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Coins on graves

It is common in West Texas to place coins and other items on graves.

At an abandoned cemetery in Big Bend National Park a couple of days ago, I saw this 1969 silver Kennedy half dollar on an unknown grave.

Comments

  • OAKSTAROAKSTAR Posts: 5,788 ✭✭✭✭✭

    You should have tracked down a park ranger and asked him. He would have known.

    Disclaimer: I'm not a dealer, trader, grader, investor or professional numismatist. I'm just a hobbyist. (To protect me but mostly you! 🤣 )

  • @OAKSTAR said:
    You should have tracked down a park ranger and asked him. He would have known.

    Known who the grave belonged to?

    Young Numismatist

  • OAKSTAROAKSTAR Posts: 5,788 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @hummingbird_coins said:

    @OAKSTAR said:
    You should have tracked down a park ranger and asked him. He would have known.

    Known who the grave belonged to?

    No idea. The park ranger would know or should know the history or the significance of what @GoldIndian saw on the graves.

    Disclaimer: I'm not a dealer, trader, grader, investor or professional numismatist. I'm just a hobbyist. (To protect me but mostly you! 🤣 )

  • There is conflicting information on who is buried here. Some sources say the graves are of Mexican laborers who worked in the area. Other sources give specific death dates (1920s and 1930s) of Anglos supposedly buried here, but the specific graves aren't identified, and the graves themselves have no identifying information.

    The truth may be lost to time perhaps.

    Most of the coins I've seen on graves are fairly recent, with dates in the past few decades. Given the extremely remote location and the difficulty of reaching this cemetery (4-wheel-drive required), it seems unlikely these coins are being left by descendants of those buried here. Rather, I suppose the coins are left by occasional adventurous strangers who are carrying on the tradition.

  • OAKSTAROAKSTAR Posts: 5,788 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 19, 2022 7:14PM

    @GoldIndian said:
    There is conflicting information on who is buried here. Some sources say the graves are of Mexican laborers who worked in the area. Other sources give specific death dates (1920s and 1930s) of Anglos supposedly buried here, but the specific graves aren't identified, and the graves themselves have no identifying information.

    The truth may be lost to time perhaps.

    Most of the coins I've seen on graves are fairly recent, with dates in the past few decades. Given the extremely remote location and the difficulty of reaching this cemetery (4-wheel-drive required), it seems unlikely these coins are being left by descendants of those buried here. Rather, I suppose the coins are left by occasional adventurous strangers who are carrying on the tradition.

    That works for me. And what coin did you leave?

    Disclaimer: I'm not a dealer, trader, grader, investor or professional numismatist. I'm just a hobbyist. (To protect me but mostly you! 🤣 )

  • VasantiVasanti Posts: 448 ✭✭✭✭

    Coins to pay Charon the Boatman to cross the River Styx to safely reach the underworld.

  • @OAKSTAR said:

    And what coins did you leave?

    We left some Wilma Mankiller quarters.

  • johnny9434johnny9434 Posts: 27,480 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 20, 2022 12:52PM

    It's legal to take things off of a grave, just wondering. Not starting any wars just wondering

  • ernie11ernie11 Posts: 1,902 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Here in Philadelphia, the grave of Benjamin Franklin is behind a fence, and many pennies are pitched on it by tourists.

  • PerryHallPerryHall Posts: 45,382 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @ernie11 said:
    Here in Philadelphia, the grave of Benjamin Franklin is behind a fence, and many pennies are pitched on it by tourists.

    "A penny saved is a penny earned."

    Worry is the interest you pay on a debt you may not owe.

  • SaorAlbaSaorAlba Posts: 7,474 ✭✭✭✭✭

    It is a tradition in the military community when visiting the grave of a fallen comrade to leave a coin as a memento of your being there - the larger the denomination the more you knew the person buried there.

    In memory of my kitty Seryozha 14.2.1996 ~ 13.9.2016 and Shadow 3.4.2015 - 16.4.21
  • JWPJWP Posts: 17,506 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @johnny9434 said:
    It's legal to take things off of a grave, just wondering. Not starting any wars just wondering

    Legal, I don't know. I do know if you remove anything from a grave site (flowers to coins) you are being very disrespectful!

    USN & USAF retired 1971-1993
    Successful Transactions with more than 100 Members

  • Mr_SpudMr_Spud Posts: 4,428 ✭✭✭✭✭

    It’s bad luck too to remove coins from a grave. Worse than if you remove sand or rocks from that beach in Hawaii.

    Mr_Spud

  • WalkerfanWalkerfan Posts: 8,952 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Cool!! Who says you can’t take it with you?? ;):D

    “I may not believe in myself but I believe in what I’m doing” ~Jimmy Page~

    My Full Walker Registry Set (1916-1947)

    https://www.ngccoin.com/registry/competitive-sets/16292/

  • CoinHoarderCoinHoarder Posts: 2,455 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Taking a coin, or anything else from a grave, is stealing from the dead as far as I'm concerned.

  • CaptHenwayCaptHenway Posts: 31,534 ✭✭✭✭✭

    It might be legal to take the coins, but it would be in extremely poor taste to do so.

    Numismatist. 50 year member ANA. Winner of four ANA Heath Literary Awards; three Wayte and Olga Raymond Literary Awards; Numismatist of the Year Award 2009, and Lifetime Achievement Award 2020. Winner numerous NLG Literary Awards.
  • milbrocomilbroco Posts: 2,709 ✭✭✭

    I agree that it is disrespectful. I would never.

    ebay seller name milbroco
    email bcmiller7@comcast.net
  • DreamcrusherDreamcrusher Posts: 210 ✭✭✭✭

    In Baltimore, A portion of the monument at the grave of Edgar Allan Poe was paid for by schoolchildren who contributed "pennies for Poe." The monument was too large to be placed at the sight of Poe's grave so Poe was exhumed and moved to the place (in the same graveyard) where the memorial finally rests. BTW, there is an error on the memorial. It states that Poe was born on January 20th when he was actually born on the 19th.

  • Clackamas1Clackamas1 Posts: 760 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @ernie11 said:
    Here in Philadelphia, the grave of Benjamin Franklin is behind a fence, and many pennies are pitched on it by tourists.

    But to be fair that grave is right next to the side walk.

  • DreamcrusherDreamcrusher Posts: 210 ✭✭✭✭

    @Clackamas1 said:

    @ernie11 said:
    Here in Philadelphia, the grave of Benjamin Franklin is behind a fence, and many pennies are pitched on it by tourists.

    But to be fair that grave is right next to the side walk.

    It's also right across the street from the Mint isn't it?

  • ernie11ernie11 Posts: 1,902 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @airplanenut said:

    @ernie11 said:
    Here in Philadelphia, the grave of Benjamin Franklin is behind a fence, and many pennies are pitched on it by tourists.

    Took this a few years back

    Typical collector, me. Every time I walk past this, I look for wheat ear cents. :)

  • CoinosaurusCoinosaurus Posts: 9,614 ✭✭✭✭✭

    The obvious question is, what should happen to coins laid on gravestones? Perhaps the caretaker should periodically collect them and use them for upkeep of the cemetery?

  • SPalladinoSPalladino Posts: 832 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I visit the cemeteries at Virginia City, NV, one or two times/year. I've seen modern coins on graves there as well - usually military.

    Steve Palladino
    - Ike Group member
    - DIVa (Designated Ike Varieties) Project co-lead and attributor
  • BLUEJAYWAYBLUEJAYWAY Posts: 8,014 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @ernie11 said:
    Here in Philadelphia, the grave of Benjamin Franklin is behind a fence, and many pennies are pitched on it by tourists.

    To show the utmost respect they should toss Franklin Half's shouldn't they?

    Successful transactions:Tookybandit. "Everyone is equal, some are more equal than others".
  • lordmarcovanlordmarcovan Posts: 43,198 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @BLUEJAYWAY said:

    @ernie11 said:
    Here in Philadelphia, the grave of Benjamin Franklin is behind a fence, and many pennies are pitched on it by tourists.

    To show the utmost respect they should toss Franklin Half's shouldn't they?

    Definitely! LOL

    Or something he'd have recognized. Maybe some Fugio cents...


    Explore collections of lordmarcovan on CollecOnline, management, safe-keeping, sharing and valuation solution for art piece and collectibles.
  • s4nys4ny Posts: 1,562 ✭✭✭

    Andrew Carnegie is buried nearby and there are always lots of coins on his grave.

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