Are you a history buff? Do you feel like you've visited every possible historical site in your area? One sometimes overlooked area of historical significance is the local cemetery or cemeteries. Although it may sound strange at first, here are some reasons to explore the cemeteries in your area:
Learn unknown local history: When you go on cemetery tours, you may learn things that don't typically get mentioned in history books. You may find out about a local feud and learn about the family members that got buried in the cemetery. You could also learn about a famous Civil War soldier who retired in the area or why a movie star ended up buried in that particular city. A cemetery is a good place to discover history that has almost been forgotten by everyone else in the area.
Purchase souvenirs: In addition to cemetery tours, some cemeteries may also offer their own history books. These books may be relatively small and of a limited run, meaning that they aren't available for purchase anywhere else. These books may offer information that wasn't mentioned during a tour, or they may go into even more detail. Purchasing one of these books is an excellent way to retain what you learned while on the tour and to support the upkeep of the cemetery itself. Some books may include maps and photographs that show what the city was like when the cemetery was first opened, as well as how the city has changed around the cemetery over time. If you like to cook, some cemeteries may even offer a cookbook that includes historical recipes enjoyed by city residents who may be buried in the cemetery.
Assist with genealogical research: Gravestones can be an important part of researching a particular family tree. A gravestone may reveal previously unknown facts about a person, such as their exact birthday or different family members. There are websites that collect gravestone pictures that have been taken by volunteers, allowing someone in another part of the world to view or research their ancestor's grave. If you choose to participate in a cemetery tour, you can assist by straying from the tour area and snapping pictures of graves that aren't already listed on the site that you prefer.
Although popular culture often portrays cemeteries as strange and creepy places to visit, cemeteries aren't always like that. They can be peaceful and relaxing places to visit and learn more about the history of the surrounding area.