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."

My Favorite Poems

By Linda Jean Limes Ellis
January 23, 2014

An old tombstone cannot be made new again,
No matter how hard we try.
There is no Tombstone Time Machine to turn back the clock,
So please don’t believe the lie.
We scrape and scrub the stone’s eroded epitaph,
Then rinse it well and pat the surface dry.
We see their names, ages, birth and death dates are now more clear.
But wait, before we take our photographs, is that their voices that we hear?
A moment is spent to bid our respectful goodbye, before we turn and depart,
Knowing that wherever we are the tombstone will always hold a piece of our heart.
We will return to that lonely tombstone because we just can’t stay away,
And bring with us more tools to work again on another day.
The tombstone belongs to another time,
Though it's standing in our sight.
Please treat it as your own,
Mindful to always strive to preserve it right!


Today we walked where others walked
On a lonely, windswept hill;
Today we talked where other cried
For Loved Ones whose lives are stilled.
Today our hearts were touched
By graves of tiny babies;
Snatched from the arms of loving kin,
In the heartbreak of the ages.
Today we saw where the grandparents lay
In the last sleep of their time;
Lying under the trees and clouds -
Their beds kissed by the sun and wind.
Today we wondered about an unmarked spot;
Who lies beneath this hollowed ground?
Was it a babe, child, young or old?
No indication could be found.
Today we saw where Mom and Dad lay.
We had been here once before
On a day we'd all like to forget,
But will remember forever more.
Today we recorded for kith and kin
The graves of ancestors past;
To be preserved for generations hence,
A record we hope will last.
Cherish it, my friend; preserve it, my friend,
For stones sometimes crumble to dust
And generations of folks yet to come
Will be grateful for your trust.

Your tombstone stands among the rest
Neglected and alone
The name and date are chiseled out
On polished marble stone
It reaches out to all who care
It is too late to mourn
You did not know that I exist
You died and I was born
Yet each of us are cells of you
In flesh, in blood and bone
Our blood contracts and beats a pulse
Entirely not our own
Dear Ancestor, the place you filled
One hundred years ago
Spreads out among the ones you left
Who would have loved you so
I wonder if you lived and loved
I wonder if you knew
That someday I would find this spot
And come to visit you
The Irish Poem: 
"One Final Gift"

(by D.H.Cramer)

Scatter me not to the restless winds
Nor toss my ashes to the sea.
Remember now those years gone by
When loving gifts I gave to thee.
Remember now the happy times
The family ties are shared.
Don't leave my resting place unmarked
As though you never cared.
Deny me not one final gift
For all who came to see.
A simple lasting proof that says
I loved and you loved me.

"Your life was a blessing, your memory a treasure. You are loved beyond words and missed beyond measure" 

By: Anonymous

Come look with me inside this drawer.
In this box I’ve often seen. 
At the pictures, black and white.
Faces proud, still, serene.
I wish I knew the people.
These strangers in the box.
Their names and all their memories
Are lost among my socks.
I wonder what their lives were like.
How did they spend their days?
What about their special times?
I’ll never know their ways.
If only someone had taken time
To tell who, what, where or when,
These faces of my heritage
Would come to life again.
Could this become the fate
Of the pictures we take today?
The faces and the memories
Someday to be passed away?
Make time to save your stories.
Seize the opportunity when it knocks.
Or someday you and yours could be
The strangers in the box. 

From Cleo Mary Buss
Shared with permission:
"Poem I wrote in 2009..."
Through the ornate rusty gates, corroded hinges sing….
The quietude is utter, there is no living thing…
The tombstones stand at attention, sentinels over their piece of earth…
The flowers dried and withered, no longer of any worth….
Death is absolute here, even unto the trees….
Gnarled stark branches ,devoid of any leaves…..
Care has not been taken, to manicure this place…
The only things are of the dead, nary gone without a trace….
Bramble bushes border this brown and barren field…
The peaty loam conceals with care, its decaying yield….
Eroded marble angels and granite gravestones tilt….
Listening to the cadence of the wailing winds lilt…
The departed are at rest here, in this neglected gloom…
The angel of death has woven their names,
on eternity’s shadowy loom…
Epitahs (shared by Tom Raney - June 18, 2017)
" Long have I dwelt forgotten here. In pinning woe and dull despair; This place of solitude and gloom, must be my dungeon and my tomb " 

" Life is for the living. Death is for the dead. Let life be like music, and death a note unsaid "