About: Justin Nobel

We live our lives online. Baby photos are uploaded, homework is emailed in, mates are encountered via Facebook and in nearly every field the web has revolutionized how work is done. And we die online too; obituaries and even funeral services can now be downloaded. We have entered the age of Digital Dying. \r\n\r\nThis blog explores trends in death and the industries it touches, examines perceptions and practices regarding dying, both past and present and also looks at the living, and how we anticipate, recover from and are even inspired by death.\r\n\r\nDigital Dying is written by Justin Nobel, whose stories about science, culture and travel have appeared in publications such as the Chicago Tribune, Audubon, Gourmet.com, Nunatsiaq News, Point Reyes Light and The Smart Set www.justinnobel.com. Comments and ideas can be sent to [email protected].

Louisiana researcher stumbles upon a hidden graveyard of former slaves

By: Justin Nobel | Date: Thu, February 9th, 2017

In the thick woods not far from Louisiana’s capitol city of Baton Rouge is a crumbling graveyard containing the bodies of individuals who were once enslaved. In fact, they tilled the very cane fields that their bones are now resting beside.

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Thomas Proctor Lippincott

My Rock n Roll Dad: A Unique Story of Remembrance

By: Justin Nobel | Date: Mon, January 30th, 2017

The year is 1969. Robert F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr. have recently been assassinated. Riots have swept many large American cities. And now a vibrant and subversive new music form called Rock n Roll is sweeping the nation and about to have its largest coup yet, a massive muddy marijuana-filled outdoor festival called Woodstock.

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Playing Dead For The Next Hundred Years – Hibernation Preparation Tips

By: Justin Nobel | Date: Thu, January 5th, 2017

A new season, a New Year. This is a chance to blossom forth with new ideas and plans, or dig our heads deeper into the sand and perhaps disappear for a bit?

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“Arrival,” And The 9 Million Names For Death

By: Justin Nobel | Date: Mon, December 5th, 2016

How do you say death in heptapod?

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Who will be the first human to die on Mars?

By: Justin Nobel | Date: Fri, November 11th, 2016

“The sun is gradually expanding,” Elon Musk told a rapt audience in 2013 at SXSW, the famous media, music and technology conference held in Austin, Texas. “In 500,000 million years, a billion at the outside, the oceans will boil and there will be no meaningful life on Earth—maybe some very high temperature bacteria, but nothing that can build rockets.”

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Trump and Clinton

Death on the Campaign Trail – From Trump and Clinton to RFK and Horace Greeley

By: Justin Nobel | Date: Mon, October 10th, 2016

Donald Trump. Hillary Clinton. It is difficult to remember a presidential battle between candidates who are more disliked than the present two major party nominees. Numerous citizens have no doubt privately wished the worst on both candidates. But what were to happen if the unthinkable happened?

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Amelia Earhart

Amelia Earhart Lives! And Five Other Terrific Tales of Death at Sea

By: Justin Nobel | Date: Mon, September 19th, 2016

Amelia Earhart lives! At least she may have lived for nearly a week after crashing near the coral atoll of Gilbert Island on her world-famous 1937 flight, an attempt to become the first woman to fly around the world.

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Nikola Tesla

The Lonely Death and Fantastic Reincarnation of Nikola Tesla

By: Justin Nobel | Date: Sun, September 11th, 2016

In an attempt to inspire Americans to be innovative and inventive, President Obama called out to inventors, and in particular, immigrant inventors in his State of the Union address on Tuesday.

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Louisiana Flooding Is So Bad The Dead Are Coming Out Of The Ground, Again!

By: Justin Nobel | Date: Sat, August 20th, 2016

The dead are literally crawling out of the ground and sailing away on their coffin ships.

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Why are Native American cemeteries treated differently?

By: Justin Nobel | Date: Wed, July 27th, 2016

Sonny Ledford is sharpening his battle axes. “I will tell you a story,” he says.

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Italian Ghosts

Do Italian Ghosts Haunt New Orleans? A Look at America’s Forgotten Lynch Mob

By: Justin Nobel | Date: Mon, June 20th, 2016

Ghosts haunt the streets of New Orleans, and a few months back I may have heard one.

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Michael Gaspeny

“The Deathbed Poet” – How One Man Makes Poems of Life’s Last Hours

By: Justin Nobel | Date: Fri, May 20th, 2016

Michael Gaspeny knows secrets. He knows lives. He knows what makes people smile, and what makes them sin. He knows what makes people tick, and what makes them stop ticking, because he is sitting right beside them when it happens.

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Jeffrey Dahmer Home

Vacationing in Jeffrey Dahmer’s Childhood Home

By: Justin Nobel | Date: Thu, April 14th, 2016

The listing reads as follows:

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An Awful Relative Stole My Home

As I Lay Dying…Some Awful Relative Stole My Home!

By: Justin Nobel | Date: Fri, April 8th, 2016

Could an awful relative steal your home? It’s more common than you think.


Here is an awful story I heard recently.

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National Geographic Death Rituals

The National Geographic Article On Death Everyone Can’t Stop Talking About (It’s Weirder Than You Think!)

By: Justin Nobel | Date: Thu, March 31st, 2016

A woman pulls back a golden curtain and slips inside a room to speak to her husband, “Papa, Papa.”

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