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Funerales durante la Nueva Nación - Historia

Funerales durante la Nueva Nación - Historia

En comunidades más pequeñas, los vecinos y amigos serían notificados de la muerte, mientras que los más cercanos entre ellos acudirían a mantener limpios y vestir el cadáver. Los hombres solían preparar los cuerpos de los hombres muertos y las mujeres, los cuerpos de las mujeres muertas. En comunidades más grandes y en ciudades, las mujeres hicieron la mayor parte de la preparación, a veces como especialistas remuneradas; en Filadelfia en 1810, había 15 mujeres que se especializaban en "colocar a los muertos". Dado que los cadáveres no fueron embalsamados, los sudarios y ataúdes tuvieron que hacerse rápidamente.
En los pueblos y áreas rurales, casi todos los que se enteraron de un funeral asistieron, incluso si el fallecido no era conocido por todos los invitados. Esto se debió a que una muerte en la comunidad significó un cambio importante en el tejido de interdependencia que caracterizó la vida en el campo. El ataúd se dejaría abierto antes del funeral. Los más cercanos al difunto se sentaban cerca del ataúd y recibían el pésame de los invitados. Los servicios fúnebres rara vez se llevaban a cabo en las iglesias. Después de reunirse en la casa del difunto, los dolientes escuchaban una oración, y tal vez un sermón, luego caminaban hacia el lugar del entierro con el ataúd sobre los hombros de los portadores. Cuando los autocares con ruedas y otros vehículos estuvieron disponibles, el medio de transporte estándar para un ataúd se convirtió en un coche fúnebre.
Los detalles de los funerales variaron según la región y la afiliación religiosa de la familia del difunto. En Nueva Inglaterra, los cuadros y los espejos se cubrieron con tela en una casa de luto. En los asentamientos occidentales, las familias a menudo celebraban sus funerales solas, con poco alboroto y, a veces, ni siquiera con una oración o lectura de las Escrituras. En las comunidades esclavistas del sur, la costumbre era enterrar a los muertos por la noche, con el acompañamiento de himnos e iluminación de antorchas. En el camino de regreso del entierro, los dolientes podrían cantar música más alegre. Esta es una característica famosa de los funerales en Luisiana. Este ritual a veces asustaba a sus vecinos blancos.



La muerte no es el final: fascinantes tradiciones funerarias de todo el mundo

Los funerales a los que he asistido han sido todos muy parecidos. Familiares y amigos llegan vestidos de negro y se sientan en los bancos de la iglesia o la sinagoga para una ceremonia sombría donde se dicen oraciones, se comparten recuerdos y se derraman lágrimas. Los asistentes caminan lentamente hacia sus autos y forman una sola fila detrás del coche fúnebre, llegando al cementerio donde colocan rosas en el ataúd justo antes de que lo bajen al suelo. Luego, se dirigen a la casa de la familia inmediata, donde suena el timbre con un flujo constante de seres queridos & # 8212 platos de cazuela en mano & # 8212, ya que, en los días venideros, la gente a menudo se olvida de comer.

La antropóloga cultural Kelli Swazey (Charla TED: La vida que no termina con la muerte) comparte un enfoque diferente para conmemorar a los muertos. En Tana Toraja, en el este de Indonesia, los funerales son asuntos estridentes que involucran a toda la aldea. Pueden durar desde días hasta semanas. Las familias ahorran durante largos períodos de tiempo para reunir los recursos necesarios para un lujoso funeral, donde el sacrificio de búfalos de agua llevará el alma del difunto a la otra vida. Hasta ese momento & # 8212 que puede tener lugar años después de la muerte física & # 8212, se hace referencia al pariente fallecido simplemente como una "persona que está enferma", o incluso uno "que está dormido". Se les colocan habitaciones especiales en el hogar familiar, donde son alimentados, cuidados y sacados simbólicamente & # 8212 todavía una parte muy importante de la vida de sus parientes.

Las prácticas funerarias están profundamente arraigadas en la cultura y, en todo el mundo, las tradiciones enormemente variadas reflejan una amplia variedad de creencias y valores. Aquí, un vistazo a algunas de las tradiciones funerarias que podrían parecer extrañas a alguien fuera de una cultura.

El funeral de jazz de Nueva Orleans. Es una de las imágenes prototípicas de Nueva Orleans, Luisiana: la bulliciosa procesión fúnebre con tintes de jazz. Los funerales en Nueva Orleans fusionan las tradiciones de África occidental, francesa y afroamericana, y logran un equilibrio único entre la alegría y el dolor, ya que los dolientes son dirigidos por una banda de música. La banda toca cantos fúnebres dolorosos al principio, pero una vez que el cuerpo está enterrado, cambian a una nota optimista. La danza catártica es generalmente parte del evento, para conmemorar la vida del difunto. [Wikipedia]

Cuentas de entierro de Corea del Sur. En Corea del Sur, una ley aprobada en 2000 requiere que cualquier persona que entierre a un ser querido retire la tumba después de 60 años. Debido a la disminución del espacio del cementerio y la ley resultante, la cremación se ha vuelto mucho más popular. Pero las familias no siempre optan por las cenizas. Varias empresas comprimen los restos en cuentas en forma de gemas en turquesa, rosa o negro. Estas "cuentas de la muerte" se exhiben luego en la casa. [La semana]

Tradiciones de la muerte filipina. Muchos grupos étnicos en Filipinas tienen prácticas funerarias únicas. Los Benguet del Noroeste de Filipinas les vendan los ojos a sus muertos y los colocan junto a la entrada principal de la casa, sus vecinos tinguianos visten cuerpos con sus mejores galas, los sientan en una silla y les colocan un cigarrillo encendido en los labios. Los caviteños, que viven cerca de Manila, entierran a sus muertos en un tronco de árbol ahuecado. Cuando alguien se enferma, selecciona el árbol donde finalmente será sepultado. Mientras tanto, los Apayo, que viven en el norte, entierran a sus muertos debajo de la cocina. [Wikipedia]

Entierro en el cielo en Mongolia y Tíbet. Muchos budistas Vajrayana en Mongolia y el Tíbet creen en la transmigración de los espíritus después de la muerte, que el alma sigue adelante, mientras que el cuerpo se convierte en un recipiente vacío. Para devolverlo a la tierra, el cuerpo se corta en pedazos y se coloca en la cima de una montaña, lo que lo expone a los elementos & # 8212 incluidos los buitres. Es una práctica que se ha realizado durante miles de años y, según un informe reciente, alrededor del 80% de los tibetanos todavía la eligen. [The Buddhist Channel]

Funerales verdes. En los Estados Unidos, cada vez más personas optan por entierros respetuosos con el medio ambiente. Esto significa saltarse los procesos de embalsamamiento, rechazar las tradicionales bóvedas de hormigón y conseguir ataúdes de sauce tejidos biodegradables, que se descomponen en el suelo. El Green Burial Council ha aprobado 40 cementerios ecológicos en los EE. UU. Y # 8212 mucho más que hace una década. Otra opción: convertirse en una "bola de arrecife" conmemorativa. Una empresa llamada Eternal Reefs comprime los restos en una esfera que está unida a un arrecife en el océano, proporcionando un hábitat para la vida marina. [Newsweek, Wall Street Journal]

Cremación balinesa. "Por extraño que parezca, es en sus ceremonias de cremación donde los balineses se divierten más", escribió Miguel Covarrubias en el libro de 1937, Isla de bali. En 2008, la isla vio una de sus cremaciones más lujosas cuando Agung Suyasa, jefe de la familia real, fue quemado junto con 68 plebeyos. Miles de voluntarios se reunieron para llevar una plataforma de bambú gigante, un enorme toro de madera y un dragón de madera. Después de una larga procesión, el cuerpo de Suyasa finalmente fue colocado dentro del toro y quemado cuando el dragón fue testigo. En la tradición balinesa, la cremación libera el alma, por lo que es libre de habitar un nuevo cuerpo & # 8212 y hacer esto se considera un deber sagrado. [Los New York Times]

El giro de los huesos en Madagascar. El pueblo malgache de Madagascar tiene un famoso ritual llamado "famadihana" o "el giro de los huesos". Una vez cada cinco o siete años, una familia tiene una celebración en su cripta ancestral donde los cuerpos, envueltos en tela, son exhumados y rociados con vino o perfume. Mientras una banda toca en el animado evento, los miembros de la familia bailan con los cuerpos. Para algunos, es una oportunidad para transmitir noticias familiares a los fallecidos y pedirles su bendición y # 8212 para otros, es un momento para recordar y contar historias de los muertos. [Los New York Times]

Ritos mortuorios aborígenes en Australia. Cuando un ser querido muere en la sociedad aborigen del Territorio del Norte de Australia, comienzan los elaborados rituales. Primero, se lleva a cabo una ceremonia de fumar en la sala de estar del ser querido para alejar su espíritu. A continuación se lleva a cabo una fiesta, con los dolientes pintados de ocre mientras participan en la comida y la danza. El cuerpo se coloca tradicionalmente sobre una plataforma y se cubre de hojas mientras se deja descomponer. Se ha informado que, en algunas tradiciones, los fluidos de la plataforma pueden ayudar a identificar al asesino del difunto. [PubMed]

Ataúdes de fantasía de Ghana. En Ghana, las personas aspiran a ser enterradas en ataúdes que representan su trabajo o algo que amaban en la vida. Estos llamados "ataúdes de fantasía" fueron popularizados recientemente por Buzzfeed, que mostraba imágenes de 29 escandalosos, desde un ataúd con forma de Mercedes-Benz para un hombre de negocios hasta un pez de gran tamaño para un pescador y una Biblia realmente grande para alguien que amaba. ir a la iglesia. [Buzzfeed]

También vale la pena señalar: no siempre es el negro lo que significa muerte, como ocurre en Occidente y el blanco, morado, gris, verde y amarillo también marcan el paso de la vida. Vea esta visualización de David McCandless (Charla TED: La belleza de la visualización de datos) para ver qué color se usa donde: la fila 16 muestra el color asociado con la muerte y la fila 59 revela los colores variados asociados con el luto.


Etiqueta de la bandera estadounidense

Cuando se usa la bandera estadounidense durante una ceremonia para un miembro del servicio, hay varias reglas sugeridas por el Departamento de Asuntos de Veteranos (VA) de los EE. UU. Para honrar y respetar al difunto.

  • No se debe bajar una bandera a una tumba ni tocar el suelo.
  • Una bandera nunca debe usarse para cubrir una estatua o un monumento.
  • Una bandera nunca debe usarse de tal manera que permita que se rompa, ensucie o dañe.
  • Una bandera no debe tener nada colocado, adherido o marcado en ella.
  • Una bandera nunca debe usarse para sostener o transportar nada.
  • Cualquier bandera que esté desgastada, rasgada o sucia ya no debe mostrarse públicamente, sino destruirse en privado.
  • Los portadores del féretro deben sostener una bandera drapeada sobre el ataúd e, inmediatamente después del sonido de "Taps", deben doblarse de la manera correcta.

Hay una historia detrás de por qué la bandera estadounidense está doblada de una manera tan precisa. Cada pliegue tiene un significado diferente y esos significados se basan en un conjunto de principios cristianos tradicionales. Los orígenes de este procedimiento son en su mayoría desconocidos, pero algunas fuentes sugieren que pudo haber sido el Gold Star Mothers of America o un capellán de la Fuerza Aérea quienes primero usaron este proceso para honrar a los Veteranos.

La Legión Estadounidense afirma que el campo azul de la bandera que se muestra durante el programa de plegado representa el honor y representa los estados en los que sirvieron los Veteranos. Cuando una bandera está completamente doblada, a menudo se dice que “parece un sombrero de tres picos”, al igual que los sombreros que usaban los soldados que servían bajo el mando del general George Washington durante la Guerra Revolucionaria.


Urbanismo, arquitectura y uso del espacio

Los príncipes javaneses utilizaron durante mucho tiempo los monumentos y la arquitectura para magnificar su gloria, proporcionar un enfoque físico para sus reinos terrenales y vincularse a lo sobrenatural. En los siglos XVII al XIX, los holandeses reforzaron la posición de los príncipes indígenas a través de los cuales gobernaron construyéndoles palacios señoriales. La arquitectura del palacio a lo largo del tiempo combinó elementos y símbolos hindúes, musulmanes, indígenas y europeos en diversos grados según la situación local, que todavía se pueden ver en los palacios de Yogyakarta y Surakarta en Java o en Medan, en el norte de Sumatra.

La arquitectura colonial holandesa combinó elementos imperiales romanos con adaptaciones al clima tropical y la arquitectura indígena. Se han restaurado el fuerte holandés y los primeros edificios de Yakarta. Bajo el presidente Sukarno, se construyeron una serie de estatuas alrededor de Yakarta, principalmente glorificando a la gente más tarde, el Monumento Nacional, el Monumento a la Liberación de Irian Occidental (Papúa) y la gran Mezquita Istiqlal se erigieron para expresar el vínculo con un pasado hindú, la culminación de la independencia de Indonesia y el lugar del Islam en la nación. Las estatuas de héroes nacionales se encuentran en ciudades regionales.

La arquitectura residencial para diferentes grupos socioeconómicos urbanos se construyó sobre modelos desarrollados por el gobierno colonial y utilizados en todas las Indias. Combinaba elementos holandeses (techos de tejas de gran altura) con porches, cocinas abiertas y cuartos de servicio adaptados al clima y al sistema social. La madera predominó en la arquitectura urbana temprana, pero la piedra se convirtió en dominante en el siglo XX. Las zonas residenciales más antiguas de Yakarta, como Menteng cerca del Hotel Indonesia, reflejan la arquitectura urbana que se desarrolló en las décadas de 1920 y 1930. Después de 1950, continuaron desarrollándose nuevas áreas residenciales al sur de la ciudad, muchas de ellas con casas elaboradas y centros comerciales.

La mayoría de la gente en muchas ciudades vive en pequeñas casas de piedra y madera o bambú en aldeas urbanas hacinadas o en complejos con acceso deficiente a agua potable y eliminación adecuada de desechos. Las casas suelen estar muy juntas, sobre todo en las grandes ciudades de Java. Las ciudades que tienen menos presión de los migrantes rurales, como Padang en el oeste de Sumatra y Manado en el norte de Sulawesi, han podido gestionar mejor su crecimiento.

Las casas tradicionales, que se construyen en un solo estilo de acuerdo con los cánones consuetudinarios de grupos étnicos particulares, han sido marcadores de etnia. Estas casas existen en diversos grados de pureza en las zonas rurales, y algunos aspectos de ellas se utilizan en arquitectura urbana como edificios gubernamentales, bancos, mercados y hogares.

Las casas tradicionales en muchas aldeas rurales están disminuyendo en número. Los gobiernos holandés e indonesio alentaron a la gente a construir casas "modernas", estructuras rectangulares con ventanas. En algunas zonas rurales, sin embargo, como el oeste de Sumatra, las casas tradicionales restauradas o nuevas son construidas por inmigrantes urbanos exitosos para demostrar su éxito. En otras áreas rurales, la gente muestra su estatus construyendo casas modernas de piedra y teja, con preciosos ventanales de vidrio. En las ciudades, las casas coloniales antiguas son renovadas por propietarios prósperos que pusieron frentes de estilo contemporáneo más nuevos en las casas. Las columnas romanas preferidas en los edificios públicos holandeses ahora son populares para las casas privadas.


Un servicio socialmente distanciado

Antes de ingresar a la Capilla de San Jorge, los miembros de la familia real que caminaron en la procesión, incluidos el Príncipe Carlos, el Príncipe William y el Príncipe Harry, se pusieron máscaras.

Las únicas personas que hablaron en el servicio fueron el Decano de Windsor y el Arzobispo de Canterbury.

El Reverendo David Conner, KCVO, Decano de Windsor, dijo: "Nos ha inspirado su lealtad inquebrantable a nuestra Reina, su servicio a la Nación y la Commonwealth, su coraje, fortaleza y fe".

La familia, incluida la Reina, se sentó a distancia según el protocolo COVID-19.

Los miembros de la familia solo se sentaron con los miembros de su propia casa: el príncipe Carlos y su esposa Camillia juntos, el príncipe William y Kate Middleton, y la reina y el príncipe Harry sentados solos.

La familia real no hizo elogios y, según las pautas de COVID-19, no pudieron cantar.

El funeral del príncipe Felipe fue un reflejo de sus propios deseos y mostró los aspectos profesionales y personales de su vida: su familia y su servicio militar.

La música del servicio fue seleccionada por el propio Philip.

La canción cantada cerca del comienzo del servicio, Jubilate de Britten en C, fue comisionada por Philip para el Coro de la Capilla de San Jorge.

Más adelante en el servicio, William Lovelady puso música a la adaptación del Salmo 104 a pedido de Philip. Las palabras del salmo, interpretadas en un concierto por el 75 cumpleaños de Felipe, "evocan temas de la creación, el medio ambiente y la vida silvestre", que reflejan los intereses de Felipe, según el Palacio de Buckingham.

Uno de los momentos finales del servicio vio a los clarines de los Royal Marines tocar el Clarín, que significa el final del día o, en el caso de Philip, cuando un soldado ha ido a su descanso final. Philip también solicitó que los Royal Marines suenen en las estaciones de acción, una tradición naval que anuncia que todas las manos deben ir a las estaciones de batalla.


Mes de la Historia Afroamericana: directores de funerales afroamericanos como líderes comunitarios

Cortesía de Carl Miller Funeral Home en Camden Rutledge Miller, difunto propietario de Miller Funeral Home, posa con su coche fúnebre construido a mano alrededor de 1917. El negocio ahora se llama Carl Miller Funeral Home y es la funeraria de propiedad afroamericana más antigua de el estado, que se remonta a 1861.

Durante la década de 1860, cuando viajar por Nueva Jersey en carro podía consumir medio día, un ebanista / pastor llamado Edward Miller se diversificó en un nuevo negocio.

Fue uno de los primeros funerarios afroamericanos de Garden State, que transportaba cadáveres de un pueblo agrícola a otro en un coche fúnebre de madera hecho a mano. Su esposa, Leah, usó hielo para preservar y embellecer los cadáveres para su visualización. Su hijo, Rutledge, ayudó a su padre a subir a los difuntos a su vehículo y finalmente se hizo cargo del establecimiento.

Fundada en Magnolia en 1861, pero ahora con sede en Camden, la funeraria Carl Miller es la segunda funeraria de propiedad negra más antigua del país.

“Crecimos a partir de una necesidad básica dentro de la comunidad”, dice Pamela Miller Dabney, de 58 años, bisnieta de Edward, el fundador de la empresa, quien se había mudado a South Jersey desde Carolina del Norte.

En esos primeros días, los Miller dieron la bienvenida a familias que hubieran sido rechazadas por directores de funerales blancos. A pesar de que los habitantes de Jersey no estaban sujetos a las leyes de Jim Crow, el estado tenía su propia tradición no oficial de "separados pero iguales".

"Alrededor de 1910, tenían un lugar llamado People’s Burial Company en Newark, y los negros tenían que entrar por la puerta lateral para hacer arreglos", dice James E. Churchman Jr., de 86 años, cuyo abuelo abrió un depósito de cadáveres del mismo nombre en Orange en 1899.

Aunque los empresarios negros eran técnicamente "libres" después de la Guerra Civil, enfrentaron grandes probabilidades de iniciar negocios que les permitieran ser sus propios jefes. Durante décadas, los antiguos esclavos y sus descendientes fueron excluidos de un espectro de oficios, y la educación superior permaneció en gran medida fuera del alcance de Nueva Jersey.

Una excepción notable fue la profesión de funerario. Era un campo especializado para afroamericanos que logró prosperar a pesar de una cultura de división racial. Una profesión de ayuda, ofrecía la promesa de prestigio y la oportunidad de hacer crecer sus ahorros.

Cuando el uso del embalsamamiento se generalizó durante la Guerra Civil, ambas razas consideraron tabú que un empresario de pompas fúnebres blanco manejara un cadáver negro. Esta segregación de los muertos creó una industria funeraria paralela, completa con una red autónoma de empresas de ataúdes y proveedores de productos químicos de propiedad de afroamericanos.

En 1900, la National Negro Business League incluía a unos 500 directores de funerarias hombres y mujeres. Ese número aumentó a miles a mediados de siglo.

La importancia duradera de un entierro adecuado, ya sea que el difunto sea rico o pobre, ha permitido que las funerarias de propiedad de negros perseveren desde la revolución industrial hasta la actualidad, según la historiadora Suzanne E. Smith en su libro, "To Serve the Living : Directores de funerarias y la forma de muerte afroamericana ".

Las funerarias negras son más que santuarios para familias en duelo. También pueden ser un vínculo con la cultura afroamericana, según Dabney.

"Se trata de tradiciones", explica. "Las personas que emigraron al norte después de la Guerra Civil trajeron consigo sus tradiciones".

Los monumentos conmemorativos de hoy en día fusionan los elementos básicos de los funerales estadounidenses con los componentes de las tradicionales "celebraciones hogareñas" africanas, dice Dabney.

Una despedida incluyó una visión del difunto para el duelo ritual y un entierro con tambores, seguido de un festín. Cuando los africanos fueron esclavizados en el Nuevo Mundo, los propietarios de sus plantaciones les permitieron reunirse para ceremonias privadas. Los funerales de esclavos tenían un tono festivo porque la muerte se percibía como liberación, según el libro de Smith.

Ese trasfondo histórico se traslada a los funerales modernos. “A menudo tiene servicios que son bastante animados”, explica Miller. “Ahora incluso se está extendiendo a donde tienen bailes interpretativos y bailes de alabanza. Suele haber una fiesta. Las personas que quizás no tengan mucho dinero traerán comida para la familia. Dirán: "Traeré una cacerola de macarrones con queso. Quiero traer judías verdes o voy a hacer papas blancas. Te traeré pollo y jamón o pavo ".

Durante la era de los derechos civiles, los funerarios se unieron a la lucha por la igualdad de formas únicas. Por ejemplo, cuando Martin Luther King Jr. y otros activistas se encontraron con amenazas de muerte, una red informal de funerales negros los ayudó a viajar de manera segura de un discurso a otro, transportándolos en secreto en coches fúnebres y alojándolos durante la noche en funerarias en todo el sur.

Incluso la revista de la industria, Coloured Embalmer, se convirtió en una publicación política. Y un punto álgido en el movimiento fue el funeral de una víctima de linchamiento adolescente en Chicago, Emmett Till, cuyos restos maltratados se exhibieron con una restauración mínima para hacer una declaración.

Smith sugiere en su libro que los directores de funerarias continúan desempeñando un papel especial dentro de las comunidades afroamericanas, encomendado por los dolientes, estrechamente vinculados a la iglesia y ayudando a mejorar las áreas en las que sirven.

"Los directores de funerarias son líderes comunitarios, ya sea en el noreste o en el sur", dice Samuel Arnold, presidente de la Asociación de Directores de Funerarias de Garden State. Tiene su base en Perry Funeral Home en Newark. “Incluso hoy, unimos fuerzas para participar en diversas actividades y asuntos comunitarios que dicen: 'Reunámonos y solucionemos algunos problemas'”.

Sin embargo, los tiempos han cambiado desde que se apoderó de la recesión, y el estatus de las funerarias como productos básicos del vecindario ha disminuido. Los consumidores están comprando en línea y recurriendo a las grandes tiendas en busca de gangas, incluso en un momento de dolor.

"En estos días, la gente puede ir a Costco y comprar un jamón y un ataúd al mismo tiempo", dice Edith Churchman, hija de James, quien ayuda a administrar el negocio familiar en Newark.

Los directores de funerarias urbanas dicen que también han visto cambiar su trabajo a medida que cambian sus comunidades.

En Camden y Newark, ven de primera mano las consecuencias de la violencia de las pandillas y el abuso de drogas. “Desafortunadamente, los jóvenes y los viejos van”, explica James Churchman. "En estos días, parece que hay más gente joven que gente mayor".

Arnold dice que las comunidades unen sus recursos para ayudar a las familias con dificultades a despedirse con dignidad, un testimonio de la persistencia de las tradiciones.

"He visto iglesias, organizaciones, donaciones de todas partes", explica Arnold, que trabaja en la funeraria Perry en Newark. “He visto a gente traer 10 tarjetas de crédito. Hay fiestas para ayudar a sufragar el costo del evento ".


Un cuerpo para el cuerpo político

Foto de Samuel Montague Fassett. Cortesía de la Biblioteca del Congreso.

Extraído de El cuerpo de Lincoln: una historia cultural por Richard Wightman Fox, ahora de W. W. Norton & Co.

Cuando Lincoln respiró por última vez el sábado 15 de abril de 1865 por la mañana, su esposa estaba instalada en el salón delantero de la Casa Petersen. Edwin Stanton, secretario de Guerra, la había invitado al lecho de muerte para una breve visita unos 20 minutos antes del final, y esa pudo haber sido la última vez que vio el cuerpo de su esposo.

Cuando salió de la Casa Petersen, descendió los escalones de la entrada y se agarró a la barandilla de metal curvada que todavía estaba en su lugar hasta el día de hoy, miró hacia el Ford's Theatre, lo maldijo y luego se subió a su carruaje cerrado junto a su hijo Robert y su amiga Elizabeth. Dixon. De regreso a la Casa Blanca, ascendió a las habitaciones del segundo piso y permaneció allí durante cinco semanas seguidas.

El prolongado aislamiento de Mary en la Casa Blanca dio a los dolientes del Norte una cristalización escalofriante de su propio sufrimiento. Hasta el 20 de abril, ni siquiera se sentó en la cama. Habiendo sido negada cualquier apariencia de una escena familiar en el lecho de muerte en la Casa Petersen —Stanton se negó a permitirle traer al joven Tad, o dejarla llorar tan inconsolablemente como había deseado— se instaló en un silencio público ensordecedor.

Al hacerlo, sin querer otorgó un gran regalo al pueblo estadounidense. Entregó el cuerpo de su marido al cuerpo político. El dolor del pueblo y el mártir del pueblo prevalecerán sobre el duelo de la familia y el amado de la familia. Por supuesto, las metáforas familiares moldearon la percepción que la gente tenía de Lincoln durante la guerra y después de su muerte. Los soldados de la Unión lo llamaron especialmente Padre Abraham, pero muchos otros insistieron en que perderlo se sentía exactamente como perder a un miembro de su familia.

Ilustración cortesía de Harper's Weekly a través de Wikipedia Commons

La retirada de la Sra. Lincoln del cuerpo físico creó un vacío que Stanton llenó con gusto. Habiendo fallado en proteger a su amigo en vida, ahora lo microgestionaría en la muerte, rodeando el cadáver con la guardia militar que el presidente vivo había eludido con tanta frecuencia y haciendo un seguimiento de las personas a las que se les permitía tocarlo a él o su ataúd. Por lo que sabía, los simpatizantes confederados podrían intentar profanar los restos.

Stanton no dejó ningún detalle al azar. Solo unas horas después de la muerte de Lincoln, aparentemente fue él quien decidió qué hacer con los feos hematomas bajo los ojos de Lincoln. El impulso de los embalsamadores fue hacerlo lucir "natural", dijo el Heraldo de Nueva York, tal como lucía en “los retratos del fallecido presidente, tan familiares para la gente”: una “frente ancha y una mandíbula firme” y “una plácida sonrisa en los labios”. Eso requeriría que "eliminen la decoloración de la cara mediante un proceso químico". Pero el secretario de Guerra insistió en preservar las manchas moradas como “parte de la historia del suceso ... una prueba para los miles que verían el cuerpo cuando sea puesto en estado, de la muerte que este mártir de sus ideas de justicia y el derecho había sufrido ".

Stanton completó el itinerario del funeral de Lincoln el 19 de abril, dos días antes de la salida del tren.

Mary Lincoln le suplicó a Stanton que enviara a Lincoln a casa por el camino más directo — al oeste a través de Pensilvania desde Filadelfia a Pittsburgh y luego al Medio Oeste — evitando así la larga caminata por el norte a través de Nueva Jersey y Nueva York. Pero Stanton resistió. El viaje fúnebre calificaría como una verdadera experiencia de la Unión. El tren que transportara el cuerpo de Lincoln pasaría por los cinco estados más poblados del norte (Pensilvania, Nueva York, Ohio, Indiana e Illinois) y solo perdería un estado (Massachusetts) que contiene más de 1 millón de habitantes. La Sra. Lincoln luchó con uñas y dientes por una sola cosa: la parcela de entierro en particular en el cementerio de Oak Ridge, a dos millas a las afueras de Springfield, Illinois, que recibiría los restos de su esposo.

El cuerpo de Lincoln resistió bien durante las primeras paradas del tren funerario: Baltimore Harrisburg, Pensilvania y Filadelfia. Durante la visualización maratón de 20 horas en Filadelfia, quizás 150.000 personas pasaron junto a su ataúd después de esperar hasta cinco horas. Ozias Hatch, viejo amigo de Lincoln en Springfield, que viajaba en el tren como parte de la delegación de Illinois, notó algunas manchas en la cara, pero lo encontró con un aspecto "bastante natural". También lo hizo el Philadelphia Inquirer, que observó "una expresión natural, plácida y pacífica".

La marea comenzó a cambiar por el cadáver de Lincoln después del visionado maratónico en Manhattan, pisándole los talones al primero en Filadelfia. En la ciudad de Nueva York, el cuerpo estuvo expuesto al aire durante 23 horas seguidas, desde la 1 p.m. el lunes 24 de abril hasta el mediodía del día siguiente. Entre los miles, en blanco y negro, que pasaban arrastrando los pies por el féretro, buscando empapar el rostro y la parte superior del torso de Lincoln, estaba Augustus Saint-Gaudens, de 17 años, el futuro escultor. Después de mirar la carne del presidente, el adolescente salió del Ayuntamiento y volvió a la fila, esperando horas más para ver el cadáver por segunda vez.

Cuando el tren partió de la ciudad de Nueva York hacia Albany, Nueva York, el martes por la tarde, los lectores de periódicos recibieron informes alarmantes sobre el estado del cuerpo. los New York Times afirmó que el cuerpo "se había alterado muy materialmente" mientras se encontraba en la ciudad. “Tan oscuro como era el rostro antes, y sobrenatural, era, a las 11 en punto [el lunes por la noche], casi cinco tonos más oscuro. El polvo se había acumulado en los rasgos, la mandíbula inferior un poco caída, los labios ligeramente separados y los dientes visibles. No fue una vista agradable ". El estado del cuerpo lo hacía "dudoso", dijo el Veces, que podrían tener lugar visualizaciones públicas adicionales.

El poeta y editor William Cullen Bryant's New York Evening Post fue más allá, declarando: "No es el rostro afable y amable de Abraham Lincoln, es una sombra espantosa". Aquellos que vieran a "nuestro presidente mártir por primera vez" tendrían "una mala idea de su semblante hogareño, amable e inteligente". Sus ahora "rasgos hundidos y encogidos", en opinión de Bryant, significaban que los neoyorquinos seguramente serían los últimos en "contemplar el rostro vuelto hacia arriba del presidente Lincoln".

Cuando el tren llegó a Albany a última hora de la noche del martes, el embalsamador Charles Brown y el empresario de pompas fúnebres Frank Sands entregaron una firme negación a la prensa: "No se ha producido ningún cambio perceptible en el cuerpo del difunto presidente desde que salió de Washington" (apareció la palabra "perceptible" admitir que podría haber ocurrido algún cambio, pero que manos hábiles podrían oscurecerlo con pólvora). Los ciudadanos de Ohio, Indiana e Illinois podrían respirar mejor; después de todo, podrían ver los restos de Lincoln.

Pero las afirmaciones en duelo sobre la condición del cadáver ahora tiñeron el resto del viaje. ¿Quién tenía razón, Brown and Sands o los periódicos de la ciudad de Nueva York? ¿No había tenido lugar ningún cambio perceptible, o había tenido "el trabajo del embalsamador", como el Mundo de Nueva York sostuvo, ha sido "anulado por las fuerzas orgánicas con las que el Rey de los Terrores completa la frase [de] 'Polvo al polvo'"? Los reporteros en la escena en Albany agregaron apoyo a la MundoLa vívida especulación al señalar que el rostro de Lincoln estaba "evidentemente cada vez más oscuro, a pesar de los productos químicos utilizados como conservantes", "el rostro amable se está decolorando".

La alarma cada vez más intensa sobre el estado del cuerpo dio a la última semana del viaje fúnebre una sensación muy diferente a la de sus primeros cinco días. Del 21 al 25 de abril, los funcionarios debatieron cómo maximizar el número de espectadores y mantener el orden. Ahora, mientras se las arreglaban para un público que todavía estaba desesperado por ver a Lincoln, se preocupaban por mantener a los espectadores encerrados en una postura adecuada de duelo. Los periodistas comenzaron a preguntarse si la descomposición del cadáver estaba alterando la composición de la multitud. Charles Page pronto decidió que sí: algunos dolientes ahora hacían fila solo por "curiosidad mórbida".

Foto de Samuel Montague Fassett. Cortesía de la Biblioteca del Congreso.

Una vez que el tren llegó a Buffalo, Nueva York, después de una agotadora caminata de 15 horas que cubrió 300 millas, el Chicago Tribune El reportero a bordo trató de tranquilizar a los lectores de Illinois sobre la apariencia del cadáver: la muerte simplemente había "suavizado y suavizado" los "fuertes contornos" de su rostro. Pero los delegados de Illinois a bordo del tren, incluido el gobernador Richard Oglesby, no se arriesgaron. Antes de salir de Albany, ya habían telegrafiado a los organizadores de Springfield, advirtiéndoles que adelantaran la ceremonia fúnebre del 6 al 4 de mayo.

Embalmer Charles Brown had said from the beginning that the corpse would eventually take on a mummified look, but he’d promised that for months it would look as “natural” as it did on the day of Lincoln’s death. Ten days of exposure to air and dust, and six days of jiggling on the train, had provoked a rapid erosion. More and more observers thought the president’s remains belonged in their burial place, not on display. With a week to go before the Springfield funeral, many citizens faced a dilemma: how to walk past the coffin to honor Lincoln while sensing that the display of his body amounted to disrespect.

Democratic editors had been handed a volatile story with which to whip Stanton. Unable any longer to attack their old nemesis Abraham Lincoln, they would soon turn their fire on his friend and collaborator, the secretary of war.

One daring Democratic editor, S.A. Medary—son of famous Copperhead journalist Samuel Medary, a perpetual thorn in the side of Unionists until his death in 1864—may have been the first writer in 1865 to turn the condition of the president’s corpse into an attack on Edwin Stanton’s management of the funeral. Peering into Lincoln’s coffin at the Columbus, Ohio, State House on Saturday, April 29—two weeks after the president’s death—the Columbus Crisis editor beheld “a dark, unnatural face whose features were plaintive and pinched and sharp, piteously like death.”

Lincoln himself, announced Medary, would have objected to “making a show of all that was mortal of a fellow-man.” By overruling Mary Lincoln “in her desire that the body of her husband should be entombed within a more appropriate period after death,” Stanton had desecrated his remains.

If anyone could have been counted on not to mind that his corpse was being exposed beyond all reasonable limits, it would probably have been Abraham Lincoln himself. He would have been reminded of some story (a feeding frenzy of farm animals at the trough?) that tweaked the millions of people who pressed forward to feast on his body. The champion of people’s access to their representatives might quite seriously have carried approachability to its logical conclusion: let the people have his body as long as they could stand having it.

This lengthy event made eminent republican sense. A repetitive national farewell—a vast coordination of military and civilian officialdom, and of elected officials at federal, state, and local levels—it celebrated Lincoln’s love for the people and their love for him. “Love is a rare attribute in the chief magistrate of a great people,” said P. D. Day, a Protestant preacher in Hollis, New Hampshire, in his address at the end of the funeral period. “We have so long regarded an iron will … as the first requisite for a ruler, that we have thought tenderness and love a weakness. But MR. LINCOLN has changed our views … he was beloved by the nation, and they loved him because he first loved them.”

Photo by Carol Highsmith. Cortesía de la Biblioteca del Congreso.

Once the funeral train reached Illinois in May, the press lost interest in analyzing the condition of the corpse. los Chicago Tribune reverted to boilerplate reverence: “an extremely natural and life-like appearance, more as if calmly slumbering, than in the cold embrace of death.” The corpse hadn’t suddenly become lifelike again. los Tribuna’s self-conscious diversion connoted that Lincoln was now finally resting among his Illinois intimates, those who could approach his body as if they were friends and family. The civic body had become the domestic body. The state of decay didn’t matter to those who cared. They could see only their beloved boy and man.

Extraído de Lincoln’s Body: A Cultural History by Richard Wightman Fox. Copyright © 2015 by Richard Wightman Fox. With permission of the publisher, W. W. Norton & Co. Inc. All rights reserved.


Contenido

It was an established Athenian practice by the late 5th century BCE to hold a public funeral in honour of all those who had died in war. [3] The remains of the dead [4] were left in a tent for three days so that offerings could be made. Then a funeral procession was held, with ten cypress coffins carrying the remains, one for each of the Athenian tribes, and another for the remains that could not be identified. Finally they were buried at a public grave (at Kerameikos). The last part of the ceremony was a speech delivered by a prominent Athenian citizen.

Several funeral orations from classical Athens are extant, which seem to corroborate Thucydides' assertion that this was a regular feature of Athenian funerary custom in wartime. [5]

los Funeral Oration was recorded by Thucydides in book two of his famous Historia de la Guerra del Peloponeso. Although Thucydides records the speech in the first person as if it were a word for word record of what Pericles said, there can be little doubt that he edited the speech at the very least. Thucydides says early in his Historia that the speeches presented are not verbatim records, but are intended to represent the main ideas of what was said and what was, according to Thucydides, "called for in the situation". [6] We can be reasonably sure that Pericles delivered a speech at the end of the first year of the war, but there is no consensus as to what degree Thucydides's record resembles Pericles's actual speech. [7] Another confusing factor is that Pericles is known to have delivered another funeral oration in 440 BCE during the Samian War. [8] It is possible that elements of both speeches are represented in Thucydides's version. Nevertheless, Thucydides was extremely meticulous in his documentation, and records the varied certainty of his sources each time. Significantly he begins recounting the speech by saying: " Περικλῆς ὁ Ξανθίππου . ἔλεγε τοιάδε ", i.e. "Pericles, son of Xanthippos, spoke igual que this". Had he quoted the speech verbatim, he would have written " τάδε " ("this", or "these words") instead of " τοιάδε " ("like this" or "words like these"). The authorship of the Funeral Oration is also not certain. Plato, in his Menexenus, ascribes authorship to Pericles's companion, Aspasia. [9]

The Funeral Oration is significant because it differs from the usual form of Athenian funeral speeches. [10] David Cartwright describes it as "a eulogy of Athens itself. ". [11] The speech glorifies Athens' achievements, designed to stir the spirits of a state still at war.

Proemium (2.35) Edit

The speech begins by praising the custom of the public funeral for the dead, but criticises the inclusion of the speech, arguing that the "reputations of many brave men" should "not be imperilled in the mouth of a single individual". [12] Pericles argues that the speaker of the oration has the impossible task of satisfying the associates of the dead, who would wish that their deeds be magnified, while everyone else might feel jealous and suspect exaggeration. [13]

Praise of the dead in war (2.36–2.42) Edit

Pericles begins by praising the dead, as the other Athenian funeral orations do, by regard the ancestors of present-day Athenians (2.36.1–2.36.3), touching briefly on the acquisition of the empire.

At this point, however, Pericles departs most dramatically from the example of other Athenian funeral orations and skips over the great martial achievements of Athens' past: "That part of our history which tells of the military achievements which gave us our several possessions, or of the ready valour with which either we or our fathers stemmed the tide of Hellenic or foreign aggression, is a theme too familiar to my hearers for me to dwell upon, and I shall therefore pass it by." [14] Instead, Pericles proposes to focus on "the road by which we reached our position, the form of government under which our greatness grew, and the national habits out of which it sprang". [14] This amounts to a focus on present-day Athens Thucydides' Pericles thus decides to praise the war dead by glorifying the city for which they died.

The greatness of Athens Edit

"If we look to the laws, they afford equal justice to all in their private differences. if a man is able to serve the state, he is not hindered by the obscurity of his condition. The freedom we enjoy in our government extends also to our ordinary life. There, far from exercising a jealous surveillance over each other, we do not feel called upon to be angry with our neighbour for doing what he likes. " [15] These lines form the roots of the famous phrase "equal justice under law." The liberality of which Pericles spoke also extended to Athens' foreign policy: "We throw open our city to the world, and never by alien acts exclude foreigners from any opportunity of learning or observing, although the eyes of an enemy may occasionally profit by our liberality. " [16] Yet Athens' values of equality and openness do not, according to Pericles, hinder Athens' greatness, indeed, they enhance it, ". advancement in public life falls to reputations for capacity, class considerations not being allowed to interfere with merit. our ordinary citizens, though occupied with the pursuits of industry, are still fair judges of public matters. at Athens we live exactly as we please, and yet are just as ready to encounter every legitimate danger." [17]

In the climax of his praise of Athens, Pericles declares: "In short, I say that as a city we are the school of Hellas while I doubt if the world can produce a man, who, where he has only himself to depend upon, is equal to so many emergencies, and graced by so happy a versatility as the Athenian." [18] Finally, Pericles links his praise of the city to the dead Athenians for whom he is speaking, ". for the Athens that I have celebrated is only what the heroism of these and their like have made her. none of these men allowed either wealth with its prospect of future enjoyment to unnerve his spirit, or poverty with its hope of a day of freedom and riches to tempt him to shrink from danger. No, holding that vengeance upon their enemies was more to be desired than any personal blessings, and reckoning this to be the most glorious of hazards, they joyfully determined to accept the risk. Thus, choosing to die resisting, rather than to live submitting, they fled only from dishonour. " [19] The conclusion seems inevitable: "Therefore, having judged that to be happy means to be free, and to be free means to be brave, do not shy away from the risks of war". With the linkage of Athens' greatness complete, Pericles moves to addressing his audience.

Praise for the military of Athens Edit

In his speech, Pericles states that he had been emphasising the greatness of Athens in order to convey that the citizens of Athens must continue to support the war, to show them that what they were fighting for was of the utmost importance. To help make his point he stated that the soldiers whom he was speaking of gave their lives to a cause to protect the city of Athens, its citizens, and its freedom. [20] He praised Athens for its attributes that stood out amongst their neighbours such as its democracy when he elaborates that trust is justly placed on the citizens rather than relying only on the system and the policy of the city. Where citizens boast a freedom that differs from their enemies' the Lacedaemonians. [21] He regards the soldiers who gave their lives as truly worth of merit. That if anyone should ask, they should look at their final moments when they gave their lives to their country and that should leave no doubt in the mind of the doubtful. [21] He explained that fighting for one's country was a great honour, and that it was like wearing a cloak that concealed any negative implications because his imperfections would be outweighed by his merits as a citizen. [21] He praises the soldiers for not faltering in their execution during the war. That the soldiers put aside their desires and wishes for the greater cause. Because as they are described by Pericles, Athenian citizens were distinct from the citizens of other nations – they were open minded, tolerant, and ready to understand and follow orders. Where their system of democracy allowed them to have a voice amongst those who made important decisions that would affect them. Therefore, he proceeds to point out that the greatest honour and act of valour in Athens is to live and die for freedom of the state Pericles believed was different and more special than any other neighbouring city. [21]

Exhortation to the living (2.43–2.44) Edit

Pericles then turns to the audience and exhorts them to live up to the standards set by the deceased, "So died these men as becomes Athenians. You, their survivors, must determine to have as unfaltering a resolution in the field, though you may pray that it may have a happier outcome." [22]

Epilogue (2.45–2.46) Edit

Pericles ends with a short epilogue, reminding the audience of the difficulty of the task of speaking over the dead. The audience is then dismissed.

Thucydides' Greek is notoriously difficult, but the language of Pericles Funeral Oration is considered by many to be the most difficult and virtuosic passage in the Historia de la Guerra del Peloponeso. [ cita necesaria ] The speech is full of rhetorical devices, such as antithesis, anacoluthon, asyndeton, anastrophe, hyperbaton, and others most famously the rapid succession of proparoxytone words beginning with mi (" τὸ εὔδαιμον τὸ ἐλεύθερον, τὸ δ' ἐλεύθερον τὸ εὔψυχον κρίναντες " [judging courage freedom and freedom happiness]) at the climax of the speech (43.4). The style is deliberately elaborate, in accord with the stylistic preference associated with the sophists. There are several different English translations of the speech available.

Peter Aston wrote a choral version, So they gave their bodies, [23] published in 1976. [24]

American Civil War scholars Louis Warren and Garry Wills have addressed the parallels of Pericles's funeral oration to Abraham Lincoln's famous Gettysburg Address. [25] [26] [27] Lincoln's speech, like Pericles':

  • Begins with an acknowledgement of revered predecessors: "Four score and seven years ago, our fathers brought forth upon this continent. "
  • Praises the uniqueness of the State's commitment to democracy: ". a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. government of the people, by the people, and for the people. "
  • Addresses the difficulties faced by a speaker on such an occasion, ". we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground"
  • Exhorts the survivors to emulate the deeds of the dead, "It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the great task remaining before us"
  • Contrasts the efficacy of words and deeds, "The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here." [28]

It is uncertain to what degree, if any, Lincoln was directly influenced by Pericles's funeral oration. Wills never claims that Lincoln drew on it as a source, though Edward Everett, who delivered a lengthy oration at the same ceremony at Gettysburg, began by describing the "Athenian example". [29]


Contenido

Pre-Revolutionary War Edit

Slavery in the New York City area was introduced by the Dutch West India Company in New Netherland in about 1626 with the arrival of Paul D'Angola, Simon Congo, Lewis Guinea, Jan Guinea, Ascento Angola, and six other men. Their names denote their place of origin- Angola, the Congo, and Guinea. Two years after their arrival three female Angolan slaves arrived. These two groups heralded the beginning of slavery in what would become New York City, and which would continue for two hundred years. [9] The first slave auction in the city took place in 1655 at Pearl Street and Wall Street - then on the East River. Although the Dutch imported Africans as slaves, it was possible for some to gain freedom or "half-freedom" during the time of Dutch rule. In 1643, Paul D'Angola and his companions petitioned the Dutch West India Company for their freedom. Their request was granted, resulting in their acquisition of land on which to build their own houses and farm. By the mid-17th century, farms of free blacks covered 130 acres where Washington Square Park later appeared. [10] Enslaved Africans in chattel bondage were granted certain rights and afforded protections such as the prohibition against arbitrary physical punishment – for example, whipping. [ cita necesaria ]

The English seized New Amsterdam in 1664, and renamed the fledgling settlement to New York (after the Duke of York). The new city administration changed the rules governing slavery in the colony. At the time of the seizure, some forty percent of the small population of New Amsterdam were enslaved Africans. [12] The new rules [13] regarding slavery were more restrictive than those of the Dutch, and rescinded many of the former rights and protections of enslaved residents, such as the prohibition against arbitrary physical punishment. In 1697 Trinity Church gained control of the burial grounds in the city and passed an ordinance excluding blacks from the right to be buried in churchyards. When Trinity took control of the municipal burial ground, now its northern graveyard, it barred Africans from interment within the city limits. [12] Through much of the 18th century, the African burying ground was beyond the northern boundary of the city, which was just beyond what is today Chambers Street.

As the city population increased, so did the number of residents who held slaves. "In 1703, 42 percent of New York's households had slaves, much more than Philadelphia and Boston combined." [14] Most slaveholding households had only a few slaves, used primarily for domestic work. By the 1740s, 20 percent of the population of New York were slaves, [15] totaling about 2,500 people. [10] Enslaved residents also worked as skilled artisans and craftsmen associated with shipping, construction, and other trades, as well as laborers. By 1775, New York City had the largest number of enslaved residents of any settlement in the Thirteen Colonies excepted Charles Town, South Carolina, and had the highest proportion of Africans to Europeans of any settlement in the Northern colonies. [12]

Post-Revolutionary War Edit

During the Revolutionary War, the British occupied New York City in the summer of 1776 and they maintained control of the city until the Peace of Paris was signed and they departed on November 25, 1783, a date which came to be known as Evacuation Day. As in the rest of the Thirteen Colonies, the Crown had offered freedom to enslaved peoples who escaped from their Patriot masters and fled to British lines. 3,000 of these individuals were eventually listed in the Book of Negroes. This promise of freedom attracted thousands of slaves to the city who had escaped to British lines. In 1781 the New York legislature offered a financial incentive to Loyalist slaveowners who assigned their slaves to military service, and promised freedom at the war's end for the slaves. [ cita necesaria ]

By 1780 the African-American community swelled to about 10,000 in New York City, which became the center of free blacks in North America. [15] Among those who escaped to New York were Deborah Squash and her husband Harvey, who fled from George Washington's plantation in Virginia. [15] After the end of the war, according to provisions concerning property in the Treaty of Paris, the Americans demanded the return of all former slaves who had escaped to British lines. The British steadfastly refused the American request and evacuated 3,000 freedmen with their troops in 1783 for resettlement in Nova Scotia, other British colonies, and England. Instead of returning the slaves which had been promised their freedom, the British came to an agreement with the Americans to financially recompensate them for each slave lost. [15] Other freedmen scattered from the city to evade slave catchers. [ cita necesaria ]

Aided by individual manumissions after war's end, by 1790 about one-third of the blacks in the city were free. [10] The total city population was 33,131, according to the first national census. [dieciséis]

In 1799 the state legislature passed "An Act for the Gradual Abolition of Slavery" with little opposition. Similar to Pennsylvania's law, it provided for gradual manumission of slaves. Children born to slave mothers after July 4, 1799, were considered legally free, but had to serve as indentured servants to their mother's master, until age 28 for men and 25 for women, before gaining social freedom. Until reaching age 21, they were considered the property of the mother's master. All slaves already in bondage before July 4, 1799, remained slaves for life, although they were reclassified as "indentured servants." [14] [15] [17]

In 1817, the New York legislature granted freedom to all children born to slaves after July 4, 1799 under the Gradual Emancipation Act [18] , with total abolition of slavery to take effect on July 4, 1827. July 4 is now known as New York's Emancipation Day, more than 10,000 slaves were freed in New York State with no financial compensation to their former owners. Blacks paraded in New York City to celebrate.

Under the 1777 New York constitution, all free men had to satisfy a property requirement to vote, which eliminated poorer men from voting, both blacks and whites. [17] A new constitution in 1821 eliminated the property requirement for white men, but kept it for blacks, effectively continuing to disfranchise them. This lasted until passage of the Fifteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution in 1870. [17]

The early history of free blacks and slaves in New York City became overshadowed by the waves of mid- to late nineteenth century immigration from Europe, which dramatically expanded the population and added to the ethnic diversity. In addition, most of the ancestors of today's African-American population in the city arrived from the South in the Great Migration of the first half of the twentieth century. In a rapidly changing city, the early colonial and federal history of African Americans was lost.

"Negros Burial Ground" Edit

The burial ground in use for New York Town residents in the late 1600s was located at what is now the north graveyard of Trinity Church (of the Anglican / Church of England - today the Episcopal Church U.S.A.). The public burial ground was open to all for a fee, including to enslaved Africans. Some burials of deceased slaves were made just south of the public burial ground to avoid the fee. The stockade in this area ran northeast from the present-day corner of Broadway and Chambers Street to Foley Square the wide street on the top right (southwest) is Broadway.

After Trinity was established as a parish church in 1697, the vestryman of the church began taking control of land in Lower Manhattan, including existing public burial grounds. When Trinity purchased the land at Wall Street and Broadway for the construction of their church, they passed a resolution on October 25, 1697:

That after the Expiration of four weeks from the dates hereof no Negro's be buried within the bounds & Limitts of the Church Yard of Trinity Church, that is to say, in the rear of the present burying place & that no person or Negro whatsoever, do presume after the terme above Limitted to break up any ground for the burying of his Negro, as they will answer it at their perill & that this order be forthwith publish'd.

The "rear of the present burying place" did not include the town cemetery (now the north churchyard). The church petitioned for control of this burial ground, which was granted by the colonial Province of New York on April 22, 1703.

This prohibition against the burial of those of African descent necessitated finding another area acceptable to the colonial authorities. What would become the "Negro's Burial Ground" was located on what was then the outskirts of the developed town, just north of present-day Chambers Street and west of the former Collect Pond (later Five Points). The area was part of a land grant issued to Cornelius van Borsum on behalf of his wife Sara Roelofs (1624–1693) for her services as an interpreter between the town of New York and the various Native American tribes in the area, such as the Lenape and Wappinger. The land would remain part of her estate until the late 1790s when the grade was raised with landfill in anticipation of development, and the land subdivided into building lots.

Labelled on old maps as the "Negros Burial Ground," the 6.6-acre area was first recorded as being used around 1712 for the burials of enslaved and freed people of African descent. The first burials may date from the late 1690s after Trinity barred African burials in the former city cemetery. The area of the burial ground was in a shallow valley surrounded by low hills on the east, south and west, which enveloped the southern shore of Collect Pond and the Little Collect. The burial ground was outside the stockade marking the northern boundary of the city. The stockade in this area ran northeast from the present-day corner of Broadway and Chambers Street to Foley Square after it had expanded northward, similar in form and function to the former stockade on Wall Street. The revelation that physicians and medical students were illegally digging up bodies for dissection from this burial ground precipitated the 1788 Doctors' Riot.

Desarrollo Editar

After the city closed the cemetery in 1794, the area was platted for development. The grade of the land was raised with up to 25 feet (7.6 metres) of landfill at the lowest points covering the cemetery, thus preserving the burials and the original grade level. As urban development took place over the fill, the burial ground was largely forgotten. The first large-scale development on the land was the construction of the A.T. Stewart Company Store, the country's first department store it opened in 1846 at the corner of 280 Broadway and Chambers Street. Several skeletons were unearthed during the commencement of building the store. [20]

The site's earliest discovery in the early 19th century seems to have aroused little interest. According to an article in The New York Tribune, homeowner James Gemmel, who owned a house at 290 Broadway in the early 19th century, told an unnamed daughter that when the cellar for their house was being dug many human bones were found. He assumed that he had discovered a potter's field. [21] In 1897, when the building at 290 Broadway was demolished to make way for the R. G. Dun and Company Building (later financial firm of Dun & Bradstreet), workers in excavating found a large number of human bones. [22] Some concluded at that time that these were connected to a 1741 incident in which thirteen African Americans were burned at the stake and eighteen were hanged, [21] however others wondered whether the bones were of Dutch or Indian origin. [20] [23] Many bones were taken as souvenirs by so-called "relic hunters." [20] [23]


House of Mourning - Victorian Mourning & Funeral Customs in the 1890s

The manner of caring for the dead is growing gradually into a closer imitation of life, and we see the dear ones now lying in that peaceful repose which gives hope to those who view them. No longer does the gruesome and chilling shroud enwrap the form. The garments worn in life have taken its place, and men and women are dressed as in life. It gives a feeling of comfort to see them thus, for it imparts a natural look which could never accompany the shroud. Flowers are strewn about the placid face, and one cannot but remember those grand lines from Bryant:

"He wraps the drapery of his couch about him,
And lies down to pleasant dreams."

It is no longer the custom to watch the dead — an excellent omission, for many of those vigils were unseemly in their mirth. Some friend or relative sits up in order to give the dead any attention necessary. The preparation of the deceased is always attended to by some kindly friends who are not members of the family, and that agonizing duty is spared the afflicted ones. It is more thoughtful for someone to volunteer to remain with the family, through the long sad night hours. It makes the grief and loneliness of the house less oppressive.

"Ring the bell softly,
There's crape on the door."

Black crape tied with white ribbon is placed upon the door or bell knob, as an indication that the dread visitor has entered the home, and borne away another prize. This should deter the caller from ringing, if it is possible to bring the attendant to the door without doing so. No one knows save those who have passed through a sorrow, how the clang of a bell, with its noisy reminder of active life, jars upon the nerves. In many houses, the hall door is left ajar, that friends may enter quietly. The kindly instincts of the heart tell them to speak softly, and be helpful and sympathetic. White crape looped with white ribbon is appropriate for a child or young person. For the aged, black crape and black ribbon are used.

PALL-BEARERS:

From six to eight pall-bearers are chosen from the immediate friends of the deceased, and near to him in age. A very young girl may be conveyed to the hearse by girls of her own age. The duty of the pall-bearers is to carry the coffin from the house to the hearse — also from the hearse to the grave. The carriage in which they ride precedes the hearse. They are provided with black gloves and crape for the arm, when attending an elderly person, but wear white gloves and white crape for a young person. These are furnished by the family through the undertaker. Notes are sent to those who are to act in this capacity, requesting their services.

AT THE HOUSE OF MOURNING:

When the sad event has become known, friends call to offer their services, but the afflicted ones are not expected to see any save their most particular friends, whose duty it is to make all arrangements for the burial, consulting with those most interested about the details, receive those who call, or fulfill any and every requirement that may arise. Visits of condolence are not made until after the funeral.

CARRIAGES:

The family decides about how many it wishes to invite to the interment, and provides carriages for them. A list is made out, and given to the undertaker, that he may know about how many carriages will be needed, and in what order to arrange them. Many bring their own carriages, but a certain number is provided by the family, among which are those for the pall-bearers, and clergyman, when he accompanies the dead to the grave.

Do not slight an invitation to a funeral. In cities and towns where death notices are inserted in the papers, the words "Friends invited," is sufficient invitation to the funeral. But in smaller places, it becomes necessary to issue invitations to those whose presence is desired. The invitations are engraved on small-sized note paper, with wide black border, in this manner:

When the funeral is held at the house, the family do not view the remains after the people have begun to assemble. Just before the clergyman begins the services the mourners are seated near the casket, the nearest one at the head, and the others following in order of kinship. If it is possible, they are placed in a room adjoining, where the words of the service can be heard. They are thus spared the pain of giving way to their grief before strangers.

Those who are present should look at the dead before they take their seats for the service, although it is customary for the master of ceremonies (usually the undertaker ) ere the coffin lid is closed, to invite all who so desire, to take a last look, ere parting forever.

The casket is never opened at the church, unless it is the funeral of a prominent man and numbers go to the church for that purpose, whom the house would not accommodate.

The family, together with those who are to be present at the interment, should be allowed to pass from the house or church before the others do.

"FUNERAL PRIVATE":

This announcement has caused many to remain away from a funeral, lest they intrude. But it merely means that the interment will be private, only a few near friends accompanying the remains to the grave but at the services all who choose to come will be welcome.

How tenderly these emblems of purity and beauty speak to the mourning heart. They are the tokens of sympathy sent by friends to comfort the lonely ones. Their fragrance mingles with the memory of the dear one who has gone. How fitting that their exquisite beauty and perfume should mingle with the last sad rites and consolation be found by silently breathing the heart's emotions in their blossoms, for

"They are love's last gifts bring flowers, pale flowers."

The carriages containing the clergyman and pall­bearers come first. The hearse follows, and behind that are the carriages of the immediate mourners, in their proper order. At the place of burial the minister precedes the coffin. An undertaker who is competent, always directs all the details, so that the family have no part in any such painful duty.

MILITARY FUNERALS:

The sword and sash of an army or navy officer are laid across the coffin lid, and the national flag is draped over him. When the deceased is buried with Masonic or other honors, the lodge or body to which he belongs, conducts the funeral according to its own formulas. In case the deceased is a member of an organization that expects to conduct the services, prompt notice should be sent them, so that they may have time to prepare for the funeral.

HOW LONG MUST MOURNING BE WORN?

A widow's bonnet should be of heavy crape, with white crape or tarletan border, and the veil must be worn over the face. At the end of three months she may wear the veil depending from the back of her bonnet. This deep veil must be worn a year, and mourning must be worn two years. Many widows never return to gay colors, and some wear mourning the rest of their lives.

A widower wears mourning for a year. His mourning must consist of a black suit, black gloves and necktie, and a deep weed on his hat. Those are very punctilious in such matters, wear black-edged linen and black studs and cuff-buttons.

For parents or children deep mourning is worn for a year. After that, though mourning is worn another year, the material is changed, and crape is dispensed with.

A sudden transition at the end of the period of mourning from black to glaring colors, should not be made. Any change of this nature should be gradual.

Crape and soft woolen goods for brothers and sisters are worn for six months after that gray, black and white can be adopted.

Of course there are no set limits to the period of wearing mourning, for these matters vary with the individual tastes and feelings of the wearer. Custom has laid down certain rules, which, however, can be widely departed from at will.

For uncles, aunts, cousins and grandparents, black suits without crape are worn.

Children wear mourning for a parent one year. It seems an unnatural custom to put very small children into deep black, even for so near a friend as a parent. The little ones do not comprehend the loss that has come to them why teach them the meaning of their sad garb?

Gentlemen in mourning wear weeds, whose depth is proportioned to the closeness of their relationship to the dead. Their mourning is adhered to only as long as the ladies of their household wear it.

ATTENDING PLACES OF AMUSEMENT:

A person in deep mourning does not go into society, or receive or pay visits. Neither are they found at the theater or other public places of amusement, unless it is a musical or concert, for six months. Formerly, a year's seclusion was demanded of a mourner as also was the fashion of wearing purple, or "half-mourning" on leaving off deep black. There are some natures to whom this isolation long continued, would prove fatal. Such may be forgiven, if they indulge in innocent recreations a little earlier than custom believes compatible with genuine sorrow.

It is not in good taste to attend a funeral in gay colors. You are not expected to assume mourning, but nearly every one has a plain, dark suit that is less noticeable.

There are many who do not believe in wearing mourning at all. Such have a right to refuse it — it concerns no one but themselves. On the other hand, much can be said in favor of the custom. A mourning dress is a protection against thoughtless or cruel inquiries. It is also in consonance with the feelings of the one bereaved, to whom brightness and merriment seem almost a mockery of the woe into which they have b een plunged. With such, garments of mourning are "an outward sign of an inward sorrow," and they cling to them as the last token of respect and affection which they can pay the dead.

CARDS AND WRITING-PAPER:

Gentlemen or ladies in mourning use black-bordered cards and stationery for their social correspondence, until the period of mourning expires. The width of this border is a matter of taste. But if they write any letters upon business, they use plain white stationery.

Sometimes the bereaved ones send cards announcing their loss to friends. It is far less harrowing than to write, especially when one's circle of acquaintance is large. They should say very little:

In Memoriam:
HELEN LANGDON
Died in Chicago, March 25, 1891,
Aged 23 years.

The words "In affectionate remembrance" may be substituted for "In Memoriam."

The first calls of condolence should be made by friends within ten days of the death, but mere acquaintances should not call until the family have appeared at their place of worship. When those who are in mourning feel able to receive visits, they announce the fact by sending out black-edged cards enclosed in envelopes to those who have called upon them. This custom is not general, although a very excellent one.

It is best not to allude to the sorrow unless it is seen that it is expected of them to do so. It is a relief with some people to talk of the departed, while it proves a torture to others, and only reopens the wound.

It is better for the sorrowing ones to mingle with their fellow creatures as soon as they can endure company. Their own feelings are their best guides. To some dispositions seclusion is a sweet and gentle ministry — they are never alone. But to others the monotony and loneliness strike a chill, and they must have some change to keep them from a settled melancholy.

It is not usual to give or attend entertainments within a year of the death of a near relative but if the custom is broken by the young, it should not excite unkind remarks. Older people should not expect younger ones to observe such strict rules as they lay down for themselves. The "young suffer intensely, but it is a wise provision of nature that it is not as lasting as the grief o f maturer years. They should pay a suitable respect for the relatives they ha ve lost but do not ask them to seclude themselves until their lives are lastingly shadowed. We owe love and remembrance to the dead but we also owe a duty to the living. And if we would hallow the memory of those we have lost, we should be more tender toward those who are left us to love and cherish.

There's a beautiful face in the silent air
Which follows me ever and near,
With smiling eyes and amber hair,
With voiceless lips, yet with breath of prayer,
That I feel, but cannot hear.

The snow-white hand and head of gold
Lie low in a marble sleep—
I stretch my arms for the clasp of old,
But the empty air is strangely cold,
And so my vigil alone I keep!

There's a sinless brow with a radiant crown,
And a cross laid down in the dust
There's a smile where never a shadow comes now,
And tears no more from those dear eyes flow—
So sweet in their innocent trust.

Ah, well! the summer is coming again,
Singing her same old song
But oh, it sounds like a sob of pain
As it floats in the sunshine and the rain
O'er the hearts of the world's great throng.

There's a beautiful land beyond the skies,
And I long to reach its shore
For I know I shall find my darling there—
The beautiful eyes and amber hair
Of the loved one gone before.

"What a pleasant thought, that when we come to die people will show us respect, that they will gather round the casket and tenderly lay our remains away in the earth for the angels to watch over till the morning of the resurrection. Tears will fall upon our grave, and appreciative words will be uttered. But would it not be well if honors were not entirely post­humous? if a part of the love and affection that is so freely given to the dead, had encircled them when living?"

I sometimes think that it would be best
If the hands that labor were folded o'er
The silent breast in the last sweet rest,
When I think of the friends who have gone before
Who have crossed o'er the river's rolling tide
And reached the home on the other side.

It seems so far to the wished for day,
And weary, and lonely, and lost I roam
I feel like a child who has lost his way,
And is always longing for home, sweet home!
But I say to my yearning heart: "Be still,
We'll go home when it is God's will.

The night is long, but the day will break
When the light of Eternity, streaming down
On the cross we bear for the Master's sake,
Will guide our steps to the promised crown.
A little while, and the gate is passed—
Home, and heaven, and rest at last!

—F. L. Stanton
from. Polite Society at Home and Abroad, 1891. .


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