Russell Plot – Big Spring Cemetery


Big Spring 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

IMG_0511In memory of Sarah Russell, wife of Samuel Russell, born January 24, 1772, died July 1827.

IMG_0505There are two or three small stones within the walled area – but we could find no information on them.

IMG_0523Samuel Russell, born January 27, 1793, died July 27, 1853

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, Jeffersontown, Kentucky.

IMG_0527James McClaskey, Senior, 1756 – January 1805

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 Spring 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!


7 thoughts on “Russell Plot – Big Spring Cemetery”

  1. I recently visited this cemetery and was intrigued by the walled grave site. But did not want to enter. Your description was very informative and answered some questions I had on this site.

  2. I am a descendant of James McClaskey and he was indeed in the Revolutionary War. We still have the family farm. Our family came from Antrim County Ireland to Pennsylvania then to Kentucky.

  3. Samuel Russell immigrated from Belfast with little known about the time between his birth and appearing in Virginia records just prior to the formation of KY as a state. I am unaware of living descendants in the area and my branch went to Wyoming and then Missouri to ranch. There are numerous Russells buried at the cemetery who descended from Samuel and Sarah Russell. My 98 year old father visited the grave in May of this year. His name is Samuel Russell.

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