Example of a treestone from Fairmount Cemetery, Denver, Colorado

Treestones are basically grave markers in the shape of a tree. Often they will look like tree stumps or logs. Some will have branches. They are usually associated with the Woodmen of the World, and their various associated groups, although using tree-shaped grave markers pre-dates the organization. The treestones of Woodmen will usually include their symbols, and they might be inscribed with “Dum Tacet Clamet” (“though silent he speaks”), or “here rests a Woodman of the World.” Trees, branches and leaves are common symbols of nature in cemeteries.

According to Douglas Keister’s Stories in Stone, treestones were derived from the Victorian rusticity movement, and at one time could be ordered from the Sears and Roebuck catalog.

Photo: the tombstone of Alfred J. Day, Jr. (1892-1908), Fairmount Cemetery, Denver, Colorado

8 Responses to Treestones

  1. onlycrook says:

    We have boring Woodmen of the World tombstones in Rifle, where I live. But my favorites are at Creede, Colorado, so I talked a friend into photographing one of those so I could show the photo on my annual cemetery tour for the town’s third graders. The Creede tombstones are amazing.

  2. DeadManTalking says:

    Good Piece. I hadn’t made the Victorian rustic connection, I’d always assumed it an American invention. Do they have such stones in England, as well? I also was unaware of the Sear Roebuck availability. I’d like to see the catalog.

  3. Dee says:

    Fascinating, as usual. Thanks again!

  4. Elisabeth Nieuwhof says:

    I found your site very informative and educational. I have placed a link on my site for people to learn more about cemetary symbols. I could not find a skull on your site, and the meaning of those on headstones. Do you have any ideas about that?

  5. Alex says:

    I found your site very intrest . Here - is the blog also about cemeteries. Its in russian, but with many pictures.

  6. ghoov says:

    Cool site and I love the pictures. You’d think I’d have my fill of cemeteries (work in one) but my dream would be to travel and take pictures of memorials all over the world. it’s often hard to get a good quality picture of markers but you’ve done a really nice job.

  7. cathy lowe says:

    Were can you purchace a log monument. We are looking for one for my father inlaws grave. He worked in the logging woods in east tx for many years.

    Thank You
    Cathy Lowe

  8. Judy Shubert says:

    I found this post very interesting and informative, especially after my post about Woodmen of the World monuments in Mount Pleasant Cemetery, Hood County, Texas. Thanks for quality pictures!

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