Sunday, May 6, 2012

Angels & Iron - The Packard Lot

This little angel is found in the Packard family lot on the South Ridge, not far from President Arthur, Wooster's Hope, and the Dalton columbarium.  Its features are somewhat blurred by exposure to the elements, but unlike many such figures, it is unbroken. 

The lot is enclosed  by a lovely Gothic iron fence, broken in many spots, but still reasonably intact in others.  There is a fine gate flanked by finials in the shaped of draped and flaming urns.  Another urn crowns the gate itself which bears the name Chester Packard and the date 1866.

I've found a few references to Chester Packard.  In 1821, a periodical called The Ploughman carried a notice listing people who had unclaimed letters waiting at the Post Office and the name Chester Packard appears.  Also, his widow, Mrs. Chester Packard appears to have taken an active interest in spiritualism and seances as she gave a detailed account of a "sitting" in which the spirits of her departed son, husband, and mother appeared!  Her experience was published in an 1871 book, The Proof Palpable of Immortality, Being An Account of The Phenomena of Modern Spiritualism by Epes Sargent.

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