WTF?

26 03 2012

If I needed more proof that these grave related activities (more commonly involving changes to how the graves of Civil War veterans and pseudo-veterans are marked) are more about the honorers than the honorees, I’ve found it in this article. This is just weird and defies rational explanation, in my book: “saving” un-lost, un-threatened gravesites by destroying them? What exactly is the difference between the actions of these folks and those of an apparently disturbed man in Petersburg, who has been sentenced to jail time for digging up buttons, among other things?  I don’t get it. But I think the reporter stumbled across the reason in one sentence [with my commentary]:

To the diggers in these woods, the Hollemans [well, their buttons, cufflinks, and suspender hardware, anyway] belong in Oakwood Cemetery, led there by honor guard, laid alongside men who fell at Gettysburg.

Let me guess: the ceremony will be held on a Saturday (or holiday), when lots of people can come out and watch you guys, right?

Read more at Civil War Memory.

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6 responses

26 03 2012
Andy Hall

“Let me guess: the ceremony will be held on a Saturday (or holiday), when lots of people can come out and watch you guys, right?”

Exactly right. The imperative to “do something” to “honor” these two men (one of whom was not a soldier, BTW) completely eclipses both common sense, and common decency.

31 03 2012
William Richardson

Aren’t most things ( Family Reunions, Birthday parties, Weddings, parades…held when most people can attend ?????????

William

31 03 2012
Harry Smeltzer

Sure they are. But those are celebrations. What this “thing” is is the question. It looks like the exhumation and reniterment are an excuse for an event.

26 03 2012
Bob Huddleston

A “Confederate collaborator”? I suspect the word “collaborator” did not exist in the 1860s. Joel, as a school teacher and community leader, had to take the oath of allegiance at the end of the war but to claim “the federal government still lists him as a ‘Confederate collaborator’” is nonsense. And what kind of “honor” can they create, placing him along side the Confederates who died at Gettysburg? Joel was 28 — and a legal draft dodger, 1860 style, like those who used deferments to get out of going to Vietnam.

No, they do not belong in Oakwood cemetery: they had the chance 150 years ago and chose to be buried at home where they should be left. I suspect the real reason is in the two quotes, “Nothing specific threatens their rest” and “Now neither kudzu nor concrete will cover Joseph and Joel Holleman.” The family is planning to sell to developers and a cemetery will detract from the superstitious buying a lot.

Another issue: it does not appear that *any* physical part of the two brothers is being moved, only a few buttons. Bodies in wood caskets disintegrate. What a sad farce.

26 03 2012
Andy Hall

Another issue: it does not appear that *any* physical part of the two brothers is being moved, only a few buttons.

I wouldn’t be surprised if there were extant human remains there, just not the intact, easily-recognizable skeletons these amateur yahoos expected to find. I doubt there was a so much as a screen there, much less a physical anthropologist who knew what the hell they were looking at.

26 03 2012
My personal take on relic hunting | To the Sound of the Guns

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