Monday, April 7, 2014

His and Her Travel Review: Fairview Lawn Cemetery, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada

The A-Z Blogging Challenge continues. F is for the Fairview Lawn Cemetery in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Ever since I was a little girl, I have been fascinated by the story of the Titanic. From the building, to the sailing, to the sinking - I find myself drawn to the stories of the people who sailed. I cannot get enough. 

My classroom has many novels and nonfiction stories that I have read and want to share with my students. I watch all the movies and documentaries that I can find. It makes me sad to remember all those souls who were lost, but I feel somehow permanently connected to the story.
Fairview Lawn Cemetery where many of the victims of Titanic are buried.

When we had the opportunity to travel into the city of Halifax on our first Canada cruise, I was completely unsure of what shore excursion we should take. We looked through the list and nothing jumped out at me, until I saw the Peggy's Cove and Titanic Shore Excursion. Of course I was intrigued because of the Titanic connection. Peggy's Cove was beautiful, but I was really waiting for the Titanic part of our day. They took us to the cemetery where 121 passengers and crew were buried after being pulled from the water on that April night. The town of Halifax chipped in to buy grave markers and families could engrave them if they chose to. I was touched to hear how much the city of Halifax did after the sinking and how compassionate the people in the town had been. 

This was not the wildest and craziest shore excursion we have ever taken, but it was the most touching. Given my love for the stories and the people, I am glad that I got to go and pay my respects to some who lost their lives on that April night. 

It was a very surreal feeling to be in the presence of the people that suffered during that cold April night in 1912. Our tour guide was very informative and was able to give us a lot of facts and details about the people that were buried here.Visiting the cemetery was just as meaningful and special as being able to see the artifacts from the ship itself a years earlier in Denver, CO. I learned a lot about the passengers on the ship and the role that Halifax played in the rescue and recovery of the Titanic sinking. I am glad that we had the opportunity to visit and pay our respects and would recommend to anyone visiting the Halifax area that has interest in the Titanic story.

Here are some more photos from Fairview Lawn:
Some of the families paid to make the grave markers more ornate.

John Law Hume was one of the violinists who played while the ship sank to try and keep the passengers calm.

What a beautiful tribute to a life lost too young. 

James Cameron visited the cemetery when planning the movie Titanic. This gravestone had a specific influence on him and the movie. Love it!!

George H. Dean was a 2nd class steward on the ship.

A man came over to the States to get a head-start on a new life for his family. When he had saved enough money, he sent for them. His wife and four children died on the Titanic.

George Frederick Charles Talbot was from Southhampton and was a third class steward on the ship.

It made me heart sick to look down the line of tombstones. It was even more surreal to see that the deceased date all the same - April 12, 1912.

Each of the graves had a number on them and were updated as they learned who the person was. Some of the headstones where they couldn't identify the person just have the number and the date of death.

A crew member's final resting place. He stayed vigilant to help save so many others.

Ernest Waldron King was from Ireland and was a 1st class steward. He had also worked on the "Olympic" when she collided with HMS Hawke in 1911.

This is the grave of the unknown child. The sailors on the ship that recovered the body were so moved by this unknown child that they paid for the monument themselves. After many decades the child was identified in 2008 as Sidney Leslie Goodwin through DNA testing. His 5 siblings and parents were all on the ship on their way to a new home and job in America, but sadly none of them survived. Sidney is the only member of the family to have been recovered and identified.

So much devastation and so much sadness. I'm sure the families are thankful to the city of Halifax for all they did that night and for the memorials they have created since.

Are you as fascinated by the Titanic as we are?

Happy Travels,


  1. I'm very fascinated by the Titanic, and like you, read a lot of the books and watch a lot of the movies. I'd love to see that cemetery! That is so nice that the town paid for markers like that.

  2. Good pictures! New follower here. I'm stopping by from the "A to Z" and I look forward to visiting again.


  3. This is so touching. It's good of you to keep alive the memory of these people and the kindness of the residents of Halifax.

  4. What a wonderful tribute Halifax chose to do to honor those lost in the tragedy of the Titanic. I had not heard of this cemetery and the graves from the Titanic victims, so thank you for sharing it as part of your challenge. I found it fascinating and if I was ever there in Halifax, I would have to put it on my list of things to see, although I'm sure my husband would be "bored" of it in a bit, but I find it a bit interesting to walk through cemeteries and read headstones and wonder about the lives of those buried.

    I am a bit intrigued about the Titanic; two years ago we went to the Titanic exhibit that ws traveling around the country at one of the museums here. I enjoyed looking at the displays. We were given a name of a passenger when we first "boarded" the exhibit; a woman for me, man for hubby. At the end we saw whether we survived or not; I did,he didn't.


  5. Indeed a sad story was that,
    This post brought us back to
    those sad incedent. Thanks
    for sharing a bit more info.
    and your own reminiscents.
    Thank you so much for dropping by,
    and for the feedback.
    Wish you a wonderful time of blogging.
    Best Regards

  6. That was a wonderful and very moving post. Strangely it brought back memories of my trip to the River Kwai years ago. If there was an award for best post of the AtoZ Challenge I'd nominate you for it!
    Blogging from Alpha to Zulu in April


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