Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Recently Added to Names in Stone: Huntington Rural Cemetery, Huntington, New York

The Huntington Rural Cemetery in Huntington, New York was recently added to the Names in Stone website. It is located at 555 New York Avenue between New York Avenue and Oakwood Roads.

This cemetery has an interesting history. In the early 1800's, cemeteries in cities were running out of space. It was not uncommon to have bodies removed so that others could be buried! Thus began the rural cemetery movement. Early in the movement, cemeteries weren't just burial spots - they were used as parks as well! Huntington Rural was established in 1851, and apparently it was greatly needed....

From the Huntington Rural Cemetery website:

"In an editorial dated February 28, 1851, The Long-Islander urged the establishment of a new cemetery lamenting "We have almost fancied whilst passing the present burial place (the Old Burying Ground), and seen the bones of those who have been deposited there, sacrilegiously thrown out and exposed to make room for others, that we could hear a low murmur of reproach against those who 'permit such things' and witness an involuntary compression of those lying near, that they might escape the ruthless spade. Surely there should be peace in the possession of 'God's Acre.'"

From its beginning, the cemetery has admitted burials of all persons regardless of race, nationality, creed, or economic status, even before this was a common practice. Notable people buried at Huntington Rural:
  • Harry Chapin, popular singer and songwriter, who was killed in 1981 on the Long Island Expressway
  • 176 Civil War veterans
  • Abner Crossman, (memorial stone) soldier of the American Revolution
  • The Browns of Brown Brothers Pottery fame
  • Dr. Walter Lindsay, noted Civil War doctor
  • Samuel Ballton, African-American Civil War veteran and former slave, who died in 1917 - he was known as the "Pickle King" for his skill in growing cucumbers for the pickle industry.
Check out Huntington Rural Cemetery on Names in Stone. You might want to add a grave decoration on Harry Chapin's grave!

Click here to see a photo of his headstone - his epitaph is a quotation from his song, "I Wonder What Would Happen to this World" - 'Oh if a man tried to take his time on earth, and prove before he died, what one man's life could be worth, I wonder what would happen to this world.'

Here's Harry Chapin's grave on the map at Names in Stone.

1 comment:

  1. Does anyone know where Charles Kelsey is buried? I heard he (his lower half) was buried at Old Burial Hill but I couldn't find it. Is it possible that he's buried at Huntington Rural? Please advise...

    RE: Charled Kelsey was the victim of the brutal "Tar and Feather" incident that took place in Huntington in the 1870's...


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