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DR. HARTWELL CARVER --  "Remarkable Rochesterian"

Hartwell Carver epitaphWhat an interesting article by Jim Memmott in Dec 4th's  Democrat and Chronicle about Dr. Hartwell Carver, formerly of Pittsford, and now a permanent resident of Mt. Hope.

Here is a man who was totally devoted to the dream of creating a railroad to the Pacific Ocean.  He spent years promoting the feasibility and practical use of such a railroad.  When his dream was finally fulfilled, he helped drive the "golden spike" that connected the east and west by rail in 1869.

hartwell_carver_monumentIt appears from Memmott's research that Carver erected his 50-foot-high memorial – the second highest in the cemeter—several years before his death, and wrote his own epitaph.  I suspect that many wealthy early Rochesterians made similar plans to erect elegant statuary before their deaths.  Pre-planning was in vogue!

Having recently been added to the list of the Democrat & Chronicle's "Remarkable Rochesterians,"  Dr. Carver's entry reads:

Dr. Hartwell Carver (1789-1875): An early advocate of a railroad that would link the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, he began publishing articles on the subject as early as 1832 and later claimed he was the "father of the Pacific Railroad." Others would also lay claim to this title. Born in Providence, R.I., he graduated from Yale University in 1816 (after a brief time at Hamilton College) and set up a
medical practice in Pittsford, where he lived, on and off, for the rest of his life, his time interrupted by frequent travel.

former home of Hartwell Carver in Pittsford, NYHe also established several businesses in the area and built a large home in Pittsford village. Before his death, he had a 54-foot monument to himself erected in Mount Hope Cemetery at what became his burial site.

Carver's monument and gravesite will be featured on our Winter Tour on Saturday, January 26th.  Winter tours are invigorating, educational, and fun.  All are welcome!