13 Nov 2016



BACK COVER BLURB: A Fine and Private Place: Jesmond Old Cemetery tells the remarkable story of Newcastle's own necropolis since its opening in 1836. This 'Highgate of the North' contains a wealth of social history. 

From merchants to murder victims, from philanthropists to fever fatalities, Alan Morgan also describes over 100 of the famous - and not so famous - who lie in Jesmond Old Cemetery. John Dobson, the founder of Fenwick's, Bainbridge's, Malings, the Hancock Museum, and many others who helped shape the city we know today, found their last resting place here.

The haunting beauty of the cemetery, and some extraordinary examples of the monumental mason's art, are celebrated in fine photography.

FIRST SENTENCE {DUST TO DUST: AN INTRODUCTION TO JESMOND OLD CEMETRY}: Death comes to us all, and each human society commemorates the dead in its own way.

MEMORABLE MOMENT {Page 8}: These family vaults were to be brick-lined with stone shelves supported on corbels to carry the lead-lined coffins. They could be as deep as six metres and were popular because coffins survived longer when not in contact with the soil.

SOURCE: A library book.

MY THOUGHTS: A book doubtlessly not to everyone's taste ... but then, each to their own, which book is? However with chapters headed 'Rites and Rituals', 'The Cemetery Plan', 'The North West Cemetery', 'The South West Cemetery' and 'The East Cemetery' to social history buffs (and/or those like myself with a fascination for graveyards and the history to be found therein) this is nothing short of a treat.

Written and laid out (no pun intended) in such a way as to be highly readable. Far from being a dull read this is full of fascinating information about the famous, the infamous and the not-so-infamous inhabitants of the cemetery since its opening in the 1836. But more than that, a book that should be of wider appeal than to just those of the locality, Jesomond Old Cemetery offers a wonderful insight into architecture over the years centuries.

Further reading and to view some of the graves within the cemetery please click here to view the Friends of Jesmond Cemetery website.


Kelly said...

While it can't possibly have the same appeal to me, given it's your "local" cemetery, I do think it sounds quite interesting and feel sure I'd enjoy it, too. Cemeteries are fascinating (and often beautiful) places.

Yvonne@fiction-books said...

Hi Tracy,

I love reading and looking at vintage shots of towns and buildings and whilst, as Kelly points out, they do have a certain appeal when they are more relevant to me personally, I wouldn't stick to that criteria exclusively.

We write walking/mystery trails around Wessex, which is our little corner of the world and invariably almost every trail features a church and cemetery, as they are a wealth of beauty and socially important history.

Thanks for sharing and I hope that you enjoyed your weekend :)


Shooting Stars Mag said...

I'm glad this was a good read for you. It's nice to hear it wasn't boring or not easily readable.


Barbara Fisher said...

Hi Tracy, I would love this! Reading headstones is something of a passion of mine, there is always so much to discover. I’m going to add it to my Christmas present list in the hope Santa will be kind to me this year.

Suko said...

Tracy, I'm glad you enjoyed reading this. It wouldn't ordinarily be my cup of tea, but you've convinced me that it is worthwhile.

Melliane said...

It must ben interesting to see the changes there

Crystal Collier said...

I think any time you explore the actual stories behind a place and people, you turn up all kinds of amazing things. It's not the first thing I'd reach for, but I can see myself getting totally swept away.