around I see;
O Thou who changest not, abide with me.
I fear no foe, with Thee at hand to bless;
Ills have no weight, and tears no bitterness.
Where is death’s sting? Where, grave, thy victory?
I triumph still, if Thou abide with me.
The concept of a beautifully -landscaped park where families might come to visit departed Loved Ones was first fully-realized in London’s Highgate and Cambridge’s Mount Auburn. The Victorians rivalled the Ancient Egyptians in their ritual observances of death and burial, monuments and memorials. Beautiful Oak Grove Cemetery in the North end of Fall River is one of many New England mid- century Victorian memorial parks where the streets are named for trees, and fanciful wrought iron gates enclose the fine families of the city like fences of stately homes in the earthly life.
For those who love cemeteries, – the peacefulness and quiet of the Past- Oak Grove holds unparalleled verdant vistas and peerless carved monuments of another age. Whether a student of Victorian symbolism , or of Fall River history- a pensive hour spent in silence at Oak Grove is a retreat from the pressures of modern society, and a glimpse into the intriguing past of the city’s notable citizens.
Plagued with the problems all cemeteries are faced with today, vandalism, landscaping and maintenance costs, security, lack of volunteerism, etc. -perhaps now is the time for those who truly appreciate the heritage and history enclosed within the gates and walls of Oak Grove to come together.