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Illusion’s Play

Headstone for Edward LeRoy Tabler (1840-1866) in Aux Sable Cemetery, on Brown Road south of E. Shady Oaks Road, Minooka, Grundy County, Illinois. Edward served in Company K, 51st Illinois Volunteer Infantry during the Civil War. The 51st Illinois was in Maj. Gen. Oliver O. Howard’s IV Corps in the Union Army of the Cumberland during the Atlanta Campaign. Edward survived the war, only to get kicked in the head by a mule and die at the age of 25.

Aux Sable is a quaint, garden-like cemetery tucked in the woods near Aux Sable Creek. The nearby town of Minooka was platted in 1852, so the cemetery probably dates back to that time. Despite an otherwise mundane existence, it continues to be an incubator for ghost stories. The most notable concerns the ghost of a young girl that has been seen lurking around the cemetery. A remote cemetery, hidden from prying eyes and a favorite drinking spot for teens, was a natural incubator for such rumors.

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Under Ebony Shades

Sarcophagus for an unknown individual in Church Street Graveyard, at Monroe Street and S. Washington Avenue, in Mobile, Mobile County, Alabama.

Church Street Graveyard was established in 1819 and closed in 1898, although a few burials have taken place since then. It is known for the Boyington Oak, which according to legend sprouted over the grave of convicted murderer Charles R.S. Boyington. Passersby have reported hearing sighs, sobbing, and even the voice of Charles Boyington himself proclaiming his innocence.

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The Changing of Times

Headstone for “Red Bone” Johnson in Beauvoir Confederate Cemetery, 2244 Beach Boulevard, Biloxi, Harrison County, Mississippi. Johnson served in Company I, 31st Alabama. The 31st Alabama was garrisoned at Vicksburg and later joined the Confederate Army of the Tennessee, fought in the Atlanta Campaign, and marched with John Bell Hood into Tennessee in 1864.

The Jefferson Davis Soldiers Home opened on the grounds of Beauvoir Mansion, one-time home of former Confederate President Jefferson Davis, in 1903 and operated until the 1950s. It was home to around 1,800 Civil War veterans and widows of Confederate soldiers. Roughly 780 of them are buried in the cemetery located on the property.

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When the Sun Sleeps

Bacon family plot in Bonaventure Cemetery, 330 Bonaventure Road, Savannah, Chatham County, Georgia. There are at least eight members of the Bacon family interred here, including Albert Sumner Bacon (1844-1920) and his wife Ruby Williams (1845-1929). Albert S. Bacon served in B Co., 8th Georgia Volunteer Infantry Regiment during the American Civil War. The 8th Georgia was in Maj. Gen. John Bell Hood’s Division in Longstreet’s Corps. Albert was severely wounded in the face on July 2, 1863 at the Battle of Gettysburg, but survived the war and lived to be 76.

John Mullryne’s plantation, with its tree-lined avenues, once occupied this 160-acre site. Mullryne was an English colonel who was granted the land in the 1760s. He named it “Bonaventure,” which is Italian for “good fortune.” Peter Wiltberger purchased Bonaventure in 1846 and his son William turned it into Evergreen Cemetery 22 years later. The haunting, picturesque scenery led one statue, called “Bird Girl,” to appear on the cover of John Berendt’s novel Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (1994).

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Silence of the Passed

Headstone for Nellie Hogan Gray (1861-1880) in Oakwood Cemetery, 50 101st Street, Troy, Rensselaer County, New York. Nellie was the wife of George W. Gray and died at the age of 19, however, she is not buried with her spouse. The inscription reads:

Loving wife you left me here alone
without a friend my sorrow to condole
If in Heaven’s bliss we meet once more
with you I will stay and hurt never more

“Condole” means to express sympathy with a person who is suffering sorrow, misfortune, or grief.

This 300-acre cemetery was established in 1848 and designed in rural style. It offers a beautiful view of the Hudson Valley and contains the remains of over 16,000 people, including Samuel “Uncle Sam” Wilson.

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