THE FINAL RESTING PLACE of George Frederick Root in his family plot at Harmony Vale Cemetery was still and peaceful after the last snowfall. Root’s upbringing on a North Reading farm influenced his prolific musical career which included “The Haymakers,” the first secular American cantata, and more than 30 Civil War songs. His obelisk tombstone is engraved: “George Frederick Root • Poet, Teacher, Singer, Patriot • Born Avgvst 30, 1820 ~ Died Avgvst 6, 1895 • He loved God and Man and was beloved by both • His gentle memory is the heritage of his kindred.” (Maureen Doherty Photo)