With the start of centennials for World War I, the 5th Annual Founders’ Day Celebration of The Homewood Cemetery Historical Fund will explore Pittsburgh’s many connections to “The Great War.” Tales of soldiers will share the spotlight with lesser known stories of homefront work, women’s war efforts, and Pittsburghers who opposed the war and worked for peace. Stories of bravery, valor, sacrifice, poetry, art, and music will feature prominently in the offerings of the event, all of which is free, family friendly and open to the public.
From noon through 4pm, Founder’s Day events will take place on the cemetery grounds and will include:
• A free performance of WWI music by Phat Man Dee and Members of The Cultural District. Voted Best Jazz/Blues Performer in the 2016 Best of Pittsburgh City Paper’s Readers’ Poll, Mandee will be performing songs chosen from sheet music collections from The Music Room of The Carnegie Library. Phat Man Dee’s performance is sponsored by a research fellowship from The Friends of the Music Library, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.
• Tom Roberts, “one of the leading exponents of early jazz piano in the world today,” will be playing DJ, spinning 78s of WWI era music on vintage gramophones and victrolas.
• A variety of vintage cars, including hearses from The Pittsburgh Professional Car Association, will be on display.
• The Kid’s Club of the Train Collectors’ Association will be operating an extensive, kid friendly model train display in the cemetery’s Chapel and Hospitality Room. This year’s display will be based on WWI stories from Pittsburgh. Kids of all ages are encouraged to look over the display and try it out!
• An illustrated talk by Samuel Black, Director of African American Programs at the Sen. John Heinz History Center, telling the exciting story of the 351st, the only all African American Heavy Artillery Unit to fight in WWI. Mr. Black’s talk is sponsored by a grant from The Three Rivers Community Foundation
• Food trucks from Popsburgh and Gaucho Parrilla Argentina will be on site to vend gourmet ice pops and Argentinian fare.
• Local artists, merchants, and other Friends of The Homewood Cemetery will offer a variety of items for a silent auction, all proceeds of which will benefit The Homewood Cemetery Historical Fund.
• A genealogy booth will allow visitors to look for relatives within the cemetery and also to receive advice on how to conduct their own genealogical research
All events are free and open to the public. Parking is free and will be available both within and around the cemetery.