- we hunt the dead

Richard Buckminster Fuller
July 12, 1895 - July 1, 1983
Mount Auburn - Cambridge, MA


R. Buckminster Fuller was an American inventor and innovator and is most well-known for his patent of the Geodesic Dome.  He is buried here with his wife Anne Hewlett Fuller.

The inscription "Call Me Trimtab" is not only on his stone, but also on a seperate larger stone just above.  Not having the slightest idea what that meant at the time, we did some research once we arrived home:

A trimtab is a tiny rudder on the end of the principal rudder of a boat.  Pushing it allows the principal rudder to turn with less effort and makes for a much easier task of pulling a whole ship around.

Mr. Fuller is quoted as having once said, "When I thought about steering the course of the 'Spaceship Earth' and all of humanity, I saw most people trying to turn the boat by pushing the bow around.  I saw that by being all the way at the tail of the ship, by just kicking my foot to one side or the other, I could create the 'low pressure' which would turn the whole ship.  If ever someone wanted to write my epitaph, I would want it to say
'Call me Trimtab'."


Mount Auburn's affluence allows them to have pre-printed maps with directions to interesting graves.   Don't miss Charles Bulfinch, Mary Baker Eddy, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Winslow Homer, Bernard Malamud and Oliver Wendell Holmes also buried in this cemetery, in addition to some other historical figures you might find interesting (but that we didn't!).



Factoid: "Bucky" coined the phrase "Spaceship Earth".

Learn more about Buckminster Fuller


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