Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Tombstone Tuesday - Rev. C. W. Ruth

Christian Wismer Ruth, husband's grandfather
September 01, 1865 - May 27, 1941

I have written several posts about the Reverend Christian Wismer Ruth. Reverend Ruth was an early leader of the Holiness Christian Church later becoming a founding member of the Church of the Nazarene. Christian and his wife, Emma Josephine Springer Ruth were both interred at Forest Lawn Cemetery in Glendale, California.

Forest Lawn Cemetery, Glendale is describe on Wikipedia as:

Forest Lawn was founded in 1906 as a not-for-profit cemetery by a group of businessmen from San Francisco. Dr. Hubert Eaton and C. B. Sims entered into a sales contract with the cemetery in 1912. Eaton took over the management of the cemetery in 1917 and is credited as being the "Founder" of Forest Lawn for his innovations of establishing the "memorial park plan" (eliminating upright grave markers) and being the first to open a funeral home on dedicated cemetery grounds. Eaton was a firm believer in a joyous life after death. He was convinced that most cemeteries were "unsightly, depressing stoneyards" and pledged to create one that would reflect his optimistic, Christian beliefs, "as unlike other cemeteries as sunshine is unlike darkness."

These statues grace the Ruth family grave site at Forest Lawn
The six Forest Lawn cemeteries contain about 1,500 statues, about 10% of which are reproductions of famous works of art, in various locations. Leonardo da Vinci's The Last Supper has been recreated in stained glass in the Memorial Court of Honor ‘in vibrant, glowing and indestructible colors.’ There are also a number of full-sized reproductions of other Renaissance sculptures, including Michelangelo's David and Moses. This cemetery is the only place in the world containing a complete collection of replica Michelangelo's sculptures, which were made from castings taken from the originals and using marble from the same quarries in Carrara, Italy as used by Michelangelo.

Forest Lawn is the final resting place for many entertainment figures such as L. Frank Baum, Lucille Ball, Sammy Davis Jr., Douglas Fairbanks, Jimmy Stewart, Humphrey Bogart, and Clark Gable. Some of these celebrities are buried in private gardens to discourage the curious. Most recently Forest Lawn was in the headlines as the final resting place for Michael Jackson.

I would like to thank the Find-A-Grave volunteer who graciously obtained these photographs for our family. These wonderful people take their time to assist families with filling in the missing pieces of their family trees. This was the case with our volunteer Tom, who lives on the other side of the country. Thanks again Tom!

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