Symbols on the Stones in Union Cemetery

By Lisa Terech, Community Engagement

This Sunday, the Oshawa Community Museum is excited to offer our Annual Union Cemetery Tour.  Oshawa largest cemetery is also the final resting place to a great number of its early settlers and community leaders.  The stones are varied, as are the stories that accompany them.  On Sunday, we will discover the secrets behind the symbols on the stones, and learn about the societies, organizations, and affiliations denoted by the symbols. What can be learned by reading a stone, and what secrets are still to be discovered?

There are many symbols and iconography that are easily identifiable, and there were others that required research as to their history.

The following are some of the symbols you might see on a gravestone in Union Cemetery.

Be sure to join OCM Staff at 2pm for our annual tour, on Sunday September 7, 2014.

George Chapman's gravestone, featuring the Masonic square and compass
George Chapman’s gravestone, featuring the Masonic square and compass
Menagh-Kennedy stone, featuring a cross, indicative that the person was a Christian
Menagh-Kennedy stone, featuring a cross, indicative that the person was a Christian
Monument for the Corinthian Lodge of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows.  On the top sphere are the three linked chains, interwoven with the initials IOOF.
Monument for the Corinthian Lodge of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. On the top sphere are the three linked chains, interwoven with the initials IOOF.
Detail of William Strickland's headstone, featuring the Woodmen of the World crest.
Detail of William Strickland’s headstone, featuring the Woodmen of the World crest.