Charleston is called ‘The Holy City’ because of the large number of churches in town, every denomination you can think of, and then some.
Because they are old each church typically has their own grave yard for members of the congregation. Today few have any open plots and a walk through them is a history lesson of the original colonies, US founders, and Civil War secessionists.
The headstone above caught my eye in one of the oldest grave yards in town. To shoot the photograph I had to lean through an old wrought iron fence pushing my lens through. Ten steps to the left was an open gate, but at the time…
I wanted to shoot these stones because they are great examples of New England stone carvings. The imagery, shapes, and style all are a type not available in the south.
Until the 1800’s grave stones were imported from the north. The rock quarries were there and the craftsmen too.
At some point the craftsmen recognized the wealth of the Charleston planters and either moved here or open trade offices. Even famous designers like Tiffany Co. serviced the homes and business in town.
Andrew F. Browning, a memorial not grave site since he died in Cuba just days after General Lee surrendered at Appomattox.
He was assigned to Charleston security, but not there when it fell to Sherman. A year later he was a passenger on a ‘blockade’ runner headed for Cuba. Where he passed away soon after arriving.
The question is why was he there at all? He did have a political run in with a superior officer (who had killed another officer in a duel). But that was finished before his trip. Before the war he was a successful merchant.
No records have been found for his leaving the army and war. It could have been any number of reasons, still a mystery.
He was well thought of, enough so that this expensive monument and family grave sites was built in Magnolia Cemetery, Charleston.