“Angel of the Resurrection” was the sculptor’s name for this bronze angel. Henry Kirke Brown was the sculptor, and he was one of the first Americans to cast his own full-size bronzes. When his statue of De Witt Clinton was unveiled in 1855, it was reported to be the first full-length statue cast in bronze by an American; this angel, however, is older, though a little less than life size (if angels have a life size). By some reckonings, then, this is the first large bronze statue cast in America. It was cast in about 1850, since George Hogg died in 1849.
A bronze monument unlike anything else old Pa Pitt has seen around here, and he suspects it may have been done by a craftsman more used to architectural ornamentation than to cemetery monuments. Whoever it was created a fine work, however, and the inscriptions are also good pieces of hand lettering.
An attractive Art Deco design with more traditionally Gothic bronze doors that have survived because this mausoleum is right at the cemetery entrance, where people might tend to notice two men with a pickup truck fiddling with a mausoleum in the middle of the night. (Note the fence spike in the foreground: old Pa Pitt apologizes for that, but it’s sometimes hard to see what’s in the picture when the camera has to be held above a fence.) This is one of only two mausoleums in St. Michael’s Cemetery, and it is the grander of the two.
The stained-glass window of the Holy Family is a very good one, though it was probably a standard catalogue item.
Angels adorn the bronze doors.
There was a brief revival of early-nineteenth-century tombstone styles in the 1920s and 1930s, and it produced some very attractive designs. Several of them are in the Laughlin plot. The three above share a weeping-willow design patterned after folk-art tombstones of a hundred years earlier.
This later tombstone is made in the same shape as the others, but with a different decorative scheme.
In the same plot are some stones with bronze plaques commemorating Henry B. Laughlin and his two wives.