Dave Higgins Photography

Looking at life through nano-coated lenses

Posts tagged ‘Albany Rural Cemetery’

Last Saturday I had another chance to meet some of the residents of Albany Rural Cemetery. I once again took a tour of a part of the cemetery during which cast members at various grave markers told us about their lives and how they wound up where they are. The event was put on by The Historical Society of the Town of Colonie. It was a fascinating experience that offered a tangible dimension that would have been missing from a simple tour with a dry presentation about who was buried where.

♦ ♦

John G. Myers

John G. Myers: Owner of Myers Department Store on North Pearl Street, which was one of the most prosperous and iconic department stores in downtown Albany. Tragically the building collapsed 4 years after Myers died, killing 13 people. Portrayed by Peter Crouse.

George Dawson

George Dawson: Editor of the Albany “Evening Journal” in 1846, he assumed control of the paper as senior editor and proprietor until 1877. Was close personal friend of Thurlow Weed and William Seward: he named his son George Seward Dawson. Portrayed by Bill Douglas.

John Swinburne

John Swinburne: Graduated from Albany Medical College and became one of Albany’s most prestigious and successful doctors and surgeons. Served as surgeon behind the front lines during the Civil War. Became Mayor of Albany and U.S. congressman. Swineburne Park is named for Dr. Swineburne. Portrayed by Lou Nunez.

Erastus Dow Palmer

Erastus Dow Palmer: Renowned Albany sculptor. The most visited monument in the Cemetery is Palmer’s Angel at the Sepulchere, 1868. Also sculpted a bronze statue of Chancellor Robert R. Livingston located in Statuary Hall, Capitol Building, Washington, D.C. Portrayed by Brian Dollard.

James Wilson

James Wilson: Merchant, became partner in the firm Hartness & Company, manufacturer of soaps and candies at the corner of Chapel and Canal Streets in Sheridan’s Hollow. Served as Director of the Mutual Insurance Company and the Albany Plank Road Company. Portrayed by Sean Owens.

Gen. Philip Schuyler (Margarita Schuyler, his daughter)

Gen. Philip Schuyler (Margarita Schuyler): Captain of British Forces in 1755 during French & Indian War. Was NYS Assemblyman, then elected to Continental Congress in 1775. Served as Major General during Revolutionary War. Represented NYS in the 1st U.S. Congress. Lost 1791 Senate election to Aaron Burr. Portrayed by Samantha Hall-Saladino.

Capt. Willard Glazier

Capt. Willard Glazier: Soldier, author, explorer. Graduate of State Normal School in Albany. Enlisted during Civil War in 1861 in the 2nd NY Calvary. Was in 50 engagements during the War. Spent 14 months confined in Confederate prisons. After the War he authored 7 books about his explorations. Portrayed by Larry Handy.

Hamilton Family

Hamilton Family: Andrew Hamilton was a prominent attorney and author of legal textbooks who married Jessie R. Walker. The family was beset by tragedy, and Andrew was also tied to the “yellow dog fund” scandal. The exquisite Celtic cross that dominates the family plot was designed by Marcus T. Reynolds. Jessie R. Walker portrayed by Carla Sofka.

John Boyd Thacher (Emma Treadwell Thacher, his wife)

John Boyd Thacher (Emma Treadwell Thacher): Businessman, politician. Partner in family firm the Thacher Car Works. Member of the Albany Board of Health. Elected as a State senator in 1883. Served two terms as Mayor of Albany. Emma donated 350 acres of their Helderberg estate, known as the John Boyd Thacher State Park. Emma Treadwell Thacher portrayed by Diane Doring.

Elisha R. Hurlbut

Elisha P. Hurlbut: Attorney, judge. In 1847 was appointed Judge of the Supreme Court of the State of New York. Also served on the Court of Appeals. Was also quite knowledgeable on the subject of phrenology, the study of the skull. The unique design of the family monument is patterned after the headboard of Hurlbut’s bed. Portrayed by Ed Bablin.


For more stories about Albany Rural Cemetery residents, visit my page Visits With The Dead.

♦ ♦

All photographs are © Dave Higgins and “Dave Higgins Photography,” 2019; all rights reserved.

Advertisements
Leave a comment

Last week I had the chance to meet some of the residents of Albany Rural Cemetery. No, I wasn’t at a seance or anything else paranormal. I was instead taking a tour of a part of the cemetery during which cast members at various grave markers told us about their lives and how they wound up where they are. The event was put on by The Historical Society of the Town of Colonie. It was a fascinating experience that offered a tangible dimension that would have been missing from a simple tour with a dry presentation about who was buried where.

I’d brought my infrared camera with the idea of taking pictures of some of the markers. But I wound up creating infrared images of the presenters in their period costumes. I really like the effect – everything seems more ethereal and timeless. You’ll find them below, along with the brief bios provided to us by the Historical Society. In the end I gained a greater appreciation of how much history is rooted in the Capital Region – especially in Albany Rural Cemetery.

(Per the ARC website: “Among the many historic people interred in ARC are: the 21st President of the United States, Chester A. Arthur; 34 members of Congress; eight presidential Cabinet members; five New York State governors; and 55 mayors of the City of Albany since it founding.” There are also over 1,000 Civil War soldiers buried there, including a handful of confederate soldiers.)

♦ ♦

Charles Fort

Charles Fort: author of several books on unexplained phenomena; beings on Mars controlling events on earth; a sinister civilization extant at the South Pole. Fort said he didn’t believe anything he had ever written. Portrayed by Ed Bablin.

Joseph K Emmet

Joseph K. Emmet: comedic stage actor, best known for his depiction of a character in the play “Our Cousin German.” Emmet Street in North Albany is named for him. The original Wolfert’s Roost was built be “Fritz” Emmet. Portrayed by Sean Owens.

Emily Weed Barnes

Emily Weed Barnes: daughter of Albany Evening Journal editor Thurlow Weed. Became wife of William Barnes, who took over as editor of Albany Evening Journal. During the Civil War, Emily helped establish the Albany Relief Bazaar to raise money for sick and wounded soldiers of the War of the Rebellion. Portrayed by Lori Dollard.

Fredrick Cleveland

Fredrick Cleveland: founder of the Cleveland Baking Powder Company. Cleveland lost two young children with fever, which was later found to be from contaminated water in the home well. His mansion on Van Rensselaer Blvd. was called “Greyledge.” Portrayed by Brian Dollard.

Daniel Manning and his second wife

Daniel Manning: businessman, journalist, and politician. Became editor and owner of Albany Argus. Most notable for having served as the 37th United States Secretary of the Treasury under President Grover Cleveland. Manning Boulevard is named in his honor. Portrayed by Peter Crouse.

Louis Menand

Louis Menand: born in France, came to America and became an authority on horticulture and botanical subjects. Established his business north of Albany near Albany Rural Cemetery. The Village of Menands is named for Louis Menand. Portrayed by Eric Washburn.

Brig. Gen. Adolph Von Steinwehr

Brig. Gen. Adolph Von Steinwehr: born in Germany, his father was a major in the ducal service, grandfather was Lt. Gen. in Prussian Army. Educated at a military academy in Germany, he became a brigadier general in the Army of the Potomac during the Civil War. Steinwehr Avenue in Gettysburg is named for him. Portrayed by Robert Mulligan.

Capt. John Cooke

Capt. John Cooke: born in England, emigrated to America. Joined local militia company. Fought in Mexican War and Civil War, where he was wounded in action at Port Hudson, LA. Was a messenger at State Attorney General’s office until his death in 1875. Portrayed by Will Trevor.

Mary McPherson

Mary McPherson: born in Scotland in 1804, moved to Albany in 1819. Had a bronze statue atop a rose-coloered Scottish granite of famed Scottish poet Robert Burns erected in Washington Park at her bequest. Sculptor was Albany native Charles Calverly. Portrayed by Diane Doring.

Stephen Van Rensselaer III

Stephen Van Rensselaer III: married to Margaret Schuyler, daughter of Revolutionary War Gen. Philip Schuyler. During War of 1812, led unsuccessful attack on Queenston Heights. Later became active in politics as NYS Assemblyman & Senator and US Congressman. Founder of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Portrayed by Bill Douglas.

Col. Michael K. Bryan

Col. Michael K. Bryan: born in Ireland, moved to America and settled in Albany. Proprietor of restaurant and hotel in Albany. Active in local militia, becoming Captain. Promoted to Colonel of 175th NY Infantry during Civil War. Killed in battle at Port Hudson, LA. Portrayed by Jim Verhagen.


For more stories about Albany Rural Cemetery residents, visit my page Visits With The Dead.

♦ ♦

All photographs are © Dave Higgins and “Dave Higgins Photography,” 2018; all rights reserved.

Leave a comment