Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Gravestone of the Day: Elizabeth Fernald

Elizabeth Fernald, 1804, Copp's Hill, Boston, MA
Sacred to the Memory of
amiable Wife of
(Also in Memory of
her Husband and Children)
who died Febt. 27th. 1804
in the 34th. Year of her age.
O. my Friends remember that the Lord giveth
& taketh away, & blessed be the name of the 
Lord. O my Husband & Children, [dry up 
your tears, & remember that you must all follow 
me sooner or later, where we must all lie till Christ 
our Saviour bids us arise; for thy will must be done. Amen.]

I haven't been able to find much information on Elizabeth Fernald or her family. I found one family tree that listed an Abraham Fernald who died at sea in 1804 whose wife, Elizabeth Mills, also died in 1804. That might explain why the stone was "also in memory of her husband," but I haven't found any children for the couple. Perhaps they died as infants? If her husband and children were already dead, the verse, "O my Husband and Children, dry up your tears . . ." doesn't make much sense.


Robert J. said...

Although it's certainly possible that there was more than one Abraham Fernald, nevertheless it's curious that a few months after Elizabeth died there is a record in Boston of the marriage of an Abraham Fernald to a Nancy Tracy.


Caitlin GD Hopkins said...

There seem to be a bunch of Abraham Fernalds in Maine, too. The "Capt." made me think seafaring, but it could be a militia designation.

In any event, it's strange to have the "in memory of her husband and children" on the same stone as "husband and children dry your tears." Perhaps there was some strange lag time in setting up the stone.