from the graveyard of the First Presbyterian Church
Death once more has been among us
Our beloved friend is gone
Who was near and dear unto us
Thus we’re falling one by one.
–epitaph of William Baldwin, aged 61 years
Lo! on a narrow neck of land
Twixt two unbounded seas we stand
Yet how insensible!
A point of time–a moment’s space
Removes us to yon heavenly place
Or shuts us up in Hell.
–epitaph of William Hughes, aged 24 years
Far from afflictions, toil and care
The happy soul has fled
The breathless clay shall slumber here
Among the silent dead.
–epitaph of Catharine Garret, aged 56 years 8 months
So fades the lovely blooming flower
Sweet smiling solace of an hour
So soon our transient comforts fly
And pleasures only bloom to die
–epitaph of Mary W. Hay, aged 3 years 3 months
These verses are taken from a manuscript volume in the New Jersey Historical Society. They were copied in the nineteenth century from gravestones in the burial ground of Newark’s Old First Church, now the site of the Prudential Center.