Cemeteries have always fascinated me. Nonetheless, I have only been to two funerals in my life, that of my granddad who died in 1978 when I was 23, and that of my best friend who died in 1989. I didn’t even get to go to my wise old grandmother’s funeral in 2003 because my three uncles threatened me with violence, one stating that he “didn’t know what might happen” if I went. Since he had more weapons than the United States Army, I decided to stay away.
San Diego is the only place that has two national cemeteries—Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery (picture ▼) and Miramar National Cemetery—and Southern California is the only region that has three of them, with Riverside National Cemetery about 60 miles from me. My husband’s dad is interred at Riverside National Cemetery.
I find national cemeteries to be kind of dull, boring, and uninteresting due to their monotonous conformity.
However, they always seem to be located in beautiful places.
I think the most interesting cemeteries I ever visited were in New Orleans; those are what I call cemeteries.
We don’t seem to have a lot of cemeteries here in San Diego, but while out and about a couple of weeks ago I discovered “The Cemetery”:
Located at the Mission San Antonio de Pala in Pala, California, founded in 1816 to convert the native Indians to Catholicism, The Cemetery is the original Mission cemetery and claims to hold the remains of hundreds of Native American converts to Catholicism, as well as other early California pioneers.
If The Cemetery holds hundreds of remains, they are not well marked after all these years, or they were buried in a mass grave.
Actually, while researching this post, I discovered that the cemetery is also known as the “Old Luiseño Cemetery,” named after the tribe of Indians the Mission had served. Graves typically were marked by wooden crosses, a great supermajority of which have fallen, deteriorated, or been misplaced.
Over at Interment.net, I found a partial list of those interred in the cemetery.
There might have been about twenty grave markers in The Cemetery. Here are some that I found interesting:
I don’t think this last one is a grave marker unless it’s a place holder for all those grave markers that aren’t there anymore.