Gillette, Charles E. HOOSICK FALLS Charles E. Gillette, 88, former senior scientist of archaeology for the New York State Museum, died Sunday, May 4, 2008 at the Hoosick Falls Health Center after a long illness. He was the husband of Gwyneth Young Gillette, also a resident of the Health Center. Born on February 23, 1920 in New Albany, Ind., he was the middle son of Clinton Edgar and Celia Rogers Gillette. The family moved to Calumet City, Ill. where Charles went through public school. He graduated from Cornell College in Mt. Vernon, Iowa with a bachelor's degree in history in May of 1942 and then entered the United States Army. He served with Company F of the 300th Infantry until Christmas Day, 1945. He and Gwyneth were married on November 21, 1942. After his discharge from the Army, Charles returned to student life at the University of Chicago and was awarded a master's degree in anthropology in 1949. The following year he accepted employment at the New York State Museum in Albany as senior curator of archaeology. In 1972, he became senior scientist of archaeology, retiring in 1983. Gillette was instrumental in preserving the history of "Capitaland". He was an authority on the Iroquois Indians and was greatly involved in establishing the Iroquois Museum in Howe Caverns and the Tekakwitha Shrine in Fonda. He published The People of the Longhouse, A Guide to the Iroquois Indian Groups, as well as contributed to many books that were edited collections of archeo-logical papers. He was instrumental in the significant work of conserving the Morgan collection and he especially liked working with the New York State Division of State Police BCI doing bone identification. Charles had a lifelong interest in genealogy having traced his roots in the United States to 1630 and earlier in Scotland. He enjoyed music, especially classical, and photography, a hobby he shared with his son David. Charles was a member of the Trinity United Methodist in Albany, where he was Historian Emeritus, for over 50 years. He was a 50 year member of Ancient Temple Lodge No. 14 F. & A. M. and a member of numerous professional organizations. He and Gwyn moved from Albany to Saratoga in 1999 and to the Hoosick Falls Health Center in 2006. He is predeceased by a son, Roger Holmes Gillette and a brother, James R Gillette. Along with his wife of 65 years, Charles is survived by a daughter and her husband, Caroline and Noel Ashton of Cambridge; a son, David Charles Gillette of Albany; a brother, Philip Roger Gillette of Salem, Oregon; a sister-in-law, Rema Joan Gillette of Silver Springs, Md. and several nieces and nephews. Friends and relatives are invited to call on Tuesday, May 6, from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Ackley & Ross Funeral Home, 73 West Main Street, Cambridge. The Masons will conduct a service. A memorial celebration of the life of Charles Edgar Gillette will be held at a time to be announced. His ashes will be buried at Mount Vernon Cemetery, Mount Vernon, Iowa. The family suggests memorial donations be made to either the NYS Archeological Ass. Van-Epps Chapter, Fonda, NY 12068 att: Wayne Lenig; Cornell College, 600 First Street West, Mount Vernon, IA 52314-1098 or Hoosick Falls Health Center, 21 Danforth Street, Hoosick Falls, NY 12090.
Published in the Albany Times Union on 5/5/2008