There are many sides to TikTok – from true crime to dancing to cooking. Some TikTok accounts are quirky, like Rosie Grant's, an intersection of two very different niches: baking and graveyards.
It started out as an assignment for grad school. She was in library science school at the University of Maryland and took a class on content creation, where she received the unusual assignment to make a TikTok page from scratch.
Grant already had an internship at Congressional Cemetery in Washington, D.C., working in their digital archives department. So, she decided to use that as inspiration. On her @ghostlyarchive TikTok, she began baking the recipes people etch onto their gravestones.
"It ended up there's a huge audience for 'graveTok' and 'cemetery TikTok,'" Grant told CBS News. "I came across this gravestone for Naomi Miller-Dawson and it was beautiful, it's like an open book." The book design featured a recipe for spritz cookies, which are made using a cookie press.
"And I tried out, I posted it on TikTok and it kind of exploded in a very surprising way. And so I found more and just kept doing it," she said.
After that first video went viral, Grant started looking for more and viewers started sending her photos of family gravestones adorned with family recipes.
She's made 17 gravestone recipes so far, including snickerdoodles, fudge and meatloaf. But matter what the recipe is, her videos get people talking.
Many people comment with what they would want on their own gravestones. "Some people have been like mac and cheese. Others have been Taco Bell Crunchwrap Supreme. It's endlessly fascinating and all of the recipes have been very different," Grant said.
"It's not like oh, everyone has a cheesecake recipe," she said. "Every single grave has been a little bit different from each other. It's so cool."
Grant has amassed 114,400 followers and 4.7 million likes on her TikTok. She said her TikTok provides people with a way to honor their dead relatives. And even though baking and graveyards are two niches you might not expect to go together, many people relate to her page.
"The two things we inevitably do in life is we eat food and then we die someday. And it's this weird shared experience," she said. "And I feel like, if anything, that's been the most interesting comments to me, of people either reflecting on, 'This is how I want to be remembered,' or 'Yeah, now I'm thinking of my grandparent, and this is what they made every day and whenever I make that, I think about them.'"
"I have no language for how interesting and amazing it's been to watch how other people connect with these topics," she said.
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