Featured Gravestone – Jane Wendell

202Section:  Dutch Reformed

Material:  Brown sandstone

A small stone with a heavy amount of lichen on the surface.  Carving is partly obscured by the lichen, but otherwise legible.  Bottom of stone was broken, possibly at time of transfer.

Inscription:  In memory of Jane Wendell daughter of John and Cathalina Wendell who departed this life November 24, 1795 aged 1 year, 9 months and 21 days.

She was the daughter of John H. Wendell

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Featured Gravestone – Mary and Pamelia Pells

DSC04846Section:  Garretson Methodist Episcopal Church

Material:  White marbl

A double stone, there is a complete diagonal break beginning at the top between the two halves and continuing downward through Mary’s half of the stone.   Upper part of Mary’s section is also partly embedded in the earth.  Stone has darkening from exposure, but text is generally legible.

Inscription:  In Memory of Pamelia C. Pells who died Sept. 30 1831 aged 2 years 2 months.  In Memory of Mary J. Pells who died Oct 1, 1831 aged 9 months.  Gone is the flowers sweet buds of early spring Thy ruthless Death cold finger rudely press’d Yet ah grim tyrant pointless is thy sting They fading fell to ripen with the blest.  Parents to you this cheering hope is given They sank to Earth to freshly bloom in Heaven.

The stone makes no mention of the parents’ names, however, burial records show an Ebenezer Pells, age twenty-six, also buried in this lot.  He died approximately seven months after these two little girls and the epitaph from his widow is written in a similar tone to that of these children making it possible that he was the father of Pamelia and Mary.

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The Book of Burials – At Papskinee

The 1722 Book of Burials lists those buried at Papskinee, meaning Papscanee Island on the east side of the Hudson River.  The exact location of this burial ground is now lost, but it is believed to have been in the vicinity of Teller’s Point and the Port of Rensselaer.  It is not to be confused with the Staats burial ground which still exists on private property nearby.  Papscanee is now accessible as a nature preserve.

See The Book of Burials master post for further details on the list.

The Book of Burials – At Papskinee

Gerret B. Van den Bergh’s child was buried at Papskinee (November 14, 1725)
Mattys Van de Bergh’s child buried at Papsknee (June 21, 1729)
Johs Schoonmaker’s child was buried at Papsknie (August 13, 1729)
Johannis Schoonmaker was buried at Papsknee (May 8, 1730)
Thomas Witbeck buried at Papsknee (May 6, 1731)
Hendrick Bries’ son was buried at Papsknee (January 25, 1732)
Gerrit C. Van Den Bergh’s child was buried at Papsknee (February 1, 1732)
Hendrick Bries’ child was buried at Papsknee (April 6, 1732)
Johs Van Vechten was buried at Papsknee (June 23, 1734
Cornelis Van Beuren’s little son was buried at Papsknee (October 27, 1735)
Gerrit Teunisse Van Vechten’s child was buried at Papsknee (August 19, 1740)
Barent Van Beuren’s child was buried at Papsknee (September 30, 1740)
Melchert A. Van Deusen was buried at Papsknee (January 6, 1742)
Johs Van Vechten was buried Papsknee (July 15, 1742)
Jacob Schermerhorn Jr was buried at Papsknee (June 20, 1743)
Barent Van Ceuren’s wife was buried at Paspknee (August 11, 1743)
Child of Willem Van Buren, at Papsknee (March 10, 1751)
Willem Van Beuren, at Papsknee (August 17, 1752)
Catie Witbeck, at Papsknee (September 30, 1752)
Hendrick Bries, at Papsknee (September 22, 1753)
Abram To’s Witbeck’s wife, at Papsknee (March 28, 1755)

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Ann Eliza Bleecker

DSC05500From the companion blog, the story of the Revolutionary War-era poet and novelist, Ann Eliza Bleecker.

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Upright Stones – Eliza Maxwell


One of several stones set upright along the edge of the Church Grounds, the gravestone of Eliza Maxwell is broken, stained and spotted with lichen.  Despite the damages, it remains a beautiful and detailed monument.  The upper portion features a pair of clasped hands, often a symbol of eternal affection.  Above the joined hands, the stone is crowned with a heavy arrangement of flowers and foliage centered around a rose.

The inscription on this gravestone reads:

Eliza Wife of James Maxwell Died Nov. 2, 1858 Aged 32 year.  A loving wife to me most dear, A faithful comrade I parted here, Her days ith me was short but sweet, I hope with her in Heaven to meet.

Eliza was first interred in the Episcopal section of the State Street Burying Ground and brought to the Rural Cemetery in the general removal of remains and markers when the old graveyard was transformed into Washington Park.

There were several James Maxwells residing in Albany at the time of Eliza’s death.  One is listed in the city directories as a marbleworker residing at 40 Park Avenue.  It is quite possible that this was Eliza’s husband and that he carved this stone for her grave himself.

See other upright stones in the Church Grounds.

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Featured Gravestone – Martha J. Ross Tuger


Section:  Lutheran Ebenezer Church

Material:  White marble

Stone lies at the end of a row and at a slight angle to it.  Edges are partially embedded in the earth with usual darkening and some chipping.  Inscription is legible, though the first line of smaller text is somewhat faint.  Very stylized willow and urn motif.

Inscription:  To the memory of Martha J. Ross wife of John F. Tuger born in the city of Banbridge, County Down Ireland March 20, 1825 died April 3, 1850.  Frederick Richard their son died Aug 7 1850 aged 4 months & 14 days.

Martha’s husband, John F. Tuger, was a native of Germany who worked as a cabinetmaker in Massachusetts and Albany.  Following the death of his wife and son, John Tuger relocated to Michigan and, later, to St. Louis where he was later described as “one who stood high in the esteem of all, not only as a business man, but as an energetic, progressive citizen.”  He remarried while in Michigan; his second wife, Christina Wagner, was born in Bavaria.  By his second wife, he had three children. John F. Tuger died on November 4, 1900.

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Featured Gravestone – William Burdett Reed


Section:  St. Peter’s Episcopal

Material:  White marble

A worn marble stone with erosion to the inscription, particularly on the upper half.  The bottom has less staining as it was likely embedded in the earth for some time and only recently exposed.

Inscription:  In memory of Reed, William Burdett son of Samuel and Laura M. Reed who died Feb 6, 1831 aged 5 months and 16 daysOne only son what pleasure bright His joyful birth did give He’s gone his parents chief delight To moulder in the grave Yet let their troubled hearts be taught Their darling rests in peace With God who gave them happy thought And bids their anguish cease.

While this stone is difficult to read in person, enough of the epitaph is legible making it possible to identify this stone and the full inscription from the burial index card.  The father may have been  engaged in the plastering business in Albany;  the name Samuel Reed is signed to an advertisement in the Albany Evening Journal in 1832 offering a reward of six cents for information on a runaway apprentice.

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