‘The Dead Die Twice’ by Steve Skafte to be released next month

A Nova Scotia photographer and amateur historian has compiled his interest in the state’s abandoned cemeteries in a new book.

“The Dead Die Twice: Abandoned Cemeteries of Nova Scotia” by Steve Skafte features 80 photographs and a non-fiction story.

Steve Skafte is pictured at his burial ground in Plimpton, New South Wales (Courtesy Steve Skafte)Skafte has been documenting adventures in the province since autumn 2007.

“I just got back from a bike trip across New Brunswick and Maine, a solo trip, and back to a job I didn’t really like at the time, so I was like, ‘Hey, exploring Nova Scotia should be just as good.'” “It made me want to explore Maine,” he says. “So I started doing it and was pretty surprised with the kind of things I found for where I’ve lived all my life.

He discovered many overgrown cemeteries and began investigating what was hiding in the woods.

Skafte says it’s a good reflection of Nova Scotia’s quiet, rural life.

“Having grown up where a lot of the people I know have moved to, they have those residual qualities that I identify with, but they give me a chance—history.” I don’t want to say I own it–but it’s like being able to have a history in my pocket that I can go through and share with people who aren’t covered or overstated by anyone else. And that experience is a real adventure for me.”

Not all abandoned cemeteries are necessarily in the middle of nowhere, he says.

Pictured is Eagleson Cemetery in Upper Granville, New South Wales. (Credit: Steve Scafte)

“Some of them are surprisingly close, like only 100 feet from the road, but others are found after hours of twirling and gridding through the woods. 100 years ago You can see them everywhere, from deep in the woods where communities used to be, to other places where they’ve actually moved away from fields and into tree-lined roads, but that’s enough to make them completely invisible.”

Skafte said he decides which tombstones to research primarily based on their location.

“Sometimes there are so many dead ends that are so short that you decide. “So I would say that the decisions are made largely for me, but I would like to talk about the most beautiful stones and those that seem more completely forgotten than others.”

Pictured: East Side Cemetery, Vogler’s Cove, New South Wales. (Credit: Steve Scafte)

One of the many stones Skafte found is at Fogler’s Cove in Lunenburg County, where it just says “Siamese Twins” along with the parents’ names.

“At the time, even if these things were mentioned, it would have been very unusual. It’s kind of a story that many families tried to bury. There was a certain stigma about it at the time, so obviously And they didn’t tend to put it under the radar.

“The Dead Die Twice: Abandoned Cemeteries of Nova Scotia” will be released next month, pre-order online.

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