by Stew Thornley
In the introduction, Thornley writes, “Cemetery surfing has become an increasingly popular hobby… . People making treks include genealogists tracing their roots, artists and writers admiring the monuments and epitaphs, travelers looking to get off the beaten path… . Visitors respond in different ways to what they encounter, taking pictures, making rubbings, leaving offerings. . . .”
This guidebook — splashed with interesting, enlightening and often unknown factoids about the state’s history — also contains a helpful appendix with a county-by-county listing of Minnesota’s cemeteries and their specific locations and lists the 400 famous, infamous and just plain interesting Minnesotans whose graves were visited by Thornley. The author’s interest in cemeteries is not new. He has also visited the grave of every member of Baseball’s Hall of Fame, a quest that took him across the United States and to Cuba.