For the dead who could afford a grave marker, the information chiseled or inscribed on them about the lives that lay beneath is often limited. Their name, birth, death, a short passage of poetry or a biblical except - and that's it. What about their favourite piece of music? Their favourite colour? Where did they travel to? What did they achieve? This is the real information we yearn for as we reacquaint ourselves with the dead. But where do you start to find this information out? And what if they don't have a headstone? How do we deal with the contentious histories often linked to those who've passed?
With the growing popularity of cemeteries as a quieter, more socially-distanced places to take time to reflect and learn more about our social history, this talk aims to help you discover their resource as a place of learning as well as mourning and how to recover a life long gone, with the pros and cons of this historical resurrection.
Sheldon K. Goodman is the curator of Cemetery Club, a blog that reframes cemeteries as Museums of People. Recently Sheldon completed a masters at the University of Birkbeck in Public Histories and runs tours in a number of cemeteries, including queer history tours in Brompton & Arnos vale cemeteries. He is also a qualified City of Westminster Tour Guide and heritage professional.