Student creates walking guides for Mount Albion

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 15 August 2016 at 3:00 pm

Photo by Tom Rivers

ALBION – Kyle Thaine, 18, is pictured by the Ingersoll Memorial Fountain on Sunday after a tour of Mount Albion Cemetery. Thaine has created three walking guides for sections of the historic cemetery.

The guides, which include maps and highlights of notable residents, are available at the cemetery or online by clicking here.

Thaine has seen first-hand the popularity of the annual Ghost Walk at Mount Albion Cemetery. Thaine has portrayed several of the Albion residents buried in the historic cemetery.

The Ghost Walk is put on by Albion students and draws about 500 people to the cemetery. Thaine also attends some of the walking tours led by historians Matt Ballard and Bill Lattin. Those tours draw a crowd of people interested in the backgrounds of residents in the cemetery.

Thaine decided to create three walking guides for people who aren’t able to attend the walking tours or Ghost Walk events.

The guides highlight prominent business leaders, politicians, soldiers and others who were victims of tragedies, such as the bridge collapse on Sept. 28, 1859. The bridge collapsed when 250 gathered to watch a tightrope walker over the canal. At least 15 people died in the calamity.


Photo by Tom Rivers

Thaine portrays Rufus Bullock, who grew up in Albion, was a railroad official in George and was elected that state’s governor in 1868. He was instrumental in the reconstruction of Georgia after the Civil War. Thaine portrayed Bullock in the 2014 Ghost Walk at Mount Albion.

Kyle Thaine during the 2015 Ghost Walk portrayed his great-uncle, Eugene Barnum, who was killed during World War II after shooting down two German planes.

Thaine graduated from Albion High School in June and will major in history in college at Albany. He worked on the Mount Albion guides as part of an internship project his senior year with Sue Starkweather-Miller, the school district’s grants manager and internship coordinator.


Photo by Kim Pritt

“I wanted to do a history project,” Thaine said about creating the guides and a website about Mount Albion. “This is for people who can’t make the Ghost Walks or the tours.”

Thaine also helped with two new interpretive panels that are expected to be added to the cemetery this fall.

He was a seventh-grader when he and his classmates researched and set up a permanent memorial for residents of the Alms House, the precursor to the county nursing home.