This cross is carved into the grave of an ancestor who died in 1891. When seen in inverse, the U shape looks serpentine, which may or may not be coincidental. The cross itself could be considered a cross pattée but it’s in the interior carvings that I’m interested in.
It’s a very unusual grave in that there’s a raised portion above the slab on which are the man’s initials, CSA service record, and totally erroneous dates (1838-1870— he in fact lived from 1832-1891 which is recorded on his actual monument- it’s almost as if it’s two gravestones, but no other member of his family had his initials or those dates of birth and death.
Because of when/where he lived I’ve even looked at KKK iconography, but it doesn’t seem to match. (I don’t know if he was involved in the Klan or not- I’ve never heard that he was and he raised an orphaned black kid, but rural Alabama in the 19th century was an even less logical and consistent place than rural Alabama in the 21st century.) The KKK did use pattee crosses, but they also used Celtic and every other kind, usually just the traditional t-shaped cross.
Anybody have an idea of what it is? Or why there’d be a second headstone (with erroneous dates) on top of the slab?