The pharaohs of ancient Egypt were entombed with eye-popping treasures. President James A. Garfield, who died just 200 days into his term, was sent off to eternity with a much more modest cache, including a collection of spoons from his inauguration.
And now, he doesn't even have that because a thief broke into the James A. Garfield Monument at Lake View Cemetery in Cleveland last week and made off with the set of 13 spoons.
"We were like, 'Really? They took spoons?'" Katherine Goss, the cemetery's president and chief executive, told the Washington Post.
Goss called the spoons "flimsy little things" and said they had no monetary value. The thief left behind a few items of even lesser value: an empty bottle of Fireball cinnamon whiskey, cigarette butts and a T-shirt.
UPI reported that one day before the incident, a worker at the monument was fired for "extreme opposite behavior."
The cemetery's website said the 180-foot-high monument to the 20th president "includes rich, gold mosaics, beautifully colored marble, stained glass windows and deep-red granite columns," but neglects to mention the spoons.
The monument's crypt contains Garfield’s casket, which is the only presidential casket on full display, according to the website. The casket of his wife, Lucretia, and urns with the remains of their daughter and her husband are also in the crypt.
Garfield took office on March 4, 1881, but was shot 120 days into his term. He died of his wounds and an infection related to the gunshot 80 days later, on Sept. 19, 1881. He is perhaps best remembered as a staunch abolitionist in the years leading up to the Civil War, and a passionate advocate for equality and "full rights of citizenship" for African-Americans in the years that followed.
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