Chester Fuller and dog aboard the ‘Chesperus,’ 1898
The poem above is written on the back of the photograph, and while it is a little cryptic (did Herbert W. Cobb take the picture from his own boat? is Chesper the name of Chester Fuller’s dog?), it lends a special air of mystery to another great dog portrait from the Local History Room Collections.
In April 2009, Town Meeting approved spending from the Elizabeth B. Sampson Memorial Fund for a number of projects, including one specific to this holiday weekend. Kingston’s Veterans Agent received $5,000 from the Sampson Fund for “memorial stones and flags at veteran’s graves in local cemeteries,” continuing local observance of a custom that dates back at least 140 years.
This photograph show the Kingston post of the G.A.R. — veterans of the Civil war and their sons — marching on Memorial Day. At the rear of the group, Lemuel Ford carries a bunch of small flags to be placed in the grave-marker or standards of the deceased comrades. The photo is undated but must have been taken no later than 1914, as Mr. Ford died in April of 1915.
The 2001 snapshot below shows the Civil War Soldiers Monument, which was placed on the Training Green and dedicated in 1883, with flags in place. Be sure to take a moment on Monday to remember the sacrifices of America’s veterans.
This month’s exhibit highlights photographs, programs and other documents from Kingston’s Memorial Day celebrations.
Originally called Decoration Day, the holiday originated during the Civil War and spread across the country by the end of the 19th century. After the First World War, Memorial Day expanded to honor the memory of all whose lives were sacrificed in war.
For more information on the history of this solemn holiday, look here and here. To see how Kingston has celebrated the day, stop by the Library!
Here’s a quick look at one of the first negatives I’ve scanned in the Local History Room. This is Emily Drew’s photograph of Elm Street at the Jones River. The Pumping Station is just out of the frame to the right side.
Elm Street Bridge, looking north, circa 1920
Meanwhile, somebody’s best friend is nosing around for a treat.
Detail, Elm Street Bridge, looking north, circa 1920