There are over 300 Civil War soldiers buried in Greenridge Cemetery. The statue that sits just inside the Mary Sackett memorial gates on Lincoln avenue faces North to pay homage to those in the North. In Southern states their statues face South for the same reason. I find out these tidbits of information by taking tours of our beloved city of Saratoga. This past Wednesday I took the Twilight tour of Greenridge Cemetery. It is presented by the Saratoga Springs Preservation Foundation and cost $10. The tour was led by SSPF’s Gloria May.
The theme of this tour at Greenridge was Madness, Murder, Untimely Deaths and Strange Coincidences. Greenridge Cemetery is known for its park-like atmosphere and it is also non-denominational, the stories are as varied as its residents.
The 77th Regiment in the Civil War were the soldiers who were from Saratoga Springs. Ms. May informed our group that the 77th Regiment was originally going to be the 44th Regiment, but they worked to have it changed to the 77th to commemorate the Battle of Saratoga fought in 1777. One of the soldiers, Luther Wheeler is said to have predicted his own death.
We also learned about Saratoga local Charles Dowd, the father of Standard Time. There is a statue honoring him on the Church Street side of the Adirondack Trust Bank. Railroads benefitted greatly from Standard Time. A strange turn of events was that Mr. Dowd was struck and killed by a train while walking home from a friends house on North Broadway.
Then there is the famous/infamous Walworth family. Frank Walworth had traveled to a New York City hotel and killed his father, Mansfield Walworth, for abusing his mother and sending her threatening letters. He then summoned the police and confessed to the murder of his father. He was sent to Sing Sing Prison and later Auburn prison. He was later pardoned and spent his last days at the Walworth’s Pine Grove Mansion (where Stewarts now sits today across from the City Center.)
This Saturday October 29, the Preservation Foundation will host its 6th annual Pints For Preservation Pub Crawl. The proceeds will benefit the Foundation’s preservation and restoration projects. Check in is at 2:30 p.m. at Druthers on Broadway and tickets are $35. The Saratoga Springs Preservation Foundation is committed to preserving and protecting Saratoga’s unique culture, history and architecture. For more information call (518)587-5030 or visit their website at saratogapreservation.org.