Thursday, October 15, 2015

Thursday Thirteen 392: Who's Who at Forest Hill Cemetery

In the autumn of 2014, I spent an afternoon at historic Forest Hill Cemetery here in Madison, but never got round to sharing some of the 200+ photos taken that day. I figured this October was a good time to finally do so.

Forest Hill predates the Civil War, and among its many features includes Soldiers Lot, where Union troops from the Civil War are buried, and Soldier's Rest, the northern-most Confederate Graveyard. You'll also see many familiar names while wandering amongst the graves. With many prominent and old families buried here, it is a veritable "who's who" of Madison. Here are a few of the more familiar names you'll find at Forest Hill.

Truax Field is a US Air National Guard filed near the Dane
County Regional Airport on Madison's north side. It was named
for Wisconsin-native Lieutenant Thomas L. Truax, who was
killed in a P-40 training accident in November 1941.

Named for Frank W. Hoyt, Hoyt Park is a former quarry and quiet
 little park on Madison's west side. I blogged about it here in 2007. 

John Myers Olin was the father of the Madison parks system. There were only 3-1/2
acres of parkland when he started, and 269 acres when he died. Olin Park bears his name.

Henry Turvill was a local farmer who sold part of his land for a site
where a spa/resort called the Water Cure was built. The site went
bankrupt after two years, and the property eventually returned to the
Turvills. An "e" was added to the end of the name around 1905. The
land came to the city in 1967, and was officially designated a
conservation park in 1998. Read more here.

James Doty was a member of the US House of Representatives, the
second governor of Wisconsin and fifth governor of Utah Territory.
He is responsible for Madison being chosen the state capitol, a city
that only existed on paper at the time. A street and parking ramp
 currently bear his name.

The memorial for Daniel Kent Tenney is one of the more ostentatious
monuments found at Forest Hill. Tenney was an attorney in Madison and
 Chicago who purchased land for a city park that now bears his name -- 
and is one of the best places to ice skate in winter, and a popular beach 
and place to fish in summer. The only lochs in the city are at this park.

Breese J Stevens was a Madison Mayor in the late 1800's, and was also
an entrepreneur, UW regent, and curator of the Wisconsin Historical Society.
Breese Stevens Field is named for him, which is on the National Register
of Historic Places and Wisconsin State Register of Historic Places. 

William H. Hamilton was a Lt. Colonel with the 36th Wisconsin
Volunteer Infantry during the Civil War, and later served as
Sergeant-at-Arms for the state senate. Hamilton Street bears his name.

The Fairchilds were a prominent family in the 1800's. Jairus Fairchild
was Madison's first mayor and father of Lucius and Cassius.
Lucius served in the Civil War, and was Wisconsin's first 3-term governor.
He also led the efforts to build the Wisconsin Historical Society. His brother
Cassius was a Colonel in the Civil War, an alderman, and a legislator.
He died ten days after he was married, when a war wound reopened while
serving as pall-bearer at a friend's funeral. His wife later remarried. 

John Lathrop was an educator and first president of the University
of Wisconsin. There is a street near campus named for him. The
columns of this monument are for his sons, and represents lives cut short.
His son Leopold died in Madison, and his son John in Mexico.

The Goodmen brothers were prominent jewelers and local philanthropists.
There is a baseball diamond, community center and a city pool name
after them. You can read more about them here

Charles H. Mills was a music professor of  the UW who revitalized
the program and created a four-year music degree. He also promoted
the Wisconsin Music Clinic, a summer program for which high
school students earn college credits, and designed pipe organs for
the Masonic Temple, Music Hall and two churches in the area.
There is a street and UW Music library named for him. 

I believe this obelisk for Vilas is the tallest and heaviest monument
at Forest Hill Cemetery. They had to lay train tracks to the cemetery in
order to transport it there. The Henry Vilas Zoo is named for the son of 
William F. and Anna M. Vilas, who donated 63-acres for the park in 1904.

LINKING TO: Thursday Thirteen


Lea said...

I like walking through old cemeteries. Very pleasant place to walk when the trees are showing their Autumn colors. I enjoyed your photos.

Heather said...

Thanks, Lea -- I love exploring this cemetery, especially in autumn when the leaves are showing off their color. Makes it more atmospheric. I have two more Cemetery T13 posts planned for this month, so I hope you'll come back for more pics. :)

Alice Audrey said...

This is great! I've got pictures of most of these, but had no idea what made each of them interesting.

200? Pft! That's nothing. ;)

CountryDew said...

What a lovely old cemetery. Thank you so much for sharing these.

Heather said...

Alice: Yes, over 200 in one day -- which I know is nothing compare to the thousands you take on your vacations. If I ever get the chance to travel again, I'm sure I'll be just as "bad" as you. :D

Heather said...

Thanks, Anita -- it really is a beautiful old cemetery. It was planned out as a pleasure park, so is quite scenic and a wonderful place to walk.

Shelley Munro said...

I find old cemeteries fascinating. I enjoyed the tour through this one.

colleen said...

Love the bench. The ball? We have an old tablet grave here that I also imagine is where Aslan was slain.

Jana said...

What a beautiful old cemetery! Glad you were finally able to share the photos. :)

Heather said...

Thanks, Shelley-- Glad you enjoyed part one of my autumn cemetery pics. More to come this week and next!

Colleen: The bench marker is one of my favorite. As Forest Hill was set up as a pleasure park, there are several benches -- both real and grave markers -- scattered throughout the cemetery.

Jana: Thanks, I'm glad I finally got the chance to share, too. :)