Jefferson County Online

by Verda Baird
Reprinted with the permission of The Fairfield Ledger
(Underlining done by this editor)


Baird continues cemetery tour

This is the fourth in a series of six articles about Jefferson County cemeteries written by local genealogist Verda Baird.

 The cemeteries in today’s report are scattered in Liberty, Locust Grove and Center townships.  Most were visited in October 2001, so if there has been any restoration work since then, I am not aware of it.

 - Liberty Township, Section 5, Smith Cemetery: burials from 1865 to 1898. Overgrown with tiger lilies; a tight fence of cattle panels enclose seven gravestones, two of which are fallen.

 - Liberty Township, Section 22, County Home Cemetery: burials were made there many years ago, however, no records survive that I am aware of. This cemetery may have been plowed up.

 - Liberty Township, Section 22, Thompson Cemetery: burials from 1869 to 1914. It is planted shut with corn or beans every year. It was nicely mowed many years ago, but not now. There is no gate, so just climb over the fence to find 16 graves. Six of those have fallen or leaning stones.

 - Liberty Township, Section 27, Cumberland Cemetery: burials from 1842-1929. The gate at the road is padlocked periodically, so drive or walk one-half mile south, unwire a cattle-panel gate, then open a third gate at the cemetery. It is nicely mowed, but 85 stones have fallen, are broken or cracked. It is the only cemetery I have seen with so many poured bases, but the stones are long gone.

 - Liberty Township, Section 36, Clinkenbeard family burials from 1845 to at least 1859 in the north half of the southeast one-fourth of this section. No stones were found in the 1960s, so no attempt was made to find them now.

 - Locust Grove Township, Section 1, Brooks Cemetery: burials from 1847 to 1958, then one more added in 1982, but none since. It is nicely mowed. Thirty-six of the 106 stones are leaning or have fallen. Three were over-grown with poison ivy or small mulberry trees.

 - Locust Grove Township, Section 5, Gray Cemetery: one burial of Mrs. Gray, who died in 1892. But I could not find the cemetery to take a picture. Can anyone lead me to it?

 - Locust Grove Township, Section 6, Smith Branch Cemetery: burials from 1847 to the present. It is mowed periodically. Thirty-one stones are leaning or laying flat on the ground.

 - Locust Grove Township, Section 10, Laughlin/Gantz Cemetery: burials from 1846-1952. A new fence was put in along the road in 2001, and the cemetery is nicely mowed. There are 111 stones, with 38 leaning, fallen or broken.

 - Locust Grove Township, Section 16, Walnut Hill Cemetery: burials from 1857 to 1978. The cemetery, back through several farm gates, is nicely mowed. It has 44 stones, with 25 of them leaning or fallen. The friendly horses had to check on our activity.

 - Locust Grove Township, Section 30, Holmes Cemetery: burials from 1854-1914. It is in the center of a big planted field, surrounded by old trees and brush. A total of six stones were found, but only one of them was standing.

 - Locust Grove Township, Section 31, Batavia Cemetery: burials from 1847 to the present.  It is nicely mowed. Some dedicated Lions Club volunteers have an ongoing project to keep it in tip-top shape.

 - Locust Grove Township, Section 36, McCleary Cemetery: burials were made from 1853 to the present. A small amount of brush was along the fence line. Since I had been there last, a flagpole has been erected. It is nicely mowed and stones OK.

 - Center Township, Section 18, Moorman Cemetery: burials from 1843-1933. From an old Fairfield Ledger clipping of September, 1961, at that time “You couldn’t crawl through on your hands and knees before we started (to clean it up).” This is on the south side of the Brookville Road and has been kept neat ever since and mowed periodically.

 - Center Township, Section 24, Armstrong: one large stone is located on the Maharishi University of Management campus. The husband died in 1879 and the wife in 1895. It is hard to spot between the tree branches. Thank you to Robert Tree for taking me to visit the area.

 - Center-South Township, Section 18, Walmer/Roth/Crawford burials from 1847-1946, south on Highway 1 on the east side. If you have never seen a white bronze metal gravestone, stop by as this cemetery has the largest one in the county, about six feet tall. You will wonder, as I did, “what made the unusual hole in the side?”

 With camera and notepad in hand, this project will continue now that the pleasant fall weather has arrived. I am getting anxious to get it completed.

The Fairfield Ledger – Page 2 – Tuesday, September 24, 2002

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