Botany Cemetery – More Correctly, Eastern Suburbs Memorial Park
After our drive along the Prince of Wales Road to ogle at the port, we took the hill and turned right into the massive graveyard - our aim, to find the early graves of the first settlers in Australia. No idea where to find them and due to the size of the cemetery we stayed in the dry of the car and followed the thin roads from right to left. We, by random chance, began with the Catholics.
From up here we could look across the graves down to the port below.
Down by the port.
The Brigidine Nuns.
Some not so well cared for.
A recent husband with a place set aside for his wife.
Mile upon mile of gravestones.
Every colour from white to black.
Furthest away from the port, facing toward Sydney.
The Jewish area.
At the top once more we drove past the Catholic mausoleums, then the Italian Families.
The Memorial Garden and Crematoria.
Main road. Lovely to see families picnicking with their loved ones.
Eastern Suburbs Memorial Park is a cemetery and crematorium at Matraville, New South Wales, in the eastern suburbs district of Sydney, Australia. Land was dedicated as a cemetery site in 1888, with the first interment recorded on the 21st of August 1893. Since then, more than 65,000 people have been buried here [tiny number compared to the world’s biggest cemetery of ten million in Iraq – a must visit]. The crematorium was opened in 1938. The memorial park incorporates Botany Cemetery, Eastern Suburbs Crematorium and Pioneer Park.
Then we found what we were looking for, the really old graves. Amazing to think these graves are so old yet we have seen modern ones in poor condition, even fallen in. This uniquely shaped grave has stood the test of time and not fallen to pieces, even after being moved. A sad story.
Pioneer Memorial Park contains historic headstones which were relocated from Devonshire Street Cemetery in 1901 to make space for Central Railway Station. At that time, thousands of graves and 2285 tombstones of the first settlers in Australia were moved to the new cemetery at La Perouse, named Bunnerong Cemetery. In 1976, the Botany Cemetery Trust destroyed most of these historic monuments by creating a new, low maintenance lawn area. The remaining 746 headstones were reinstalled in concrete strips, unrelated to the graves below. The new lawn was named Pioneer Memorial Park. The Eastern Suburbs Memorial Park has recently started expanding burials over this lawn, with interments now abutting the few historic tombstones which were saved.
The earliest grave we saw was dated 1814.
A final look back at Pioneer Memorial Park.
We drove across the road to the Western Suburb Memorial Park and saw recent gravestones, a new burial place and an area being made ready.
We always find our favourite. This plaque reads: Give Yourself an Upper Cut. Cop That.
We made our way home in the now pouring rain. Crossing the Sydney Harbour Bridge with a packed train to our left. Down the one hundred and nine steps after a really busy day. I lost both games and went on strike. Sitting up in bed it was Bear’s choice of film, he chose Nanny McPhee and served me with a chunk of green peril and two pickled onions, smashing. Bear went to sleep before me so I snuck the final half hour of Babe then settled to a good nights sleep.
ALL IN ALL SIMPLY GIGANTIC
OVERWHELMING IN SIZE