Big Springs Cemetery in Nelson County, Kentucky, is two miles east of Bloomfield on Highway 52. It is a beautiful place, in the country, with a mixture of old and newer stones. One plot that intrigued us greatly was the Russell plot – Samuel and Sarah Russell. A stone wall surrounds the plot – but there is no entrance! No gate, no open area!
It was a bit high for me to vault over, but Ritchey was up to the task! The stones were very faded, but he took photos of each little area and I think I have deciphered the birth and death dates – or at least a portion of each!
Samuel Russell, born January 1, 1759, died August 20, 1820
Two gravestones just outside the stoned area were interesting. The above stone is the son of Samuel and Sarah. In the Nelson County death records for the time period is listed “Samuel Russell, age 61, single, born and resided in Nelson County, the son of Samuel and Sarah Russell, died near Chaplin July 27, 1853, of consumption.” Notice at the bottom of the stone, which you wouldn’t see if it was actually in the ground, is the name of the company and place the gravestone was made – Wells, Jefferstown, Kentucky.
Mr. McClaskey is buried on the outside of the Russell plot, but up next to the rock wall. His birth date is within three years of the elder Samuel Russell. Did they come to Kentucky together? Were they in the Revolutionary War? They were the correct age!
There are other Russell’s and McClaskey’s buried in Big Springs Cemetery. They very well could be related.
I believe Samuel and Sarah would smile that after almost 200 years someone is still interested in their burial plot and what there lives were like. Let’s not forget any of our ancestors that came before us. But glory in the fact that they were people just like us, who suffered hardships and happiness along the way. But lived out their moment in time, making the world what it is today!