Saturday, June 19, 2010

Miners Union Cemetery- Bodie

This is the Undertakers home/office in Bodie. I had to get these photos through thick, dirty and very reflective vintage glass. The old style caskets were a real find!

The Bodie cemetery is located on a hill across the main road into Bodie. There is a great view of the town from the cemetery but also the cemetery is easily seen from the town and a constant reminder of the   closeness of death in Bodie which was considered one of the most wild of the Wild West towns.

Grave marker placed for Waterman S. Body aka William S. Bodey

Looks like the Lockwoods lost at least 2 family members in 1892, likely an influenza epidemic.

Grave of Lottie Johl

Grave of Lottie Johl

This is not an original marker for Rosa May. Her actual gravesite is near this area as she was buried outside the cemetery fence. You can see the fence in the background.
Rosa May (1855 – 1911-12) was a prostitute during the late 19th century and very early 20th century who lived in the Virginia City and Bodie, California areas. Legend states that she was selflessly nursing sick miners during an epidemic and succumbed to the illness herself. Because of this she has been referred to as the “hooker with a heart of gold”. From 1888 to the early 1890s, she traveled to and from Bodie, California and eventually settled there in 1893. She appears on the 1900 census records. 1902 land records show that Rosa purchased a house in Bodie’s “Red Light District” for $175.

Based on external evidence it appears that Rosa died during the winter of 1911-1912. Her exact cause of death is not known and a legal record of her death does not exist. She was buried in Bodie, but due to the nature of her profession, she was not allowed to be buried within the cemetery boundary. Her grave site lies about 100 feet outside of the town cemetery, did not have a headstone marker, and had a small wooden fence built around it. A gravestone marker now exists in the area but it was erected many years after her death and is in the wrong location.

Morgue building as seen from the top of the cemetery

A view inside the morgue

Front view of the morgue

View of Bodie from the morgue

A last view of Bodie from cemetery hill

Leaving Bodie behind us. .  For more on Bodie and if you plan to visit you can check HERE for info

Coming up Virginia City and Virginia City Cemetery
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