Several members of the Oswald Thomas family lie buried in Emminence Cemetery, in Henry County, Kentucky. Imagine my surprise when researching this couple I found they married in Harrodsburg, Mercer County! Oswald Thomas, son of Morris and Mary Thomas, married Mary Elizabeth Poage, daughter of William Poage and Ann Kennedy, April 13, 1793, in Harrodsburg, Kentucky. Their first three children were born here before their move to the Shelby/Henry County area.
I can’t say I have seen this on any of the older stones, but a list of the children of Oswald and Mary Thomas is on one side of the large stone in their burial plot. The thirteen children are Cassandra, Morris, Ann, Betsy, Lindsey, Paulina, Wilson, John A., Harriet, Preston, Edwin, Martha D., and Mary P. What a find for genealogists researching this family!
In the 1820 census of Shelby County all children are included – including the youngest, Mary P., who was born in 1818 – females, 2 under 10; 3, 10-15; 3, 16-25; and one 45+. Males, 2, under 10; 2, 10-15; 1, 16-25; and 1, 45+. Oswald owned 4 male slaves, 2 under 14; 2, 26-44; and 4 female slaves, 2, under 14; 2, 26-44.
Sadly, nine of the thirteen children died before their parents – Cassandra, Ann and Edwin in 1831; Martha in 1838; Harriet in 1839; Betsy in 1840; John in 1843; Lindsey in 1850; and Mary in 1852. What a loss!
Oswald and Mary lived very long lives for the time period! Oswald’s year of death is incorrect on the large stone – there are also smaller stones for Oswald and Mary – which were very likely placed at the time of their deaths, the larger stone added by the remaining children some years later.
Morris Thomas, named for his grandfather, does not have an additional stone, but a record of his life is on one side of the large stone.
Paulina is buried next to her parents. As for the children who died before the deaths of their parents, I don’t know where they are buried. It could be they are buried in this cemetery since we did not take photos of all the gravestones. I do know that Cassandra Thomas married a Crawford – perhaps a sibling of the man Paulina married.
As with any family we research, there is so much history. Although Oswald and Mary would have been listed in the 1850 census I could find nothing. Well, let me explain. I tried looking through the 1850 census for Shelby County, since there had been a hint of them living there in 1850, but an initial was given for each first name – how disappointing for anyone who is looking through that census! Not a first name for anyone! Couldn’t the census enumerator have realized how important that would be to all of us now? Happy research!