Friday, February 03, 2017

Necropolis Critobal Colon

"Necropolis"?  Yes the Havana Cemetery. Some Latin American Cities (Havana, Buenos Aires..) do cemeteries in a big way.  Here were some of the highlights of Havana's Colon Necropolis.
We will start with one of the most beautiful to me. A gorgeous art-deco pieta on a headstone.

This is one of the most famous sites in the cemetery. It is a monument to 28 firefighters that died fighting a fire in 1871. It is impressive in this picture the but the details are even more so. Each of the statues of the figures on the 4 corners was done by a different artists. 
The South East statue is of Compassion and Bravery

A Nun graces the North East Corner

The detail on the tower itself.

This detail is from a corner of the monument.  The thing that looks like a mace hanging from the chain on the left is meant to be a  tear for all those that died.  ON the fence on the right is a Bat. This was the symbol from the Bacardi bottles -Bacardi was a prime donator to the memorial.
A different view of the Bacardi Bats and the Iron Tears

Below was another odd sight.
So the way the cemetery works is that bodies are laid in the tomb and decompose. After a while, they open the tomb and pull the bones into a small depository at the top of the grave, and the tomb is ready for the next family member.  Generations are then buried in the same space.

Well, this is the tomb of a mother who died giving birth. She and the baby were buried together. A few years later, it was opened, but neither the mother nor the baby had decomposed. It was considered a miracle. Now pregnant women lay flowers in hopes of a healthy baby and couple that want to get pregnant come here to lay floers as an offering.

In the center of the cemetery is a chapel.  It is pretty and services are still held here (most churches and cathedrals in Cuba are now museums, the regime was not big on church).

In the chapel, there is this mural depicting Heaven and Hell.  A lot more people seem to be going down than up.

Other things I liked in the cemetery....
Fancy - huh?

This pyramid was the resting place of an architect and a Mason.

This is a reproduction of the Lady or Lourdes in France.

I loved the deco "grieving" statue.