Sunday, April 12, 2009

Cemetery Sunday: St. James grave yard in Wilmington, NC

I've had less time to write new posts for the blog - this is a very late "Cemetery Sunday", in a few more weeks hopefully I'll have more time I hope. Anyway, today's cemetery is attached to the St. James Episcopal Church in Wilmington, NC. It's one of the older grave yards in the area, with graves dating to the 18th century. Unfortunately when I got there they had just locked the gate, so I had to make use of a zoom lens and try to get decent shots. Here's the church's historic marker:


Here's a couple of interesting headstones:


This particular cemetery has a ghost story associated with it. It seems that a young man, Alexander, and his friend, Samuel, were constant companions. During an outing, Samuel was thrown from his horse and pronounced dead. He was duly buried with the proper ceremony and the heartbroken Alexander sat in his chamber that night, overwhelmed with grief. Suddenly he noticed a figure standing beside the fear. He called, and the figure turned - it was none other than Samuel! "Alexander, I am not dead! You must dig me up!", cried the specter. Alexander yelled out and the specter vanished. For three nights this continued. Finally, Alexander gained permission to exhume his friends body - granted, but only after he promised to keep the deed secret so as not to attract curiosity seekers. Around midnight, Alexander and another young man dug up Samuel's coffin and discovered to their horror that the satin lining of the coffin was in bloody tatters, and the body of Samuel lay with his fingers bloodied, face down, his face contorted in a grimace of absolute horror. Wilmington has its share of ghost stories, and the cemetery looks the part, with the trees covered by Spanish Moss and the old slate and marble stones.


The cemetery is home to the mortal remains of soldiers, politicians, bishops, and townfolk. In addition there are headstones made of slate, marble, and what appears to be brown New England sandstone (a rarity in North Carolina). It's certainly worth a visit if you're in Wilmington! Here's some more pictures from the cemetery to close out this post:


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