We don't frequently see genuine epitaphs carved on headstones of those recently buried. I'm not sure when these inscriptions went out of vogue but they were around from the time anyone thought marking permanent graves with stone was a good idea. I've known people who refused any marker whatsoever, cremated, ashes spread to the wind somewhere, they left it to those left behind to remember them their won way. To each his own. We see brief sentences or one or two words. " Our Angel ' bespeaks someone's tragedy as well as a paragraph could convey.
Still, they're awfully interesting and not really ghoulish. These few words remarking someone's life can be a terrific look at History and who walked through Time when- and how. I've been on the watch for ACW epitaphs, a little tough to find so if anyone has one, please feel free to add?
Found a few of these. Soldiers' epitaphs tend towards sounding the same no matter which war. One from the UK, 400 years ago, not ACW but a soldier.
" Kings and Dragoons when call'd must march away ". So must they all.
A Union soldier's grave sported this ( don't ask me where, lost the source )
" Mustered Out ".
Another soldier, probably from a family of wealth. Those carved words could be pricey.
Some seem a warning to be nice in life or risk being forever known for earthly deeds.
- a notorious miser
And a well known liar
A commentary of something we'll never know;
There's also a lesson in not giving one's friend who has a sense of humor the task of burying you.
THEN there's the descriptive narration about how someone got there.
Humor can even lighten death.
Can you imagine? It does beat ' RIP '.
Quite a few quite lovely inscriptions give you a sense of the person being remembered.
Had to have been a fellow sailor memorializing Ben, no one else could come up with that.
We'd been at this for centuries. Epitaphs of soldiers killed between 1861 and 1865 seem hard to find. Despite our thousands of graves in National Cemeteries marking only name, dates and regiments there are headstones scattered through cemeteries North and South bearing inscriptions inclusive of epitaphs. If anyone know of one they'd be willing to share, would you mind adding it please?