Emmelene, daughter of J & R Carothers, born August 18, 1841, died October 30, 1845. Old Presbyterian Cemetery, Bardstown, Nelson County, Kentucky.
Sunday Ritchey and I were out early for a day in the cemeteries of Nelson County. We went to early Mass, had a glorious pancake breakfast at Cracker Barrel, and were in St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery in Bardstown by 11:00. We also visited Pioneer Cemetery and the old Presbyterian Cemetery – also in Bardstown.
Our last stop was the Presbyterian Cemetery, just a small lot with the remains of about fifty people. Today I want to share a beautiful stone dedicated to two infants – Emmelene and Joseph Lewis Carothers. Since many of the stones in the cemetery are very faded and unreadable, this one stands out both in clarity and color.
Joseph Lewis, son of J & R Carothers, born March 25, 1845, died June 26, 1845.
As there are no other Carothers in this cemetery, at least of the readable stones, research gave us more information about this family. A DAR lineage for a woman in Bardstown listed James Carothers (1738-1826), who served as a private in the 2nd battalion of Cumberland County, Pennsylvania, in the the militia in 1781. He was born in Scotland and died in Huntington County, Pennsylvania. His son James Carothers married Nancy Neely. Their son, Samuel Carothers, married Ann Simmerman. Their son, James Carothers, married Rebecca Massie. Their son, William Burke Carothers, married Sue Yager.
In the 1850 Census of Nelson County, James Carothers, 51, is listed as a bridge builder, born in Pennsylvania. Wife Rebecca, 36, was also born in Pennsylvania, as well as the oldest daughter, Hannah, 16. Three other children were born in Kentucky, A. R., 11; William B., 7; and Josephine B., 4. Of course there is no listing for the two infants who died in 1843 and 1845.
This is the last census record for James Carothers, since he died in 1851.
The will of James Carothers is in Will Book 6, Page 553, of the Nelson County Clerk’s Office.
In the name of God, Amen. I, James Carothers, being persuaded in my own mind that it would redound to the interest of my wife and children to make a disposition of my property, do make, publish and declare the following as my last will and testament, hereby revoking all others made by me.
It is my will that all my just debts be paid and after they are paid off I desire my wife to have the use of all my estate so long as she remains my widow, with power to sell and convey any of my property to pay debts or to reinvest in other property or to use for her support and that of her family of children. Should she marry than I desire that my property to be disposed according to law of the state. I desire my boys to be put to trades so soon as they arrive at proper age.
I constitute and appoint my wife sole executrix to carry out this will. Witness my hand this 19 day of May 1851.
Attest. P. B. Muir, J. Wood Wilson
A writing purporting to be the last will and testament of James Carothers, deceased, was produced in Court and duly proven by the oaths of Peter B. Muir and J. Wood Wilson, subscribing witnesses thereto and ordered to be recorded.
Att. J. Danosin Elliott, Clerk, N.C.C.
In the 1860 Census of Nelson County, Rebecca Carothers, 45, born in Pennsylvania, with children William B., 17, and Josephine, 14. In the 1870 census Rebecca, 59, is living alone; she lived until 1890.
The death of two infants within two years was a terrible tragedy – unfortunately one endured by many parents during the 1800’s. The love for these children is evident in the beautiful stone erected in their honor – and the beautiful verse written on it.
So fades the lovely blooming flower, Frail smiling solace of an hour. So soon our transient comforts fly, And pleasure only blooms to die.
Sweet flower, transplanted to a clime, Where never come the blight of time. Sweet voice which hath joined the hymn of the undying seraphim.
Young wanderer who hath reached thy rest, With everlasting glory blest. Thy little bark in life’s dark sea, Has anchored in eternity.
Oh who would not thy brief career, With lamentation’s selfish tear. Or who would stay thy upward flight, To the bright realms of perfect light.
Come gentle patience smile on pain, Till dying Hope shall live again. Hope wipes the tear from sorrows eye, And faith points upward to the sky.