Eight years ago, I ventured into the little Fish House cemetery near my house. I noticed many small gravestones lying in the grass, discarded at the back. Alexander Dunn’s was one of them. This summer, the Fish House Presbyterian Cemetery became a project for me and for many wonderful volunteers. Four of the small discarded gravestones in the back were gravestones of boys ages two and under. I propped them up against a tree and called them my “lost boys”. Over the warm months, when not working on larger gravestones, or mowing, or planting perennials, I would venture to the back of the cemetery and dig, hoping to find foot stones that corresponded to the lost boys. I was successful for three of the four. Alexander Dunn’s was the last foot stone I found this summer. I wasn’t even looking, instead I was digging a rather deep hole looking for the bottom part of a fairly large gravestone in the next row up, instead I uncovered a foot stone. I was delighted! Now I knew where this lost boy belonged.
Alexander was born in the fall of 1837, he died on March 24th, 1840, at the age of two. His father was Ebenezer Dunn and his mother was Mary Lant Dunn. Both of Alexander’s parents were born and died in Greenwich, New York. I have no clue as to why this little grave sits here in Fish House. Ebenezer and Mary had two other sons, Charles, born in 1832 and George, born in 1841. In ancestry.com, there is no record for Alexander in the family trees, but with a father’s name of Ebenezer, it is almost a certainty, that George and Charles were Alexander’s brothers.
Alexander’s father, Ebenezer, was born in 1792 and fought in the War of 1812. He died in 1859 at the age of 67, his wife, Mary lived until the age of 85. They are both buried in the East Greenwich Cemetery.
Why was Alexander buried here? What connection does he have to Fish House? We will probably never know. I am just glad to have found his rightful place in the cemetery.
When fixing gravestones, I attempt to make sure that the whole engraving is visible. Alexander’s gravestone was a challenge as it was broken off right at the edge of the engraving. His gravestone has been sitting in our workshop for quite a while as I devised a plan. It involved epoxy and metal supports, and frames and mortar. Today was the day Alexander was returned to the cemetery. Knowing that my method worked, I have big plans for other gravestones next summer.