Posted tagged ‘drummer boy’

Greenvale Cemetery Tour – Saturday, May 7th at 1:00 p.m.

May 4, 2011

Beautiful Greenvale Rural Cemetery sits beside the canal in the village of Fairport, New York.  On Saturday, May 7th, I’ll be conducting a tour of Greenvale to introduce residents to a few of the nearly forty Civil War soldiers buried here.  After the war, many of these veterans became leading members of Fairport society and of G.A.R. Post 211. 

The tour begins at the Gazebo in Kennelley Park at 1:00 p.m. where a member of the Fairport Museum will lead the way to Greenvale Cemetery.  Once the group arrives, I’ll get the tour underway beginning with the grave of Samuel Larwood of the 33rd New York Infantry.  We will weave our way through the cemetery and hear tales of cavalry troopers, infantry soldiers and a drummer boy before ending the tour at young Shadrick Benson’s final resting place.

This Illuminated History Greenvale Cemetery tour is held in conjunction with the Fairport Merchants Association and the Fairport Museum.  We hope you can join us!

Cemetery Vandalism – The Desecration of More Than Just a Headstone

August 21, 2009
Charles E. Moore, photo taken on August 20, 2009

Charles E. Moore, photo taken on August 20, 2009

Yesterday, I made my second visit to Greenvale Cemetery located in the village of Fairport, New York.  My previous visit had been on the third of June when I began my research into the Civil War soldiers of Perinton and Fairport.  As I wandered the well-manicured lawn, I noticed a headstone that had toppled over.  A closer look showed that the headstone belonged to Charles E. Moore, a Civil War soldier who had died in service.  Charles joined the 108th NY Volunteer Infantry as a drummer boy.  Less than one year later, Charles was dead of disease at the tender age of 16.

While I don’t know how Charles’ headstone ended up looking skyward, I can imagine the cause may have been vandalism, as there were 6-8 other headstones in the same vicinity which were lying on the ground.  The photo I took on my first visit to Greenvale confirmed that the headstone belonging to this young drummer boy had been upright just a few months before.

I’m not usually one to discuss my views and beliefs in public, but I must say that cemetery vandalism ranks near the top of my list of abhorrent behavior.  What difference does it make to the people of today if someone vandalizes a headstone belonging to a boy of yesterday, long dead and seemingly unremembered, when there is so much strife in today’s world?

The fact is that cemetery vandalism is the desecration of more than just a headstone.  Headstones serve as symbols of our loved ones.  They help us remember our dead.  Who has the right to determine that this boy doesn’t deserve to be remembered?  By knocking over his headstone, this vandal has tried to desecrate the identity which belongs solely to Charles E. Moore.  His headstone is the only way we have to remember him now. 

I’ve contacted the Village of Fairport to alert them of the issue in the hopes that they will be able to right the fallen headstones.  Luckily, the headstone belonging to Charles lies unbroken in the grass, and can once again be placed back on its proper pedestal.  I’ll update the status on the possible vandalism at Greenvale Cemetery as soon as I have more information.

Because Charles was a soldier, his death is all the more poignant to me.  He left his home to serve his country.  He died of illness before being allowed to experience life.  He mourned his fallen comrades in arms even as he himself was mourned just a short time later.  Charles earned his identity and, by his service, earned his military headstone.  Charles E. Moore deserves to be remembered, and I will ensure that he is.


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