From the Inside Flap
The lure of silent places - gardens can be as tranquil as graveyards - leads each of us more easily to reflection and remembrance, revelation and joy. This book - this journey - is an appropriately gentle passage through America's past, down her back roads, by a number of her triumphs, a few of her tragedies, pausing at just some of her landmarks of life and death, restorative remembrance and neglect.
Gardens serve foremost as celebrations of life: jubilant color, airy motion, delicate or vivid tones. Graveyards can serve much the same purpose, what with our profound belief in the survival of the spirit, with our desire to remember the good that is too often interred with our bones, and with a need to preserve a link with our ancestral sacrifices and aspirations. While petals fade, after all, headstones triumph over time, at least for a little while.
This work serves more as an introduction than a true guide to the myriad monuments between the Virginia Tidewater region and the southern extent of early America, the Georgian frontier with Spanish Florida. It can transport, but leaves to other more learned sources the particulars and full flavor of fact. It hopes to illumine, to inspire appreciation, delight and an abiding sense of gratitude for all the effort evident herein: gardens tended, as well as dreams; lives lived, as well as lost.