Cemetery Walk honors War of 1812, Civil War

by CHRIS GRAY
Observer Staff Writer

A stroll through the Romeo Cemetery this weekend will take walkers on a trip back in time to shed local light on America’s second war of independence.
The Romeo Historical Society is hosting a Cemetery Walk to honor the bicentennial of the War of 1812. The self-guided tour will be held from 1-4 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 13, at the Romeo Cemetery.
Richard Beringer, curator of the Historical Society’s museums, said they were able to locate soldiers from both the War of 1812 and the Civil War buried in the local cemetery. He said the tour will help open people’s eyes to how significant Romeo was with both wars.
“People don’t realize how incredible Romeo was in its heyday,” he said. “What it really offers is an insight into what Romeo has contributed to southeastern Michigan.”
In-character graveside presentations will bring these stories to life for tour-goers. Beringer said most stories will be told from a first-person perspective, and people are invited to ask questions of them.
“It’s almost as if you are talking with this person about their life,” he said. “It’s actually an information exchange.”
One such performer is Joe Toth, who has done re-enactments for both the War of 1812 and the Civil War for 16 years and 41 years, respectively.
“I feel that history should be a living thing, and should never be over-looked,” he said. “We always learn from our past.”
Aiding the Romeo Historical Society is the Greater Washington Area Historical Society, both of which will discuss the historic significance of the war from a local perspective and share stories of people who shaped Romeo’s future.
Tickets for the event are $9 each, or $5 for members of either historical society. Tickets can be purchased in advance or the day of the event at Kane’s Town Hall Antiques at 205 N. Main Street.
In addition to history, tour-goers have the chance to pick up the Romeo Historical Society’s 2012 commemorative holiday ornament. The 14th installment of the collection is based on a historic home in Romeo.
The ornament can also be bought at Connelly’s Creations, Kane’s Town Hall Antiques, the Urban Merchant and the Romeo Arts and Archives Center.
For more information, call (586) 752-4111.

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