Document Type


Publication Date

January 2015


An object, tentatively identified as a cast-iron casket lid, appeared to be eroding out of the ground in an east-central Illinois rural cemetery. Appropriate authorities were notified in the anticipation of re-interment, but subsequent research determined that the object was a cast-iron grave cover, a rare and scarcely recognized mortuary accoutrement. The revelation afforded the opportunity to systematically examine a mid-nineteenth centurydeath custom and artifact, and to ultimately reunite the grave cover and its associated grave with its dislocated gravestone.

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