Monday, March 15, 2010

The fittest men resting in eternal peace

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Yesterday, in a desire for a tranquil and quiet afternoon in Sunday sunshine, my wife and I visited the oldest officially established graveyards in Sacramento, the Sacramento City Cemetery. It was established in 1849 with a donation of 10 acres by Captain John Sutter. A subsequent donation of land by Margaret Crocker in 1880 brought the Sacramento City Cemetery to its present size of about 60 acres.

The Sacramento City Cemetery is the resting place of more than 25,000 pioneers, immigrants, and their families and descendents. Among the notables who call it their “home” are the city’s founder Captain John A. Sutter, Jr. and other “big shots” from the early years of Sacramento and the Gold Rush Era.

Thousands of early settlers are buried in this historic cemetery representing the historical and cultural diversity of Sacramento with symbolic monuments of Victorian-era funeral customs. Many of the old graves of those of babies or children who died in floods because there were many floods in early Sacramento before the entire city was raised in order to escape river flooding. There were also lots of fires during these floods so there are lot of families buried here who died in the flames as well.

I’ve always been fascinated by cemeteries and have visited many in other cities and countries. My calculating-thirsty mind always wants to do the math as I walk past each gravesite and figure out how old the person was when they passed on from information etched on the tombstone. While people didn’t live as long as we do now, some nonetheless lived very long lives, making me wonder what their “secret” was.

Our visit was a very relaxing couple hours on a beautiful Sunday afternoon with wonderful sunshine providing a welcoming reminder that spring begins in about one week with flowers in blossom and birds chirping in a melody so pleasant to my ears, mind and spirit.

As our stay ended, thoughts entered my mind of coming back soon for another visit, and that one day I’ll make a one-way trip to St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery that will be my final resting place. Until that day comes, I’ll continue chasing good fitness and health to prepare me to be among the fittest men resting in eternal peace.

Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum

1 comment:

fishhead said...

I like to do that too--walk through cemeteries. There's one in the Smoky Mtns, at Cades Cove that I love to walk through. It's right behind a little white Methodist church. Sadly, here are alot of children/babies buried there.

Sounds like you had a nice afternoon.
Have a great week :)