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Tomb of the KNOWN Soldier

I am going to go out on a limb and say just about everyone has heard of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

We visited Washington DC this time last year. The absolute highlight of the trip was visiting Arlington National Cemetery and to watch the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. You’ve heard over and over about people dying for our freedom, right?

Changing of the guard

Nothing is a bigger exclamation point on that FACT then visiting a place like this. The grounds alone have such historical significance but that is overshadowed by this resting place for those people, my people, that have given their life so that we can sit where we are right now…

So we know about the Tomb of the UNKNOWN Soldier but did you know about the Tomb of the KNOWN Soldier? I didn’t either and I visited the town many many times…

Here is what I found out about this place of immeasurable honor: (Thank you Wiki) …

“The Tomb of the Known Soldier is a grave site in Myrtle Hill Cemetery in RomeGeorgia, United States, dedicated to a soldier killed in World War I, Private Charles Graves.

Charles Graves enlisted in the United States Army on August 16, 1917; he was eighteen years old at the time. He was eventually shipped to Neuroy, France, a place he knew nothing about. On October 5, 1918 (fourteen months after his Army service began), Graves was killed by German artillery shrapnel on the Hindenburg Line. Soon after, he received full military honors and a military burial in France.

Charles’ mother received the telegram from the War Department that her son was killed in the war. After waiting four long years, she finally claimed her son’s body when it arrived on a troopship called the Cambria on March 29, 1922. The U.S. Government had the idea of creating the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and of a “Known Soldier” in Arlington National Cemetery to honor World War I soldiers. Graves was chosen for “America’s Known Soldier” by a blindfolded sailor who picked Graves’ name from an American soldier remains list, but his mother objected to his burial at Arlington. The War Department wanted to give his body, in its flag-draped coffin, a parade on Fifth Avenue in New York with generals, admirals, and politicians before his mother buried Graves in the cemetery near Antioch Church on April 6, 1922.

Graves, a fallen soldier, failed to remain in the cemetery for a long period of time; many local citizens decided that he should be buried in a place of honor. As a result, on September 22, 1923, his body was exhumed from Antioch Cemetery and relocated to Myrtle Hill Cemetery as America’s Known Soldier after his mother’s death and his brother’s agreement. Graves was buried a third and final time. On November 11, 1923, Armistice Day, Charles and the other 33 young men from Floyd County who died in World War I were honored with three Maxim guns and 34 magnolia trees.

Today, Graves’ final resting place is known as the Tomb of the Known Soldier. To many, the memorial site is a place of remembrance, a place that is meant to pay respect to all of the known fallen soldiers of every war.”

Here are a few more photos I took…there is alot more to this particular cemetery so watch for another post about it soon….these are military graves just like at Arlington…

Camera Clicks – Oak Hill Cemetery, Rome GA

I have been visiting this town since I was a young teenager. I had always heard stories about the most famous cemetery in town (more on that in another post), but it wasn’t until just before this trip did I hear about Oak Hill Cemetery.

The Rome visitors center has this to say “Oak Hill Cemetery, also known as the West Seventh Avenue Cemetery, was designated as Rome’s first cemetery in 1837. Many of the town’s prominent citizens were buried here through the year 1857, when Myrtle Hill Cemetery was opened some blocks away just south of Downtown Rome.”

Of course I took many pictures here but I want to tell you about a picture I couldn’t take….

As I was walking around taking pictures, I was completely oblivious to my surroundings. So much so, I had wandered away from my little group when I felt a tap on my shoulder. My first thought was my family had caught up with me. But as I turned around, No One was there…I look around…yup, my group was right where I’d left them…huh…

So I turn to head off again, and again, I feel a tap on my shoulder…I hesitantly turn again…Still no one there…but this time I take notice of the headstone I was standing in front of…A Ms. Rosa Helm.

For whatever reason, my first reaction was to say “Hello” and to apologise for interrupting her slumber. I began to just chat away like I was speaking to a corporeal person. It is a wonderfully peaceful place. I did try to take several pictures of Ms. Rosa Helms headstone but I couldn’t get a clear picture. When I say I couldn’t get a clear picture, I don’t mean that it was just a bit blurry. I mean it was completely out of focus. I attempted several times to change settings, back up, move forward with absolutely no luck. Unfortunately, I deleted these out of focus pictures. However, there is a picture on the website of this headstone…Say Hello…