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Sher Hogue | all galleries >> Natchez City Cemetery...Natchez, Mississippi (Includes Prints for Sale) > Count Gasmir Dem Bouski
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Count Gasmir Dem Bouski
03-12-04 Sher Hogue

Count Gasmir Dem Bouski

Natchez, Mississippi

Inscription on the stone reads:
Count Gasmir Dem Bouski
Zouave Pontifical
Died June 30, 1869
Age 25 years

I shall go to him but he shall not return to me. ~ Gertrude

Count Dem Bouski was a native of Poland and one of the Pontifical Zouaves. While he was in Rome, he met a beautiful aristocrat, Gertrude Holmes, who was traveling with her father. They became friends and when friendship blossomed into love, they became engaged. But, their marriage was not meant to be when Gertrude's father forbad the wedding because of religious differences with the Count. Heatbroken, the couple vowed to stay faithful to each other "until the Second". Gertrude and her father left Rome and the Count returned to Poland.

While in Poland, the Count took an active part in the political issues of the day. Unfortunately, his participation resulted in his exile to a foreign land. Not wanting to reveal to Gertrude what he considered was a disgrace, he came to America under an assumed name and found work which required him to travel.

While traveling down the river on the paddlewheeler, Grey Eagle, the Count was struck with a fever and died. When they reached Natchez, the Captain, to whom the Count had divulged his identity, contacted the French curate and told him the story of the Count's love and sadness.

The curate buried the Count on a hillside and, as the Count had requested, wrote Gertrude in her home of Philadelphia to tell her the sad news and that how through all the years the Count had remained faithful, thinking it best, even though he was lonely, to keep the truth from her.

One morning, the curate was informed that a lady wanted to see him. He turned to find a beautiful woman heavily draped in the clothes of mourning. She placed her hands in his and said, in a voice full of anguish, "Mon Pere, I am Gertrude."

After receiving the curate's letter and accompanied by her father, she had come to visit the final resting place of her beloved. Kneeling beside his grave, she renewed her vow to remain faithful until the end.

At her request, the stone was to be carved with the inscription.



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Guest 14-Mar-2004 17:55
wonderful story behind the photo. Great shot.
John Buffin13-Mar-2004 23:49
Wow, another powerful image and story.
Great stuff.
Karen Stuebing13-Mar-2004 19:02
I don't mind saying it again. This cemetary series is wonderful. The stories and the photos. Looks like a book to me. :)
Guest 13-Mar-2004 04:52
wonderful story behind the photo...and the tone on this is perfect!
gary becker13-Mar-2004 03:45
Love the capture and tale.
Guest 13-Mar-2004 02:49
Beautiful!! Gorgeous setting and wonderful story!
Julie Blaney13-Mar-2004 02:21
Moody photo and a great story.
dazedgonebye13-Mar-2004 00:47
You surely have one productive cemetary down there. Another great image and story. Gets a vote.