Feb. 14 1876
78 yr’s 9 m’s 13 d’s
Side by side in the Pine Lake Cemetery at La Porte, Indiana, are two identical gravestones carved for a husband and a wife. The top of each of the white marble tablets display a curtain pulled back to reveal a pair of clasping hands and an American rose. The curtain represents the passage from one realm to another; the veil that exists between the Earthly realm and the Heavenly one.
The clasping hands represent holy matrimony. This motif symbolizes the holy union between a man and a woman. The cuff on the left side of the motif is slightly more elaborate and the hand is slender and feminine—it represents the wife. The hand on the right side is the husband’s—the cuff is plain.
The single rose is an undeniable symbol of love. The rose is in full bloom–likely representing the death an adult. The rose also has a religious meaning, differing by color. The white rose symbolizes purity while the red rose represents martyrdom and the messianic hope that Christ will return.
James Vanamburgh Sen.
Died Feb. 22. 1855
AE 56 y. 7 mo.
Great post – learning about the meaning of the symbols is a great help in understanding headstones.