PlainSky, Nebraskans: Cemetery Angel, Whitman

Cemetery Angel, Whitman

Cemetery Angel, Whitman

In Whitman, Nebraska, a lonely cemetery sits atop a hill overlooking town and the vast, rolling expanse of the treeless Sand Hills.

At the northeast corner of the cemetery is a stark reminder of the cost of settling this inhospitable land at the turn of the twentieth century:

MABEL FRANCES LEON BURR
BORN DEC. 26, 1908
DIED APR. 7, 1913

Eerily, a photograph of Mabel stares out at us, as if she waits, entombed in the marble, for the infrequent visitor to realize that the frontier demanded payment from more than adults.

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8 comments

    1. Melinda,

      So glad you like it-the scene really resonated with me when I found it, since my daughter is the same age at Mabel at the time of her death. I wither at the thought of such a loss.

      1. Melinda,

        Thanks–felt a wee bit eerie as I composed the shot. Gave me the willies.

        I’ve added a reading list page for everyone’s convenience, featuring books I require in my classes or recommend to my best students. Thought you’d like that.

  1. Mabel Frances Leon Burr known as Dolly was my Grandmas sister – I have seen the stone and think this is a wonderful picture .

    1. Terie,

      How amazing! I’ve been so moved by this grave, and I’m even moreso now knowing she’s remembered by family!

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