When little Kenneth Jenkins died in Chatham County at age 3 in 1919, it was not particularly strange that his parents had a photograph made of him in his coffin. That photograph could well have been the only one taken of Kenneth in his short life and would be treasured as a comforting reminder. After-death photography was quite popular in Victorian times--when photos of the living were not common. The practice began to wane as photography became more accessible and photographs of living people were more widely available.
Because Kenneth's photo was made a part of his grave marker, we can all get a glimpse of this aspect of history today. He is buried at Martha's Chapel Christian Church in Chatham County. You can see our inventory of the markers at Martha's Chapel here: http://cemeterycensus.com/nc/chat/cem166.htm
According to his death certificate, Kenneth died of scarlet fever.
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