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Sunday, April 21, 2013

Graves Torn Open and Headstones Damaged in Fredericksburg Confederate Cemetery, AGAIN!

     Nearly three years after a freak storm struck Fredericksburg's Confederate Cemetery, uprooting a large tree and tearing open graves (see story from July 2010), another fast, and violent storm swept through the area on Friday, April 19, 2013. This time the damage was manifest in the uprooting of a massive tree, the roots of which ripped open several graves and damaged numerous headstones. An examination of the site on Saturday did not reveal exposed human remains, but the damage to the ground and untold headstones was seen to be extensive. One marker was totally pulled from the ground and cast aside, unbroken. The massive tree appears to have stood approximately 108 feet, and probably 5 feet in diameter. As it came crushing down branches broke surrounding stones, and the giant trunk likely hammered several, straight down into the ground as it landed. This was the last of four historic trees that had been planted near the four corners of the center monument, dedicated in 1884. Further details of the storm and its wrath can be found by clicking here.
Click on any image for larger viewing.

 The massive root base opened numerous graves.
 This stone was uprooted and cast aside, unbroken.
 Its inscription indicates it was for a "Richard Jett", from Texas.
A search through several record sources did not reveal a positive
correlation to known soldiers from Texas fighting in the area.
The name engraved is perhaps a misspelling.
 Uprooted and broken stones abound.

 Approximately 108 feet tall, it effected numerous stones.
 Trees in the civilian sections also damaged stones.

 Your blog host stands next to the root base.
The roots tore through several graves.
The entrance gate to the cemetery, on Washington Avenue.
Additional damage, perhaps previous vandalism and not storm related,
is seen in the extreme shift of this column on the southwest corner of
the center monument. Could a 90 mile an hour wind gust shifted this?


Anonymous said...

Wow. Hopefully the damage isn't irreparable. Guess its another reminder of how powerful and relentless mother nature is.

Gene said...

Great blog John. I'm sad to see all the devastastion in the resting area of America's best. I've spent many of hours in that cemetary day dreaming. I hope thiers resources to restore the grounds to what they were. I love Fredericksburg, the history and geneologly are awesome. My fathers family has been there for hundreds of years in the Eley Ford area and many family members are buried at Salem church, Wilderness church ETC...
Anyway keep up the good work, I'm glad I found your blog.