Fairhaven’s lovely Riverside Cemetery is the setting of an Office of Tourism walking tour on Sunday, May 20, 2018 at 2:00 p.m. It begins inside the cemetery’s entrance at 274 Main Street. Fairhaven tourism director Christopher Richard will act as guide.
The cemetery was created in 1850, on land donated by Warren Delano II, grandfather of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. It is considered to be one of the most beautiful rural-style burial grounds in the region.
The walking tour route traces the quiet winding paths past the final resting places of some of the town’s most famous residents, including the Delano family tomb designed by Richard Morris Hunt, the H.H. Rogers mausoleum designed by Charles Brigham, and the grave sites of Captain William H. Whitfield, artist William Bradford, William F. Nye, John I. Bryant, and others. At each site, the guide discusses some of the history connected with the people buried there.
Nature lovers will see a wide variety of trees such as beech, black tupelo, birch, holly, cherry, dogwood, weeping willow, ash, sugar maple and more. Those interested in tombstone art will find fine examples of monuments and early slate markers bearing carvings of angels, willow trees, urns and other traditional symbols.
The tour is free of charge and lasts about 90 minutes. There is no need for advance reservations. Walkers are urged to wear comfortable shoes and to be prepared for some hills and uneven ground. The tour will be cancelled in the event of rain. Parking is allowed on the roads inside the cemetery, however two or three car lengths must be left open directly inside the gate. There are no public restrooms in the cemetery.
For more information, call the Office of Tourism at 508-979-4085 (this is not the cemetery phone number) or email FairhavenTours@fairhaven-ma.gov.
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