|Ebenezer Dimmick - killed by lightning in 1811|
Somewhere in a weather report today, I heard mention of lightning accompanying the rainstorm which is just now starting here on the Cape. True or not, it reminded me of the headstone I found in the Old Falmouth Burying Ground, recently.
Twenty-four year old Ebenezer Dimmick was apparently called to heaven via a bolt of lightning.
His devoted friend, Mr. John Lawrence, erected this stone.
(click on photos for closer images)
Other than cause of death which stood out amongst the more commonly-seen epitaphs in this seaside town of: " lost at sea" or "drowned" - the stone itself is a nice example of cemetery iconography.
The hand pointing upwards commonly represents "hope of heaven." In this case, Mr. Lawrence took it upon himself to explain the finger pointing heavenward with his words inscribed below: "there the weary be at rest." Nice.
And his rather passionate verse at bottom of stone is also nicely tailored to the specifics of his friend's manner of death:
"GOD calls in thunder to the silent tomb.
This hopeful youth went down in all his bloom
The swift wing'd lightning, while he asks the way
Points out the road to an eternal day."
A memorial to a good friend that endures centuries of rain, snow, drought, thunder and lightning.
I suspect this stone, along with many of the very old stones in this historic graveyard in Falmouth, has been preserved by restoration work by local preservationists. Here are a few links to important genealogical sites for the Falmouth area, including cemetery lists.
- Falmouth Genealogical Society: www.falgen.org
And included within that website: Scroll about half-way down the page for a list of all cemeteries in Falmouth. Each link includes a picture, location, and in most all cases an incredible documentation of all burials in each plot, of each cemetery.
- FGS Cemetery Project: www.falgen.org/cem
And below, link to a guide to genealogical resources in the Falmouth Public Library (main branch):
- FPL Genealogy: www.falgen.org/library.htm
Also, the Falmouth Historical Society research archives:
- Falmouth Museums on the Green: http://falmouthhistoricalsociety.org/research/archives/