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."

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Dean Cemetery - South Salem, Buckskin Township, Ross County, Ohio - Progress Report from Scott Andersen

Per "Find A Grave" -- Dean Cemetery:  

"Cemetery notes and/or description:
This cemetery is located east of the center of Lyndon, on a farm once owned by James Dean, then Will Stinson, and then Morton Titus. The cemetery is over grown, and is on the edge of a field currently used for farming."


Scott Andersen has been photographing the gravestones during his working visits at the Dean Cemetery since 2009.  

He has posted all of the currently documented burials at the Dean Cemetery on the website "Find A Grave."  Most memorials include a gravestone photograph.

Here is Scott's latest report on his project to restore the grounds at the Dean Cemetery:

July 25, 2012:

"Made it out to the cemetery today.  Things have grown up a bit, but its all soft stuff in the areas that we cut last fall.  So, I was able to clear it back out without much difficulty using a weedeater.   I ran out of string after about 20 minutes of work, so I'll have to go out again later in the week and finish up.  In that 20 minutes I cut down about what it took us all day to get through the first time.  So all the work we did last fall wasn't for naught.   Getting it trimmed back to that level will be fine for now, and I'll make another big push when the weather cools off, and perhaps I can burn some of the brush in the adjoining field."  


Regarding the photograph below:

"The photo was taken in an area that I didnt get to cut today. We did have this spot cleaned out last fall. Grows fast!  But, it trims back easy."

Per the publication, "Ohio Cemeteries 1803 - 2003", by K. Roger Troutman, Editor, published by the Ohio Genealogical Society in 2003, on page 559, the Dean Cemetery is listed as: "Dean-Old Presbyterian (10341) Cond: N. Owner F. Location:  South of Lyndon.  From SR 28 at Lyndon go 0.6 mile south on Lyndon Salem Road to just north of Buckskin Creek.  East of Lyndon Salem Road 0.4 mile."  

The Condition "N" designates "neglected" to describe the current status at the Dean Cemetery.  The full definition for "N" is found on page 4 of the "Ohio Cemeteries 1803 - 2003" book:  

N:  "Neglected.  These cemetries suffer from benign neglect.  They probably have not been cleaned up or restored in the last ten years or more.  They are slowly disappearing for lack of human intervention to maintain them.  The term abandoned, used previously in the OGS cemetery books and in other publications, is now included in the term neglected."  

Scott deserves acknowledgement and thanks for his returning to the Dean Cemetery on a regular basis to remove the overgrowth; and to locate, clean, and photograph the gravestones.  

He has shared his gravestone pictures on the "Find A Grave" memorials he has created which greatly benefit those who are interested in learning more about the early area pioneers who are interred at the Dean Cemetery.  

I'm confident that in the future, the description of the condition at the Dean Cemetery will be upgraded from "N" to "R" -- meaning it has been Restored -- restored because Scott took the time and effort, on behalf of all of those buried at the Dean Cemetery, proving that indeed someone does care.