Octocer at Green Lawn

A descendant of President Rutherford B. Hayes will be participating in the re-enactment of the 1902 dedication of the Chapel at Green Lawn that will be offered as the Oct. 6 First Saturday at Green Lawn program. 

First Saturday programs, which celebrate the life of people interred at Green Lawn, are held monthly and are free and open to the public. They are held at 11 a.m. in the Chapel at Green Lawn, 1000 Greenlawn Ave.

William R. Platt of Clintonville, a great grand nephew of the former President, will have the role of Rutherford Hayes Platt who was president of the Green Lawn Board of Trustees when the chapel was dedicated Nov. 11, 1902. Rutherford Hayes Platt was a nephew of the President and is one of the many Hayes descendants interred at Green Lawn.

Among the other participants in the 1902 program were Peletiah Webster Huntington who founded Huntington Bank and donated the stained glass windows and organ at the Chapel and the Rev. Washington Gladden, long-time pastor of the First Congregational Church. Huntington served on the Green Lawn board for 42 years.

The Rev. Tim Ahrens of the First Congregational Church will participate in the re-enactment as will Tom Brownfield of Ashville, a member of his congregation who often portrays Gladden.

The re-enactment will include the speeches made by Platt, Huntington, Gladden, and area ministers of 105 years ago as well as the music played. 

The script for this program is taken from a booklet published shortly after the 1902 dedication and contained the speeches and music.

The chapel, designed by architect Frank L. Packard of Columbus, has polished marble, mosaic tiles and stained glass by Tiffany of New York. It originally was to be a place to hold graveside services in inclement weather.

But people began using the chapel as a place of meditation and expressed their desires to be buried there. In 1963, an addition that included crypts was added behind the domed area, and in 1979, another wing that included crypts and niches was added to the north side.

When the north wing was added, the stained glass window that honors Peggie Thompson, the first woman buried in Franklin County, was removed from the north wall of the original building and reinstalled in the east wall of the addition.

The other stained glass window depicts Isaac Dalton ministering to the wounded during the Civil War, an act he was assigned by Gov. David Tod.

The mosaics that Huntington was instrumental in obtaining more than 100 years ago still adorn the east wall of the original part of the chapel.

These mosaics, in Favrile iridescent glass from the original drawings of artist Frederick Wilson, are of the standardbearers of "Truth" and "Wisdom." Famed artist Louis Comfort Tiffany patented the Favrile iridescent process by mixing different colors of glass together while hot.

Platt, Huntington and Gladden are among the more than 147,000 people interred at Green Lawn since it was established as a nonprofit association in August 1848. Green Lawn has grown from its original 83 acres to 360, 80 of which are yet to be developed. 

For further information on Green Lawn, visit www.greenlawncolumbus.org or call 444-1123. For information on First Saturday and other programs and projects of the Green Lawn Volunteers, call 878-4214 or 266-5218.

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