Tag Archives: gravestones

First Members of New Providence Presbyterian Church – Born Before 1800 – Volume 4

The third installment of the original members of New Providence Presbyterian Church, Mercer County, Kentucky, who were born before 1800 – and there are quite a few – we’ve only scratched the surface!  The previous installments can be viewed – Volume 1 and Volume 2 and Volume 3.

Priscilla, wife of Robert McAfee, died February 19, 1837, in the 66 year of her age (born 1771).

James Coleman, born October 6, 1776, died January 5, 1844.

Mary Bunton, wife of James Lyons, born April 10, 1777, died May 27, 1850.

Ann, wife of Col. George McAfee, born January 11, 1777, died April 7, 1851.

In memory of Col. George McAfee, born April 28th, 1777, died May 28th, 1819, aged 42 years.

Robert McAfee, died January 30, 1849, in the 72nd year of his age (born 1777).

Nancy Buchanan, consort of A. Buchanan, deceased, departed this life October 1st, 1810, aged 32 years (born 1778).

Thomas Cleland, D. D., born May 22, 1778, died January 31, 1858.

George Brown and Anne Hemphill Buried In Maple Grove Cemetery

George Brown, February 28, 1819 – October 30, 1897, aged 78 years, 8 months.  Maple Grove Cemetery, Nicholasville, Jessamine County, Kentucky.

from The History of Jessamine County, Kentucky, Young, 1898

George Brown was born in Nicholasville, Jessamine County, February 28, 1819, and died October 30, 1897.  He first attended school at St. Joseph’s, Bardstown, Kentucky, afterward at Centre College, Danville, and finally at Transylvania University in Lexington.  Upon leaving college he at once engaged in the business of the manufacture of hemp.  His father had been one of the pioneers in hemp manufacture in Lexington and the son acquired a practical knowledge of the business early in life.  Owning a large number of slaves, which he used in his business, he made it extremely profitable and he continued in the manufacture of hemp for many years.  In the fall of 1853 he moved to a farm on Jessamine Creek, about two miles from Nicholasville, and in conjunction with his farm operated a hemp manufactory.  He married Anne M. Hemphill in 1843, who proved to him an affectionate, faithful and helpful wife.  She was one of the model housekeepers of Jessamine County and as neighbor and friend had no superior.

Mr. Brown was a man of intense activity; domestic in his taste, he loved his home and added to it those things which made it attractive.  He was a model husband and father.  When twenty-two years of age, he united with the Nicholasville Presbyterian Church, in the faith of which he continued to the end of his life, and at his death he was the oldest living member of the organization.  He was converted under the preaching of Rev. David Todd.  He was efficient and earnest in his Christian work and was always one of the liberal and helpful members of the congregation.  He was a pure, good man; long president of the Jessamine County Bible Society, he was not only active but useful in the Bible work and has left behind him no enemies and host of friends.

While in Maple Grove Cemetery in Nicholasville, earlier this year, we came across the beautiful stone for Anne Hemphill Brown.  This is one of the most beautiful stones I’ve encountered. 

Buried between her husband, and son, Victor, the carving of the image of the woman is amazing.  The flowers, lace, details of the dress and cross she wears around her neck is extremely vivid and clear.

In memory of Anne M. Hemphill, wife of George Brown, June 9, 1826 – March 29, 1888.  ‘A kind and true wife, a dear and fond mother and a faithful friend.  We cherish her memory.’

The love and regard held for Anne is definitely evident in the carving on the front of the stone.  The sentiment on the back of the stone just reinforces this.

Carother’s Infants Buried In Old Presbyterian Cemetery In Nelson County

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.

                                                          James Carothers

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.

Reid/Read Family Gravestones at Old Paint Lick Presbyterian Cemetery


Dr. James Reid, born April 12, 1787, died October 26, 1848.  E. D. [Elizabeth D. Murrell] Reid, wife of Dr. James Reid, born October 17, 1794, died August 8, 1871.  Old Paint Lick Presbyterian Cemetery, Garrard County, Kentucky.


Belle Read, wife of William Shearer, and daughter of James and Elizabeth D. Read, born August 6, 1835, died September 26, 1871.  ‘Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord, from henceforth you saith the spirit that they may rest from their labors and their works to follow them.’ 


Mary E., daughter of Dr. J. and E. D. Reid; and wife of Dr. W. C. Montgomery, born November 11, 1824; died October 4, 1879.

Our Latest Adventure – Metcalfe, Barren and Edmunson Counties

Last week the weather was beautiful!  The temps were just right for taking cemetery photos and the sky was a gorgeous blue!  What more can one ask?  Since this journey has begun, several years ago, we have visited 54 counties and taken photos of gravestones in at least one cemetery in each county – in some, two or three cemeteries.  So on this day we added Metcalfe, Barren and Edmunson Counties.  57 – very close to half of the 120 counties in Kentucky!  Starting in our home county of Mercer we have spiraled out until there is at least a two hour drive to get to new counties!

In Metcalfe County we started with the Edmonton Cemetery on Durham Street.  A rather small cemetery, it still contained some older gravestones.


You can see Edmonton Baptist Church in the background, although it is not affiliated with the cemetery.


R. H. Evans, died November 15, 1880, aged 45 years, 11 months.  Edmonton Cemetery, Metcalfe County, Kentucky.

I loved this stone – the wreath encircling the clasped hands, and ‘darling’ written above.  Unfortunately with initials it is difficult to know if there is a woman or man buried here.  What do you think?


Center-Asbury Cemetery

Center-Asbury Cemetery is located in the northwestern part of Metcalfe County on Highway 314.  As you can see there are some old graves.  This cemetery is surrounded on three sides by a corn field.


John Snider, born September 14, 1777, died March 20, 1865.  Center-Asbury Cemetery, Metcalfe County, Kentucky.

On to Barren County and its county seat – Glasgow.  We headed for the Glasgow Municipal Cemetery on Leslie Avenue.


Glasgow Municipal Cemetery

Glasgow Cemetery is huge!  It spreads out in every direction from where I took this photo – to the left and right, up over the hill and beyond, and behind me!

img_1288John Gorin, Sergeant, Continental Line, Revolutionary War, War of 1812, May 15, 1763 – August 5, 1837.  Glasgow Municipal Cemetery, Barren County, Kentucky.

How can I resist sharing with you the grave of a Revolutionary War soldier – and a soldier of the War of 1812!

As we came out of the cemetery and down Leslie Avenue to US68, Big Moose’s BBQ was right across the street.  If you read my blogs often you know how much we love to eat!  Cemetery hunting requires food!  I had a pulled pork sandwich with the best sweet potato crunch – not a lot of sugar, but just enough to hint at the sweetness, and lots of pecans! – and a great cole slaw.  After a good lunch we were ready to hit the road again – to Edmunson County!

The first cemetery I wanted to visit was Hill Grove Missionary Baptist – in the northeastern corner of the county, on the Nolin River.  Driving into the county we came through the Mammoth Cave area, eventually taking a ferry across a creek/small river to get to our destination.  And it was worth all the driving!


Hill Grove Missionary Baptist Cemetery

This small cemetery is wonderfully maintained by the parishioners and families.  Almost every grave is covered with a green carpet, and decorated with shells and flowers.  There are ten tall flag poles with flags blowing in the gentle breeze in remembrance of soldiers who fought in various wars.

img_6037John Wilson Carroll, Private, 8th NC Infantry, War of 1812, 1793-1862.  Hill Grove Missionary Baptist Cemetery, Edmonson County, Kentucky.

img_6025W. R. Wilmoth, born April 16, 1847, died August 7, 1922.  Hill Grove Missionary Baptist Cemetery, Edmonson County, Kentucky.

Our next stop, in the same county, was Grassland Cemetery on Hwy70 and 1365.


Grassland Cemetery

Grassland is a small cemetery, located on a hill, in a rural area.  As you can tell from the photo, shadows were starting to form.

img_6080Joseph A. Higdon, Private, CO B, 35th Kentucky Infantry, Civil War, 1845-1917.  Grassland Cemetery, Edmonson County, Kentucky.

It was time to head back to Mercer County.  Our journey took us through a small part of Warren County – and there we found Smiths Grove Cemetery – unexpectedly, but what a delightful surprise!  Located in the northeastern part of Warren County, I believe on Hwy 101, just outside of the town of Smiths Grove.

img_6143Smiths Grove is not a huge cemetery.  The graves are arranged, not in straight lines like most cemeteries, but in circles and groups.

img_6092In memory of L. W. Rasdall, born December 19, 1838, died March 10, 1883.  ‘Remember man as you pass by, as you are now, so once was I.  As I am now, so you must be, prepare for death and follow me.’  Smiths Grove Cemetery, Warren County, Kentucky.

As we came back through Metcalfe County we stopped at one more cemetery, since the sun was not yet set.  Cedar Flats Cemetery is on Hwy 163, south of Edmonton.

img_6159Salley Froedge, June 10, 1847 – August 12, 1928.  Cedar Flats Cemetery, Metcalfe County, Kentucky.

As you can tell from the photo the shadows were deepening and home was calling!  Our day was productive – we visited three new counties (we had previously been to Warren County) and seven new cemeteries!  A good days work!

Eliza Jane ‘Jennie’ Cullins


Jennie E., wife of J. C. Cullins, born October 7, 1845, died September 21, 1876.  Smith Grove Cemetery, Warren County, Kentucky.

Just looking at this stone struck me as exceptionally sad – I’ve never seen a more poignant carving on a gravestone.  The top of the stone portrays a gravestone with a willow tree above, the husband resting his hand on the stone, holding his daughter’s hand – and two little boys on the other side of this stone.

Jennie, Eliza Jane Smith Cullins, was born October 7, 1845, and died September 21, 1876 – just thirty-one years of age at her death.  Jennie married Joseph C. Cullins, January 2, 1866, in Warren County, Kentucky.  Jennie was the daughter of Henry D. Smith and Elizabeth Ann Ray.  Ten years after her death her father was buried next to her, in Smith Grove Cemetery.

Four years later, in their first census together, there is still just the two of them – Joseph was 32, born in Georgia, and Jennie was 24, born in Kentucky.  Later that year a daughter, Georgia, was born.  In 1873 Henry Smith Cullins joined the family, named for his maternal grandfather.  And two years later another son, Joseph C., named for his father.

I do not know the cause of Jennie’s death.  Life was precarious at best in those times.  But her gravestone gives a shining example of how much she was loved.  The people at the top of the stone are her family – loving husband, daughter and sons!  The verse at the bottom is very difficult to read but it starts – ‘Darling Jennie, I will try to make your happy home’ and on the third line, ‘trusting it may be again so that’.

I lost a dear friend Sunday, two years younger, and this brings those emotions back.  She is out of pain and in heaven with her Lord.  But I will always miss her!

Selected Gravestones from Old Paint Lick Presbyterian Cemetery

The following are selected gravestones from the Old Paint Lick Presbyterian Cemetery located in Garrard County, Kentucky, on Hwy 52 very close to the Madison County line.

img_3695William F. Wylie, born September 14, 1846, died December 6, 1903.

img_3696J. L. Wylie, born January 14, 1849, no death date.  Nannie M. Wylie, born October 23, 1837, died November 11, 1911.

img_3697Jennie A., wife of A. R. McLean, born November 11, 1849, died August 9, 1874.

img_3698John W. Walker, born February 25, 1802, died December 5, 1865.  Jane M., wife of John W. Walker, born October 20, 1805, died March 25, 1895.

img_3705Annie E., daughter of W. S. and F. T. Walker, born March 9, 1874, died October 29, 1875.

img_3717Jemima Royston, wife of W. L. Kavanaugh, 1843-1903.

img_3719William L. Kavanaugh, born March 16, 1841, died July 11, 1896.  ‘A true friend.’