Thanking The “Chillicothe Gazette” and Chris Balusik and Jona Ison for their in-depth research and reporting of the ongoing crisis that has overtaken Floral Hills Memory Gardens in Chillicothe, Ross County, Ohio.
This once registered cemetery, that is still active, has not had a legal owner for several years.
This situation of unwanted abandonment has meant plot owners, and family and friends of those buried at Floral Hills Memory Gardens — as well as additional help from caring and concerned volunteers — have all had to continually step in to maintain the grounds and gravesites.
This story describes the events causing this long crisis and how its effects are creating unbearable hardship and heartache for those who have friends and loved ones buried at Floral Hills Memory Gardens; a modern cemetery that once held so much promise to be a beautiful place of eternal peace and rest.
Answers need to come for Floral Hills Memory Gardens in Chillicothe (and also the Floral Hills Memory Gardens in Circleville), and soon.
“Memorializing the dead with grave markers, headstones and tombstones, family burial plots were marked with rough stones, rocks or wood as a way to keep the dead from rising. The deceased’s name, age and year of death were inscribed. From 1650-1900 square shaped tombstones from slate and sandstone evolved with churchyard burials. During the Victorian era (1837-1901) lavish and decorated gravestones included sculptured designs, artwork and symbols. Marble, granite, iron and wood were popular materials from 1780 to the present.
Mary Milne, professional genealogist, presents Epitaphs and Icons: Interpreting Gravestones on Monday, May 14, 2018 at the Avon Lake Public Library’s Waugaman Gallery. She has investigated cemetery records, carvings, and statues that provide clues to aid genealogy research. Learn how to interpret often-overlooked messages on gravestones.
All events, which are free, will be held from 1 to 2 p.m. in the Waugaman Gallery at Avon Lake Public Library, 32649 Electric Blvd.
Heritage Avon Lake is a local history organization that collects, preserves, and promotes oral, written, and physical history. For more information, visit www.heritageavonlake.org or call 440.549.4425.”
Reminder: The Next Volunteer Hands-On Cemetery Preservation Work Session at Greenfield’s earliest cemetery, The Old Burying Ground, will be coming up on Tuesday, May 15th, 2018 beginning at 9:00a.m. — it is a “stay as long as you can environment”.
The Old Burying Ground’s restoration/preservation efforts are now in their 5th year…and still going strong!!
Many of the historical society’s volunteers, namely, John King, Scott and Venus Andersen, Harold Schmidt, and Gloria Losey, have been volunteering since the beginning. Others have also joined them over the past years, including, Michael Lee Anderson and Jackie Doles, who are regulars as well.
You won’t find a more dedicated, and experienced group of caring individuals who are working to restore an early Ohio cemetery than these volunteers!
“Volunteer Session – May 8, 2018”
“What a beautiful day for work in the cemetery! We were able to realign more stones, repair a couple broken stones, clean some stones, and using the hoist, lift and reset a few of the heavier stones. Joining in were Scott Andersen, John King, Jackie Doles, Mike Anderson, Gloria Losey and her sister Karen, Harold Schmidt, and Avery Applegate (who came from Hillsboro to help).”
****How Can YOU Help?****
“Join us for an upcoming work session. You can stay as long as you like. We will help you get started if you have not participated previously. Tasks range from cleaning stones, straightening stones, recording information, etc. We post our scheduled sessions on the GHS website calendar“
The Old Burying Ground’s Ohio Historic Inventory # HIG-00314-02 with the Ohio History Connection’s Preservation Office.
***Sunday, April 22, 2018***
Beginning at 9:00a.m.
“Since 2014, the Old Burying Ground (OBG) in Greenfield, Ohio, has been undergoing work by a group of dedicated volunteers. Throughout each year, work sessions have been held by project leaders Scott and Venus Andersen and John King.
Contact John King at the Greenfield Historical Society if you plan to attend.”
John King’s email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Old Burial Ground next to Travellers Rest
“Please join other volunteers as we continue to make improvements to the Old Burial Ground.
We’ll start at 9:00 a.m. and work as long as we have the energy.
Come help and stay as long as you can.
Join us for an upcoming work session. You can stay as long as you like.
We will help you get started if you have not participated previously.
Tasks range from cleaning stones, straightening stones, recording information, etc.
We post our scheduled sessions on the Greenfield Historical Society website calendar.”
(Select photographs below
from the 2014 Old Burying Ground Project
by Linda Jean Limes Ellis)
Link to the document for:
Beth Wilson Shoemaker and her “A Grave Sight Cemetery Photographs by BAWS” posted a new link on Facebook, on March 3, 2018, connecting to her Past Lives Photography Blog (a link for it is also included in this blog) with an update detailing her visit to the almost lost and forgotten Mastin Family Cemetery in Clay Twp., Scioto County, Ohio.
Learning of Beth’s discovery led to my own recollection of someone who helped me in 1997 with documenting a relatively obscure Ohio cemetery — the Friends (Quaker) Cemetery in North Lewisburg, Champaign County Ohio.
I am writing about surveyor, Mr. James L. Murphy, who, himself, had paid an earlier visit to the Mastin Cemetery. Thankfully, he shared his research results on the USGenWeb site on November 16, 2007. He provided his listing of the inscriptions on the gravestones he found at the Mastin Cemetery. His work included surveying the little cemetery for the Ohio Historic Inventory . The cemetery information was added to the official records at the Ohio Historical Society (now the Ohio History Connection). The OHI number for the Mastin Cemetery is SCI0046813.
So, while searching for information on the Mastin (Mastin Family) Cemetery in Scioto County, I decided to do a “Google” search for James L. Murphy who I had not communicated with for several years following our exchanges regarding the Friends Cemetery.
Sadly, I learned that he had passed away on October 8th, 2012.
I dedicate this blog post to James L. Murphy whose assistance helped me complete the first Ohio Historic Inventory Form that I finished in 1997. Over the years, I completed seven more OHI forms for other early Ohio cemeteries.
Sharing James L. Murphy’s “Forgotten” Cemeteries and the Ohio Historic Inventory publication.
Please take a moment to read it, and if you feel so inclined, contact the Preservation Office of the Ohio History Connection to learn more how these forms can help protect Ohio’s almost forgotten cemeteries.