Rest in Peace: A History of American Cemeteries

Overview

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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Overview

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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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Paula McMillen
Part of the "People's History" series, this slim and well-documented text probably provides more information than most teens ever wanted to know about the history of cemeteries. Chapters are laid out in roughly chronological order, with final chapters about ethnic cemeteries, changing trends in burial preferences, and the challenges of preserving old cemeteries. It is obvious the author, a historian, cares about her subject, and there are numerous black-and-white photos and drawings, both historic and current, to break up the narration. Nevertheless, overall this is somewhat ponderous reading and it seems unlikely to catch and maintain the attention of many teen readers. Most interesting are the frequent discussions, in addition to the specific chapter discussing ethnic cemeteries, about how cultures of various native and immigrant groups influenced customs for burial over the centuries of American settlement. From a design standpoint, the book is attractive, and the supplemental material is extensive: timeline from 3000 B.C. to present, annotated descriptions of key cemeteries with their accompanying websites, source notes, selected bibliography, "Further reading and websites," and an index. Useful for larger school libraries or public libraries. Reviewer: Paula McMillen, Ph.D.
School Library Journal

Gr 9 Up- From small family burial plots to the full-service corporate cemeteries of today, Americans' burial and funeral traditions have shifted over time. This detailed book traces those changes in a scholarly way, and includes traditions of Native Americans, slaves, and various ethnic communities. Sepia-toned illustrations liven up the rather serious text, but some are of poor quality and several of the captions are difficult to read. This well-documented and thorough book would be useful for someone genuinely interested in this topic, but it won't have wide appeal to average teens.-Marcia Kochel, Olson Middle School, Bloomington, MN

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780822534143
  • Publisher: Lerner Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 3/28/2008
  • Series: People's History Series
  • Format: Library Binding
  • Pages: 112
  • Age range: 10 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 7.64 (w) x 8.96 (h) x 0.51 (d)

Meet 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.
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