Tag Archives: Cemetery Travels Notebook

Mississippi Churchyards

Country ChurchyardsCountry Churchyards by Eudora Welty

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a charming little book this is! It contains 90 black-and-white photographs, snapped by the grand dame of Southern literature in Mississippi churchyards during in the 1930s and 40s. “Mississippi,” she said, “had no art except cemeteries.”

Miss Welty merely trained her lens on whatever interested her. Angels appear more often than any other figure. One unusual stone that I particularly like is coffin-shaped, sheltering a moon-faced girl with staring eyes. She bears the outline of her life written on a tablet on her chest. I’ve never seen anything else like it. There’s a life-sized rendition of the Old Rugged Cross, complete with clinging virgin. Several stone dogs guard their masters’ graves. A whole flock of lambs sleep atop children’s graves, including a startled sheep whose eyes bug out at the camera.

Amongst the photographs, excerpts from Welty’s fiction and essays appear, along with her reminiscences of the photographing trips which were recorded in her 90th year.

As Welty’s friend Elizabeth Spencer notes in her introduction, all of Welty’s art — whether photography, fiction, or essays — “is an effort to rescue life from oblivion.” These lovely photos definitely serve that function. It’s noted at one point that these memorials have suffered decades of winter and abuse since Welty snapped her photos. It’s likely that if any of these sculptures still survive, they are worse for wear. Welty preserved them. This book, like a time machine, brings them into the present.

Although the hardcover book is 18 years old, it’s still available on Amazon both used and new.

View all my reviews on Goodreads.

Nothing like a Cemetery to Enliven a Trip

Forest Lawn aerial postcard bk

Vintage postcard of the original Forest Lawn Memorial Park with a note which reads, “Having a fine vacation.” From my collection.

Hello! Long time, no see, as my father says.  I have been swamped in my other life as a science fiction novelist.  The first book in my space opera trilogy came out on July 7, so I have been busily blogging all over the internet, trying to sell the book.  Oh, and I’ve had pneumonia.

The cemetery work hasn’t totally ground to a halt, though.  I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Irene S. Levine for the Chicago Tribune for an extensive piece she wrote about adding cemeteries to your summer travel. It has the wonderful title “Nothing like a Cemetery to Enliven a Trip.”  Here’s the link: http://www.chicagotribune.com/lifestyles/travel/sc-trav-0721-great-cemeteries-20150708-story.html

Planning a cemetery adventure this summer?

Cover of the Cemetery Travels Notebook

Cover of the Cemetery Travels Notebook

Cemetery Travels Notebook is a great book for recording notes and thoughts while you explore cemeteries… This beautiful book consists of 80 lined pages interspersed with Loren’s full color photos from cemeteries around the world. The photos feature cemetery scenery, gorgeous statuary in different poses, and gravesites decorated with colorful flowers. They are thought-provoking images that will inspire you as you write.”

I couldn’t hope for higher praise than that, especially since it comes from Andrea Carlin, one of my inspirations at the Association for Gravestone Studies.  Her review appears in the Spring 2013 issues of the AGS Quarterly, which I read last week while traveling to New Orleans — to visit cemeteries, among other things.

Ordering information:

The Cemetery Travels Notebook is available for $21.95 (softcover) or $38.95 (hardbound) from Blurb.com. See a preview at Blurb.

Autographed and inscribed copies can be ordered directly from Loren Rhoads via PayPal. For details or to request inscriptions, leave a message below.

The Cemetery Travels Notebook page in this blog has more details and testimonials.

Sale on the Cemetery Travels Notebook

From now until March 31, take $10 off the cost of the Cemetery Travels Notebook on Blurb.com. Use the code SHARE10. Here’s the link.

The Cemetery Travels Notebook is the place to keep field notes from your own cemetery adventures. It features 80 lined pages, interspersed with 20 lush full-page color photographs of cemeteries from Paris to Tokyo, with stops at Sleepy Hollow, San Francisco, and all points between, to inspire your wanderlust.

Photographer Loren Rhoads, editor of Death’s Garden: Relationships with Cemeteries and former cemetery columnist for Gothic.Net, now blogs about graveyards as travel destinations at CemeteryTravel.com. She’s a member of the Association for Gravestone Studies and the Graveyard Rabbits Association.

Ordering information:

The Cemetery Travel Notebook is usually available for $21.95 (softcover) or $38.95 (hardbound) from Blurb.com. See a preview at Blurb. With the SHARE10 code, you can take $10 off!

Praise for the Cemetery Travels Notebook:

“Loren Rhoads’ Cemetery Travels Notebook is the perfect notebook for a taphophile. It’s a lined notebook for all your note-taking needs. It’s also filled with beautiful full-color photos of monuments from the U.S. and beyond.” – Minda Powers-Douglas, The Cemetery Club

“The Cemetery Travels Notebook is really beautiful. It will be very useful.” – Jeane Trend-Hill, author of the Silent Cities series

“The Cemetery Travels Notebook is great! I love the photos and the amount of space for keeping notes and thoughts.” – Joy Neighbors, author of A Grave Interest

“I just received the Cemetery Travels Notebook.  The photos are inspirational and I love the fact that there’s a lot of writing space for my thoughts.” – Leni Panopio, Cypress Lawn Memorial Park

Cemetery Travels Notebook’s first review

Minda Powers-Douglas, of The Cemetery Club and Epitaphs Magazine, just published the first review of my Cemetery Travels Notebook:

Cemetery Travels Notebook
Photography by Loren Rhoads
San Francisco: Automatism Press 2012


Loren Rhoads’ “Cemetery Travels Notebook” is the perfect notebook for a taphophile. It’s a lined notebook for all your note-taking needs, and it’s also filled with beautiful full-color photos of monuments from the U.S. and beyond.According to Ms. Rhoads, it’s a great place “to keep field notes from your own cemetery adventures.” It’s also just a nice journal for writers inspired by great statuary.

The journal consists of 80 lined pages and 20 full-page color photos from Paris, Tokyo, Sleepy Hollow, San Francisco and more. Ms. Rhoads is the editor of Death’s Garden: Relationships with Cemeteries and writes the blog at CemeteryTravel.com.

Reviewed by Minda Powers-Douglas (8/23/12)

Here’s the link to all the new cemetery book reviews on The Cemetery Club.com.

You can enter to win a copy of the Cemetery Travels Notebook your own by traveling back in time to yesterday’s Cemetery Travel entry and telling me: What graveyards have you visited on vacation this summer?