Doppelganger Revisited

The Gray Family Monument at the Oakland Cemetery at Atlanta, Georgia

The Gray Family Monument at the Oakland Cemetery at Atlanta, Georgia

Doppelganger is a word that refers to two people who look the same.  Look-a-likes.   It is a German word that translates to “double goer”.  Popular television shows run photos next to each other showing actors and actresses together to show look-a-likes, such as, Christina Hendricks and Jessica Rabbit, Katy Perry and Zooey Deschanel, Morgan Freeman and Kofi Annan, Margot Robbie and Jaime Pressly, or Stephen Colbert and Bob Saget to name a few.  To poke gentle fun, some sites also match the faces of dogs to their look-a-like actors’ faces.

In this case, five gravestone sculpture doppelgangers—the Gray Family Monument at the Oakland Cemetery at Atlanta, Georgia; the Haggard monument at the Mount Olivet Cemetery at Nashville, Tennessee; The Inez M. and James Dunn Family Monument at the Glendale Cemetery at Akron, Ohio; the Mary Norcott Bryan London Monument in the Elmwood Cemetery at Charlotte, North Carolina; and The Mary Salmen Monument at the St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery at Evansville, Indiana, are clearly look-a-likes.

James Richard Gray – September 30, 1859-June 25, 1917

May Inman Gray – March 6, 1862-January 6, 1940

Gray Family Monument at the Oakland Cemetery at Atlanta, Georgia

Gray Family Monument at the Oakland Cemetery at Atlanta, Georgia

The Haggard monument at the Mount Olivet Cemetery at Nashville, Tennessee

The Haggard monument at the Mount Olivet Cemetery at Nashville, Tennessee

MARY LAURA CHAMPE-HAGGARD July 11, 1920

WILLIAM HAGGARD M.D. October 17, 1826 January 25, 1901

JENNIE DOUGLAS HAGGARD February 11, 1840 November 16, 1914

The Haggard monument at the Mount Olivet Cemetery at Nashville, Tennessee

The Haggard monument at the Mount Olivet Cemetery at Nashville, Tennessee

The Inez M. (March 16, 1852 – July 17, 1925) and James Dunn (January 17, 1854 – May 14, 1931) Family Monument at the Glendale Cemetery at Akron, Ohio.

The Inez M. and James Dunn Family Monument at the Glendale Cemetery at Akron, Ohio.

The Inez M. and James Dunn Family Monument at the Glendale Cemetery at Akron, Ohio.

The Mary Norcott Bryan, the wife of Henry Adolphus London (January 20, 1867 – April 12, 1932) Monument in the Elmwood Cemetery at Charlotte, North Carolina.

The Mary Norcott Bryan London Monument in the Elmwood Cemetery at Charlotte, North Carolina

The Mary Norcott Bryan London Monument in the Elmwood Cemetery at Charlotte, North Carolina

The Mary Salmen (1857 – 1987) Monument at the St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery at Evansville, Indiana.

The Mary Salmen Monument at the St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery at Evansville, Indiana

The Mary Salmen Monument at the St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery at Evansville, Indiana

According to a book about the Oakland Cemetery, the Gray Family Monument is adorned with a magnificent white-marble sculpture of the Niobe, the Greek mythological Queen of Thebes. All of these sculptures most likely originate from the same tradition and possibly from the same monument company. But, the sculpture commemorating the grave of Mary Salmen in the St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery at Evansville, Indiana, titled the funerary sculptural, “The Morning Prayer”. Perhaps Christian sensibilities did not want a mythological interpretation of the sculpture in their cemetery.

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