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."

Friday, June 27, 2014

How My Antiquing Adventure Turned into an Unexpected Tombstone Discovery

A successful summer trip for me would include researching at local libraries, looking for local artifacts at antique stores, and of course, walking through local cemeteries.  

What I don't expect would happen, though, is to find a tombstone sitting on the floor at an antique store!  But, that is exactly what did happen to me this past weekend in Wellington, Ohio! 

I photographed the mystery tombstone, and below are the pictures: 



This beautiful old double tablet white marble gravestone appears to be original for brother and sister, George D. and Lucy L. Stedman who died as children in 1861 and 1862, respectively.  Unfortunately, there is a heavy amount of cement encasing the back of the whole stone, and part of a red brick was attached to the top center suggesting that the marker was once part of a structure; in a wall perhaps at the Stedman family home?  There was no price tag on it, thankfully, and no one in the store knew why it was there. 

When I got home, I started my search on "Find A Grave" for George D. and Lucy L. Stedman.  I discovered that brother and sister, George and Lucy, and their parents, George S. and Lucy, and their brother, Charles M. Stedman, were all buried at the Spencer Cemetery in Medina County, Ohio.  So, I was pleased to learn where they were resting in peace and that they were with their family.  But, I noted no gravestone photographs are posted for any members of the Stedman family.
At this point, I knew I had to contact a Spencer Township Trustee about George D. and Lucy L. Stedman to learn if there are, indeed, gravestones at their gravesites at the Spencer Cemetery.
Fortunately,  I found Spencer Township trustee, Mr. Scott Neptune, and Mr. Tom Brown, who also works at the Spencer Cemetery.  Both were of great help with answering my questions.  
Thanking Tom Brown for visting the gravesites of the Medina County Stedman family and for taking photographs of the tall four-sided dark gray granite monument that includes all of their names. 
(See Tom Brown's pictures below)

Questions remain where the children's original stone was located for so many years.  Perhaps it was kept at the Stedman family homestead and was saved prior to its demolition? 
And, what about its future, if that can be known at this point, for this beautifully carved original marble gravestone for a brother and sister who died so young and so long ago.  

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