Sunday, February 24, 2013

The Meads Monument

This marble monument stands in the Meads family plot on the Middle Ridge, close to the Young double headstone and Erastus Palmer's monument for Lucia Olcott.

The monument consists of a urn enclosed within a marble canopy.  The cross which once topped the monument has fallen off and rests by the urn.  It marks the graves of several members of the family of Orlando Meads (a founding member and later president of the Albany Institute), most notably his son.

The inscription on the urn reads:

John Hun Meads Son of Orlando Meads Died Aug. 11, 1855 On Board The Steamer Pacific Aged 19 Years & 5 Months.  

There is also a inscription in Greek.   Near the base of the urn, is the notation "Buried In Albany" which hints that the urn may have been created first as a memorial to the young man and located elsewhere before being placed in the Cemetery.  His father, Orlando, served as president of the Albany Institute of History & Art. 

An inscription on the front of the monument bears the name of another John Meads who died  in 1870.  According to Henry Phelps' history of the Cemetery, John Meads was a great admirer of the Rural Cemetery who visited almost daily.  The Fitzgerald guide to the Cemetery describes him as "an old and respected citizen of Albany, who was conspicuous in many noble public charities."

1 comment:

  1. The Greek text is from I Corinthians 15:52 "the dead shall be raised incorruptible." I assumed that Meads died in a shipwreck, but the Pacific arrived in Baltimore on August 22, 1855 [Baltimore Sun 23 Aug 1855], so perhaps he was killed in an accident on board.