headstone photo

Oldest Stones in Newfoundland

These are photographs of the five oldest headstones found during the StonePics project. The lettering had been painted over on three of them making it difficult or impossible to verify the details.

headstone photo

Sir Joseph Blackburn's headstone is in St. Luke's Anglican Churchyard in Placentia. It is unusually ornate and a detail photo of the skull and crossbones appears at the top of this web page. The text of the headstone is:

"In loving memory of Sir Joseph Blackburn who departed this life 18.1709, remembered by a dear mother and the children, age 67 years."



headstone photo

This headstone was found at the only cemetery in Port Kirwan. The given name had been painted over, but it was probably "Elinor", and it was transcribed into the StonePics database that way. Much of the text is unreadable, but here is a partial transcript:

"Here lies the body of Elinor (?) Brothers, child of Wm Brothers. She died Oct 27, 1709, aged ? years, boy ? of his wife ?."



headstone photo

These two are from the Anglican cemetery in Bonavista. They have been removed from the cemetery for safekeeping and one of them has its original position marked in the cemetery by a replacement. The individual full-sized StonePics photos are readable and transcripts follow:

"Here lieth the body of Thomas ADDAMS of Frampton, near Dorchester, who died the 13th of August in 1729, aged 26 years."

"Here lieth the body of William DARE who departed this life August the 23, in 1725 & aged about 45 years. As I am now so must you be; Therefore prepare to follow me; As you are now, so once was I; Therefore prepare yourself to die."



headstone photo

A group of students working on a summer project uncovered an old headstone in the cemetery beside St. Luke's Anglican Church in Winterton that is believed to be the oldest English headstone in the province. It is made from a slab of local gray sandstone measuring 27 by 23 inches with some chipping and damage around the edges. The inscription is in English with spelling typical of the period.

Wiliam Lincefild died twenty-five years after the earliest recorded settlement in Scilly Cove and only three years after the French pillaged and burned Scilly Cove (Winterton). There were four houses in the cove at the time.

The stone is on permanent display in the Boat Building Museum in Winterton. The museum has excellent displays and demonstrations on Newfoundland boat-building techniques and is well worth a visit.


Rear Inscription: AGED 30 YR