Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Tree Shaped Tombstones-Hitting the Jackpot part 2

More from New Ulm Minnesota, the best cemetery to date for tree shaped tombstones...

I have decided that I am going to commission a "tree" when my time comes.  Or maybe my wife and I will share one.  In either case I am planning to have a faithful dog curled around the base. I thought for a moment I had found one:

It could be a dog, some sort of whippet or greyhound.  But there does not seem to be much of a tail.  So it could be a deer.  Or a poorly rendered lamb.

I really was not sure what to make of this one.  The double eagle logo is similar to that of the Hapsburg Empire, and the number 32 could, I figured, represent an army regiment.  But the Latin motto - it means "My Hope is in God" - seemed a little non-martial.  As it turns out this is a Masonic logo, specifically of the 32nd Degree of the Scottish Rite.

Other than the cheap knock offs sold by outfits like Sears Roebuck, I had no clue as to the origins of the tree shaped tombstones until I found this little signature on the bit of log supporting a book.  Anthony Ambrosini appears to have been the supervisor of a cemetery in St. Paul.  He must have also had a stone cutting business, which does not surprise given the dominance of Italians in that field.  More research ahead on this lead.

And now, my new favorite tree shaped tombstone.

John Hauenstein was a local brewer.  His company stayed in business just long enough for me to have tried a few sips of his wares.  Evidently he had served with pride in the military.  Note the musket on the left side.

Just amazing detail.  Look at the holes in the canteen strap.  And remember, this is carved from stone.

Half way up we have a jaunty little owl.  I do not know what the initials mean.  But to see the crowning glory of this magnificent specimen you have to go all the way to the top....

It is John Hauenstein's army hat!

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