Fremont County, Iowa

Residents Buried in Antrim Cemetery

By Sherry Perkins


View from the Attic ~ A Weekly Series
Fremont County Historical Society
Week of June 28, 2010

When we last visited the folks buried in the Antrim Cemetery in the northeast corner of Fremont County, we speculated on the lives of some of the children buried there. This time the adults need to tell their stories.

Illness robbed the young of their chance at life, but on the other side of life's' coin, there is Robert Kellogg who lived to be 77 yrs. of age, James Haskell who died at age 90, his wife, Mary Haskell lived to be 83 yrs. old, lsaac Dils reached 84 yrs, and Massa Walker lived 81 years.

Harriet Townsend was the wife of G.H. Townsend and died in Jan. 1888 having reached the age of 67 yrs. & 11 months. Her husband was a Sergeant in Co. A, 9th Iowa Infantry. This says she kept the home fires burning while he fought in the Civil War. Was it a hardship to find fuel for heat and to raise food to feed the family? She could have dried the fruits and berries she harvested from the bushes and vines along the creek. She probably sat and pieced quilts by lamplight. She could possible have taken a buggy to the Deer Creek trading post or into Randolph itself to do her trading. She most likely knew Susan Antrim and they probably would have shared the hardships of that time.

Susan Antrim died in 1899 at 74 years of age. The Antrims were a large extended family who settled the area in 1856. Many were buried in this cemetery early on, however, when the Randolph Cemetery was formed, the living relatives reburied their family members in the new cemetery. There are still descendants of these Antrims in the Randolph, la. area. The only Antrims still buried in the old Antrim cemetery are Howard Antrim, Sarah Antrim and Francis Antrim.

Rebecca Pringle sounds like a person of interest. She was the wife of Rev. W. Pringle. I envision a kind, plain lady who helped her husband tend to his flock. They may have held church services in the Deer Creek school house or perhaps he was a circuit rider preacher. I expect she was always willing to lend a helping hand with picnics, dinners, barn raisings and funeral services. She would certainly have visited the sick bringing a covered dish or pot of soup. She knew how to darn socks, spin wool, find wild strawberries, butcher a hog, can vegetables, sew her clothes, comfort the bereaved, and offer support to her minister husband. She was important to her community and she should still be important to all of us, but her name and last resting place have been forgotten to the ravages of time. How sad!

The last burial in the old Antrim cemetery was Robert Kellogg (age 77) in April of 1896. Other names found among the whispering winds are Allely, Blakely, Gee, Welty, Bagley, Vaughn, Henry, Walker, Pringle, Foster, Conklin, Fitch, Clark, and Haskell.

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Author's Notes:

The dates and names included in this article were taken from the Fremont County Cemetery Record Book. The rest is the result of an active imagination on my part. But the truth of the article is that these were real people, living and dying in a new land, and now they have been all but forgotten and soon there will be nothing to mark their place in the place where they lie buried. Isn't there something we as a caring society could do to save Antrim Cemetery in Fremont County?


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