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The Mexico Ledger - Mexico, MO
  • Elmwood's 'Voices of the Past' helps keep Mexico history alive

  • Cemetery tours will be held Sunday
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  • There is no reason to be scared of this walk through a cemetery. On Sunday, Oct. 13, the Simmons' Stables Preservation Fund and the Mexico Parks and Recreation will host its third annual Elmwood Cemetery 'Voices of the Past' Historical Walking Tour. The program features live actors dressed in period appropriate attire at six different sites in the cemetery portraying individuals from Mexico community history. These portrayals help bring local history to life by telling stories that may have been forgotten by the general public.
    "In no way are we trying to disrespect the past," said Mary Littrell, committee member. "We want to honor the past, our city's past, and the people who helped shape this community." Littrell thanked the Audrain County Historical Society and the Audrain County Area Genealogical Society for providing invaluable help and information about the chosen individuals.
    This year's group of individuals are a combination of well-known and not-so-well-known residents of Mexico.
    L.B. Hawthorne, long time school administrator, and his wife Mary will be portrayed by Michael Briggs and Cathy Zinkel.
    Samuel Craddock, Mexico's first lawyer, will be portrayed by his great-grandson George Craddock.
    Ben Middleton, nationally known horseman and last owner of Rex McDonald, will be portrayed by Tom Usnick.
    W.W. MacFarlane, a Confederate soldier who became a prominent doctor in the area, will be portrayed by Scott Weber.
    Annie Bledsoe, a long time principal of Eugene Field, will be portrayed by Melanie Richter, who served for 19 years as principal at Eugene Field herself.
    Clarence Barnes, his wife Ruth, and Rhodes Clay, all participants in a gunfight on Promenade St., will be portrayed by Robin Lightfoot, Erica Lightfoot, and Gary Littrell respectively.
    Attendees should enter the cemetery via the archway gate entrance located on Liberty Street/Mo. FF. Tour times are scheduled for 3 p.m., 3:15 p.m., and 3:30 p.m. Rides will be available for those who may have trouble walking the tour.
    Advance tickets are $5 and can be purchased at Jim Stubblefield Furniture. Tickets are available 'at the door' on the day of the event for $8. Rain cancels the event.
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