Ebby Thacher – Gravesite Volunteers

Ebby Thacher’s gravesite is not far from the CDCO Office. AA volunteers Gene R., Maria, John K., and Billy R. visited the gravesite on more than one occasion to adequately provide directions for potential visitors – and to clean up the area, cut grass, and remove weeds. They brought a lawn mower and garden tools along with them as well.

Summary from Gene R. on visits

Below is a summary of our experience with Ebby Thacher’s gravesite this past June.  We went back again within the next few days to see if anything had changed or needed updating. We were joined there by Bill R., a CDCO daytime Office Volunteer.

Over time in AA I had heard many things about Ebby T. Thacher.  I had heard that Bill W. called Ebby his sponsor, and that Ebby was buried in Albany Rural Cemetery.  It surprised me to learn that someone so local to the Albany area played such an important role in helping Bill W. get sober, thus having an instrumental part in the founding of AA. This led me to want to visit his burial place.  

According to this website: Findagrave, Ebby had been a social reformer as well as a schoolmate of Bill W’s. I had always found it interesting, too, that he was part of the affluent and well known family after which John Boyd Thacher State Park is named.

Ebby is buried at the Albany Rural Cemetery, Lot 24, Section 56.  Maria and I went looking for his site on a sunny day in June and found it, but with difficulty as we were dismayed to see all the overgrowth at his family’s plot (and in many other sections at Albany Rural Cemetery).  Although there is a tall obelisk with the Thacher family name on Lot 24, the individual family graves were practically covered over and were difficult to find.

Maria and I returned later June  with John K., this time bringing a lawn mower, a couple of weed whackers and different types of cutters/pruners. It took us about three hours to get the entire plot ship-shape.  We weed whacked around the base of all the markers and mowed the entire plot.  CDCO volunteer, Billy R., arrived and put some nice red geraniums in front of Ebby’s marker. Billy spray-painted a small marker on Middle Ridge road to show where to start the straight descent down

I found it rewarding to be there and hope to visit again soon.

IF YOU GO TO VISIT THE SITE,  Lot 24 is on an old carriage road that separates the lot from a deep ravine between Middle Ridge and South Ridge roads.   There are two approaches from Middle Ridge Road:

1)  Western Approach – Heading east and descending Middle Ridge road from the intersection with Linden Ave., look on your right for a grassy path just to the left of the Section 54 sign. This path leads down and curves the left into the old carriage road. [see attached photos]

2)  Eastern Approach – Heading west and ascending the road from near the crematory, look for a grassy path just to the right of the William L. Marcy obelisk.  This path will curve to the right and head down through some woods to the old carriage road. [see attached photos]

I made another visit to the Albany Rural Cemetery in October, and it looked like somebody may have mowed the grass in a wide swath leading down from the Middle Ridge Road to the Thacher plot. 

I’ve attached a photo with markup showing the edge of the mown area and the Thacher obelisk circled.  I’ve attached another photo looking down from Middle Ridge Road onto the Thacher plot taken from between the obelisks for Timothy Fassett and James Harris – the three obelisks are labeled.  So, someone more sure-footed might prefer to take a straight walk down the hill, rather than the western or eastern approaches I described previously, although all three approaches depart from Middle Ridge Road as a starting point. 

Gallery Of Gravesite Images by Gene R., CDCO Treasurer

Move mouse over image, or touch, for description

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