Monday, November 4, 2013

Old Cemetery Coins Rocks and Fairy Rings

old grave site entrance
Come, take a mini tour of an old cemetery with me. You'll see sunken graves,  old coins and fairy rings!

wooden cemetery gate

Upon entering we see very old graves. They look randomly placed and oddly spaced! But most of these graves are sunken in the ground and covered with  moss. They appear to be slowly disappearing into the earth so there must be many more graves that we can't see.

old grave sunken into the ground

Quietly, slowly, sinking.

Some graves have trees growing right through them,

tree growing through a grave

So beautiful and haunting all at the same time.

Now let's keep walking and we'll see the Fairy Rings. Just a little further, through the trees and into the open grassy area ...

Oh my!! Huge rings made of mushrooms!

I've never seen mushrooms growing like this before, have you? I am immediately struck by the ring formations and the perfectly lined up fungus!

Are you curious too? Yes, I thought you would be so I did some research for you... you're welcome!

Fairy Rings:
Fairy rings made by fungi like Marasmius oreades are called "free" rings. They will continue to grow outward until a barrier is reached. Sometimes the barrier is another fairy ring! Rings can grow into each other's territory and die as each reaches the other's "dead zone."

If there are no barriers, free rings can grow outward at up to 8 inches (20 cm) per year. They can reach a diameter of over 30 feet (10 m). One ring formed in France by the fungus Clitocybe geotropa is almost a half mile (600 m) in diameter. This ring is thought to be 700 years old.
The above is quoted from yahoo, click here to read more from the article

After reading the answer on yahoo I realized I actually have taken photos of two fairy rings that have crossed over into each others' territory and are now dying!

The lighter colored one pictured below seems to have a somewhat of a human form to it, don't you think so too?
They have met, they are now in the dead zone and not a one is willing to turn back so now they must also meet their fate!

Ok, I am sorry for the mushrooms crossing over and all but let's continue on now and see the coins!

Every visible grave has coins. Some have a dime or a penny or a nickle or a bunch of each. Some have coins with a rock placed close by...

coins on tombstone
There are coins buried deep inside old wooden posts too!

I've never seen coins left on graves before so I did a little research.
Here's what I found:
For a military grave site each coin means something. A penny means you visited to pay your respects. A nickel means you and the deceased soldier trained together, a dime means you served with him. A quarter means you served with the soldier when he was killed.
But for this grave site it has to mean something else since the age of it tells me that nobody alive today is old enough to have served with anyone buried here so I searched on and found this:
The  rocks are like leaving flowers but rocks are permanent and don't die like flowers do.. and coins are to remember the deceased, to let others know that that person has not been forgotten about and that people are still visiting them.

I love old cemeteries and I think this is such a kind and respectful thing to do so next time I tour a graveyard I'll be sure to bring some change along.  

Thanks for touring with me, I hope you enjoyed your visit!


  1. I knew about the fairy rings but the coins and rocks I had never heard of. Thanks for the information. I love old cemetaries.

  2. I absolutely love cemeteries old and new alike! Some of my earliest memories are of my Mother tending to one family grave and stone at a time scrubbing some of the older stones and planting flowers at everyone, we would go every year in early summer, my Mother stopped this after we were forced to move and she no longer had the time.But once we moved it became part of our 'Mother/Daughter' time that when we could we would visit cemeteries stop and walk around looking at all the different stones and names it was always so peaceful and serene. My Mother became extremely ill in 2005 and passed in 2007 God Bless her and may she R.I.P but even though my mother is no longer with me I still enjoy visiting the cemeteries her and I once did and finding new ones on my own, I also like to learn about any of the older traditions people have when it comes to things like death (the coins on the eyes, stopping the clocks, placing cloth over the mirrors things such as those), gravestones (like what you just explained above 'I never knew that' also such things like how they would bury a person with the bell exposed in cause they were not really dead, how different cultures leave different things at graves for different reasons) and basicly about different folklores, traditions and such .... oh God, I have been rambling :) anyway thank you very much for the pics and info I really did enjoy it an awful lot

  3. There is a wonderful old cemetery in Grand Lake, Colorado (the SW entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park). The grave are scattered among the tall pines. Each year on Labor Day weekend, the Grand Characters give tours in costume and tell the history of those buried there.

  4. What cemetery is this, please?


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