There is no doubt that this ninth recorded cemetery in East Greenwich, Rhode Island was recorded as the Spencer Family Cemetery. However, because of sloppy research done by the Veteran’s administration, this Spencer Historical Cemetery (E.G.No.9) was recorded in Veteran Records as Rathbun cemetery. This error was because Veteran George Rathbun’s large relatively modern gravestone just happened to be by the front gate “so they probably poked their heads over the gate and read the first gravestone and ignored the sixty some other gravestones.” [Roby Alice (née Spencer) Rathbun married George Rathbun and their gravestones (No. 48 and No. 49) are by the front gate. Their death was in 1901 and 1906.]
There are six Spencer veterans, as well as the two Rathbun brothers–who married two Spencer sisters–who are veterans, in this historical Spencer Family Cemetery. The Veteran Groups are to be complemented for keeping our heritage and our American history alive. Dawn, Audrey Mae’s oldest daughter remembers as a young person how her grandparents or her uncle Ern would pick up her and her older brother, Spencer, and take them to the historic cemetery. There, they would view the rifles being shot in the air in memory of the Revolutionary, Civil and other war veterans for their service to their country. Audrey Mae’s daughter as a seven year old remembers being totally impressed.
In 2008 web site author received Information on lists available to commissioners and others on historical research done on historical cemeteries. This list includes “#9 Listed as Rathbun lot in 1976 by the Veterans Affairs” “Owners as Horseshoe Farms Estate”. Web site author does not know how Audrey Mae who died in 2004 found out about this erroneous listing of her Spencer family Cemetery.
However, the web site author was aware that the Veterans group naming this cemetery in error greatly grieved Audrey Mae. She felt–and she was–the link that connected the Spencer history in East Greenwich area of Rhode Island to the modern day Spencer descendants. These web sites carry out her and her California sister Edith Anna’s desire to keep the Spencer ancestral history alive in the modern day descendants and in all future descendants in California, Rhode Island and states in between. 🙂