Often people visiting the cemtery want to know about all the famous people buried in Oak Grove. There are big monuments to the mill barons, and of course everybody knows about the Bordens. They even have a series of arrows painted on the ground to help you find the Borden plot. There are politicians, artists, actors, servicemen, Civil War notables, and beloved city residents. The name of Lewis Latimer is largely unknown. He has been placed in the catagory of top ten African-American inventors in the country! This link will take you to an excellent biography of Dr. Latimer and his accomplishments. If you see a young student today- tell them about Dr. Latimer! His museum, which was a house where he once lived, has been moved from Flushing, N.Y. to Queens. He was born in Chelsea. Massachusetts.
Two Poems by Lewis Latimer
Friend of my childhood,
Of life’s early days
When together we wandered
Through bright sunny ways
Each true to the other,
Till full manhood came,
And found the old friendship
As ever the same.
Came summer and winter,
Years waxed and waned.
Youth it had left us
But friendship remained
And now as with white locks
I bend o’er life’s page,
The friend of my childhood
Is the friend of my age.
Let others boast of maidens fair,
Of eyes of blue and golden hair;
My heart like needles ever true
Turns to the maid of ebon hue.
I love her form of matchless grace,
The dark brown beauty of her face,
Her lips that speak of love’s delight,
Her eyes that gleam as stars at night.
O’er marble Venus let them rage,
Who sets the fashions of the age;
Each to his taste, but as for me,
My Venus shall be ebony.