Last night, I attended a most unique event at Green-Wood Cemetery with my friend & fellow funeral director, Doris Amen. It was a two mile stroll through the grounds, after dark, on a perfect fall evening . Along the way, we encountered performance artists stationed in and around some of Green-Wood’s many notable mausoleums and monuments. Food stations, too, were available.
Our ties to Green-Wood run deep. Doris is the cemetery’s “go to” funeral director, having handled the funerals of the cemetery president’s family, as well as many of the staff’s loved ones. While I, enamored with the grounds from my very first visit as a funeral director, wrote a book about the place. During the researching and writing process, I traversed the grounds countless times. Still, seeing it at night is something extra-special. Even in the dark, we discovered new sites and saw others in a different light. Highlights were the Currier (of Currier & Ives) monument lit up in pink, and the Charlotte Canda Gothic memorial (a perennial favorite) illuminated by candles.
When at last we came to the end of the trail, we were sad to see the night end. But we have our memories, and lots of photos, some of which we shared on Instagram.
My latest book is an historic overview of New York City’s most notable and historic cemeteries. Filled with photos, it can easily serve as a guidebook and reference book for taphophiles and tourists alike.
Green-Wood Cemetery – April 2013 w/ tour guides extraordinaire Marge & Ruth
I took tour guide extraordinaire Marge Raymond’s trolley tour at Green-Wood Cemetery today. After the tour, Ruth Edebohls, another of Green-Wood’s tour guides, joined us, and we went exploring. Despite having written a book about the place, Marge and Ruth showed me several sites I had never seen before. Green-Wood never ceases to amaze me. There is always something new to see. Sometimes it’s an interesting element of a grand monument that escaped notice, or a small, almost hidden stone on which is inscribed something that moves the soul.
I was able to get some interesting new photos to share from this fun afternoon. And, as always, a visit to Green-Wood is a learning experience, especially in the company of two such amazing guides Thanks Marge and Ruth!
While in Brooklyn to meet up with my friend Doris (a media favorite) and attend the wake of an industry friend, we made an impromptu stop at Green-Wood. “You want to take a walk before we go to the wake?” she asked. “Sure, I have sneakers in my car!” I responded, always up for a walk in G-W. “You don’t need those. I walk in heels,” she said. And, so we did. After which Doris drove us to the wake in her hearse. “I can double park that way,” she explained. We were quite the sight as we made our way in the Brooklyn traffic congestion, arriving at the funeral home as we did. After we paid our respects and talked with some colleagues, I was given a spirited tour of Red Hook (still in the hearse). I must say, Doris makes even going to a wake quite an event!