On the evening before Memorial Day in 2012, I spent a very special hour, alone, in Gage Cemetery placing flags on the graves of the veterans buried there, as part of the “Bob Palmer Project”. Very personal. Very moving. Bob Palmer is a WWII Veteran and VFW Post 672 Member that spent many years heading up the effort to adorn every Veteran’s grave in the Town of Southeast with an American Flag. In 2012, he handed the reins over to a committee headed by Army and Marine Corps Veteran Jack Duncan.
The Gage Cemetery is one of 12 known cemeteries in the Town of Southeast. There are six Civil War Veterans interred in Gage Cemetery. The Gage name has a long history in the Town of Southeast, and this cemetery is on the property of the Gage House, one of the town’s Historic Sites. The cemetery is on Milltown Road, about two miles east of Route 22. The cemetery, however, is on private property, so view it only from the road. In the summer, the leaves obscure the view, but in the late Fall and Winter, you can see the graves surrounded by a stone wall, back in the woods on the Northeast side of Milltown Road. (If you are driving from Route 22 towards CT the cemetery will be on your left. If you reach the Glenda Farrell-Henry Ross Preserve, you have gone too far.)
In the “Houses of the Oblong” tour brochure produced by the Southeast Museum in 1987, the cemtery is also referred to as The Old Milltown Cemetery. The same brochure indicates the graveyard was used from 1806 to 1879, when the new Milltown Rural Cemetery (closer to Route 22) was incorporated.
-Houses of the Oblong. Pamphlete from Southeast Museeum House Tour, October 17th, 1987.
–www.putnamgraveyards.com website, accessed various dates.