Update: How NOT to Clean a Tombstone for Find-A-Grave

I recently wrote (at http://wp.me/p5Z3-As) an article about a person who damaged tombstones in a Tennessee cemetery by using a wirebrush to scrape the stones, making the letters more visible. Of course, it also created irreversible damage in the process.

Newsletter reader “ljellis2000” now has posted an update: the culprit has been found, arrested, and charged with a felony offense. The man reportedly said, “… that he did not realize his actions were causing any harm.”

Under Tennessee law, unauthorized tampering with or damaging gravestones is a Class E felony, and — once damaged — antique tombstones can rarely be returned to their former appearance. Rough brushing or cleaning with harsh chemicals can further weaken or completely destroy the often illegible inscriptions on stones that are already deteriorated because of age and exposure to the elements.

Details may be found in The Rogersville Review at http://goo.gl/hEUvUd.

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