Saturday, August 2, 2014

Mama Sarah and Clary-Boy

This pretty marble monument on the South Ridge includes one of the more unusual epitaphs I've encountered in the Albany Rural Cemetery and one I didn't actually notice until I looked at the photo later.  The marble is in very good condition for its age, still fairly clean and its lettering still legible.  It is topped with a very simple draped urn and marks a lot belonging to the Parker and Britton families. 

The upper half inscription on the face shown above reads:  Sarah N. Parker wife of Winchester Britton Died November 15, 1854.  Aged 20 years And 22 days. 

The lower half read:  "I am coming to take you away, Clary-Boy"  "I do see, Mama Sarah.  I will come,"  January 29, 1857 Verified February 6, 1857 Clarence P. Britton Aged 2 years 10 mos. 8 dys.

Sarah Nelson Parker was the first wife of attorney Winchester Britton whose interesting obituary appeared in the Albany Evening Times on February 15, 1886.

After Sarah's early death, Winchester had married her sister Caroline (also buried here).  They had eleven children. 

The dialogue quoted on this side of the monument, though, seems right out of a sentimental novel or tract of the era with the spirit of the deceased mother calling to the young son that will soon join her in the family's cemetery plot and little "Clary-Boy" ((who was only nine months old when "Mama Sarah" died) responding to her summons.  It's not quite clear what the word "verified" means in this context or what the significance of the January date is.

1 comment:

  1. I'm guessing there was some kind of portent of Clarence's death on January 29, 1857 and the "verified" preceding his date of death meant the supposed prophecy was fulfilled by his death.