Phone: 203 742-1450
Fairfield County Catholic Cemeteries of the Diocese of Bridgeport

April 15, 2024

“Going … but know not where”
— Epitaph on gravestone in Putnam

Epitaph on gravestoneSometimes when you’re driving past an old country graveyard in a New England town, pause to walk among the tombstones, and you will encounter another world, with countless stories about life and death, tragedy and courage, mortality and hope of eternal salvation. Our ancestors took the rite of burial very seriously and put deep thought into the inscriptions on their graves. Pause to read them and realize the person buried there, while they may be separated from us by centuries, still had the same hopes and dreams and loves as we do, and we are only separated by time.

Here are some epitaphs from New England gravestones, which appear in Janet Greene’s book “Epitaphs to Remember.”

From Pittsfield, Vt.:
“Jack York, died 1874, age about 85 yrs.
He came to Pittsfield in 1820
Born a Slave in Salem, N.Y.
He was always ready to put his hand out
in friendship to all.”

An anonymous grave in Hartford from 1882:
“Those who cared for him while living
will know whose body is buried here.
To others it does not matter.”

And from a stone in Stowe, Vt.:
“I was somebody.
Who, is no business
of yours.”

The Putnam, Conn., grave of Phineas Wright who died at 89 in 1918 says:
“Going, But Know Not Where”


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