I am writing to tell everyone in Salisbury about a hidden gem that you all have right smack in the middle of your city, and to thank everyone involved in keeping this little piece of history and heaven preserved.
I am referring to Parsons Cemetery.
Thats right, a cemetery. A lovely, tranquil, peaceful cemetery that is near and dear to my heart.
A little history:
Growing up, Parsons Cemetery became a part of our childhood stories. Keep in mind I am from and still reside in Richmond, where we have our fair share of amazing cemeteries.
But, Parsons Cemetery is a part of my family just the same.
You see, my mother is buried there. My mother’s mother is buried there, my mother’s entire side of the family is buried there, and one day my husband and I will, more than likely, be buried there.
My siblings and I grew up listening to the stories my mother would tell about her playing in the cemetery with her brother and the rest of the kid’s in the neighborhood.
Her childhood home on New York Avenue backed up to Parsons.
Parsons was part of her back yard, part of her playground. It was part of her home and childhood.
One of the many stories she told was about my grandma on Halloween.
The kids in the neighborhood would cross the cemetery to get to the other neighborhood for trick or treating and my grandmother would hide behind a tree and jump out and yell BOO!
Mean? — not at all. The kid’s expected and waited for it each year. It was the talk of the town, or so we were told.
When my mother was laid to rest, I heard children playing in the background and knew she had literally come home again.
This cemetery is so much more than a final resting place. It is breathtaking piece of 18 plus acres of beautiful monuments and trees — glorious trees.
It is a property that needs to be preserved, cared for and loved.
It is a park, it is a walking path through and around a beautiful piece of water. it is a meditation session for the soul, and so much more.
Recently, I discovered Parsons Cemetery on FaceBook. Ahh, the wonders of the internet.
I have discovered a great group of folks who help care for Parsons, help raise awareness, and to help keep this little gem on the map.
So the next time you have time for a walk, by yourself, with a friend, loved one, or the kid’s, consider walking around Parson’s Cemetery on North Division Street.
If you have the time, say hi to my mom, she’s there, at home again.
You’ll hear the kids — just listen.
Thank you Salisbury. And thank you to the the great folks that are a part of Parsons Cemetery Advisory Committee!
Look them up on Facebook! You’ll discover what you’re missing!
Reach Barbara Biggerstaff at email@example.com.