29 June 2010

Tombstone Tuesday--Newaygo Cemetery

This week our featured cemetery is the city cemetery of Newaygo. Again this is one that I have not stopped at, but just driven by. High above the river valley, it is a large and impressive cemetery.
Because of the size of the cemetery, I will treat it as I did the Fremont city cemetery and first talk about it in general and give pictures of the cemetery and next time concentrate on individual stones.
These pictures give a sense of the size of Newaygo Cemetery. Notice the old and new stones, weathered limestone and marble, along the shiny new black granite.
The Newaygo Cemetery is filled with many large oak and pine trees. And notice how this view shows such clear rows. Nothing haphazard here.
Another section, filled with newer stones, but also clearly showing in the background, room available for the future.
I mentioned it was high above the river, and you can see that this rolling hillside presents some drawbacks. but the steps inlaid into the slope show thoughtful planning as well as careful maintenance.
You may remember back in April we did several posts on James T. Battles. He was the black Civil War veteran that did not have a stone.
If you go here and to the next couple posts, you can read more about the story. This is a picture of Sandy, and our friend Terry Wantz with the man who officiated at the dedication of Mr. Battles memorial stone.
Newaygo cemetery is the final resting place for both James and his wife Sarah Battles.
Next week, some of the interesting individual stones.

27 June 2010

Obituary--George E. Taylor

This is a fine example of the obituaries from the early 1900's. Full of juicy details, and as a recent commenter noted, a great read when there wasn't much else to write about. I do like the historical details you can pick up in these early obituaries, especially those of veterans. And you gotta just love the way these old writers could turn a phrase.

From the 8 April 1909 Newaygo Republican:

George E Taylor

A man of noble impulse, of generous and broad character was George E Taylor, who was stricken by apoplexy on Monday last, and dying from the effects Tuesday forenoon. He was well known throughout the county and highly respected for his sterling qualities of mind and heart.
Mr. Taylor was born March 22, 1844 at Quincy Mich. He was raised on a farm and educated mainly in country schools. His life was without special incident until the breaking out of the civil war, and being intensely patriotic he enlisted as a member of the 8th Michigan infantry. Being only a few months past his 17th birthday, his parents interfered and caused his rejection. He again enlisted in February, 1862 and again was parental authority asserted to baffle hiis intentions, but August 9th following, as Mr. Taylor often expressed it, the third time was the charm, and he became a member of Co. B, 21st Mich. Inf. and this time he was permitted to remain in the service. That he was a good soldier is attested to his comrades, Lyman R. Meeker, who resides in Newaygo, being one of them. He participated in the battles of Perryville and Stone River, and was a prisoner of war for 11 months, but fortunately was paroled soon after his capture and escaped the horrors of the southern prison pens. While engaged on a long, forced, march he received a sunstroke which affected his sighe and gradually the trouble became worse and he was totally blind for many years.
He was mustered out of the service in June, 1865 and returned to Grand Rapids where he attended the public schools and took a course in a business college. For several years Mr. Taylor taught school in this county with much success. In 1878 he was elected Register of Deeds of Newaygo county and the year following started the compilation of the titles of the county which was the beginning of the abstract business which is now owned by F. W. Riblet.
Although entirely blind Mr Taylor never lost his interest in the affairs of life and for a man so afflicted was wonderfully informed. His memory was perfect and once a fact was fixed in his mind it never escaped him. He was prominent in Grand Army affairs and has made many addresses at soldier's reunions, post meetings and on Memorial days. He was elected president of the reunion association of his regiment last fall and had prepared an address which he expected to deliver at Grand haven on Memorial Day. He never spent any time in mourning over his great affliction but was always cheerful and light hearted and contributed in many ways to the happiness of those who surrounded him. His list of friends can only be counted by his acquaintances. Those who knew him best loved him most.
The funeral of Mr. Taylor will be held at the opera house at 10:30 a.m. Friday. The remains will lie in state at the opera house from 8:00 to 10:00 o'clock a.m., giving all his friends an opportunity to look upon the face of one who lived a life of unselfishness and devotion to the truth, whose life was full of generous deeds, and whose death brings sadness to many hearts. The funeral will be conducted by Rev. H. C. Chamberlin, under the auspices of the I. O. O. F., of which organization he was a faithful member. The relatives who will be present are: his daughter, Mrs. Cora McFarland to Grand Rapids, who came Tuesday afternoon and will remain for the funeral, and Mrs. Francis Higley, a cousin, resides here. Hon. Walter R. Taylor, of Kalamazoo, brother of the deceased, came to Newaygo Tuesday, but much as he regretted it, was compelled to go to Lansing to look after some important pending legislation and he and his wife are expected to arrive this afternoon and will remain until after the funeral.

Such rich details, about both the Civil War and the time after. I wonder what the important pending legislation was?

26 June 2010

Obituary--Mrs Lovilla B Martin

An obituary of another pioneer, died at the age of 97. What a life she appears to have led. Makes one wish you could sit down and chat with her about the changes she saw in her lifetime.

From the 23 October 1913 Fremont Times-Indicator:

Mrs Lovilla B. Martin

Mrs. Lovilla B. Herkimer Martin, (lovingly called Grandma martin by the entire community), was born in the town and county of Otsego, New York, May 20, 1816. She began teaching school at the age of sixteen years and continued in that work until she was twenty-six, when on November 17, 1832 she was married to William S. Martin. In 2852 them moved to Clinton, Lenawee county, this state, where she taught in a young ladies' seminary. From here they moved to Newaygo in 1855 and one year later to what was then a very sparsely settled wilderness in Dayton township.
Mrs Martin taughte her last term of school in the district where she resided at the age of fifty three. She lived on the farm in Dayton continuously until the death of her husband twenty years ago, when she came to Fremont to live. The last few years of her life she divided her time among her children. The last two years were spent with her son, Mike, and family. And here she passed from her long earthly pilgrimage, to the city that hath foundations, October 15, 1913, at the age of 97 years.
Three of her children survive her: George H., late of Dayton township, but nowNorth Dam, Oregon; Mrs Helen M. Upton of Thompsonville, and Michael D., of this city.
Eleven grandchildren, thirteen great grandchildren and two great, great grandchildren, together with scores of other relatives and friends mourn their loss. The funeral services were held last Friday afternoon from the home of her son, M. Martin, and were conducted by Rev. R. W. Paul, Interment in the Evans cemetery.

Such a full life she lived! I always love the mini-sermons these obituary writers snuck in: "to the city that hath foundations". These quotes and phrases were so common then in the obituaries. Today's obituary writers could learn a thing or two from these earlier writers.

25 June 2010

Korean War--60 Years

Just 60 years ago today the Korean war started.
To so many people today, that war is just the backdrop for a group of doctors in a MASH unit. When I studied history in high school, we barely got to the end of the Civil War by the end of the year. Not until I got to college did I get a history class on the balance of the country's history. And even then, not much was said about the Korean conflict, when that age was still seething over the war in Viet Nam.I know of one relative who was in the service at time. I don't know if he actually served in Korea or not.
But to all to fought then, all to were wounded, and especially all to died...I salute you.

23 June 2010

Obituary--Robert Boyd

This obituary is one that was originally published in the Newaygo Republican and reprinted in the Times-Indicator. A typical obituary from the time, with gory details galore.

As reprinted in the 31 December 1919 Fremont Times-Indicator.


Robert Boyd, Living East of Newaygo, Consumed by Flames December 19.

(Newaygo Republican.)

Robert Boyd, a veteran of the Civil war, and for many years a resident of this county, was burned to death in his cabin on the edge of Surrarera Prairie, about six miles east of Newaygo, Friday night, December 19.
Wesley Boyd, a son, was out doing the evening chores. The father, 88 years of age, was alone in the cabin except for the dog. It was his habit to wrap himself in a quilt and stand or sit by the stove. Presumably the quilt caught on fire or the old man may have died suddenly and fallen into the flames. When Wesley saw the smoke, the interior of the cabin was burning so firecely that he could render no assistance. The cabin, built of logs, held a hot fire throughout the night. The body was recovered the next morning, badly burned, by Glenn Rice, the undertaker. The dog died with his master.
A large family of boys and girls survive the deceased who came to Newaygo county many years ago from Indiana.
The funeral services were held at 10 o'clock Tuesday morning from the Oak Grove cemetery. Rev. Mr. Truman preached the funeral sermon.

Cheery little obit, huh? I am assuming that the "large family of boys and girls" are his grown children, if he was 88. Some names would have been nice.

22 June 2010

Tombstone Tuesday--Mount Calavry Cemetery

This week's cemetery is the local Catholic Cemetery associated with All Saints Catholic Church, Mt Calvary Cemetery. It is a fairly recent looking cemetery, with wide open areas that sets in a rural area, south of Fremont.
Our pictures contain no closeup views of individual stones, but you can see from these pictures the pastoral settings, with farm land nearby, and many trees. As you can see they are not very large trees.
Such a peaceful looking place.
It is true to its Catholic heritage in the midst of this Dutch community, and a lovely and active cemetery.
While I am not sure, but I think that previous to the start of this cemetery, all the area Catholics were served by the church in the small nearby community of Brunswick. St. Michael's Church, located there, has an older and fuller cemetery. I suspect, that St. Michael's, situated on the county line, was the Catholic church for most of the Catholics in this area, prior to the establish of All Saints.

19 June 2010

Obituary--Frances Tindall

An obituary of a immigrant woman, this tells a brief story of the hardships women faced in those early days in this state.

From the 18 December 1913 Fremont Times-Indicator.

Frances Tindall

Frances Hoover was born in Strassburg, Germany, January 19, 1838. In 1864 she was married to John Miller. They came to this country in April 1866. To this union five children were born namely: Chas. E., of Fremont, John E., of Boyne City; Sophia Kimbell, of Fremont; Geo. H., of Lincoln township; and Frank, who preceded her nearly three years ago.
After residing about six months near Grand Rapids they came Fremont. On December 15, 1871, her husband was killed in the lumber woods by a falling tree. In 873 she was married to Wm. Tindall and to this union four children were born namely: Wm. F. of Boyne city; Mary and Fannie, both having preceded her, and Mrs Daphine Stratton, of Fremont. On March 13, 1911, occurred the death of her husband. Since that time she lived mostly with her daughter, Mrs. Dadphine Stratton, until December 2, 1913 when she was called to the Great Beyond. Of her it can well be said, "She hath done what she could."

And article from the week before on 11 December 1913.

Mrs. Francis Tindall passed away at the home of her daughter, Mrs. C. V. Stratton, Tuesday, Dec 2. The funeral services were held Thursday at the Disciple church. Interment in Maple Grove cemetery.

I think the last line on the actual obituary sums up the life of so many pioneer women. "She hath done what she could. "

16 June 2010

Obituary--Holly W. Crawford

I always get excited when, as I review an obituary with an eye to sharing it here, I find a personal connection. I glanced at this several times and it always made me pause. Now, reading it more carefully I find that I knew this gentleman's son. Guy was a member of my church when I was a teen, and he was (it seemed to me) older than the hills. I always get goose-pimply to find connections. And not only did I know his son, Holly lived just 2 miles from where I now live.

From the 20 N0vember 1913 Fremont Times-Indicator.

Holly W. Crawford.

Holly W Crawford was born in Montcalm county June 24, 1837 and died at his home near Sitka, Sheridan township, Sunday, Nov. 9, 1913.
When the civil war broke out Mr. Crawford was one of the first to respond to the call of his country and enlisted April 30, 1861 in the Eleventh Ill. volunteer infantry where he served faithfully during the entire period of the war. He was wounded at Fort Donelson and also in another engagement and was honorably discharged as sargeant July 29, 1864.
Immediately after the close of the war Mr. Crawford came to Newaygo county, then a wilderness, and settled upon the homestead in Sheridan townshi where he has ever since resided.
On April 1st, 1869, he was married to Luella Nelson and to this union seven children, viz., Mrs. May Ferguson who resides at Corey; Chester, who teaches school in the Upper Pensula; Reuben, living at San Pedro, Cal; Perrie, guy and Mrs. Lydia Nash, all of whom live on adjoining farms on the same section of land; and George, the youngest, with his family lives at home. His wife and children, except Reuben, were all with him during his last hours.
In the early days Mr. Crawford served his county and township in many capacities, being at various times county clerk, township supervisor and for 20 years justice of the peace. he was postmaster at Sitka for 16 years.
In the winter for many years he taught school, often walking long distances through the woods in order to be at home with his family as much as possible.
Mr Crawford had been in poor health for several years but was never found wanting in giving his time or means towards what ever tended to the betterment of his fellowmen. His influence for good has been and will be felt for many years and he will be greatly missed by many for none knew him but to respect and honor him.
In 1869 Mr. Crawford joined the Christian church, continuing a member of that body until the M.E. church was built at Sitka, at which time, November 29, 1908, he united with that denomination. Besides his wife and children he leaves 25 grandchildren, two sisters, Mrs Maria Brown of Grant, and Mrs Dennis Miller, of Fremont; and one brother, Lewis Crawford, of Grant.
He was a member of Dahlegrew Post, No. 149, G. A. R. Of this post, only 17 survive him.
Funeral services were held at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday from Sitka church. Rev. J. P. Durham, pastor of the Holton M. E. church conducted the services. The remains were laid to rest in Holton cemetery.

An interesting note is about the Sitka M. E. church. We have an article here in the local history room about the church's centennial, in which they say the church was completed in December 1908. He joined before it was completed. And it was practically across the road from his home. I notice the pastor was from the Holton Methodist church. I wonder if the two churches actually shared the same pastor then, as they have for much of their existence.

15 June 2010

Tombstone Tuesday--Merrill Cemetery

Merrill Cemetery, located of course in Merrill Township is one of our more rural cemeteries. It is less than a mile from the main state trunk line that roughly bisects the county. But as you can see from the pictures, while mowed and cared for, it is still quite rustic.
This building appears to be the only building in the cemetery for tools and such. It sets the tone for this out of the way cemetery. Of course since the pictures appear to be taken in the autumn months, that contributes to the atmosphere.
This lovely shaped stone for H. J. Reichard who died in 1903, has a massiveness to it, in its thickness. Yet is is simple and seems to still be cared for. You can see a bit of flowers peeping around the base.
There are also hints that all has not been peaceful in this cemetery. The larger stone outside the bordered plot appears to be missing most of the monument. It looks like it is just several bases, in preparation for the obelisk type top. The picture showing a closer look at the top resembles the picture below.
This appears to be two broken off stones. The center of the rectangular and also the hexagonal stones, flush to the ground seem to have a post or rod of some type in the center that have been broken off. Notice also the mossy ground in the background of these pictures. Not much grass in evidence. This is typical of yards in the northern part of the county, with the poor marl-like soil. Hard for grass to grow, and here it just appears that the surface is left to its own devices, other than mowing.
Merrill share of the homemade memorials. Above it appears that a military marker is surrounded by the fence. The names of four men are engraved on the posts. Possibly sons? This appears to be to recent to appear in our transcript of graves, although that extends into the 1960's and 70's.
These two home-made stones for the Huntley's also do not appear in our list. You can see the difference in the weathering in the wood.
At the top of this cross is the number I believe is 87. Written below is Symons. There are also names written on the crosspiece. Simple but touching.
One of the cemeteries I touched on recently, Lincoln had similar lovely homemade monuments. It has come to our attention here at the Divas that they are thinking of banning such monuments. We (especially Sandy) are up in arms and will keep you posted on developments.

13 June 2010

Obituary--Giles Townsend

One thing I have noticed in posting these old obituaries is the changes in spelling and other usage. You never hear someone using "o'clock" anymore. and notice how the titles have evolved. Civil war, instead of Civil War, as used so often now. The White River, was then just the White river. Funny how both language and customs change.

From the 1 April 1915 Fremont Times-Indicator.

The death of Giles Townsend a pioneer and a veteran of the Civil war, occurred at his home here march 15, at the age of 82 years after a brief illness. Mr Townsend was a familiar character of this region, being famed far and near as a hunter and fisherman. Game in its season was always to be found in his home and some of his associates asserted that hew hew the location of every fish in White river. Mr. Townsend came to Newaygo county before the outbreak of the Civil war. He enlisted and served throughout the war. In November, 1865, he was married to Myra Rogers who survives him. No children were born to them. Mr. and Mrs . Townsend lived on their farm in Greenwood township from the time they were married until he became so infirm he was no longer able to work the farm, when they sold it and moved to Hesperia. Mr. Townsend leaves an aged and almost helpless wife, and a brother in Petoskey to mourn their loss. Mr. Henry Newlin and his sister, Mrs. Eva Berkholder, of Detroit are the only living relatives of Mrs. Townsend. The funeral was held at the house last Thursday at 1:30 o'clock, Rev. Geo. VanWingerden officiating. The Grand Army attended in a body and marched with the body to East cemetery. Mrs. Townsend has the heartfelt sympathy of the (illigible line of microfilm) companion who thought of her every want while living, giving her the tender sympathy and care in her helplessness that only a loving helpmate can give.

I am adding the Mrs. Robertson tag, because it is her area and time, even if she isn't listed as the correspondent for this obituary. The details are in her style. While not so excited as some she has written, this could still be her work.

11 June 2010

Obituary--Albert Hair

Based on the shocked community I almost blamed this obituary on Mrs. Robertson also. Except for the fact that is half a county away, it certainly sounds like her. This obit, however does have more detail than the previous one. From the 27 August 1914 Fremont Times-Indicator.

The community received a severe shock Saturday morning on discovering the dead body of Albert Hair in his home. As near as can be judged, he must have died Thursday evening. The body was discovered Saturday morning by Myron Daggan, Henry Smith, Ray Hawkey, and J. W. McLean. John Rasey, Dr. Barnum and Mr. Crandell's undertaker were notified at once. They arrived at noon. After viewing the body it was decided death was due to heart failure. The stock were without c are from Thursday evening until 11:00 o'clock Saturday. The funeral took place Tuesday, August 18, at the Sand Creek school house. Deceased was 55 years of age and leaves to mourn his departure one son, 12 years old; one brothers, Will; three sisters, Mrs Minnie Ramey, of Idaho, Mrs Alice Hawkey, of Bridgeton, and Mrs Carrie Starling, of Alanson, Mich.; also numerous other relatives. Funeral services were conducted by Rev. J. W. McLean. The body was laid to rest in Bridgeton cemetery.
Mrs Carrie Sterling of Alanson, attended the funeral of her brother, Bert Hair.
Mr and Mrs Melvin Scott, of Holton, attended the funeral of their nephew, Bert Hair.
Harry McLean, of Fremont, visited his father, J. W. McLean and attended the funeral of Mr. Hair.

Our photocopy of the obituary has small hash marks around the final three paragraphs. I almost think that one or more of those three paragraphs were in another section of the paper, possibly the Fremont and Holton gossip columns and glued down with the original obit. Either that or the writer was very choppy with those last add-ons.

09 June 2010

Obituary--Frank Robbins

While this obituary could be written by Mrs. Robertson, the style isn't quite the same. The time period works, but while there is loads of details, the writer here is rather detached, unlike Mrs. Robertson's personal touch. If she wrote this, perhaps she didn't know him.
From the 13 July 1916 Fremont Times-Indicator.

Despondent because his son Corporal Roy Robbins of Company G 32nd Michigan Infantry, the Muskegon Rifles, was called out on national guard duty, Frank Robbins who has lived near Hesperia all his life, a farmer in the McLaren Lake district 3 1/2 miles north, committed suicide last Thursday morning by hanging himself in h8s barn. He was about 60 years of age. Mr. Robbins has not been well for some time and has acted queerly since his son died last spring and his last and only son left for Grayling, and his family has been watching him. But he slipped away ad harnessed his horses, climbed a ladder and tied the hayfork rope around his neck and jumped to his death. When found later by Tom McLaren, Walter Linstead and Chas. Robbins, his neck was broken. No inquest was thought necessary. The funeral was held from the house last Sunday at 10 a. m., Rev. Oldt officiating. Interment in West cemetery.

So rich in some details, yet lacking in others; birthdate, parents, survivors, spouse. But if the details are a bit gruesome, you can bet they were always included back then.

08 June 2010

Tombestone Tuesday--Maple Grove's Indian Cemetery

This is the final week of touring Fremont's Maple Grove Cemetery. Tucked away in one of the back corners, next to the fair ground is the old Indian Cemetery, which predates Maple Grove.
While part of Maple Grove, it is has its own sign.
As you can see in the grass behind the sign, there are not many graves here, or at least any grave stones. According to the local legend, when a local squaw traded for some maple sugar for 2 dozen eggs, she boiled them and ate them all. After suffering from a violent stomach ache, she died three hours later. At time there was no Indian cemetery (because some locals were still suspicious of them), so a local Indian farmer, Henry Pego, donated a portion of his land as the Indian cemetery and she was buried there. That land fell in to disarray for some time but today is kept neat and tidy along with the rest of Maple Grove. While there are only 30 some known graves here, there are many more unknown.
Only a few of these graves have stones on them. Several are flat on the ground to prevent further breaking.
This one survives and while the cross (which is on several of the stones) is clearly visible, the name is not. A lovely shaped stone though.
This one, is perhaps part of a double stone. Again, a cross, although smaller here, and the name is unreadable.
As you can see here, few of the stones are totally intact. But I am glad that the recognition remains.

06 June 2010

Obituary--Mrs. Leon Young

This is a fine example of two different takes on the same death. The first is an obituary was in the local paper after the funeral. Then the second was reprinted in the local paper from another the following week.

From the 10 August 1916 Fremont-Times Indicator.

Mr. and Mrs. Wm. DeKuiper, Mr. and Mrs. T. I. Fry, Mrs. Fred Hawkey, Mr. and Mrs. L. G. Graves and Miss susie Cole motored to Lowell Sunday to attend the funeral of Mrs Leon Young, who died at her home there Friday following an operation. Mrs Young was formerly Miss Euphemia Smith, of this city. She was 28 years old and is survived by her husband and four year old son. Her father, John Smith, and brothers Harry and George went to Lowell Saturday.

This article was reprinted in the 17 August 1916 Fremont Times-Indicator from the Lowell Ledger. Pay close attention to the names.

Young Wife and Mother Taken From Her Loved Ones
After a brief illness, Mrs. Leon Young passed from her home in Lowell to the better land August 4, aged 28 years. Funeral services were held at the home Sunday afternoon at 2:30 o'clock, with Rev. I. T. Weldon as officiating clergyman; burial at Oakwood cemetery.
Euphema Moon was born at Hamilton, Mich., March 8, 1888. She was united in marriage with Leon Young at Fremont, Mich., November 11, 1911, and they have since made their home in Lowell, where her friendly disposition made friends of all who knew her.
She leaves her husband, a little son, John, but four years old, her father, mother, two sisters, three brothers and a host of friends to mourn their loss. ---Lowell Ledger.

Did you catch it? Her maiden name changed from Smith to Moon in the second article, as well as the spelling of her first name. I am just itching to know who were the sources. Friends, family members, or the neighbor down the road who wasn't sure.

03 June 2010

Obituary--Flavia Conkey

This obituary I think is from the Hesperia newspaper of that time, and I think Mrs Robertson, my favorite obituary writer may have been moonlighting writing here as well as for the Fremont Times-Indicator. The tone just screams with her style of writing. See if you don't agree.

From 11 December1913, Hesperia newspaper:

Flavilla Conkey

Flavilla Dinsmore Peas was born in Wilton township, Franklin county, Maine, March 16, 1834. She was the daughter of Aaron and Sarah Lester Peas. She left Maine in her early days and came to Cleveland, Ohio where she was married to George W. Conkey and moved from there to Greenwood township, coming to the home of Mr. and Mrs. Lachlan MacCallum. Mr. and Mrs. Conkey were classed among the early pioneers because previous to his marriage Mr. Conkey had taken up land and operated a sawmill in that vicinity. In 1870 they moved to Montague where he was engaged as a filer in the Ferry & Dowling mills. In the spring of 1878 they moved from Montague to the Henry Becker farm in Dayton where they resided until 1885 when they purchased the farm known as the John Swain place. It was here that Mr. Conkey died 12 years ago.
Several years ago Mrs. Conkey disposed of the farm, moving to Hesperia where she has since resided, renting rooms of Mrs. Nellie Carlisle. Mrs. Conkey had no living relatives that anyone knows of, but the McCallum family all claimed her as their own. She was free and independent and came and went among us all as she pleased and "Aunt Flay," as we lovingly called her, gave all her girls many a lift, for she was the most capable woman of her years we ever knew.
When she was 76 years old, she went with Isabelle M Becker to Montana to visit Mrs. Lora Smith Edmunds, another of her girls, and went all through Yellowstone park, Later she went home with Mrs. Edmunds to Montana and came back alone.
We all loved to have her come to our homes and three weeks ago last Tuesday she went to the Becker home and visited until Sunday when Mrs. Jean Clark came after her taking her to the home of her parents, Mr. and Mrs. L. McCallum. On Thanksgiving day they all went to the Clark home for dinner in company with Mr and Mrs James James McCallum, of Hart. Mr and Mrs Ernest Noble and children, of Fremont made up the happy family party. Mrs. Conkey visited at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Clark until Sunday when she accompanied them to church, then came home with Mr. and Mrs. McCallum. On Sunday evening she retired in usual health and in excellent spirits. She arose next morning and lighted her lamp, when she must have been taken ill and lay back on the bed wher Mrs. McCallum found her in an unconscious condition from which she never rallied. Mrs. McCallum at once called her friends and a physician, who pronounced the disease paralysis and held out no hope from the first. She died December 5, at 9 a. m. All was done for her that loving hands could do. It seemed a strange coincidence that she should spend her last days in the home where she came as a bride when she first came to Michigan.
She loved us all and made life a little easier, a little more enjoyable and helped us to be kinder, truer and sweeter. Her life has been long and useful spent in doing for others and those who have been recipients of her kindly deeds live to testify of her noble christian life.
The funeral services were held in the Presbyterian church Sunday at 1:30 o'clock, Rev. Geo. VanWeingerden officiating. She was interred beside her husband in West cemetery. The beautiful casket was covered with roses, pink and hello chrysanthemums and a beautiful sheaf of wheat. This was the last mark of love and respect her friends could pay her.

I will pause a moment while those of you who are diabetics take another shot of insulin. Can you see why it has to be by Mrs Robertson? Super sweet and syrupy, and loaded with details. One of the reasons I love reading old obituaries.

02 June 2010

Mini Post--Maple Grove on Memorial Day

Since I have been posting about Maple Grove, I could not resist the chance to show the entrance as it looked this past weekend for Memorial Day.Both sides of the drive, and a way into the cemetery were lined with American flags. A beautiful sight.

01 June 2010

Thank you Cindy

Thank you for the award. Linda does 99.9% of this blog and I seem to do The Newaygo County Cemetery ladies more. She keeps it sweet while rant and tell my views more. We do have a interesting mix between the two of us.

Linda told me to tell of three ancestors it is difficult I have had people on both sides of the Salem Witch trials in Salem Massachusetts. One burned in "the Burning Times" in Europe. Hannah Dustin who was a Indian captive married into the Colby family. Oh so many great ones right down the the horse thieves, farmers and pastors.

ANTHONY COLBY was the first Colby in America that I can trace back to. He is interesting to research. Anthony Colby (November 13, 1792 – July 13, 1873) was an American businessman and politician from New London, New Hampshire. He owned and operated a grist mill and a stage line, and served one term as Governor of New Hampshire. For twenty years (1850-1870) he was a trustee of Dartmouth College.

LAURA INGALLS WILDER author of "Little House on The Prairie" books.

PARDON TILLINGHAST is another great one that I enjoy researching.Tillinghast settled in Providence, Rhode Island and on November 19, 1645 was admitted as a resident and allotted a share as a proprietor. He served as pastor of the First Baptist Church in Providence without remuneration from 1678 until his death in 1717. He was the author of "Water-Baptism Plainly Proved by Scripture to Be a Gospel Precept" (Boston, 1689). In 1700 at his own expense, Tillinghast built the first meeting-house of the First Baptist Church, the oldest Baptist congregation in America. In 1711 Tillinghast deeded the building to the church and described the church as adhering to Six Principle Baptist principles. Tillinghast worked as a merchant and served as a member of the house of deputies (representatives), and in various official posts within the town of Providence. Tillinghast died in Providence, Rhode Island, 19 January, 1718.

Oh so many tales from our ancestors it is hard to only tell of only a few.

We're Approved.

We here at the Cemetery Divas would like to thank In My Life, AKA Cindy Bergeron Scherwinski for awarding us the honor of being Ancestor Approved.
Since Sandy and I are more or less co-authors of this blog, I will try my best to live up to part of the responsibility, and let her handle the rest in a later post. So--ten things my ancestors have done to enlighten/surprise/humble me.
  1. Armenus Gilbert was my first discovered ancestor. I knew his son GGrandpa Roy, but never learned anything farther back. I was so delighted to find Armenus in the 1890 Civil War Union Veterans index. As a result, he holds a special place in my heart.
  2. Mary Sitts is an ancestor that was "gifted" to me by a distance cousin who shared her story when we met. This wonderful woman was captured by Indians during the Colonial times as a child, was raise by the Indians, eventually ransomed back, ran off with my ancestor and eventually became know throughout her community as "Granny Johnson."
  3. I was pleased to discover that, just like Sarah Jessica Parker, that I have a Salem Witch connection. The same day that Sarah Jessica's episode of Who Do You Think You Are? aired I discovered that Mary Clements Osgood was my 10th Great Grand Aunt in Law. Am I stretching the connection a little?
  4. I guess in the surprising category, I have been surprised to find no connection to Ethan Allen, as family legend states he was an uncle. Of course, in one place one of my Allens married another Allen, and we only have traced the one side. Perhaps on the other.
  5. Equally humbling/frustrating is the Gerald Ford connection. Again, family legend has him as related to my GGrandma Carrie Belle Ford. I know he was adopted by the Fords, but I have been unable match his Fords with mine. But we "have been told" that he attended Ford Family Reunions, when he was small. So the search continues. I wrote to him once to inquire, and he referred me to his daughter, but I was too shy to write again.
  6. Another family story was confirmed when I found a clipping from a 1899 newspaper stating that a Mecosta farmer was killed when he tried to hop a train. Sure enough, James Henry Samis had died when he lost a limb when the train ran over him. I later discovered, in a delightful bit of serendipity, that some friends of mine now live on his family farm.
  7. I have also been enlightened by my roots. When cherishing the supposed Ethan Allen connection, I felt that I was a long time American. When I could not confirm that it was rather disappointing. However I find that most of my family have been in North America for some time. My nearest immigrants are paternal GGGrandparents who came from Ireland. Even my Canadian roots are no nearer than Great-greats.
There, that just leaves 3 items for Sandy to enter. I'll let her find nominate more people, but for now I nominate as Ancestor Approved:
  1. Creative Gene, and
  2. The Genealogy Blog.
That leaves her 3 blogs to nominate as well.

Tombstone Tueaday--Maple Grove Cemetery-Up Close

As promised last time, this weeks post is also about Maple Grove, but this time, about the tombstones themselves. Maple View has many styles, old and newer, massive as shown below and much older and fragile.
This Buck family stone is so striking with its rough hewn look. The delicate flowers against the simple name give it a stark but striking appearance. I love this stone.
There are also the ones that need a little help. I am not sure if this stone simple suffers from a broken base or if there are more problems. I know that in the last decade or so there was some vandals that harmed some stones. I do not know if broken base here is from that or something else. It does give the row an old appearance with the various stones tipping in different directions.
Maple Grove has several of these "tree trunk" stones. This bordered plot features the large tree stump with the family name on a "branch" across the front. I am unable to make out the name on this stone. Along with the three smaller individual stones, did you notice the smaller stump-like stone in the plot? The detail on these tree trunk is always fascinating to me, with the bark, as well as flowers, including the potted lily at the base. Another plot in the cemetery not only has the tree trunk monument, but also a bench, also looking like tree branches.
A large detailed monument, befitting a family who was prominent in the early days of the town. I love the fine carving in the two panels flanking the large section.
While not all of the cemetery has the bordered plots, the ones that are there can be simple as the one around the "tree trunk" plot, or more massive as above. The huge Reynolds family stone anchors the sturdy border on their plot.

The family plot here, next the the large Sargeant stone is bordered with a smaller border, but with large corner stones.
Did you see this simple stone for Della Hain in the above plot? I love it. So simple, but it still has the name and dates. Time should be kind to this stone, so much of it is so natural.
Farther on is this family stone for the VanderWerp family. Such graceful curves and light carving around the cap. I like the shape of this stone.

A lovely old stone. I wonder though if it as old as the dates suggest. I almost think that it could be a replacement. Lovina (his wife) died in 1878 and Samuel F Henderson in 1909. Since Lovina died a year before the cemetery was established, I assume she was moved here. Perhaps in 1928 when many were transferred here from Pioneer cemetery. Perhaps the stone was obtained then. It just looks newer to me. The carving is not as deep, the flowers flatter than those shown on other graves, like the Buck and VanderWerp. Even the fact that is pink granite says "new" to me. What do you think?
And while not typical of Maple Grove, there are plenty of the old stones as well. This obelisk style for the Schotanus family is hard to read, with the writing on the top fading with the weather and lichens. Even so, weathered and tipping, it continues to commemorate the family who erected it.