Putting the ‘Rave’ Back in Grave! is the motto of three Massachusetts women who have made it their mission to “entertain and educate on the historical perspective of old cemeteries by documenting and preserving the beautiful art they contain.”
I met GG Brenda Sullivan of The Gravestone Girls at the recent New England Regional Genealogical Conference in Springfield, Massachusetts and learned more about their work.
With a background in art history, the Gravestone Girls research cemetery and mortuary art and give educational presentations at schools and organizations. They specialize in recreating gravestone iconography using a casting technique that replicates the stone’s art and images without damage to the original surface. The three-dimensional plaques are hand formed and finished in a process they perfected.
Initially, the Gravestone Girls focused on creating a variety of artistic items, from jewelry to wall wallhangings to magnets. Since their “discovery” by genealogists, they have also replicated ancestral headstones for clients and made small surname magnets for family reunion fundraisers. Their work is frequently sought by historic associations and societies to be used as a fundraising activity.
An hourglass tells you time is passing.
One with wings reminds you it is passing swiftly.
This graceful glass adorns the gravestone of William Field who died April 10, 1772
and is buried in St. John’s Cemetery, Providence, Rhode Island.
You can read more about The Gravestone Girls at their website, www.gravestonegirls.com.