Rest in Peace: A History of American Cemeteries (People's History)

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9780822534143: Rest in Peace: A History of American Cemeteries (People's History)
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From unsanitary pits to today's "green" cemeteries, Rest in Peace explores the evolution of burial practices and how they reflect the history and culture of the United States. Interspersed with primary source quotations and fascinating photographs, the book offers an unusual window in to the expression of American cultural identity across the ages.

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About the Author:

Meg Greene is a historian and an award-winning author. She holds an M.A. in history and an M.S. in historic preservation. She is the author of fourteen books, including Slave Young, Slave Long: The American Slave Experience, which was named a 1999 Honor Book from the Society of School Librarians International; Buttons, Bones and the Organ-Grinder's Monkey: Tales of Historical Archaeology, named as a 2001 Best Book for Teens from the New York City Public Library; and the star-reviewed Into the Land of Freedom: African Americans in Reconstruction. Meg Greene also is editor of "History for Children" for Suite101.com.

From Booklist:

Over the last two centuries, American cemeteries have evolved from unsightly, unsanitary urban graveyards to rural park destinations to thriving, sprawling enterprises to places practicing green burials and other environmentally conscious alternatives. This account of cemeteries in the U.S. offers a sweeping history of these trends as well as plenty of noteworthy details, illustrated throughout with black-and-white photos shaded in sepia tones. The opening chapter describes Native American burial traditions, followed up with a discussion of Spanish, New England, Southern, and slave burials in colonial times and the above-ground cemeteries of New Orleans. Another interesting chapter looks at ethnic cemeteries. The extensive back matter includes a time line, an annotated list of places to visit, source notes, a selected bibliography, and lists of recommended books and Web sites. From the concept that cemeteries “served as models for the nation’s city park systems” to the development of pet cemeteries, this book from the People’s History series presents many aspects of an unusual topic. Grades 8-11. --Carolyn Phelan

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