Rose Hill Cemetery in Memphis, TN
A major storm threatened to move the dedication of Charlie Burse’s headstone indoors until about 2:30 on Saturday afternoon, March 9, 2019. The rain stopped, however, and at around 4:00 pm the sun came shining down onto the water-logged Rose Hill Cemetery. By the time Christian Stanfield, of the Side Street Steppers, delivered his welcoming address to the seventy people who braved the inclement weather to attend, the sky was clear, blue, and bright. Without a cloud in the sky, we had an amazing backdrop for the blessing and prayer of Pastor Leonard Dawson, the lone caretaker of the abandoned cemetery, who Mt. Zion Memorial Fund affiliate Bill Pichette tracked down in early 2018 to help organize the rehabilitation of the burial ground.
The unveiling of the headstone was followed by musical performances by David Evans and the Last Chance Jug Band, Arlo Leach, Bill Steber and the Jake Leg Stompers, Moses Crouch, the Side Street Steppers, Tony Manard and Nancy Apple, all of whom joined together form the finale performance of “Stealin, Stealin’” to close out the dedication and adjourn to the reception across town at the Midtown Grille.