Time again for a Big Q Tip.  This one might seem a little morbid to some, but trust me, this works. 

I’ve been lucky enough to have seen a fair share of this planet.  When I was younger, and able to fit in airline seats, I would travel as much as I could.  If I spent more than a day at some place I would like to find out about the history of the town.  Sure, I could’ve gone to the library, but I’m a heavy breather, and they frown on that at the library.  So, to find out a little history of the town, I would head down to the local graveyard.

This is not as morbid as you think.  If you go to a graveyard you can find the families that have been in town a long time, whether they were wealthy or poor. You'd be amazed at the level of history you can see by staring at pieces of marble.

You can see how hard life was when the town was young.  If you see a lot of stones of children who died young you know that it was a hard time, and a hard land.

Looking for this information will also tell you a little about crime in the community.  Are they’re a lot of vandalized plots, Graffiti markings?  If the stones look to be in good shape, then you can figure that it's a good place to live. For whatever reason, picking on the dead seems to be a signal that there's a lot of anger in the neighborhood.

You can also find out what cultures are prevalent in the community by looking at gravestones.

I found one in Scottsbluff Nebraska which, at first, I thought was a joke.  It simply said Hamburger.  I carried around a photo of the tombstone and would joke that if Burger King, or McDonalds, would fail to sell a burger before it went bad that they would send it to Scottsbluff to be buried.  Later, when the internet was invented by the Gore guy, I did a little research and found that “Hamburger” is a family name in Scottsbluff.

Via Big Q Photos TSM
Via Big Q Photos TSM

The other thing I like to do is check the phone book to see if my last name is present, if it is, I would then check to see if there were any tombstone with my personal name on it.  After all, if you think about it, it’ll be the only chance I'd get to see it from a “living” point of view.


  Big Q Tip;  Visit the local Cemetery for a touch of local history.

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