I'm a PhD student researching the role of mortuary archaeology in contemporary British society. Think of this as a scrapbook of all the interesting links, snippets of information and random bits and bobs I come across pertaining to death, dying and the dead. Enjoy?!


Dallas: on the trail of JFK
Ahead of the anniversary of JFK’s assassination, Nigel Richardson visits key sites in Dallas

It was nearly midnight in downtown Dallas. As we crossed Dealey Plaza on Elm Street the taxi driver braked sharply – “This is where the first bullet hit” – then floored the accelerator, whipped us round on to Stemmons Freeway and headed for Parkland Memorial Hospital.


“Kennedy was pretty much dead by this point,” he said. “Jackie had the president’s brains in her hands. Me, I don’t think Oswald did it.”


The driver, who had just picked me up from Dallas-Fort Worth Airport, had taken me a little too literally. I told him I was there because the 50th anniversary of the Kennedy assassination was looming and I wanted to see where and how it happened. He responded by taking me on the route of the motorcade on which JFK was shot, before dropping me (exhausted, bemused, excited) at my hotel in the early hours.




The assassination of President John F Kennedy on November 22, 1963 was one of the defining events of post-war history – what you might call the baby boomers’ 9/11. From it, like sparks from a spinning wheel, have flown a million stories of conjecture and conspiracy.

(Source: The Telegraph)

Dallas: on the trail of JFK
Ahead of the anniversary of JFK’s assassination, Nigel Richardson visits key sites in Dallas

It was nearly midnight in downtown Dallas. As we crossed Dealey Plaza on Elm Street the taxi driver braked sharply – “This is where the first bullet hit” – then floored the accelerator, whipped us round on to Stemmons Freeway and headed for Parkland Memorial Hospital.


“Kennedy was pretty much dead by this point,” he said. “Jackie had the president’s brains in her hands. Me, I don’t think Oswald did it.”


The driver, who had just picked me up from Dallas-Fort Worth Airport, had taken me a little too literally. I told him I was there because the 50th anniversary of the Kennedy assassination was looming and I wanted to see where and how it happened. He responded by taking me on the route of the motorcade on which JFK was shot, before dropping me (exhausted, bemused, excited) at my hotel in the early hours.




The assassination of President John F Kennedy on November 22, 1963 was one of the defining events of post-war history – what you might call the baby boomers’ 9/11. From it, like sparks from a spinning wheel, have flown a million stories of conjecture and conspiracy.

(Source: The Telegraph)

Dallas: on the trail of JFK
Ahead of the anniversary of JFK’s assassination, Nigel Richardson visits key sites in Dallas

It was nearly midnight in downtown Dallas. As we crossed Dealey Plaza on Elm Street the taxi driver braked sharply – “This is where the first bullet hit” – then floored the accelerator, whipped us round on to Stemmons Freeway and headed for Parkland Memorial Hospital.


“Kennedy was pretty much dead by this point,” he said. “Jackie had the president’s brains in her hands. Me, I don’t think Oswald did it.”


The driver, who had just picked me up from Dallas-Fort Worth Airport, had taken me a little too literally. I told him I was there because the 50th anniversary of the Kennedy assassination was looming and I wanted to see where and how it happened. He responded by taking me on the route of the motorcade on which JFK was shot, before dropping me (exhausted, bemused, excited) at my hotel in the early hours.




The assassination of President John F Kennedy on November 22, 1963 was one of the defining events of post-war history – what you might call the baby boomers’ 9/11. From it, like sparks from a spinning wheel, have flown a million stories of conjecture and conspiracy.

(Source: The Telegraph)

Dallas: on the trail of JFK

Ahead of the anniversary of JFK’s assassination, Nigel Richardson visits key sites in Dallas

It was nearly midnight in downtown Dallas. As we crossed Dealey Plaza on Elm Street the taxi driver braked sharply – “This is where the first bullet hit” – then floored the accelerator, whipped us round on to Stemmons Freeway and headed for Parkland Memorial Hospital.

“Kennedy was pretty much dead by this point,” he said. “Jackie had the president’s brains in her hands. Me, I don’t think Oswald did it.”

The driver, who had just picked me up from Dallas-Fort Worth Airport, had taken me a little too literally. I told him I was there because the 50th anniversary of the Kennedy assassination was looming and I wanted to see where and how it happened. He responded by taking me on the route of the motorcade on which JFK was shot, before dropping me (exhausted, bemused, excited) at my hotel in the early hours.

The assassination of President John F Kennedy on November 22, 1963 was one of the defining events of post-war history – what you might call the baby boomers’ 9/11. From it, like sparks from a spinning wheel, have flown a million stories of conjecture and conspiracy.

(Source: The Telegraph)


Lockerbie bombing: Pan Am 103 returned to Scotland
ONE of Scotland’s most visited museums hopes its bid to display aircraft wreckage from the Lockerbie bombing will be boosted by the remains of Pan Am flight 103 being moved north of the Border.
The Crown Office yesterday confirmed the wreckage had been moved from an Air Accidents Investigation Branch hangar in Hampshire to a storage facility near Dumfries.



The investigation into the 1988 attack, in which 270 people were killed, is ongoing, although Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, the former Libyan intelligence agent convicted of the bombing, died last year.
The Riverside Museum in Glasgow, which attracts more than a million visitors a year, is seeking part of the wreckage to add to its permanent display about the disaster, which was developed with the victims’ families.
A source said: “We continue to hope some of the fuselage will be made available to help us to tell this important story.”
Museum officials have previously told The Scotsman they were seeking “something which is identifiably part of the aircraft rather than just a piece of metal”, such as a seat or one of the black boxes.
Curators have previously said: “We want items that tell a story, such as a piece of fuselage which shows blast damage, or something which illustrates the forensic investigation.”

(Source: Scotsman)

Lockerbie bombing: Pan Am 103 returned to Scotland
ONE of Scotland’s most visited museums hopes its bid to display aircraft wreckage from the Lockerbie bombing will be boosted by the remains of Pan Am flight 103 being moved north of the Border.
The Crown Office yesterday confirmed the wreckage had been moved from an Air Accidents Investigation Branch hangar in Hampshire to a storage facility near Dumfries.



The investigation into the 1988 attack, in which 270 people were killed, is ongoing, although Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, the former Libyan intelligence agent convicted of the bombing, died last year.
The Riverside Museum in Glasgow, which attracts more than a million visitors a year, is seeking part of the wreckage to add to its permanent display about the disaster, which was developed with the victims’ families.
A source said: “We continue to hope some of the fuselage will be made available to help us to tell this important story.”
Museum officials have previously told The Scotsman they were seeking “something which is identifiably part of the aircraft rather than just a piece of metal”, such as a seat or one of the black boxes.
Curators have previously said: “We want items that tell a story, such as a piece of fuselage which shows blast damage, or something which illustrates the forensic investigation.”

(Source: Scotsman)

Lockerbie bombing: Pan Am 103 returned to Scotland

ONE of Scotland’s most visited museums hopes its bid to display aircraft wreckage from the Lockerbie bombing will be boosted by the remains of Pan Am flight 103 being moved north of the Border.

The Crown Office yesterday confirmed the wreckage had been moved from an Air Accidents Investigation Branch hangar in Hampshire to a storage facility near Dumfries.

The investigation into the 1988 attack, in which 270 people were killed, is ongoing, although Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, the former Libyan intelligence agent convicted of the bombing, died last year.

The Riverside Museum in Glasgow, which attracts more than a million visitors a year, is seeking part of the wreckage to add to its permanent display about the disaster, which was developed with the victims’ families.

A source said: “We continue to hope some of the fuselage will be made available to help us to tell this important story.”

Museum officials have previously told The Scotsman they were seeking “something which is identifiably part of the aircraft rather than just a piece of metal”, such as a seat or one of the black boxes.

Curators have previously said: “We want items that tell a story, such as a piece of fuselage which shows blast damage, or something which illustrates the forensic investigation.”

(Source: Scotsman)


Plans for Titanic replica set sail as Australian billionaire avoids sink jinx
It looks like the Titanic. It is meant to feel like the Titanic. But the Australian billionaire who on Tuesday unveiled blueprints for a successor ship to the doomed ocean liner is confident his dream project will not sink like the Titanic.
At a news conference in New York, mining tycoon Clive Palmer said his ambitious plans to launch a copy of the Titanic and sail her across the Atlantic would be a tribute to those who built and backed the original.
“We will complete the journey. We will sail into New York on the ship they designed,” he said at the event being held inside the Intrepid aircraft carrier that is now a museum in the city.
But Palmer, a jovial and brash mogul who likes to style himself “professor”, refused to be drawn into predicting that his new boat would be “unsinkable” – and thus avoided repeating an act of hubris that the backers of the first Titanic famously made. “Anything will sink if you put a hole in it,” Palmer admitted of Titanic II. But he joked that due to global warming the risks of travelling through the waters near the Arctic circle had lessened considerably. “There are not so many icebergs in the North Atlantic these days,” he said.

Read more here. 

Plans for Titanic replica set sail as Australian billionaire avoids sink jinx
It looks like the Titanic. It is meant to feel like the Titanic. But the Australian billionaire who on Tuesday unveiled blueprints for a successor ship to the doomed ocean liner is confident his dream project will not sink like the Titanic.
At a news conference in New York, mining tycoon Clive Palmer said his ambitious plans to launch a copy of the Titanic and sail her across the Atlantic would be a tribute to those who built and backed the original.
“We will complete the journey. We will sail into New York on the ship they designed,” he said at the event being held inside the Intrepid aircraft carrier that is now a museum in the city.
But Palmer, a jovial and brash mogul who likes to style himself “professor”, refused to be drawn into predicting that his new boat would be “unsinkable” – and thus avoided repeating an act of hubris that the backers of the first Titanic famously made. “Anything will sink if you put a hole in it,” Palmer admitted of Titanic II. But he joked that due to global warming the risks of travelling through the waters near the Arctic circle had lessened considerably. “There are not so many icebergs in the North Atlantic these days,” he said.

Read more here. 

Plans for Titanic replica set sail as Australian billionaire avoids sink jinx

It looks like the Titanic. It is meant to feel like the Titanic. But the Australian billionaire who on Tuesday unveiled blueprints for a successor ship to the doomed ocean liner is confident his dream project will not sink like the Titanic.

At a news conference in New York, mining tycoon Clive Palmer said his ambitious plans to launch a copy of the Titanic and sail her across the Atlantic would be a tribute to those who built and backed the original.

“We will complete the journey. We will sail into New York on the ship they designed,” he said at the event being held inside the Intrepid aircraft carrier that is now a museum in the city.

But Palmer, a jovial and brash mogul who likes to style himself “professor”, refused to be drawn into predicting that his new boat would be “unsinkable” – and thus avoided repeating an act of hubris that the backers of the first Titanic famously made. “Anything will sink if you put a hole in it,” Palmer admitted of Titanic II. But he joked that due to global warming the risks of travelling through the waters near the Arctic circle had lessened considerably. “There are not so many icebergs in the North Atlantic these days,” he said.

Read more here


From Julius Caesar to JFK: Visit the top assassination tourist sites
Tourists still flock to see the building JFK was shot from but he’s not the only assassination victim to draw a crowd:
JFK Dallas, Texas
November 22, 2013 marks the 50th anniversary of the assassination of JFK. Visitors to Dallas can find out more about President John F Kennedy – and his untimely death – in a number of ways. The somewhat inappropriately named Big D Fun Tours’ JFK Assassination Tour takes in key locations, while The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza is on the site of the former book depository from which Lee Harvey Oswald is believed to have fired the fatal shot. The 50 sq ft John F Kennedy Memorial, on Main, Elm and Market Streets, is also worth checking out.
http://www.bigdfuntours.comhttp://www.jfk.org
Mahatma Gandhi, Gandhi Smriti, New Delhi
Gandhi Smriti is the Delhi museum dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi – it’s also where Gandhi was assassinated on January 30, 1948. The museum houses a number of artefacts associated with Gandhi’s life, and there are tours of the building, including the room where Gandhi lived. It’s also possible to visit the spot on which he was shot while taking his nightly walk. Eerie. The exact location is marked by a Martyr’s Column, with a trail of concrete footprints acting as a reminder of the leaders’ last steps.
http://www.gandhimuseum.org
John Lennon, New York City
John Lennon was shot dead by Mark Chapman at the Dakota, an apartment building on the north-west corner of Central Park, on December 8, 1980. The park’s 2.5-acre (1ha) Strawberry Fields memorial in New York comprises a circular mosaic bearing the title of his most famous song, Imagine. ‘I saw roses, candles, works of art and even a hand-made Lennon doll placed on the Imagine memorial,’ says Kris, founder of http://www.theyellowbrickroadtrip.blogspot.co.uk. ‘These impromptu memorials are common and often attended by famous musicians and admirers of Lennon.’ Other locations for Beatles fans include 105 Bank Street in the West Village and The Plaza Hotel, where the group stayed before their famous first appearance on the Ed Sullivan show.
http://www.nycgo.com
Martin Luther King, Lorraine Motel, Memphis, Tennessee
Martin Luther King was assassinated by James Earl Ray, an escapee from Missouri State Penitentiary, on April 4, 1968. King was a regular at the Lorraine Motel – usually staying in room 306 – and it was while standing on the second-floor balcony that he was fatally shot. Visitors to Mulberry Street will now find the National Civil Rights Museum, a complex that incorporates not just a museum but several other important sites, including the Lorraine Motel and the Young and Morrow building on 422 Main Street, from which the fatal shot was thought to have been fired.
http://www.civilrightsmuseum.org
Julius Caesar, Theatre of Pompeii, Rome
Julius Caesar was stabbed to death in March 44BC by 60 Roman senators who called themselves the Liberators. The attack took place at the Theatre of Pompeii, one of Rome’s first permanent theatres. Its largest intact remains can be found at the spectacular Renaissance Palazzo della Cancelleria in the heart of the city. However, some buildings were constructed on top of the theatre’s original curved foundations. For this reason, visitors to modern-day Rome will be able to spot several curved buildings and streets. The Palazzo della Cancelleria itself is widely regarded as one of the finest examples of Renaissance architecture.
http://www.rome.info
Yitzhak Rabin, Rabin Square, Tel Aviv
Yitzhak Rabin was the fifth prime minister of Israel, serving two terms. His second term ended with his assassination in 1995. On November 4, Rabin had attended a political rally held in support of the Oslo Accords, a peace agreement which gave Palestinians more control over the West Bank and Gaza. The rally took place in Tel Aviv’s Kikar Malkhei Yisrael (Kings of Israel) Square: Rabin was about to get into his car when Yigal Amir, a right-wing extremist, fired three shots at him. Two bullets hit Rabin, who was rushed to hospital but later died on the operating table from blood loss. Many of Israel’s streets were subsequently named after Rabin, including the square in which he died. Rabin Square is now also home to a monument dedicated to Rabin.

From Julius Caesar to JFK: Visit the top assassination tourist sites
Tourists still flock to see the building JFK was shot from but he’s not the only assassination victim to draw a crowd:
JFK Dallas, Texas
November 22, 2013 marks the 50th anniversary of the assassination of JFK. Visitors to Dallas can find out more about President John F Kennedy – and his untimely death – in a number of ways. The somewhat inappropriately named Big D Fun Tours’ JFK Assassination Tour takes in key locations, while The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza is on the site of the former book depository from which Lee Harvey Oswald is believed to have fired the fatal shot. The 50 sq ft John F Kennedy Memorial, on Main, Elm and Market Streets, is also worth checking out.
http://www.bigdfuntours.comhttp://www.jfk.org
Mahatma Gandhi, Gandhi Smriti, New Delhi
Gandhi Smriti is the Delhi museum dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi – it’s also where Gandhi was assassinated on January 30, 1948. The museum houses a number of artefacts associated with Gandhi’s life, and there are tours of the building, including the room where Gandhi lived. It’s also possible to visit the spot on which he was shot while taking his nightly walk. Eerie. The exact location is marked by a Martyr’s Column, with a trail of concrete footprints acting as a reminder of the leaders’ last steps.
http://www.gandhimuseum.org
John Lennon, New York City
John Lennon was shot dead by Mark Chapman at the Dakota, an apartment building on the north-west corner of Central Park, on December 8, 1980. The park’s 2.5-acre (1ha) Strawberry Fields memorial in New York comprises a circular mosaic bearing the title of his most famous song, Imagine. ‘I saw roses, candles, works of art and even a hand-made Lennon doll placed on the Imagine memorial,’ says Kris, founder of http://www.theyellowbrickroadtrip.blogspot.co.uk. ‘These impromptu memorials are common and often attended by famous musicians and admirers of Lennon.’ Other locations for Beatles fans include 105 Bank Street in the West Village and The Plaza Hotel, where the group stayed before their famous first appearance on the Ed Sullivan show.
http://www.nycgo.com
Martin Luther King, Lorraine Motel, Memphis, Tennessee
Martin Luther King was assassinated by James Earl Ray, an escapee from Missouri State Penitentiary, on April 4, 1968. King was a regular at the Lorraine Motel – usually staying in room 306 – and it was while standing on the second-floor balcony that he was fatally shot. Visitors to Mulberry Street will now find the National Civil Rights Museum, a complex that incorporates not just a museum but several other important sites, including the Lorraine Motel and the Young and Morrow building on 422 Main Street, from which the fatal shot was thought to have been fired.
http://www.civilrightsmuseum.org
Julius Caesar, Theatre of Pompeii, Rome
Julius Caesar was stabbed to death in March 44BC by 60 Roman senators who called themselves the Liberators. The attack took place at the Theatre of Pompeii, one of Rome’s first permanent theatres. Its largest intact remains can be found at the spectacular Renaissance Palazzo della Cancelleria in the heart of the city. However, some buildings were constructed on top of the theatre’s original curved foundations. For this reason, visitors to modern-day Rome will be able to spot several curved buildings and streets. The Palazzo della Cancelleria itself is widely regarded as one of the finest examples of Renaissance architecture.
http://www.rome.info
Yitzhak Rabin, Rabin Square, Tel Aviv
Yitzhak Rabin was the fifth prime minister of Israel, serving two terms. His second term ended with his assassination in 1995. On November 4, Rabin had attended a political rally held in support of the Oslo Accords, a peace agreement which gave Palestinians more control over the West Bank and Gaza. The rally took place in Tel Aviv’s Kikar Malkhei Yisrael (Kings of Israel) Square: Rabin was about to get into his car when Yigal Amir, a right-wing extremist, fired three shots at him. Two bullets hit Rabin, who was rushed to hospital but later died on the operating table from blood loss. Many of Israel’s streets were subsequently named after Rabin, including the square in which he died. Rabin Square is now also home to a monument dedicated to Rabin.

From Julius Caesar to JFK: Visit the top assassination tourist sites

Tourists still flock to see the building JFK was shot from but he’s not the only assassination victim to draw a crowd:

JFK Dallas, Texas

November 22, 2013 marks the 50th anniversary of the assassination of JFK. Visitors to Dallas can find out more about President John F Kennedy – and his untimely death – in a number of ways. The somewhat inappropriately named Big D Fun Tours’ JFK Assassination Tour takes in key locations, while The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza is on the site of the former book depository from which Lee Harvey Oswald is believed to have fired the fatal shot. The 50 sq ft John F Kennedy Memorial, on Main, Elm and Market Streets, is also worth checking out.

http://www.bigdfuntours.com
http://www.jfk.org

Mahatma Gandhi, Gandhi Smriti, New Delhi

Gandhi Smriti is the Delhi museum dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi – it’s also where Gandhi was assassinated on January 30, 1948. The museum houses a number of artefacts associated with Gandhi’s life, and there are tours of the building, including the room where Gandhi lived. It’s also possible to visit the spot on which he was shot while taking his nightly walk. Eerie. The exact location is marked by a Martyr’s Column, with a trail of concrete footprints acting as a reminder of the leaders’ last steps.

http://www.gandhimuseum.org

John Lennon, New York City

John Lennon was shot dead by Mark Chapman at the Dakota, an apartment building on the north-west corner of Central Park, on December 8, 1980. The park’s 2.5-acre (1ha) Strawberry Fields memorial in New York comprises a circular mosaic bearing the title of his most famous song, Imagine. ‘I saw roses, candles, works of art and even a hand-made Lennon doll placed on the Imagine memorial,’ says Kris, founder of http://www.theyellowbrickroadtrip.blogspot.co.uk. ‘These impromptu memorials are common and often attended by famous musicians and admirers of Lennon.’ Other locations for Beatles fans include 105 Bank Street in the West Village and The Plaza Hotel, where the group stayed before their famous first appearance on the Ed Sullivan show.

http://www.nycgo.com

Martin Luther King, Lorraine Motel, Memphis, Tennessee

Martin Luther King was assassinated by James Earl Ray, an escapee from Missouri State Penitentiary, on April 4, 1968. King was a regular at the Lorraine Motel – usually staying in room 306 – and it was while standing on the second-floor balcony that he was fatally shot. Visitors to Mulberry Street will now find the National Civil Rights Museum, a complex that incorporates not just a museum but several other important sites, including the Lorraine Motel and the Young and Morrow building on 422 Main Street, from which the fatal shot was thought to have been fired.

http://www.civilrightsmuseum.org

Julius Caesar, Theatre of Pompeii, Rome

Julius Caesar was stabbed to death in March 44BC by 60 Roman senators who called themselves the Liberators. The attack took place at the Theatre of Pompeii, one of Rome’s first permanent theatres. Its largest intact remains can be found at the spectacular Renaissance Palazzo della Cancelleria in the heart of the city. However, some buildings were constructed on top of the theatre’s original curved foundations. For this reason, visitors to modern-day Rome will be able to spot several curved buildings and streets. The Palazzo della Cancelleria itself is widely regarded as one of the finest examples of Renaissance architecture.

http://www.rome.info

Yitzhak Rabin, Rabin Square, Tel Aviv

Yitzhak Rabin was the fifth prime minister of Israel, serving two terms. His second term ended with his assassination in 1995. On November 4, Rabin had attended a political rally held in support of the Oslo Accords, a peace agreement which gave Palestinians more control over the West Bank and Gaza. The rally took place in Tel Aviv’s Kikar Malkhei Yisrael (Kings of Israel) Square: Rabin was about to get into his car when Yigal Amir, a right-wing extremist, fired three shots at him. Two bullets hit Rabin, who was rushed to hospital but later died on the operating table from blood loss. Many of Israel’s streets were subsequently named after Rabin, including the square in which he died. Rabin Square is now also home to a monument dedicated to Rabin.