For more than two decades, the Lawrence County Historical Society has been organizing its walk through the historic Woodland Cemetery, and on Saturday the popular event will return after a year off due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
This year’s event, which is free and open to the public, will take place at the cemetery from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., said Kay Radar, a director of the company.
Drawing hundreds of people to Woodland each year, the walk features several people from the community, disguised as notable figures buried there, telling their life stories.
Radar is among them, describing Nannie Kelly Wright, the country’s only female blacksmith, which she has been doing for 16 years.
“She was a strong woman,” Radar said of her choice, who would be the second richest woman in the world after Queen Victoria. “She has had a very interesting life.
Radar said the first march took place in the 1990s and was for members of society only. They were led through the graveyard by Naomi Deer, who used a megaphone and spoke about the numbers.
“We enjoyed it so much that we decided to get together and plan something for the community,” Radar said.
In 1999, and organized by Deer, Dottie Rogers, Virginia Bryant and Luann Blagg, the public marches began.
“We picked the characters and wrote the scripts,” she said of the performances, which include people such as Wright, WWI flying ace, Col. William Lambert, l Waterloo Wonders trainer Magellan Hairston, poet Mary White Slater and Antoinette Sherpetoska Peters, a dancer. with the Imperial Russian Ballet.
Peters, who was born in Lithuania, is performed by local dance teacher Yvonne Sinnott. She will return this year and, there will be a change – in the past year two missing portraits from Peters Mausoleum have been replaced by an anonymous benefactor and can be seen on the promenade.
Radar said there will be two new additions this year – Ducky Corn, whom she describes as “a local villain” and Dean Gilfillen, another decorated World War I hero who served as a tank commander. .
Radar invited the public to come out to the “beautiful cemetery” and participate in the event.
This is the gift of the Historical Society to Ironton and it helps us remember our past, ”she said.
– For more on Rader, check out the feature in this Weekend’s Generations section.