Historic Gilbertown Cemetery Tour Celebrates Easton 175th

New information kiosk, dedicated to Gary Haines, at Gilbertown Cemetery. — Frank Pagliaro Photo

Residents are invited to the Gilbertown Cemetery on Saturday, Oct 24 for a walk back in time as Easton continues its 175th-anniversary celebrations.

The day will begin at 10:30 a.m. with the Cemetery Committee dedicating its new information kiosk to its recently retired chairman, Gary Haines. The kiosk was built by Boy Scout Troop 66, led by Lucas Farmer, and installed on Sept. 19.

At 11 a.m., immediately following the ceremony, local historian Frank Pagliaro will give an historical tour of the cemetery and its gravestones. Established in 1768, the Gilbertown Cemetery is home to many notable locals, such as Revolutionary War hero Major Jabez Hill, and Samuel Staples, the benefactor of Staples Academy and the namesake of Samuel Staples Elementary school.

Pagliaro will speak about the history of the area with regard to the cemetery and how locals in the past handled death and burial practices. Guests will be shown notable graves, the evolution of the headstones over the centuries and the symbolism inherent in them.

“We’ll walk among the graves and point out stones that are interesting for what they reveal about the past, especially mortality,” Pagliaro said.

There are also many stones with memorial inscriptions that will be visited and read aloud. The tour is expected to last around half an hour to 45 minutes.

The Gilbertown Cemetery is located at 373 Black Rock road, and the event will have a limit of 20 participants due to Covid-19 social distancing regulations. If you are interested in participating, RSVP to the Easton Cemetery Committee in advance at eastonctcemetery@yahoo.com.

Masks are mandatory for all guests, and everyone should dress for the weather and wear shoes appropriate for the uneven terrain of the graveyard.