Images: Virginia City Cemetery | Nevada

I know I’m not the only person to have a strange interest in visiting graveyards and cemeteries when traveling. For me, it’s not that they might be haunted or contain some sort of afterlife presence, but that they hold a somber but enlightening look at how society remembers those who came before us.

The outskirts of Virginia City, Nevada, are reminiscent of Western Nevada in general—dry, dusty and deserted. Scrub bushes dot gently rolling hills. Wild horses wander through the miles of BLM-managed land. Homes show signs of wind friction and hot sun. It is here—away from the Wild West vibe of Virginia City—that I wander through the town’s weathered cemetery. Grave sites are randomly placed; some have cast iron fencing marking the plots. Headstones are broken, faded and fallen over. Identities are lost and, in many cases, worn down blocks offer the only reminder of people who once were.

Most intriguing to me, however, are the bedposts. These old bedposts—sometimes a single one and sometimes grouped with others—do not come with headstones. Instead, these bedposts are the sole markers of Virginia City’s former prostitutes, who, like everyone else, lived and died. These are identities without names, remembered only by profession.

Wooden headstone Virginia City Nevada White Broken Headstone Virginia City Nevada Virginia City Valley Bedpost Virginia City Nevada Cemetery Virigina City Cemetery Nevada Headstone Virginia City Nevada Cast iron fence Virginia City Cemetery Flowers by grave Virginia City Nevada Firefighter headstone Virginia City Cemetery Thick fence Virginia City nevada Broken headstone Virginia City Nevada Bedpost with flowers virginia City Nevada cemetery Young headstone Virginia City Nevada

 

11 Responses to “Images: Virginia City Cemetery | Nevada”

  1. Sophie

    I’m weirdly fascinated with cemeteries, too. We’re going to Lake Tahoe this summer… maybe have a look at Virginia City too, then. And it’s Bonanza-land, no? My 10-year-old had a crush on Little Joe when she was about 4… although she is far too cool to admit that now 🙂

    Reply
    • JoAnna

      I don’t know anything about Bonanza-land, but if you’re near Lake Tahoe, you’ll practically be within spitting distance of Virginia City. Go and enjoy!

      Reply
  2. Michael Hodson

    OK, I oddly love cemeteries also. Love taking photos in them. So peaceful.

    Reply
    • JoAnna

      Serene and eerie … it’s a great combination, I think.

      Reply
  3. dtravelsround

    I try to go to old cemeteries when I travel — they are fascinating and beautiful. I like that this is in our state! And, really interesting. Next time you go to a cemetery, I’d love to go with you!

    Reply
    • JoAnna

      If I ever visit one in southern Nevada, I’ll let you know!

      Reply
  4. Everywhereist

    So glad to find other cemetery-loving souls out there. There’s something amazing about them – how they can be both spooky and comforting (you get all the peace of being alone, without feeling alone). The bedposts are both fascinating and heartbreaking.

    Reply
    • JoAnna

      I was torn about how to feel about the bedposts. I was sad that they were the only things marking where these women were buried, but I was also glad that someone had at least taken the time to mark their grave sites.

      Reply
  5. Laura

    Old cemeteries are definitely intriguing. I had no idea about the old bedposts!

    Reply

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