Remembering the Past

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For many, All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day (Nov. 1 and 2 respectively) are times to visit loved ones’ final resting places. In southeast Louisiana, November 1 is a day to clean gravesites. Families with Mexican heritage might observe Dia de Muertos, or Day of the Dead, to remember family and friends that have died.

Visiting the final resting places of famous (and infamous) rulers, presidents and entertainers are common traveling stops, while others may enjoy touring established graveyards for genealogical research or reflection.

If cemeteries or burial rituals fascinate you, add these titles to your to-be-read list:

199 Cemeteries to See Before You Die by Loren Rhoads

The Complete Tutankhamun: The King, The Tomb, The Royal Treasure by Nicholas Reeves

The Dead Beat: Lost Souls, Lucky Stiffs, and the Perverse Pleasure of Obituaries by Marilyn Johnson

Do I Have to Wear Black to a Funeral? 112 Etiquette Guidelines for the New Rules of Death by Florence Isaacs

From Here to Eternity: Traveling the World to Find the Good Death by Caitlin Doughty

Hidden History: African American Cemeteries in Central Virginia by Lynn Rainville

The King’s Grave: The Discovery of Richard III’s Lost Burial Place and the Clues it Holds by Philippa Langley and Michael Jones

Obit, an inside look at life on the New York Times obituary desk (DVD)

Stories in Stone: A Field Guide to Cemetery Symbolism and Iconography by Douglas Keister

The Unknowns: The Untold Story of America’s Unknown Soldier and WWI’s Most Decorated Heroes Who Brought Him Home by Patrick K. O’Donnell

Your Guide to Cemetery Research by Sharon DeBartolo Carmack


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