Friday, July 25, 2014

The Cemetery

Each Amana village had a nice site on its edge for a pine tree surrounded Cemetery. They were usually plotted across from agricultural fields. Early wooden grave markers were replaced with cement markers and special ones are marble. Each headstone faced East as the inspiationists believed this to be the direction from which Christ will appear at the second coming.  The pines planted were Austrian pines (some seedlings brought by boat with original settlers of Amana) around the perimeter and along the entrances.  They shielded and protected the peaceful areas and times of service. The ONE last TREE PLANTED by artist, Prestele, died when it was 100 years old in 1950. In keeping with the colony Inspirationalists' beliefs of equality and simplicity, all members of the church were buried chronologically in order of death, not by family.  The long simple rows of  white cement markers reflected their plain and orderly lives. The Cemetery was and is a serene and sacred place in the villages.

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