Exploring Almost Forgotten Gravesites in the Great State of Ohio

Dedicated to cemetery preservation in the great state of Ohio

"A cemetery may be considered as abandoned when all or practically all of the bodies have been Removed therefrom and no bodies have been buried therein for a great many years, and the cemetery has been so long neglected as entirely to lose its identity as such, and is no longer known, recognized and respected by the public as a cemetery. 1953 OAG 2978."

Monday, June 28, 2010

Pontius Chapel Cemetery, Washington Township - Pickaway County, Ohio

Scenes from June 20, 2010 visit to the Pontius/Pontious Chapel Cemetery located on the Circleville - Stoutsville Road.
Note photograph of the mound of broken bits of gravestones.  It is located in back of the church. 

Friday, June 18, 2010

"Newark Advocate" story about the upcoming Association for Gravestone Studies Conference to be held in Granville, Licking County, Ohio - June 22 - 27, 2010

Click on title to link to a great story in the "Newark Advocate" (June 18, 2010) about the upcoming "AGS" Conference to be held in Granville June 22 through the 27.  

Beth Santore deserves a huge thank you for her role in bringing the AGS Yearly Conference to Ohio.  

Thank you Beth!!

Beth hosts the website: Graveaddiction.com

Quoting Beth from the final paragraph in the news story:

"I think learning about the different reasons people study gravestones will give people more reasons to look at them," she said. "If we can get more people interested in cemeteries, they will be interested in taking care of them."

The key word is interest !  Without it, Ohio will lose more history to the elements of time, weather, vandalism, and most sadly, neglect at its burial grounds. 

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Toledo State Hospital Cemetery Reclamation Project

Click on title to link to a May 16, 2010 "Toledo Blade" story about the dedication of an Ohio Historical Society marker at the Toledo State Hospital Cemetery. 

I found this story via the Facebook page - "Abandoned Cemeteries"

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Canton, Stark County, Ohio - TV News Story about mystery gravestone

Click on title to link to a news story and short video featured on Cleveland/Akron TV station WKYC about a Canton couple who turned over a sidewalk stone in their back yard only to discover it is actually a broken headstone for someone who died June 26, 1852.  The person's age looks to have been 51 years, 4 months and 7 days (birthdate calculated - February 19, 1801).   

It is thought that the stone could have once been part of a small cemetery for the Shorb family who lived in the area. 

In the book, "Ohio Cemeteries - 1803 - 2003" published by the Ohio Genealogical Society, on page 606, is listed: 
"Shorb - Location: West of Saint Johns Church.  Between McKinley Avenue and High Avenue.  Stones 2." 

The 1850 U. S. Federal Census shows several Shorb family members living in Canton, Ohio, but I could not locate any that were listed with a birth year of or close to 1801. 

My thanks to friend and neighbor, Rick, for bringing this story to my attention.  

Friday, June 11, 2010

Ohio Genealogical Society - New library location and contact information

As a reminder, the Ohio Genealogical Society, often referred to simply as "OGS" is moving its library to a new location in July, 2010. 
Per the OGS website:
New address:
611 State Route 97 West, Bellville OH 44813.
"Our old building phone number 419-756-7294 and our new building phone number 419-886-1903 will be active during this period.
We do not know if this will be our final published new phone number."
Email for the Cemetery Committee at the Ohio Genealogical Society is:

cemeterycommittee@ogs.org to contact them with any cemetery related issues you may have.

"History of Norton Cemeteries" - Norton, Summit County, Ohio

Tombstone Inscriptions Spencer Cemetery - Spencer Township, Medina County, Ohio

Click on title to access Tombstone Inscriptions for the Spencer Cemetery in Spencer Township, Medina County, Ohio.  This PDF document is currently at 193 pages.  It is found on the main site for the Medina County Chapter of the Ohio Genealogical Society.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Solving a mystery at the Butcher Cemetery in North Lewisburg, Champaign County, Ohio

Once again I am greatly indebted to Mr. Ralph Lowell Coleman, Jr. for sharing his extensive research assistance in solving a mystery of a memorial posted on "Find A Grave" for a "Siddy Ann Baker Poling" who was incorrectly posted as having been buried at the inactive Butcher Cemetery (AKA Walnut Grove AKA North Lewisburg Cemetery) on Tallman Street in North Lewisburg, Champaign County, Ohio.
Below is Ralph's message that clears up the mystery of where "Siddy Ann" was really buried.  It demonstrates how easily mistakes are made when we go with our 'best guess' and fail to verify our information:
The burial is for SADIE ANN BAKER POLING, wife of James POLING, daughter of John Barker, who was born 7 January 1832, and died 17 Mar 1922, at the County Infirmary in Marysville, Union County, Ohio. The burial was under the direction of the Morey and Creviston Funeral Home, Marysville, with burial on 18 March 1922 at Maple Grove Cemetery, North Lewisburg, Champaign County, Ohio. She is buried in Square 80, Lot 4, Site 4...one of four sites she purchased in the square on 16 February 1907, after the death of her husband, James. This sale is recorded in the Maple Grove Cemetery Book of Deeds, Volume A, page 306. She purchased the four sites (one full lot) for $20.00 (NOTE: at the time, under the original numbering system used, the Lot Number was 299. This numbering system changed in recent years, and lots are now numbered 1, 2, 3 or 4). Her husband is buried in Square 80, Lot 4, Site 3.
These sites are approximately 5 rows to the east and north of the old North Lewisburg Precinct vault, just north of the southern entryway to Maple Grove Cemetery off of Gilbert Road.
There is no marker stone at the gravesite for either Sadie or James POLING.
Hope this information helps.
Ralph Lowell Coleman, Jr.
Cell: 801.564.4926