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Meeting of the lot owners held March 11th, 1895 / Lexington Cemetery. Lexington Cemetery Company. 400dpi TIFF G4 page images University of Kentucky, Electronic Information Access & Management Center Lexington, Kentucky 2002 b92-92-27695099 Electronic reproduction. 2002. (Beyond the shelf, serving historic Kentuckiana through virtual access (IMLS LG-03-02-0012-02) ; These pages may be freely searched and displayed. Permission must be received for subsequent distribution in print or electronically. Meeting of the lot owners held March 11th, 1895 / Lexington Cemetery. Lexington Cemetery Company. Transylvania Printing Co., Lexington, Ky. : 1895. 32 p. : ill., ports. ; 22 cm. Coleman "Lexington Cemetery organized 1849."--t.p. Microfilm. Atlanta, Ga. : SOLINET, 1993. 1 microfilm reel ; 35 mm. (SOLINET/ASERL Cooperative Microfilming Project (NEH PS-20317) ; SOL MN02936.10 KUK) Printing Master B92-92. IMLS This electronic text file was created by Optical Character Recognition (OCR). No corrections have been made to the OCR-ed text and no editing has been done to the content of the original document. Encoding has been done through an automated process using the recommendations for Level 1 of the TEI in Libraries Guidelines. Digital page images are linked to the text file. Lexington Cemetery (Lexington, Ky.) Cemeteries Kentucky Lexington. Lexington Cemetery This page in the original text is blank. This page in the original text is blank. THE CHAP'EL. LEXI NGTON CE1MO ET E1RY9 ORGANIZED 1849. MEETING OF THE MARCH LOT 1 1TH, OWNERS HELD 1895. LEXINGTON, KY.: TRANSYLVANIA PRINTING CO. 189s5. Lexington Cemetery. Chairman and Trustees. II. M. SKILLMAN, M. D., Chairmaii. Trustees. R. T. ANDERSON, E. P. SHELBY, J. S. WOOLFOLK, JOSEPH CLARK, JOHN ALLEN, M. P. LANCASTER. Brief History of the Cemetery. Lexington Cemetery was founded in 1849 after the city had been visited by cholera, and the necessity for a commodious repository of the dead was demonstrated by that plague. The following gentlemen subscribed in the aggregate 12,000, 7000 of which was invested in forty acres of land, the purchase being made of Thos. E. Boswell: MI T. Scott, Benj Gratz, S. Swift, Jolhn Tilford, A. T. Skillman, (T. W. Sutton, Joel Higgins, J. B. Tilford, D. M. Craig, Benj. \Varfield, E. Warfield, T. E. Boswell, M. C. Jolhnson, R. Higgins, R. Wickliffe, D. A. Sayre, E. K. Sayre, H. T. Duncan, J. Hemingway, Johr Lutz. A. F. Hawkins, R. J. Breckinridge, E. McAlister, J. M. Bush, John Brand. Lexington Cemetery. Preliminary fleetings. LEXNGTON, January 23, 1849. At an accidental meeting of those anxious to estab- lish a cemetery, were present M. T. Scott, Benj. Gratz, Madison C. Johnson and Richard Higgins; where- upon it was resolved that M. C. Johnson draw up a subscription paper, and that each one named use every exertion to procure subscribers. The followingis a copy of said paper. The subscribers each agree to pay to the Lexington Cemetery Company the sums annexed to our names, for the purpose of purchasing the site of the cemetery and of enclosing and laying out the same, the land to be vested in said corporation, and the sums by us paid to be reimbursed to us, with interest, from the sales of lots as provided in the charter. No subscription less than five hundred dollars. Nor is this subscription to be binding until the sum of ten thousand dollars is subscribed. The amounts to be paid as the same shall become necessary for the payment of the land, and for enclosing and lay- ing it out, at the call of the corporation, and shall not exceed fifty per cent. in any one year. In pursuance of the above the subscribers met at the office of M. C. Johnson oln January 27th, 1849. A commit- tee was appointed to select a location for the cemetery and the present site, containing forty acres, was purchased LEXINGTON CEMETERY. from Thos. E. Boswell, for which the sum of seven thous- and dollars was paid. On March 15th, 1849, at a meet- ing of the Board of Trustees, Mr. Abraham T. Skillman was unanimously elected President, Richard Higgins was elected Secretary, and M. T. Scott was elected Treasurer. On July 11, 1849, the price of lots was fixed at 10 cents per square foot, at which price a great many lots were sold, but in a few days the price was advanced to 15 cents per square foot. On the 1st of April Mr. C. S. Bell was chosen Superintendent, who has been with the Company ever since, except one year. Dedication. On the 25th of June, 1850, the cemetery was dedicated with imposing ceremonies. The business houses of the city were closed and an immense procession, composed of the Masonic Order, Odd Fellows, Sons of Temperance, Societies of Transylvaniac University and citizens in car- riages and on foot proceeded to the cemetery. An open- ing prayer by Rev. Dr. Miller, of the Methodist Church, was followed by an ode composed by Prof. R. S. Ruter, of Transylvania University and concluded with this stanza O' thou God, ouv Friend and Father, May the names these gravestones bear, When we all shall rise together. In thy 5ook of Life appear. The dedication sermon was delivered by Rev. Dr. R. J. Breckinridge, pastor of the First Presbyterian Church, and the closing prayer wias delivered by Rev. E. F. Berk- ley, Rector of Christ Episcopal Church. 7 LEXINGTON CEMETERY. On thle 29th of November, 1858, E. D. Sayre was elected Secretary and Treasurer to succeed J. C. Butler, who moved to St. Louis, and he has served continuously ever since without compensation. On Oct. 15, 1858, five acres and three-quarters of ground were purchased fromn Payne's heirs, a3nd March 11, 186S3, thirteen and one-quarter acres were pur- chased from D. T. Adams. In May, 1883, the Sommer- ville property of four and one-eighth acres was purchased for quarry purposes, and the last purchase was the Lee place of which the cemetery retained fifty-two acres, making the whole real estate owned by the cemetery about 110 acres at this time (April, 1893). In March, 1867, Major Madison C. Johnson was elected President, and lie served continuously till his death in December, 1886. The Clay Monument. In 1857 the cemetery company deeded for and in con- sideration of one dollar, to the Clay Monument Associa- tion, the beautiful lot on which the monument is built. It was erected at a cost of 34,263, and on the 4tl of July the same year, it was dedicated with imposing ceremonies, a great many distinguished men from all over the coun- try being present. The Chapel. In 1890 it was thought advisable to build a chapel, waiting rooms, and office at the entrance to the cemetery and the beautiful structure that now adorns the grounds was erected at a cost of about 15,000, and it is found ex- ceedingly useful as well as ornamental. 8 A. T. SKILLMAN. Lots Donated by the Cemetery Company. A lot was donated for the burial of Union soldiers who died in the hospitals of the city. The United States Government afterwards purchased an addition to said lot to disinter the remains of soldiers buried in the adjoining counties and have them buried in this lot. The addition to lot was purchased oln the first day of July, 1867. Confederate Lot. This lot was donated for the burial of Confederate dead in 1862, and the Confederate Veteran Association, on February 2d, 1892, purchased an addition to it, so as to make it large enough to bury any one who had been in the Confederate army who desired to be buried in said lot. Since then they have erected a imonutuent onl the portion purchased with all the names of these buried in the lot, on the monument. White Protestant Churches. Lots were donated to the white Protestant churches in the city to bury their poor members and their fain- ilies. Beautiful lots have been laid off in the western portion of the cemetery for that purpose. Spinoza Society. The Spinioza Society, a corporation chartered by the General Assembly of the State of Kentucky. The ct metery company sold to said society on the sec- ond day of' December 1894, section E. 1, to be used exclusively as the burial ground of' persons of the Hebrew faith, with the same privileges that are guaran- teed to other lot owners by the charter of the Cemetery. Meeting of Lot Owners. In answer to the following call a large and represent- ative meeting of the lot owners in the cemetery met in the Circuit Court room of the court-house on Monday, March 11th, 1895. WHEREAS, We, the lot owners and the only stockhold- ers of the Lexington Cemetery, have seen with indigna- tion,,the recent base effort to defame and bring into dis- repute the Chairman and Trustees of the cemetery, who are substantial and honorable gentlemen, and who have served us for many years without compensation andwith a fidelity and efficiency seldom witnessed; therefore we call a meeting of lot owners of said cemetery, to be held in the court-house in Lexington, on Monday, March 11, county court day, at 2 o'clock P. NI., to give expression to our confidence in said Chairman and Trustees, and to express our indignation at thre aspersions that have been cast on their characters. On motion of Dr. L. B. Todd, the venerable Judge R. A. Buckner wvas chosen to preside and Mr. W. L. Threl- keld was elected secretary. Judge Buckner, after the reading of the call, with great earnestness and emotion, spoke as follows Judge R. A. Buckner's Remarks. Gmntlemen, the object or purpose of this meeting is disclosed by the petition for the calling of the meeting, which has just been read by the secretary. You will perceive that the name of no officer of the corporation is attached to it It was called at the desire of the lot own- LEXINGTON CEMETERY. ers of the Lexington Cemetery to refute the slanderous and uncalled for charges made and published in newspa- pers of this and another State. Therefore whatever may be your action, it cannot be imputed to the procurement or solicitation of any officer of the body ; it was the vol- untary act of lot owners conscious of the purity and integ- rity of their trustees, to remove a stain attempted to be put upon their character by two anonymous letters sent from this place to two widely circulating papers; one in the city of Louisville and the other in Cincinnati. I do not believe that these charges were maliciously made, but were caused by a desire to furnish those two papers with sensational news; and the publication of such accu- sations, without due investigation as to the truth of the same, is scarcely less excusable than if maliciously done. It will be remembered by all of you then. living that in 1848 the cemeteries of Lexington, for want of curators and sufficient means to keep them in repair, had fallen into ruin, being but waste places for straying cattle, and a resort for dissipation, covered by the shadows of night. A number of wealthy and plhlilantl)Iopic gentlemen deter- mined to remove this stain, if possible, from the escutch- ,eon of Lexington, formed a society consisting of twenty- five gentlemen, each of whom subscribed and paid five hundred dollars to found and build up a cemetery and park, having within itself the means through an ever living body of curators to preserve and perpetuate it. These gentlemen obtained an act chartering them as a body corporate, under name and style of Lexington Cemetery Company, and empowering them to create a Chairman and Board of Trustees and such other officers as might be necessary; and to buy land not exceeding two hundred acres, to be used as a cemetery, and to lay out the same in lots and to sell them; the proceeds of which sales, after the payment of the pur- 12 MADISON C. JOHNSON. LEXINTON CEMETERY. chase price of the land, and the refunding to the subscrib- ers of the money advanced, was ever to be applied to the ornamentation and the improvement of the lands. Having obtained such a charter they soon organized by electing a President and Board of Directors and Treasurer, and completed the purchase of forty acres of beautiful undulating land, adjoining the west of the city of Lexington, covered by a rich and varied native forest. They then employed as superintendent that well known and splendid landscape gardener, Mr. Bell, who laid out the grounds in broad, serpentine carriage drives and walks, and into lots or unequal size; the company fixing the price of the lots so low as to put them within easy reach of the most limited means. There was a large immediate demand for the lots and by their sale the company soon found itself in possession of ample funds to pay for improving and beautifying their already lovely grounds. The boundaries of the cemetery were from time to time en- larged, the improvements and the many adornments keep- ing pace with these advances. This cemetery now contains within its boundaries one hundred and six acres; and the funds of the company, over and above what has been expended for the necessary improvements and keeping in repairthe grounds!, were by the Treasurer, Mr. E. D. Sayre, put at interest, and by his skill and faithful management ,exceed eighty thousand dollars, which is securely in- vested, and the interest of which is applied to the pay- ment of the salaries of the superintendent and the work- men employed to do the manual labor, while the residue is reserved as a fund for keeping up the repairs of the grounds and extending its boundaries in the future, as the neccessities of our growing population will certainly ,demand. A. T. Skillman was elected the first Chairman, and M. 14 LEXINGTON CEMETERY. T. Scott, Cashier of the Northern Bank, its first Treasurer. Upon the death of Mr. Sayre, the present banker, Mr. E. D. Sayre, was elected Treasurer, and has continued in that position up to this time. Upon the death of Mr. Skillman, Richard Higgins was elected his successor, and at his death Madison C. Johnson. was chosen to succeed him. D. D. Bell was President for a short time and then Dr. H. M. Skillman, who is now the President. The cemetery is now a thing of beauty, and under the artistic and beautiful work of its able superintendent, Mr. Bell, it blooms and blossoms as beautiful as the garden of Hesperides. There has been no call for out- side aid upon the part of the management. The original founders and their successors have been engaged in this work for more than forty-five years without demanding and without receiving one cent for their time and their labor. These gentlemen, as well as the superintendent, deserve the profoundest gratitude from the citizens of Lexington. Of these original founders all are dead but one, and they lie sleeping quietly in the house of their own build- ing, guarded, as are the graves of their associate dead, by watchful sentinels against the trespasses of man and beast. They are not only entitled to our gratitude, but they deserve a monument; yet they need no monument of marble or brass, for, if they were here, they could truthfully say with the old Roman poet, "we have erected a monument to ourselves more enduring than brass which time cannot destroy." The first object which meets one upon entry to the cemetery grounds is a handsome temple built of Ken- tucky stone, part of which is used as an office for the superintendent and the balance as a chapel for the performance of the ceremonies usual before the burial of 16 6LEXINGTON CEMETERY. a body If immediate interment of the lead is not desired, one descends by a broad serpentine carriage drive to the bottom of a sloping vale, "a dimple in the cheek of nature," where one finds a spacious, well lighted and secure vault, in whicb the body is kept until the immediate family and particular friends, freed from the presence of unsympathizing persons, deposit it in its grave, sanctifying the spot by tears of love, there to remain secure from spoliation until the resurrection. This cemetery is suggestive of thoughts worthy of preservation. One cannot ramble through its grounds, seeing here the grave of an infant, there that of a boy then the grave of a young girl, who has died in the May day of life, and again that of the mature man, who, in his fullness and vigor, had been snatched away while laboring for wife and children ; then the grave of the octogenarian, who having long fought the battle of life, falls at last a victim at the feet of his mortal enemy-the King of Terrors-without feeling that" in the midst of life we are in death, " and that all, from the youngest to the oldest, stand on the crumbling brink of the dark stream whose nether shore has no light to dispel its gloom but the star of Bethlehem, which alone sheds any light on the ultimate destiny of the generations after generations which have floated down the stream of lite into the dark gulf where mortality is swallowed in death. But we have learned that life has conquered death, and although we die, we shall live again. It is a pleasant thought to those whose friends and dear ones lie buried in that beautiful City of the Dead, to know that when their spiritualized bodies arise from the tomb, leaving behind them the cerements of the grave, they shall arise to renewed and immortal life amid scenes of such earthly beauty-foreground of the Elysian fields. The lessons taught by this cemetery are instructive. 16 c. S. HELL, Sr. LEXINGTON CEMETERY. Here you may see a group of persons assembled at the foot of the tomb of a distinguished statesman or hero, thinking less of the virtues of the hero than of the beauty of the monument; a little further on you may see a mother bending over the grave of her infant in silent prayer and deep meditation, remembering with gladness, even in her sorrow, a smile, the impression of an angel's kiss upon those frozen lips. We do not read in Holy Writ of any promise to tho distinguished statesman or hero as such, and we know that the marble column will crumnl)e and mingle its dust with that of the hero or statesman who lies buried at its base. Turning to the grave of the infant we remember "of such is the Kingdom of Heaven," and read in the smile upon its frozen lips the sell of its new born birthright to a home in Heaven. Viewing these in contrast we can but reflect of how little value are even the successes of earthly ambition and how false is the light on glory's plumb. As a park the cemetery is beautiful and of great value. On a warm summer evening you may find its carriage drives and winding pathways crowded with visitors; many of whom come to hold sweet communion with their dead ; others to bask in the declining rays of the sun, softened as they creep through the green foliage over head, and to enjoy the soft western breezes as they come to theem, bearing the rich odors of shrub, grass and flower. No ribald jest or course conduct is heard or seen to offend the ears or eyes of the worshipers at the tomb. Others are rambling through the grounds, renewing their mem- ory of the dead by reading the names and epitaphs in- scribed upon their tombs-sweet remembrance to those who knew them in life and a revelation to the young. It is thus a record (though a partial one) of the past and a diary of the present, as scarcely a day passes that 18 LEXINGTON CEMETERY. the arrival of some new resident of the City of the Dead is not recorded. By the Constitutioi of 1892, as we are aware, all cor- porations are required to make annual reports of their condition to their stockholders. The body corporate of the Lexington Cemetery Company is not a monied cor- poration. It does not as a coIpoiration declare dividends; nor are the trustees, nor those interested in its manage- ment, nor officers of any kind, nor anyone entitled to a dollar of profits accruing from the sale of lots, nor to any profits accruing in any other manner. Therefore, the failure by the trustees to make the annual reports of the condition of the corporation cannot by any means be called a laxity of duty, nor a failure to do what, by law, is required of the monied corporations. Their failure to do so was perhaps a, mere oversight; or perhaps from a misconception of their duty. It surely did not result from any deiire to conceal the condition of the institution under their management, for the report now made in- stead of disclosing anything, which it might be desired to conceal, exhibits a most flourishing condition of the cemetery and park, and shows a prosperity that reflects the greatest credit upon its able management. The property and its funds are held as a sacred trust for the dead, and the profits, as well as all donations, are required by the charter to be-; ever applied to the orna- mentation of the grounds. The reserve fund is necessary for the preservation of the cemetery. It is, indeed, its life blood and is as necessary for its perpetuation as the blood of our body is for the preservation of its health. If it be weakened or so impaired as to destroy its vitalizing power the cemetery wvill begin to decay and soon perish; but if it is exempted from the exactions of an ever in- creasing taxation it will live as long as Lexington stands, a monument to the philanthropy and wisdom of its found- 19 LEXINGTON CEMETERY. ers, the pride of Lexington and an assurance to coming generations of the Civilization and refinement of the peo- ple who founded and had so long preserved it in its primal beauty from the wreck of time. When Judge Buckner had concluded his remarks, Judge J. D. Hunt, attorney for the company, made the following report of the assets of the corporation: Report of the Trustees of the L.exington Cemetery Company. The Board of Trustees of the Lexington Cemetery Company makes this report to the lot owners of the assets and liabilities of said company. The real estate of said company consists of about 110 acres of land, including the lots sold to lot owners. Its personal assets are as followss: Cash on band. ................................ 4796 32 Mortgage Notes 4...................36.284 80 U. S and other Bonds, -face value. 33,600 00 BankStocks........... .... ! . ...... 8,100 00 Total personal assets ..8............... 282,681 12 There are no liabilities except the current expenses for superinteiidence, labor, etc., vwhich are paid monthly. None of the property of the company has ever been listed for taxation, for the reason that the board did not, and do not, believe it tQ be subject to taxation. It is also believed that the assets above mentioned are per- fectly good, and, if necessary, could be reduced to cash within a few days for their full value. The charter of the cemetery company imposes on the trustees the duty to husband the resources of the com- pany, and to provide a fund devoted to the ornamenta- tion and care of the cemetery grounds and burial lots. The necessity of this is plain enough, unless we are willing that our cemetery shall fall into the same state 20 E. D. ,A YRE . LEXINGTON CEMETERY. of desolation that has come to most, if not all, of the old burying grounds about Lexington. Even now nearly all the lots in the old parts of the ground are sold, but the necessity and expense of caring for themn is vastly increased. This care is equally bestowed on the graves of all, without any distinction whatever. For the five years last past the sale of lots and the grave fees for the whole cemetery would not have paid the necessary ex- penses, unless supplemented by the income derived from investments. The time must inevitably come when all the ordinary sources of income to the company must be cut off, and unless a fund is now accumulated, the burial place of our dead must fall into neglect. We also take occasion to say here that the prices charged by this com- pany for burial lots is considerably less than is generally charged by si.milar irnstitutions. A few years since it became apparent that an enlarge- ment of the cemetery was imperatively necessary. Not being able to purchase the exat quantity of land required the trustees bought from Mr. Lee his farm adjoining, containing about one hundred and six (106) acres for the price of 40,000. One-half of this purchase is retained as a necessary addition to the cemetery grounds. The other half, not being now needed and not suitable, was sold by the trustees for the samne price they had paid for the entire tract. They have also within the last few years sold about four other acres of land not needed by the company at the price of 6,600. Trley have like- wise in the last three years made permanent improve- ments, including a beautiful chapel and office mnd other buildings at an expense of more than thirty thousand dollars (130,000). In these and other transactions the interests of the cemetery company have been guarded by the officers of the company to the best of their judgment, without com- 22 LEXINGTON CEMETERY. mission or expenses to any agent. None of the officers have ever received any compensation for any service ren- dered, nor has any one of them borkowed or had the use of any of the funds of the company. They have had the grounds well cared for, and as they deemed it to be their duty, after reserving sufficient cash on hand to meet current expenses, they have kept the remaining money of the company well and safely invested. By order of the Board. Respectfully submitted. Governor M. C. Alford offered the following resolu- tions which were read by the secretary: WHEREAS, We, the lot owners and only stockholders of the Lexington Cemetery Company in called meeting assembled, have seen with indignation attacks made upon the management of the cemetery through the press, of a false and slanderous nature ; and WHEREAS, The said management has done everything possible to preserve, extend and beautify the grounds of the cemetery, and have made it one of the most attract- ive cemeteries in America, affording perfect security to the ashes of our loved ones deposited in its keeping and lovely surroundings for those who visit this sacred spot; and WHEREAS, Not a cent has ever beeen paid to the pres- ent directors or their predecessors for the care and man- agement, so intelligently and efficiently employed in behalf of the interest of the company; therefore be it Resolhed, That the chairman, management and treas. urer of the said cemetery company deserve, and are hereby tendered the thanks of the lot owners for their perfect faithfulness and efficiency in the management of the pecuniary and other interests of this company. 23 4LEXIN(GTON CEMETERY. Resolved, That we have every confidence in the integ- rity, efficiency and perfect faithfulness of the present management, and recommend them for re-election to their present position whenever it shall be necessary to select a new Board. Resolved, That we tender our thanks to Mr. Charles S. Bell, who has been superintendent of the cemetery from its inception and for more than forty-five years to the pres- ent time, and whose fidelity taste and skill as a landscape gardener, h tve transformed a plain woodland pasture into one of the most beautiful spots on earth, where the ashes of our dead repose in security amid the loveliest surroundings. Resolved, That we have heard read the official state- ment of the financial condition of the company with great satisfaction and pleasure. Resolved, That this preamble and resolutions be pub- lished in the newspapers, and the Secretary of the Board of Managers be requested to spread them upon the official books of the cemetery company. Resolved, That the Board of Managers cause to be printed, in neat pamphlet form, the proceedings of this meeting sufficient to supply each lot owner with a copy. Lieut.-Gov. M. C. Alford's Speech. Mr. Chairntan : I rise, sir, for the purpose of moving the adoption of the resolutions. This voluntary meeting of those who are the lot owners in Lexington's beautiful City of the Dead, each one of whom has, perhaps, already committed all that remained of some loved one to the silent gravo within its portals, is a spontaneous tribute to the wisdom and fidelity of those 24 THE CLAY NIONUMENT. LEXINGTON CEMETERY. who have had the management of its financial affairs, and the care and control of its physical condition. The report of the treasurer, just read, shows the gratifying state of the one, while a visit within its gates eloquently attests the satisfactory condition of the other. The adverse public criticism of a quasi-public service gratuitously rendered, if untfounded in fact, cannot be too strongly condemned, and the zeal of disapprobation cannot be more forcefully put upon it than by the con- certed action of the quasi-constituency, expressive of renewed confidence and trust. Every citizen is alike amenable to the law, and he who is slowest to violate is last to claim immunity from it. No member of the Board of Trustees of the Lexington Cemetery Company claims to stand higher than the law; but, Mr. Chairman, in every community there are some men whose character and standing become a part of the public honor, whose unimpeachable integrity becomes a matter of public pride. Such men, perhaps, may acci- dently fall into technical error, but they always stand acquit at the bar of public opinion, the highest tribunal that sits in judgment. As the facts connected with the management of the Lexington Cemetery really exist, the roster of its Board of Managers is a roll of honor. Their honest, earnest and unselfish efforts have brought about splendid results, and we, Mr. Chairman, each of whom owns and cherishes a small spot of ground within that sacred enclosure, have met together to unite in an expression of the sincerest appreciation of the unbought services rendered by those who have been in control, and to avow our unaltered confidence in that management. I desire to move the adoption of the resolutions, Mr. Chairman. On seconding the adoption of the resolutions Mr. H. H. Gratz spoke as follows: 26 LEXINGTON CEMETERY. Mr. Chairman: In seconding the adoption of these resolutions I hope I may be excused if I make a few remarks pertinent to the subject. I am old enough sir, to remember the time when the cemetery company was organized and the reason that impelled those wise and good men to form the association of which we are the heirs and beneficia- ries. Every family in the county had its grave yard, and over this towI1 were scattered burying grounds of small extent, upon which little or no care was bestowed. The old city burying ground on the hill and the Baptist bury- ing ground on Short street, where a stately church now stands, had been abandoned as places of interment, and both were overgrown with unsightly weeds, and were the resort of all abominations. Sanitary science had recently pronounced its anathema upon burying grounds in cities as inimical to the health of the living, and as Lexington had recently passed through a season of plague from chol- era a score or more of prudent and public spirited citi- zens determined to establish a cemetery far enough re- moved from the city so as not to endanger the lives of the living, and where the remains of their loved ones could repose in peace and be undisturbed for all time to come. I will repeat the names of those men, to whom we are indebted for an inheritance more precious than fine gold and more valuable than lands and hereditaments. M. T. Scott, M. C. Johnson, Benj. Gratz, R. Higgins, S. Swift, R. Wickliffe, John Tilford, D. A. Sayre, A. T. Skillmnan, E. K. Sayre, G. W. Sutton, H. T. Duncan, Joel Higgins, J. Hemingway, J. B. Tilford, John Lutz, 27 LEXING(,TOIN CEMETERY. D. M. Craig, A. F. Hawkins, Benj. Warfield, R. J. Breckinridge, E. Warfield, E. McAlister, T. E. Boswell, J. M. Bush, John Brand. You, Mr. Chairman, and many others present, doubt- less recognize in these names the very flower of the solid citizenship of Lexington and vicinity, and if they could have lived, as we have lived, to see the work of their hands, they would have been abundantly satisfied, as we are and should be. They not only established a cemetery, but they inaug- urated a policy for its care and preservation, which their successors have faithfully followed, that has insured to us one of the most beautiful and beautifully kept reposi- tories of the dead that any community in this broad land can boast. Not the humblest grave has been neglected, but every mound that marks the resting place of some one's loved one, has received the assiduous attention of the vigilant guardian who, for two score years and more, has kept ward and watch over this sacred spot. Not only this, but for all this care and watchfulness not one dollar has it cast the lot owners. Survivors have gone to dis- tant cities and far off countries and remained for years, leaving not a relative behind except those that reposed in this city of the dead, and when they have come again, they have found the mounds which mark the spot where repose the remains of their loved ones as tenderly cared for as if loving hands had visited them but yesterday. I have seen most of the notable cemeteries in this country. I have gone into Mt. Auburn 4 Bqston,-where repose the remains- of the descendants of those stern old Puritans who braved the storms of the Atlantic and the tomahawks of savage Indians for freedom to worship THE CONFEDERATE LOT. LEXINGTON CEMETERY. their God-and all was lovely. I have stood in beautiful Greenwood, where the "stately ships go by," and heard the roarof the ocean surf at Rockaway as it beat per- petual requiem for the dead by whom I was surrounded. Here are erected mausoleums over dead millionaires, compared with which the tombs of princes are but un- sightly handiwork-and all was lovely. I have been to Laurel Hill, where repose the remains of the gentle sons of the City of Brotherly Love, and where stands Old Mortality to greet the visitor as he enters those hallowed precincts-and all was beautiful. Not many years ago I stood at the Golden Gate, where repose the remains of the adventurous pioneers of the gold fields of California. Here is heard the ceaseless roar of sea lions as they scramble upon the rocks for repose from the perpetual turbulence of the ocean, which is their element. Here is heard the scream of the eagle as she rises from the waves and bears her prey in her clutched talons, to her young in their eyrie on the mountain peak. Neither the lion's roar nor the eagle's scream disurbs the sleep of those who lie around-and all was beautiful. In all these abodes of death, art and wealth and sorrow had ex- hausted themselves to cannonize the dead and to give expression to tenderness and regret. But for graceful curve of hill and dale that are the very poetry of land- scape; for stately forest trees under whose spreading branches the lurking savage may have waited for his victim, or possibly Daniel Boone or Harrod. may at noonday, have reposed for refreshment, after a weary chase of the stag or the buffalo; for modest monuments that give expression rather to broken hearts and sorrow than to ostentation and vanity; for that marvelous turf which neither requires fertilization nor irrigation to in- sure perennial green but above all and beyond all for that unceasing care and vigilance that knows neither so LEXINGTON CEMETERY. sleep, nor slumber, and for whose security and perpetuity no appropriation or subscription ever has been or ever will be demanded or accepted, Lexington Cemetery has no peer. It is a perfect work in itself and beyond all praise, for the praise for its establishment is due to those who have gone before, and praises would but fall upon ears that are mouldering in the grave. To the living men, their successors, we accord all honor and every meed of thankfulness and praise, and these resolutions give that expression. But it is not only the lot owners and the buried dead that are the beneficiaries of this magnificent heritage. To the city and to the citizens of Lexington it has been what Boston Common is to Boston City and what Cen- tral Park is to New York-a resort where the old and the young, the sick and the feeble, young men and maid- ens find air and exercise atid grateful shade. Here are to be found recreation and enjoyment, chastened by the solemnities of the surroundings; and visitors can and often do, learn lessons more impressive and as valuable as preacher or teacher ever inculcated. For these privi- leges and enjoyments the city of Lexington and its people do not pay and have not paid one cent, but are indebted to the good men whose names I have mentioned, and alas! all of whom have fallen by the wayside and repose in the hallowed spot they procured for us-save one, and he is far away in a distant State, and in the nature of things, must soon join his honored associates. If the gates of this lovely park were closed, and the public ex- cluded from the enjoyments and recreations which it has furnished for well nigh on to half a century, half a mil- lion of dollars could not replace it to the citizens of Lex- ington. But such a calamity as this, thank God, cannot befall us, or can only come when we are unfaithful to our honored ancestors to whose care and providence we 31 32 LEXINGTON CENIETERY. are indebted for this priceless legacy, unfaithful to the honorable gentlemen, their successors, who for many years have given watchful guardianship without money and without price to preserve, to extend, to beautify, and to perpetuate, the lovely place in which they and we must soon find sepulchre.