I guess I have always seen cemeteries as having very long lifespans. “Lifespan” might seem an odd attribute for a place so closely related to the dead, but it is apt. By “lifespan” I mean how long it can accommodate new burials before it reaches capacity, or in the terminology of cemeterians, uses up its “inventory”. In parts of the world, this is not an issue, as graves are re-used after a few years. When Hamlet is presented with a skull dug up in a graveyard, he says: “Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio: a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy”, not “Holy crap, we must be in the wrong place, we dug up Yorick!”
Dr. Billy Campbell is the co-founder of Ramsey Creek Preserve, with his wife, Kimberley. His informed perspective is deeply valued in the conservation burial community.