Thomas Hewson’s Mourner


This is a wonderfully detailed gravestone in the St. Peter’s Episcopal section of the Church Grounds.  The tympanum features an excellent example of a mourner similar to those described in this blog post.  The mourner wears a contemporary dress, complete with a bow tied at the back and what appears to be some sort of cap or bonnet.  In her hands, she holds an object which could be either a fan, handkerchief, a wreath or garland to be laid on the grave, or even some sort of purse or reticule.  The figure is shown leaning towards a monument, bowed under the weight of grief.  The monument depicted is an obelisk atop o a square pedestal (a common style in the early to mid-19th-century).  Both the mourner and the monument are positioned beneath the branches of a willow tree.

The bottom of the stone is broken and several small portions of the inscription are missing.  However, the epitaph was transcribed in the burial records.  The complete inscription reads:

Beneath this sod is interd the remains of Thomas E. Hewson who died Sept. 28th, 1818 in the 27th year of his age.

And are thou gone sweet friend ne’er to return To charm thease eyes and soothe this aching bre’st.  Must weeping friendship scatter oer thy urn Her tributary tears with grief opprest But heaven decread and heaven’s decree is just Thine earth should mingle with it’s native dust.



Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Burials In 1869

On September 15, 1869, the Albany Morning Express reported quite briefly that “Six hundred and eighteen bodies have been interred in the Albany Rural Cemetery from the 1st of April to the 13th of September, 1869.”

While the news brief does not specify, this may refer to bodies being removed from the State Street Burying Grounds to the Church Grounds lot.  Certainly, it would represent a good percentage of the remains to be transferred and these reported burials occur at a time when such exhumations and reburials would have very likely been underway as the Burying Grounds had closed and work had yet to begin on landscaping Washington Park.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Report of Interments, 1813


The clipping above from the Albany Argus in 1813 is a Report of Interments made during a typhus epidemic.  The burials were made in the various church-owned sections of the State Street Burying Grounds, as well as the Potters Field.  The causes of death include Consumption, Typhis, Old age, Pleuresy, and unspecified diseases.

Among those who passed away during the reporting period was Colonel Henry Quackenbush.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

The Chicago City Cemetery & Lincoln Park

Like Albany’s Washington Park, Chicago’s Lincoln Park was previously used as a large cemetery.  The site below is a fascinating look at a project exploring that history:

The Chicago City Cemetery & Lincoln Park


Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

The Rural Cemetery’s Annual Fund

If you are interested in supporting the Albany Rural Cemetery’s Annual Fund, please click the link below for a printable donation form.

Albany Rural Cemetery – Annual Fund

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Friends of the Evangelical Protestant Cemetery

If you’re interested in helping restore what is likely the oldest cemetery still existing within the city lines of Albany, please visit the new blog below:

Friends of the Evangelical Protestant Cemetery

Leave a comment

Filed under News, Uncategorized

Inscriptions From The Flatts


Below are the inscriptions from headstones at the Schuyler Flatts burial ground as compiled and published by Joel Munsell in 1874.  The stones were later removed to the Rural Cemetery and arranged in the rear of General Philip Schuyler’s memorial.  The inscriptions are now mostly illegible on all but a few of the stones.  Fortunately, Munsell’s transcription preserves the names, dates, and some fine examples of early American epitaphs.

In memory of
daughter of Cornelius
& Harriet Schuyler,
who died Oct. 9, 1828,
AE. 3 yr’s. 6 mo. 19 d’s

As sweet the flower that scents the morn,
But withers in the rising day,
Thus lovely was this infants dawn,
Thus swiftly fled its life away.

Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized