After reading a posting by Eastman Online about a woman who was remodeling and found a gravestone behind her shower wall, I had to write about this story.
One of my jobs in the Local History room involves going through old donated newspapers before the mustiness drives us crazy. I recently found an item in the 26 January 1983 Fremont TimesIndicator. It was written by (then editor) Doug Hostetler:
The Sheriff's Department called us this week with an unusual lost and found item. It seems that Deps. Johnson and Sutton have found a tombstone.
The two were dispatched to an accident to an accident on M-37 south of Newaygo near Derk's Marine. A car struck a grave marker that was lying in the middle of the road.
They picked up the stone, which was inscribed James J. Quigley 1895-1952 and took it back to White Cloud.
Max Jordan, county clerk was contacted to see if he had a record of this man. He doesn't. They contacted the Michigan Department of Health to see if they have a record of this man. They don't.
Finally the Times-Indicator was contacted, and he's not on our subscribers list.
Does anyone know anything about this man?
Sandy and I were quite intrigued by this. Not enough to look through the microfilm for all of 1945, searching for an obituary, but intrigued none the less.
Since the obituary index we had is still searchable on our computer, while we wait for our new one, I looked for the name of Quigley. Bingo! There he was.
While we still don't know if the stone was returned, at least we do have some info on him.
And if we find out the Sheriff's Department still has it, we will be sure to let them, and you know.
In the mean time, here is the obituary from the 12 March 1942, Fremont Times Indicator.
James Quigley, 46, Resident of Holton Eleven Years, Dies
James Quigley, resident of Holton for about 11 years, died early Monday at his farm a mile west of Holton after an illness of three years. he was 46 years of age.
Mr Quigley was born at Tipperary, Ireland, May, 1895, and came to Holton fom Chicago. He was a member of the American Legion and the Moose and Elks organizations.
Surviving are his widow; a brother Chris Quigley of Colorado; a sister, Mrs Richard Walsh of Chicago and his mother, three sisters and three brothers, all in Ireland.
Funeral services will be held this morning at ten o'clock at the St. Michael's Catholic church at Brunswick with Rev. Julian Moleski officiating. Burial will be at the Brunswick cemetery.
This obituary does clear up some items. If he died west of Holton, he was in Muskegon County, not Newaygo. Brunswick Cemetery is next to the church, right on the county line.
But why would the editor think he would still be on the subscriber roles, 41 years after he died?