When Ritchey and I visited the Old Burlington Cemetery a year or so ago, the sun was low in the sky, as evidenced by the photos we took. I would love to return when there is brilliant sunshine to capture the stones to best advantage. Israel Gilpin’s stone struck a chord deep in my heart. I feel we sometimes forget the true patriotism our forefathers felt when they fought for freedom from England. It ran through their blood and beat with every fiber of their being. We are very lax today about the freedoms we enjoy, forgetting the sacrifices made by our forebears. And many definitely forget the responsibilities that come along with the great gift of freedom. Let’s bring back that fierce sense of pride and responsibility for the many gifts we have been given, never taking it lightly or ignoring them.
Sacred to the memory of Israel Gilpin, who died July 4th, 1834, in the 94th year of his age. ‘Pause stranger, ere your wandering feet you turn, And from the grave, this lesson deign to learn. A soldier’s ashes sleep beneath your feet, A patriot’s heart once in his bosom beat. That freedom, which in youth he fought to gain, he leaves to thee, to cherish and maintain.’ Old Burlington Cemetery, Boone County, Kentucky.
from The Lexington Observer
July 19, 1834
Israel Gilpin, aged 94 years on the 11th of October next. The deceased was strong, the most patriotic and vigilant of Captains in the War of the Revolution. His services in that war were protracted, various, and important. His sufferings, sacrifices and losses were great.
From affluence, he was, by the operations of the war, reduced almost to indigence; yet, with an unusual degree of manly and patriotic fortitude, he often expressed his gratitude, that his country had obtained her independence, and that was what he fought and struggled for, and he enjoyed his portion of it, if he was made poor and reduced in property, he was made rich in Liberty, which was by far preferable.
The objects and results of the American Revolution was a theme upon which he delighted to dwell during his life. He uniformly evinced an ardent and an unusual degree of patriotic zeal, which he only ceased when he breathed his last.
By his friends and acquaintances, it is thought to one more remarkable occurrence or coincidence in the works of providence that such a rare and distinguished Revolutionary Patriot as Israel Gilpin should be taken from time on the birthday of our Independence.
Old Burlington Cemetery established in 1819, this historic graveyard was Burlington’s first community cemetery. It protects the remains of over 250 Boone County residents including county judges and other leading citizens and businessmen from the last two centuries. Among the veterans of war laid to rest here are the Revolutionary War Colonel Israel Gilpin and six Civil War veterans. Place by Boone County Historic Preservation Review Board 2005.