Victorian Cast Iron Grave Monument in Alabama

Victorian cast iron grave monument in Greenville, Alabama's Magnolia Cemetery
Victorian cast iron grave monument in Greenville, Alabama’s Magnolia Cemetery.

While searching for catfish photos yesterday, I somehow stumbled upon this photo of an amazing, rusted iron grave monument on the blog Deep Fried Kudzu. This particular grave is in Magnolia Cemetery, but the post states many more iron monuments can be found in Greenville’s Pioneer Cemetery.

I’ve never stumbled upon anything like this while wondering the cemeteries here in Wisconsin, so I did some digging. A page on RootsWeb explaining types of headstones has this to say about iron monuments:

Iron grave markers and decorations were popular during the Victorian era in the United Kingdom and elsewhere, often being produced by specialist foundries or the local blacksmith. Many cast iron headstones have lasted for generations while wrought ironwork often only survives in a rusted or eroded state.

The Alabama Historical Commission published A Guide to Common Alabama Grave Markers (PDF) which says:

Fences, sometimes incorporating funerary motifs such as inverted torches, draped urns, weeping willow trees and reclining lambs, are the most common cast iron features in cemeteries. Grave markers and above-ground tombs were occasionally made of cast iron.

Closeup detail of the cast iron grave monument

More graves and graveshelters from Alabama right here.

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4 years ago

There are a few like that in Rose Hill Cemetery in Macon Georgia. The little statue part is long gone on all of them, most likely from vandalism.

5 years ago

Not sure where you are in Wisconsin but I’m in Milwaukee….

I was in East Troy over the weekend and came across two large cast iron modular monuments. It was the first time I have spotted any.

Email me if you’d like the pics!