Final Resting Place

This is the final post in the series of photos that I took while I was visiting my Mom over the Memorial Day weekend. I saved what I think is the best for last — the final post will be focused on the historic final resting place for centuries of Albion residents.

Mount Albion Cemetery formally opened in 1843. It consists of over 100 acres and over 30,000 grave sites. The land that the cemetery sits on was formed by glaciers and remains in the natural landscape of picturesque rolling hills.

The cemetery is a source of great pride for the town of Albion and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. There are regularly scheduled walking tours through the cemetery for villagers and tourists and many frequently visit it to walk or just sit and enjoy the peaceful beauty. The paved roads through the hilly, shady landscape make for a great place to take a walk with the family, including the dog! There are benches throughout the cemetery for folks to sit and relax — including many that are placed there by family members so that they can sit while “visiting” their departed loved ones.

You may think it is bazaar to talk about going to the cemetery on a lovely afternoon or evening to take a walk or take in the tranquility — not usually the first place most people think of when they are looking for a place to spend some quality time. But, when you look over the following photos, you’ll see that it is so much more than just a cemetery!

The first thing visitors see as they enter the majestic gates is the chapel. It is made from Medina Sandstone and has some lovely stained glass windows. One of the windows is a tribute to a woman who had a significant influence in my life – Donna Rodden. Mrs. Rodden was one of my childhood friend’s mother, my scout leader, school librarian, drama coach, and also became Albion’s most beloved Mayor of all time! As Mayor, she did a ton of work to restore areas of Mt Albion that had gone into disrepair and to market it as a tourist attraction.

Here is where I will be put to rest when the time comes. My grandparents purchased four plots when my Mom’s brother was killed at 5 years old. Now, Laverne and my grandparents occupy three of the four plots. The fourth one was for my Mom, but at some point in the future (way into the future), she will now be buried a few stones down on the same street with my Dad. So – my Grandfather deeded the fourth plot to me! So, I have the peace of mind of knowing that I have a beautiful, shady spot up on a hill in Mt. Albion right next to my grandparents and just a short distance from my Mom and Poppy!!! My plot is in the first of the next two photos – just to the left of the stone where the floral pot is sitting. The second photo is where my Dad is now.

When full sized, the following two photos show off the attraction of just spending quality time in Mt. Albion. The first photo has a couple in the distance walking along the road. The second photo is of a lovely landscaped seating area with a picnic table.

The next photo is of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument Tower – constructed, again, of Medina Sandstone. It stands 68 feet on top of the highest point in the county and has 463 names of Orleans County Civil War casualties engraved in marble slabs. Visitors can climb the winding wrought iron staircase to reach the top of the tower and have an incredible unobstructed view for miles and miles in all directions!!

The next few photos are of the oldest sections surrounding the Soldiers and Sailors Monument Tower. The first is just across the lane from the entrance to the monument. The second is looking over the hill from the first photo. The third is a shot up the lane.

The next three photos are excellent examples of the many huge family mausoleums that stand throughout the cemetery. Some are free standing and some are “fronts” for mausoleums that are embedded into the hillside (as seen in the first photo).

All the following photos are just random shots showing all the different sections – I didn’t get one of the three separate military sections, but did get a nice mix of old and new sections showing the hilly areas and some of the flatter areas. They also show some of the incredibly impressive head stones and exquisite landscaping throughout the cemetery.Now — doesn’t browsing through these photos make you want to go take a leisurely walk and listen to the tranquillity and breathe in the history???? Be careful, though — some of the higher roads in the oldest sections are extremely narrow, steep, and deeply curved!! As I was driving my Mom’s car up around the tower to get some shots up there, we went just a little too far and couldn’t turn around. We were forced to take the old narrow roads back down to the bottom and it was SCARY!!!!

Oh, yeah — and one more photo — Albion has a large Catholic population that have a separate cemetery that is also very beautiful — although not as majestic as Mt. Albion. Here is the chapel that greets visitors to the Catholic Cemetery – constructed of (you guessed it) Medina Sandstone.

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