Historic Fairview Cemetery: Final Resting Place for Notable People in Albuquerque History

On Sunday, January 17, 2021 Gail Rubin, President of the Historic Fairview Cemetery Association, spoke on the topic “Historic Fairview Cemetery: Final Resting Place for Notable People in Albuquerque History.” The program took place by live stream on the AHS Facebook page.

Marinetti-Yott Funeral
Funeral for a Yott family member at Fairview Cemetery, 1917 or 1919
Courtesy Albuquerque Museum – Gift of the Yott/Marianetti Family

Historic Fairview Cemetery at 700 Yale Blvd SE in Albuquerque, New Mexico, was founded in 1881 and has approximately 12,000 permanent residents. Yet, only about 6,000 of the graves have markers. It’s the final resting place for both the famous and the unknown. There are military graves for Buffalo Soldiers and Teddy Roosevelt’s Rough Riders, notable politicians, sports figures, fraternal organization members, and unknown individuals who nonetheless have fascinating stories. Gail Rubin, CT, president of the nonprofit Historic Fairview Cemetery organization, will introduce you to some of these stories.

Learn about the unique designs of the cemetery’s markers and graves, and how you can learn more about the history of Albuquerque and New Mexico by visiting Historic Fairview Cemetery. Donations to the nonprofit are greatly appreciated through the website, www.HistoricFairviewCemeteryABQ.org.

Photo of Gail RubinGail Rubin, Certified Thanatologist and The Doyenne of Death®, is a death educator who uses humor, film clips, and outside-the-box activities to help people plan ahead for our 100% mortality rate. She’s the author of three award-winning books on planning ahead for end-of-life issues (A Good Goodbye: Funeral Planning for Those Who Don’t Plan to Die, Hail and Farewell: Cremation Ceremonies, Templates and Tips, and Kicking the Bucket List: 100 Downsizing and Organizing Things to Do Before You Die), creator of The Newly-Dead Game and The Family Plot File, and an informed advocate for planning ahead.

A member of Congregation Albert’s Cemetery Committee since 2010, Gail has experience with historic cemeteries. This Jewish cemetery, adjacent to Historic Fairview Cemetery, was originally founded by B’nai Brith in 1897 with the involvement of Albuquerque’s first mayor, Henry N. Jaffa. Jaffa was also the first president of Congregation Albert, founded in 1897 and the oldest continuing Jewish organization in New Mexico.

Gail became president of Historic Fairview Cemetery, founded in 1881, in March of 2020. The nonprofit organization is charged with maintaining the grounds and educating the public about the history of Albuquerque as told by the cemetery’s permanent residents. She has organized monthly volunteer clean up days, created signage for the cemetery, generated news coverage, and worked with cemetery historian Susan Schwartz to create self-guided cemetery tour information. The nonprofit is also working on making the cemetery a xeriscape demonstration garden.

Gail is coordinator of the annual Before I Die New Mexico Festival, which donates a portion of sponsorship proceeds and ticket sales to support Historic Fairview Cemetery. She’s also a TEDx speaker, and a winner of the 2019 Women of Influence Award from Albuquerque Business First.

Photo of Kiku Honda headstone
Headstone of Kiku Honda who died on July 12, 1896 at the age of 21.