Friday, July 26, 2013

Summer Rambles Continue

As the heritage explorer wanders the streets of London . . . someone might be watching. Who knows where this is? takers on this one. Here's a hint:

The above symbol appears on a fence surrounding the property. Can anyone guess where this is?

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Gore Cemetery

Gore Cemetery on Trafalgar Street was set aside in 1834 to be used as a pioneer burial ground.  Originally part of London Township, the cemetery has become surrounded by the ever-expanding London. The city-owned property, closed to burials since 1954, is now protected with metal fencing and padlocked.

The Historic Sites Committee of London Public Library has been researching the site with the intention of erecting an historic plaque. To that end, groups of historians have been allowed to enter the grounds and look around. The investigators noted broken and chipped markers, as well as stones obscured by vegetation - in particular, a large mulberry tree.

The plantings could be a problem. The roots of the trees and bushes may cause the cairn to heave and break underneath while the shade provided by the mulberry promotes dampness detrimental to masonry and stone. Organic matter accumulates inside the walls, holding moisture in and producing an unkempt appearance which promotes vandalism.

The cemetery has been restored in the past, which accounts for the gravestones having been moved from their original positions and set into a concrete cairn. This mid-twentieth century trend was an alternative to repairing markers in situ. But the reconfiguration means there's no way of knowing where specific persons are actually buried.

Overall, when one considers the restructuring, wear and tear, broken stones, and greenery at this site, it's a far cry from the way it must have looked in pioneer days. One can only hope another restoration project will take place in the near future.