Elephant Tombstone, Colquitt County

moultrie-ga-elephant-tombstone-william-f-duggan-photograph-copyright-brian-brown-vanishing-south-georgia-usa-2012

Ask anyone in Moultrie about the “elephant” and they’ll gladly direct you to the Pleasant Grove Primitive Baptist Church , where you’ll find the final resting place of William F. Duggan, Sr. (18 January 1899-22 December 1950). Locals contend that this is the most famous landmark in Colquitt County and since it’s thought to be the only life-sized elephant tombstone in the world, the distinction seems appropriate. The life-size sculpture depicts Nancy, a baby elephant owned by Duggan, who had just bought a circus at the time of his death. As a boy, Duggan worked with elephants in various circuses and always favored them. His son had this sculpture commissioned after his death. Athens-based photographer Dagmar Nelson shares a bit more of the history here.

13 Comments

Filed under --COLQUITT COUNTY GA--, Moultrie GA

13 responses to “Elephant Tombstone, Colquitt County

  1. Rick Jasperse

    Looks like Ga Marble from Tate Ga.

  2. Laura Lavin

    As the living grandaughter of William F Duggan Sr, I believe Nancy the baby elephant which was replicated in my grandpas’s tombstone; returned to the mix of other circus animals that had been acquired by my grandad. In all the subsequent years of storytelling, I never heard anything more noteworthy about this animal of which my grandad and grown very fond of. At 57 years old, this landmark remains on my bucket list of items to see! Laura Petruschell Lavin

    • Teab

      Laura, do you know of your granddads dealings with the circus has anything to do with Moultrie being mentioned in the new Dumbo movie?

  3. Pingback: Summer Travel Challenge! | Mom's Morning Coffee

  4. Andy Redd

    I was there last Tuesday for the burial of a cousin whose grave is only yards from the Duggan tomb. I have several generations of relatives, McMullens, buried there. The elephant is quite impressive.

  5. Not the “ONLY” elephant themed tombstone (but probably the largest!
    http://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/circus-cemetery-hugo-oklahoma

  6. Robert Laird

    I am related to the Duggans and as a child I played on Nancy. I have many family members buried there including Confederate soldiers

  7. Ryan

    This cemetery has 5 generations of my family buried there dating back to the Revolutionary War days! But yes, Nancy is unique.

  8. Amazing….thanks for sharing this info with us. I did not know about the elephant marker..
    Keep traveling and sharing your trips with us.

    • This is for the ones who takes care of the grounds where the big white elephant is… this is our uncle’s grave and I am asking everyone for the sake of respect for our uncle… ‘ please don’t climb on it’… the ones who take care of the grounds, would you please see that no one climbs on it?… that’s like someone walking on a grave… for respect sake, would everyone please not do that?… people may have a picture taken beside it but please not with someone sitting on it… thank you so much for honoring our request for respect…

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