Thanks for joining me! This blog is around the popular and material culture of Victorian fatality and also mourning, some of which is common in my book The Victorian Book of the Dead. The blog will consoliday short articles on mourning and fatality from two of my various other blogs: Mrs Daffodil Digresses and also Killer Budgie at I will likewise occasionally article on other funegenuine topics or share distinctive excerpts from major sources. Some short articles will be grim, some will be humourous, some grewsome, as the Victorians said. I will certainly warn readers that I have actually a reprehensible penchant for dealing with the subject of fatality as entertainment.

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If you have questions around Victorian mourning or comments, please execute obtain in touch at chriswoodyard8 AT

Chris Woodyard is the writer of The Victorian Book of the Dead, The Ghold Wore Black, The Headmuch less Horror, The Face in the Window, and also the 7-volume Haunted Ohio series. She is also the chronicler of the adendeavors of that amiable murderess Mrs Daffodil in A Spot of Bother: Four Macabre Tales. The publications are accessible in paperearlier and also for Kindle. Indexes and also reality sheets for every one of these books might be found by searching Join her on FB at Haunted Ohio by Chris Woodyard or The Victorian Publication of the Dead.

Mortui viventes docent.



Vindictive Englishman Left His Right Hand also to Offspring via Whom He Had Quarreled.

Probably the a lot of grewsome bequest ever before called in a will certainly was that made by Philip Thicknesse, a dissipated Englishmale, who passed away in 1792. Some years before his death he had actually quarreled bitterly through his boy, Lord Audley, and also to spite him had actually put on the external of the household mansion a board bearing this engraving in large babsence letters:

“Boots and shoes mfinished, carpets beat, and so on., by P. Thicknesse, father of Lord Audley.”Finding he was around to die, he sent for his lawyer and also attracted up a will containing the adhering to extrasimple clause: “I leave my right hand also, to be reduced off after my death, to my child, Lord Audley: I desire it might be sent out to him, in hopes that such a sight may remind him of his duty to God, after having so lengthy abandoned the duty he owed to a father that when so affectionately loved him.”

The dead man’s wishes were scrupulously brought out, and also his severed hand also, inclosed in a hermetically sealed casket, was forwarded to his kid. Tbelow is no record regarding just how Lord Audley obtained his unwelcome legacy or how he disposed of it.

Elkhart Truth 15 October 1909: p. 5

Note: Grewsome was an different, also more widespread spelling of “gruesome” in the 19th c.

Chris Woodyard is the writer of The Victorian Book of the Dead, The Gorganize Wore Black, The Headless Horror, The Face in the Window, and also the 7-volume Haunted Ohio series. She is likewise the chronicler of the adendeavors of that amiable murderess Mrs Daffodil in A Spot of Bother: Four Macabre Tales. The publications are available in paperback and also for Kindle. Indexes and fact sheets for every one of these books may be found by searching Join her on FB at Haunted Ohio by Chris Woodyard or The Victorian Book of the Dead and on Twitter
hauntedohiobook. And visit her newest blog The Victorian Publication of the Dead.

Womens mourning ensemble2021, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 29 August 2021,>

THE CHARMING WIDOWHow She Worked the Mourning Racket on the Dry Goods Manager.

Burlington Hawkeye

She was pretty and sweet, so a lot so that the a number of clerks almost broke their necks in struggling to watch who would be the one to wait on her, but she ignored them all, and, sitting dvery own on a stool, drew from her pocket a handkerchief which she organized in readiness for application to her eyes, and sent for the manager. He shortly came up to the lady, who, via the handkerchief to one eye, flashed the various other brilliant or at his and also told her story thusly:

“Mr. B___, Charley, my husband also (sob), is dead, and also I have actually no suitable (sniffle) mourning. I came down to view (gulp) if you would certainly trust me for a (sob) mourning outfit” (sniffle). Here the various other eye was hid behind the handkerchief, while a kind of cold chill shudder passed over her.

“But, my dear madam, I don’t recognize you. I would be fairly departing from our rules to comply with your repursuit,” responded Mr. B___, politely. “How much of a bill did you wish to buy?”“I desire (sob) whatever as nice (sniffle) as I can gain (sob)—about two (one more sniffle) two hundred dollars, I (sob) guess.”

“I am sorry, yet as you are a stranger to me I shall need to decrease unless you deserve to furnish defense or come recommended by someone know to us.”“Do you (sob) know Mr. (2 sobs) Mr. Richfellow?” (Two sniffles.)

“Yes, madam, I know him. Do you think he would certainly guarantee the payment of the bill?”“I don’t (sob) want (sniffle)—desire you to (sniffle) ask him (sniffle), because I am going (two sniffles) to marry him (sob) once my (sob) mourning has expired.” (Sob.)

“Well, in a instance of that kind, of course we will trust you; we deserve to existing the bill to him after your marriage.”

“Oh say thanks to you (brightening up), thank you; indeed that will certainly be all ideal. Now I want a box of babsence gloves, number six and also a half; fourteenager yards of cashmere, thirty yards of crape fabric, twelve yards of veiling, 2 boxes of babsence silk hose (number eight), and also the essential trimmings. Please solve it up nice. Don’t you think I will look nice in mourning?”Mr. B___ looked right into her eyes, his heart began to jump, and, reasoning discretion the better part of valor, he assured her that her order would certainly be filled, and also the lady departed smiling. Mr. B__, after the lash of the pretty widow’s eyes, would have actually filled a thousand dollar order and phelp it out of his own pocket. He is bald-headed.

Cincinnati Enquirer 9 May 1885: p. 11

Chris Woodyard is the writer of The Victorian Book of the Dead, The Ghold Wore Black, The Headmuch less Horror, The Face in the Window, and the 7-volume Haunted Ohio series. She is likewise the chronicler of the adendeavors of that amiable murderess Mrs Daffodil in A Spot of Bother: Four Macabre Tales. The books are available in paperback and also for Kindle. Indexes and fact sheets for every one of these publications may be discovered by looking Join her on FB at Haunted Ohio by Chris Woodyard or The Victorian Publication of the Dead and also on Twitter
hauntedohiobook. And visit her newest blog The Victorian Publication of the Dead.

chriswoodyardCrime, Legal Matters, Mourning Fashions, News and Announcements, Products for Correct Mourning, Textiles, WidowsLeave a commentSeptember 15, 2021September 8, 20212 Minutes
Mvarious other Made Baby’s Shroud:1904
Child’s burial shroud, via corpse cover, sleeves, face mesh and also collar. St Fagans Museum


That Covered Body of Her Baby made From Mother’s Wedding Garment.

Until yesterday Annie Vorwald bore her poverty uncomplainingly. When her husband was ill and unable to occupational she made the living. Then they were both taken down, and also there was slender fare at the poor home on Liston avenue. The worst blow came, yet, when their two-year-old baby John was stricken through measles and also otitis media and the mother was obliged to take it to the City Hospital.

Yesterday the kid passed away and also included to her grief was the harrowing believed that having no money that tender bit body would need to be laid amethod in potter’s area. She knew not wright here to turn. Those of her friends to whom she could apply were almost as poor as herself. In her heart-breaking dilemma, she involved the hospital. Her tears won sympathy, and she was promised a coffin, and also the use of the ambulance as a hearse. The authorities additionally told her that they would certainly furnish the linen for a shroud, but this Mrs. Vorwald refused.

Among her meager possessions was a white skirt she had actually worn on her wedding day. None saw her at the task of converting this garment at her lonely residence right into the shroud for her darling dead. None witnessed the tears that dropped on the trembling hands that made the stitches, yet after 2 hours she went back, and in the dead room of the hospital she clothed the dead body in the shroud she had made. That done, she fainted amethod. When she was carried to the ambulance was ready.

The dead body, in a rude little bit casket, was placed in the auto. The husband and also wife took a seat beside the driver. The journey was made to the Germale Protestant Cemetery on Price Hill, where the tiny grave had actually been provided them, and without a prayer, yet via many sobs and tears from the agonized mother, the little body was consigned to earth.

Cincinnati Enquirer 29 February 1904: p. 10

Chris Woodyard is the writer of The Victorian Publication of the Dead, The Gorganize Wore Black, The Headmuch less Horror, The Face in the Window, and the 7-volume Haunted Ohio series. She is likewise the chronicler of the adendeavors of that amiable murderess Mrs Daffodil in A Spot of Bother: Four Macabre Tales. The books are accessible in paperago and also for Kindle. Indexes and also truth sheets for all of these books might be found by looking Join her on FB at Haunted Ohio by Chris Woodyard or The Victorian Book of the Dead and also on Twitter
chriswoodyardChildren, Funerals, Mourning, News and also Announcements, Pauper Funerals, Shrouds and Burial Clopoint, SorrowLeave a commentSeptember 8, 2021September 8, 20212 Minutes

Forest Hills Cemetery gateway, Roxbury, Massachusetts, 1905


What the Superintendent Sees.

Pathetic, humorous, and also stselection occurrences are continually arising in cemeteries. The general public never hears of them because the cemetery superintendent isn’t often a talker. He doesn’t tell points unmuch less he is asked. The stories of some happenings he declines to relate, concerning them as experienced keys. Above all, he of course never mentions names. The burying ground is just one of the biggest locations on earth to study character. The superintendent knows it and also he is a most skilled student. His practiced eye detects the alleged mourner that simulates his grief, and also in a minute he spots the financial skinner who is either cheese-paring prices or making a spreview to impush funeral participants to such a great extent that the screen may be a kind of financial investment. In many situations friends and also loved ones who are not sincere mourners make solid and clever before attempts at deceiving observers. Some, yet, execute not care, and also household feuds are ofttimes lugged to the side of the grave.

There was newly an circumstances of a woman laughing and also chatting choose a parrot a few minutes after the funeral of a kid. Then tbelow are cases in which the wounds of sorrow made by the deaths of friends or loved ones are so deep that the bereaved ones never recuperate. Some of this class visit and also decoprice the tombs of their dead eexceptionally day in the year, rain or shine. There are others, yet, wounded just as deeply, that cannot bear the cemetery, however sit at home and suffer in silence.

The Curious and also Superstitious.

The bane of a graveyard is the curiosity-seekers and the superstitious. People of the former class have actually a morbid love for funerals that is ghoulish. They gloat over the grief of the mourners, and feast their eyes on the confront of the corpse if they gain an chance. The abnormal appetite of these world seems never before satiated. Their encounters are so acquainted to cemetery-keepers that they are missed if they ignore to attfinish a single funeral. Superstitious world are still abundant. They wouldn’t enter a burying ground at night for a million dollars, and also many type of of them wouldn’t go right into a vault even in the daytime, not also if they were accompanied by an electric arc light and a cannon. A few days ago a exceptional superstition came to light at Graceland. One of the supervisors was walking in a drivemethod when he was approached by an old womale, tottering and bent through age. In one hand she brought a crumple sexpedition of paper. Approaching, she said: “I’m searching for an open grave, sir. Can you tell me wright here to find one?”

“Yes, tbelow is one best straight north of here—the seventh lot,” was the reply. “But why perform you desire to uncover an open grave?”

‘Well, you know, among my granchillern’s obtained the scarlet fev’r, an’ I’ve writ the name of the illness on this below item of paper. If I kin simply drop the paper in an open up grave, wbelow it’ll git hidden, the disease’ll leave the chile an’ go dvery own in the grave.”

When asked for a look at the paper, she unfolded it and organized it out. On the scrap was scrawled in a lead pencil, “skarlit fevr.” When the old womale was handed ago her slip she hurried to the grave. The male watched her. When she reached the hole she stopped for a minute, and appeared to be muttering some incantation over the opening. Then she extended her arm out directly over the middle of the grave, via the ago of her hand also dvery own. In a moment her fingers, which had actually been tightly closed, opened. The light breeze lifted the “skarlit fevr” cdamage from her palm. It fluttered in the air an prompt, and also dropped into the grave. The bad old creature was satisfied. With a contented, feeble smile, she turned and also hurried ameans as quick as feasible.

Wax Flowers and also Coffin Plates.

Very typically the household of the deceased clears the name plate from the coffin and also has the flowers which were used preserved by dipping them in wax. The flowers are made in the form of a wreath. The silver plate is placed in the middle and the entirety is inserted in a glass case to be hung In the parlor. Then, after some one comes along and provides the remark that it is “mighty negative luck to have such a point in the residence,” the loved ones take down the case and bring the plate to the cemetery and ask the superintendent to have actually the body taken up that they might put the plate back on the coffin. This has happened so regularly at eincredibly cemetery that the employes execute much longer smile as soon as the superstitious man through the plate desires a coffin exhumed.

At Oakwoods cemetery tbelow is a amazing and also supposedly inexplicable mystery, for many kind of years the authorities there have been finding candles simply inside the excellent high iron fence which surrounds the grounds. In eextremely circumstances the candle has been lighted and also extinguished at when prior to any of the tenable has melted. Sometimes three candles are uncovered bound together by a spilgrimage of a linen handkerchief. They are constantly discovered so close to the fence that whoever left them evidently reached between the iron bars and dropped them within. Scores of the candles have been discovered, and also Superintendent Drew always has actually a fresh drawer complete in his office. Many guesses have actually been hazarded regarding the cause of the stvariety practice. The concept which appears many plausible is that it is a hoodoo cdamage percreated by negroes the night of the burial of one of their kin.

Is the Grave Secure?

Quite frequently civilization ask cemetery superintendents to open up the tombs so that they might watch if the corpse has not been stolen or disturbed. This is particularly the case when graves are incredibly a lot sunken. It is incredibly seldom that the authorities will certainly listen to the research. The suspicions are virtually invariably groundmuch less and also explanations are made to the friends reflecting them the uselessness of disfuneral. Body-snatching is virtually unwell-known in in these days. The just cases that may happen are when the deceased has actually been taken amethod by some unusual illness which scientist would certainly prefer to investigate. For all simple clinical study the hospitals and also poor-residence furnish a wealth of bodies. Sometimes prior to the coffin is lowered right into the grave some mourner is currently figuring on having actually the corpse exhumed before very lengthy to view if it has actually been disturbed. One day at Oakwoods a mourner, that was unwilling to trust the documents, walked the fence and also scratched a cross on the railing oppowebsite the grave which remained in the single grave area. In a few weeks he came earlier and also wanted the grave opened. He was so persistent that Superintendent Drew consented. The man wanted the grave opened which was precisely opposite the notch. The records and chart proved the grave of the gentleman’s relative was next to the one which he wimelted opened up. He kicked up an excellent row, but the superintendent stood by his records and opened up the grave shown on the chart. It was the best one. The mourner had actually not been cautious in making his mark, and had placed it a little to one side and directly in front of an additional grave, just a foot away. The coffin was taken up. The dead had not been disturbed and also the male was satisfied.

Freduced Thieves.

The just kind of thieves and also robbers that bvarious other the burying ground is the freduced thief. She, for this brand also of thief is practically invariably of the feminine gender, comes with the blossoms in the springtime and also she haunts graveyards all summer long unless she is detected. Decoration day prior to last, at Mount Greenhardwood Cemetery, two enterpclimbing freduced sellers and also stealers had actually a narrowhead escape from being mobbed. A man drew up a wagon filled via potted plants close to the terminal. Great crowds were gaining off the train and he offered flowers appropriate and left. Although he was selling them by the dozen on eincredibly hand, for some stvariety factor his supply appeared no smaller sized at the end of an hour than when he began. Presently, once the salesman’s wife was captured stealing flowers in the cemetery, his never-decreasing supply of floral items was no much longer an enigma. As fast as the purchased flowers were placed on tombs the wife stole them and carried them back to the wagon. When recorded she was surrounded by a crowd of a thousand also people and also came close to receiving rough treatment.

Superintendent Rudd of Mount Greenwood is among the earliest and also a lot of skilled cemetery managers in Chicback. The many type of years he has been in his existing place have actually given him excellent endure with the general public.

“I might tell you points which you would certainly scarcely believe,” sassist Mr. Rudd.

“Incidents transpire in cemeteries which if told exactly as they developed would certainly receive bit credence. One point which would occasion great surpincrease is the bit actual sorrow and also grief resulted in by fatality.

Grief Arithmetically Measured.

“Most husbands are not hurt incredibly a lot by the death of their wives. I don’t think over 20 per cent really feel badly wounded at heart when they hear the clods loss on the coffin lid. Wives are less heartmuch less. About 40 per cent of wives, twice as many kind of as the husbands, treatment significantly once their life partners are buried. Very few treatment as soon as old human being die. But as soon as a mother leaves her child in the ground tright here are few instances once her heart is not almost damaged. We when had actually a striking exemption. A mother had actually simply buried the 3rd of her children who had passed away in quick succession of scarlet fever. The husband and also wire had come from the grave to my office and also were waiting for some papers. Tears were rolling down his cheeks, however the woman laughed and also talked as if she were at a reunion in a beer garden. Finally the poor man could bear it no much longer. Raising his clinched fist and cursing her, he progressed toward his wife and also told her if she didn’t shut her mouth he would shut it for her.

“I remember one young guy whose grief at the burial of his wife was heartrending. He screamed and also cried till be might be beard clear across the hill. He threw himself on the coffin, and also once it was lowered he tried to jump into the grave. Friends organized him, and also he was taken ameans almost fainting. Within a month the young man married again.

No Waking the Last Sleep.

“Very often in the winter husbands place their dead wives in the vault, and also In the spring lug out wife No. 2 to watch No. 1 put in the ground. Once an undertaker had actually occasion to open up a coffin which remained in our public vault. It remained in the depth of winter, and also the thermometer was below zero. The corpse looked extremely life-choose, and after the undertaker went amethod he made some little bit remark about it. The little remark was repeated. It flourished like a weed. It was enlarged and exaggerated till it was told over the entire community that a womale in a trance lay buried in the vault. The gossips did not sheight to think that the body had actually been frozen solid for nearly a month. These stories, by the means, about world being buried alive are greatly made for sensational purposes. I never before heard of an authentic instance, and I never before met any one else who ever before did.

Tricks of the Social Faker.

“Some queer and also peculiar points are done out below by money ‘skinners.’ Who are thinking of conserving every penny as much as they are of their grief. Two or 3 of the mourners will certainly come out before the funeral and also express their doubts as to whether we have actually a lot great enough for them. Then they conclude to location the continues to be in the vault temporarily.

The day of the funeral everything is imposing. The coffin is rosewood, or extended via plush or broadtowel, and tbelow is a long line of fine carriperiods. Some time after the funeral the mourners will certainly slip out to the cemetery, buy a single grave in the pooremainder, cheapest spot, and, without buying the $3 pine coffin-box, bury the casket in the ground. I remember well a heart-damaged husband that came out to the cemetery to buy a lot and also make arrangements for his wife’s funeral. The bad fellow could not restrain his feelings. Two big tears glistened in his eyes, and also his voice quivered. He looked up at me through his glistening tears and said:

“‘Yes. It’s hard to (sob) bear. An’ it’s an awful (sob) trial (sob) to come out (sob) right here and also pick this (sob) lot. I was wo-wonderin’ if you (sob) co-couldn’t gimme a small discoun-count for cash.’ (Long-continued sobbing.)

“I had actually another suffer through a mourner of much the very same character. ‘Now, I’ll tell you,’ he shelp, ‘tbelow are going to be the majority of swell, well-off world out below at my wife’s funeral tomorrow. They don’t any kind of of ’em own lots right here, but when they come out tomorrow and check out what a magnificent area you’ve obtained they may buy. Well, you understand, of course I’m sort of bringing ’em out here, and also perhaps you might offer ’em some lots a number of, maybe and well. I didn’t understand yet you can feel like giving me a little commission on all the lots you might market to any type of of em.”

Repentance and also Babsence Stocemperors.

“A widower involved my foremale as soon as via a proposition that had never before been heard of prior to. Several months previous the guy had actually buried his wife. He was a cheese-parer on money matters, and, I guess, he conserved all he might on funeral arrangements. At the funeral, of course, just the confront was exposed. The rest of the body could not be checked out, and also no one however the widower kbrand-new just how well or how poorly it was arrayed. Evidently he obtained to reasoning the issue over and also determined he hadn’t given his dead wife a square deal. Well, sir, he involved my foreman with a lengthy pair of babsence stocemperors, and wanted his wife taken up so that be might put them on her.”

All of the big cemeteries have actually had actually more or less suffer with world who have actually been so unfortunate as to shed a limb. One day a man from Pullguy showed up at Mount Greenlumber with a tiny coffin, around nine inches lengthy, under his arm. He had in the coffin 2 of his fingers which had been reduced off by a buzz witnessed. Instead of throwing them ameans or burying them in his earlier yard he lugged them to the graveyard, purchased a lot, and hidden the fingers. Several years ago a woguy, living on the South Side, had a leg amputated. It was hidden in a family members lot. Recently the womale passed away. Her relatives had actually the leg taken up and also placed in the coffin. They shelp they did it so that she would certainly be perfect in heaven.

Some Recent Legislation.

See more: How To Get Rid Of A Kink /Fetish? Four Tips For Getting Rid Of A Kink In The Neck

Cemetery human being everywhere the state are laughing at the ridiculous regulation passed by the Legislature in regard to the use of wire deindicators for holding flowers. The legislation renders it unlawful for these deindicators to be provided in any means a 2nd time.

“It is among the many laughable points 1 ever before heard of,” sassist Superintendent Rudd. “I presume the legislation was passed on the concept that the wire can end up being infected with contagion. Of course that is preposterous, especially if the designs are repainted. I guess if the truth were recognized it would be found that some manufacturers had actually some brand-new style they wanted to acquire on the sector. Perhaps they persuaded the Legislature to cripple the old deindications.”

Daily Inter Ocean

Chris Woodyard is the writer of The Victorian Publication of the Dead, The Gorganize Wore Black, The Headmuch less Horror, The Face in the Window, and also the 7-volume Haunted Ohio series. She is additionally the chronicler of the adventures of that amiable murderess Mrs Daffodil in A Spot of Bother: Four Macabre Tales. The publications are available in paperearlier and also for Kindle. Indexes and also fact sheets for every one of these publications might be discovered by browsing Join her on FB at Haunted Ohio by Chris Woodyard or The Victorian Publication of the Dead and on Twitter