Sunday, October 5, 2014

Spirits of Old Park Ridge Event October 2014

Location: Town of Maine Cemetery, Park Ridge, Illinois

Features: Guided tour of historic cemetery, October 4, 2014.

History: The Park Ridge Historical Society organizes this guided "spirit" tour of the Town of Maine Cemetery.  At the cemetery a tour guide will lead your party to the markers at the burial sites of notable local personages.  At each of these stations is an actor in period costume who will briefly relate the history and life of the person they are portraying.  This year featured a variety of people including several mayors of Park Ridge, a Major League ballplayer, early settlers, teachers, and entrepreneurs.  Of interest to the Military History Traveler was Colonel Thomas P. Robb, a prominent Illinois Civil War veteran and friend of U.S. Grant. Robb was responsible for formally introducing Grant to Illinois Governor Richard Yates, thereby starting Grant's Civil War career.  Also presented on the tour was Charles G. Sherwin, a young Civil War volunteer, who unfortunately succumbed to disease in 1861, the most common cause of fatality during the war.

Traveler's Notes: This is a fantastic concept for relating local history.  Even though it was our first blustery Fall day here in Park Ridge, the enthusiasm of the volunteer actors and staff, along with those who came to take the tour, was high.  It was very encouraging to see the use of memorials as educational points of "living" history.

Resources: Park Ridge Historical Society, Park Ridge Herald Article Reviews Event

George and Laura Penny, Brickyard Owner

Charles G. Sherwin, Civil War Soldier

Dr. Gustav and Mary Fricke, Town Doctor

Harriet Rand, First School Teacher


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