Sketch of Mound Cemetery
["Sketch of Mound Cemetery, Marietta, Ohio" by William Dawson Cotton, 1900 - Transcribed by AFOFG]
There is no spot west of the Alleghenies of more historic interest than the old Mound Cemetery of Marietta, for in it are buried many of the Pioneers of the Great Northwest. Sturdy and true were the men who bade "Good-bye" to the old Bay State, and wended their way westward to establish a new home in the wilderness. Under the leadership of Rufus Putnam they followed the Indian trail over the mountains, and in rude bateaux floated down the Ohio to the mouth of the Muskingum, where they landed on the 7th of April, 1788, and laid out a little city which they called Marietta in honor of the Queen of France, Marie Antoinette.
Too much praise cannot be given to that little band which thus laid the foundations of the great state of Ohio. It was composed of remarkable men. "Energetic, industrious, persevering, honest, bold and free, they were limited in their achievements only by the limits of possibility." Many of them were officers of the Revolution. At the end of that long struggle, finding themselves al-most penniless and with occupations gone, they hailed with delight the idea of founding a colony in the far away country on the Ohio. They had often heard of its beauty and richness from their old commander,
General Washington, who, as a young surveyor, had explored its vast forests and picturesque rivers, and later had bought large tracts of land in its fertile valleys. He was much interested in the Ohio Company, and wrote: "No colony in America was ever settled under such favorable auspices as that which has just commenced at Muskingum. Information, property and strength will be its characteristics. I know many of the settlers personally and there never were men better calculated to promote the welfare of such a community."
The place selected for the little town contained some of those remarkable earthworks whose origin is shrouded in mystery. The Indians could give no information concerning the mounds and squares which lay on an elevated plain above the east bank of the Muskingum, save that they were the remains of an ancient people, who had long since vanished from the face of the earth. The settlers were much interested in these vast monuments, which showed that they were erected by a race of men greatly superior to the aborigines of the country. The sides of the ramparts and mounds were covered by grand old trees, the growth of centuries. One day, in the presence of Governor St. Clair, some trees were felled, and the number of concentric circles counted in order to ascertain their age. One of the largest, a poplar tree, contained 452 circles, and therefore was more than 452 years old. The Rev. Manassah Cutler, from whose journal the above facts were taken, wrote, "Admitting the age of the present growth to be 450 years and that it had been preceded by one of equal size and age, which as probably as otherwise was not the first, the works have been deserted more than 900 years. If they were occupied 100 years, they were erected more than 1000 years ago."
The worthy pioneers gave evidence of their wisdom and culture by laying out broad streets and ample lots, and above all by reserving some of the most perfect of the ancient earthworks for public grounds.
With their country's struggle for liberty still fresh in their minds they could not honor sufficiently the name of the beautiful Queen of France, who had helped them during that weary period by her love and sympathy; and at an early meeting it was decided to call the square which contained the conical mound Marie Antoinette Square. It bore this name until 1791, but after that it was designated simply as Mound Square. The Great Mound, or Conus, as it is sometimes called, is as perfect today as it was when first discovered by Putnam's little band. Its perpendicular altitude is 30 feet, and its base is a regular circle, 375 feet in circumference. It is surrounded by a moat
15 feet wide and 4 feet deep, and defended by a parapet 20 feet thick and 585 feet in circumference. What a wonderful piece of work it is! What a witness to the skill and intelligence of a prehistoric people! What lessons it teaches in constancy and patience when we realize that all the earth used was probably carried from some distant place in little baskets, and that as it rose foot by foot it was moulded into shape by the hands of the laborers.
Is it the colossal sepulcher of some mighty chieftain, typifying by its magnitude and symmetry the nobility and beauty of his life? Was it erected as a memorial of some deadly conflict, on the very spot where the young braves shed their blood for their nation's cause? Was it an altar built to placate an avenging God and thus to ward off famine and pestilence from the land, from whose sacrificial fires the cries of hundreds of victims ascended to the Great Spirit? Questions like these must have arisen in the minds of our forefathers as they viewed this curious work from the parapet, or climbed its sloping sides to the top, where a great white oak more than 100 feet high spread out its branches in perpetual benediction. They made an opening near the summit of the mound and found under a large flat stone the bones of an adult lying in a horizontal position on thin stones placed vertically a few inches apart. The opening was filled up for it was feared that the contour of the mound would be destroyed by further excavation and the search has never been renewed.
In order to preserve these noble remnants of ancient skill, the founders of Marietta resolved to lease them "for as long a time as they were not wanted for the uses for which they were reserved." Marie Antoinette Square was leased in 1791 to Gen. Rufus Putnam for 12 years, with the following conditions: "He would surround the whole square with mulberry trees with an elm at each corner. The base of the mound to be encircled with weeping willows, with evergreens on the mound. The circular parapet outside of ditch to be surrounded with trees; all within the Square to remain undisturbed by the plow and seeded down to grass, the whole enclosed with a post and rail fence."
The settlers had not been long in their new home before death claimed some of their number. The first to be taken was Major Cushing's little daughter Nabby, who died Aug. 25, 1788. She was buried on the ridge south of the present Oak Grove Cemetery, where the house of the late Beman Gates now stands.
On the 15th of January in the following year, Gen. Varnum was carried to the same spot, and buried with military honors. Cut off in his prime, at the early age of forty, his loss was deeply felt by his fellow townsmen. He was a Brigadier-General in the Revolution, had made a brilliant record in the old Congress, and at his death was one of the Judges of the Supreme Court of the Northwest Territory.
The order of procession, copied by Dr. Hildreth from the original manuscript of Winthrop Sargant, secretary of the territory, was as follows:
Mr. Wheaton bearing the sword and military commission of the deceased on a mourning cushion.
Mr. Lord bearing the cicil Commission on a mourning cushion.
Mr. Mayo with the diploma and order of Cincinnati on a mourning cushion.
Mr. Fearing bearing the insignia of Masonry on a mourning cushion
Griffin Green, Esq.
Private citizens, two and two.
Indian Chiefs, two and two.
The militia officers.
Officers of the garrison at Fort Harmar.
The civil officers.
This reservation, which had been selected by Dr. Cutler, one of the Directors of the Company, was used for the burial of the dead till the breaking out of the Indian War in 1790, when it was abandoned because of its long distance from the Block house. In the Autumn of 1867, the remains of twentyeight persons were removed from the sunken graves of the old burying ground to Oak Grove Cemetery, and a granite monument was erected to mark their last resting place. During the Indian War in June, 1792, Gen. Benjamin Tupper died and was buried between Third and Fourth streets, opposite the Great Elevated Square. The site was commanded by the cannon at Campus Martius, where most of the settlers lived during the four years struggle with the Indians. A description of the funeral, given by Mr. John Heckewelder, who was visiting in Marietta at the time, throws a vivid light on the manners and customs of the little town which then numbered less than three hundred people. Mr. Heckewelder writes as follows:
"Gen. Tupper, who had died the day before, was buried on the 17th. In consideration of the four different offices which he held, firstly as General in the service of the United States in the late war; secondly as member of the Cincinnati order; thirdly as director of the Ohio Company; and fourthly as master among the Freemasons, therefore, because of these positions, great honors were shown his remains at the funeral. I will mention what was most remarkable to me. After a company of soldiers had arrived with drum and fife from Campus Martius, and all the Freemasons had gathered, the latter entered the house of the deceased where the remains lay. They stayed for about half an hour, during which time a guard had been placed at the doors of the house. When they came out they were furnished with tools according to their different degrees. They wore leather aprons, skillfully embroidered with red, blue or green ribbons around the edge, and bearing the design of a square and compass in the center. A few wore only a clean white leather apron. Two men with drawn swords placed themselves on both sides of the door through which the body was to be taken, and when at last it was brought forward and placed in the square, the Masons gathered around it, and those with swords stood between it and the people so that no one could draw too near. There was a lid with hinges at the head of the coffin which could be opened. On the coffin were laid: first, an open Bible with square and compass; second, a costly sword in a black sheath, lined with red velvet; third, four black boxes, about ten inches square; fifth, green bushes or asparagus greens. On the four boxes, two at the head and two at the feet, his four written commissions were laid. Some of the Masons wore red, others blue ribbons fastened at the breast. Two of them stood with long, round, beautifully carved wands in their hands, to which a blue ribbon was fastened at the top. Two others held finely carved candlesticks, two and a half feet long, containing white wax candles, at least two inches in diameter. All these arrangements having been completed, the clergyman, who was also a Mason, offered up a prayer, of which however I could understand but little as he spoke in a very low tone. A very mournful dirge was then sung, and the order of the procession called out. Hereupon the coffin was closed and every Mason broke off a little branch of the greens which lay upon it, and stuck it in his coat. The Bible, with the square and compass, the pocketbook, the four black boxes with the papers resting on them, and the sword, were now carefully lifted up, and carried by as many men as were necessary, and also the coffin, which had been covered by a large white cloth. The soldiers who had stood in double rank from the gates during the whole of the ceremony with stacked bayonets were now in part stationed by their corporal where the procession passed. After the other part had performed various evolutions before their officer, the drums were muffled and covered with a black cloth, and at a given signal they marched off, while a funeral march was being played. The Masons who had not been occupied with the care of the remains marched behind them, hand in hand, two and two. These were followed by those carrying hammers, measuring lathes, the two round wands, columns, etc., and finally came the clergyman, and behind him a man carrying the open Bible with both hands, and four men, each carrying a black box. The coffin now followed. On each side of the coffin stood a Mason, the Master walking beside it, and the mourners behind him. As they neared the grave, the soldiers who stood in double file approached it, went through a military drill and then retired. Hereupon the masons drew near to the grave, and. after a given signal knelt down around it. The clergyman then said: "Lord! now lettest thy servant depart in peace," etc. He pronounced several passages from the Scriptures applicable to the servants of God and closed with the words: ''After labor sweet is rest.'' The Mason then arose and threw their green twigs on the coffin, and the grave was immediately filled up. The guards of the different stations were now relieved, and all returned in the former order, the Masons reassembling in the house, for the closing exercises."Years afterwards the remains of General Tupper, and of his son Major Anselm Tupper, who was buried beside him in 1808, were removed to Mound Cemetery, where two plain marble slabs mark their graves.
Major Tupper was probably the youngest hero of the Revolution, for soon after the battle of Lexington, when not twelve years old, he enlisted in the regiment of which his father was Major. With true military spirit he bore the trials and perils of war, and when he was promoted the document embodying the recommendation was indorsed by General Washington. At the close of the Revolution Major Tupper was engaged as surveyor with his father, who had been appointed by the Government to lay out the lands in the territory northwest of the Ohio. After the survey of the seven ranges was completed, he returned to Massachusetts, but in the spring of 1788 he recrossed the Alleghenies as one of the forty-eight pioneers, and became Marietta's first schoolteacher.
In 1798 the little settlement was scourged with smallpox, and a daughter of Governor St. Clair, a son of Major Putnam, and a number of others were buried just above Wooster, west of the place where the Presbyterian Church now stands. These, together with two other interesting characters, Mathew Kerr and Captain Josiah Rogers, who were killed by the Indians in 1791, were reinterred in Mound Cemetery in 1839, but their graves were not marked. Captain Rogers was an officer in Gen. Mogan's rifle corps at the taking of Burgoyne. He was one of the original pioneers and because of his bravery was employed as spy, or ranger, during the Indian War at Campus Martius, his duty being to range the country between the Muskingum and Duck Creek, making a tour of fifteen or twenty miles a day.
When the Indian had buried his hatchet the settlers returned to their homes, and the little town resumed its accustomed activity. Occasionally their busy, happy lives would be saddened by the death of one of their number, for they were bound together by no common ties and seemed like one large family. They continued to use the sand hill on Wooster street for a burying ground, and as late as 1849 some old tombstones could be seen there. But it must have been a dreary place, and when in 1800 some one made the happy suggestion that the Mound Square would be an appropriate and beautiful spot for a cemetery, the idea was received with great favor.
When the town was laid out, the Directors of the Ohio Company, faithful to the Ordinance of 1787, which encouraged education and the maintenance of religion, "set apart twenty sections of their own land for the support of school and religion in that part of the territory that was deeded to them by Congress and paid for in land warrants or soldiers' rights. The Directors donated to the people of each of these townships section 16 for schools and section 29 for religious purposes." In 1800 the Territorial Legislature appointed Ministerial Trustees whose duty it was to take charge of the funds which accumulated from the taxation on the land set apart for religion, and as Mound Square lay in this section it came under their control.
Rufus Putnam, who, it will be remembered, had leased the Mound Square in 1791, for twelve years, at once ceded it to the town and in consequence of such cession the Trustees granted the square to the town to be improved as a burying ground. No formal action was taken, however, until May 3rd, 1803, when according to the records of the Ministerial Trustee, it was resolved "that Mound Square be reserved for the following purposes, viz: a part thereof for erecting public buildings thereon and the remainder for a public burying place to be laid off by the direction of the Trustees." But nearly two years before that time the first burial had taken place, that of Col. Robert Taylor, a soldier of the War of the Revolution, who died Sept. 30th, 1801.
In the spring of 1811 the citizens, wishing to make the title good, directed the Council in a town meeting to make application to the Ministerial Trustees for a permanent lease of Mound Square as a public burying ground. Accordingly on the 7th day of May the Board resolved that that Mound Square be reserved to the town of Marietta for the purposes above mentioned, free of rent for ninety-nine years, renewable forever.
Thanks to the good sense of our fore fathers, the first clause of the resolution of 1803 came to naught, though at one time it seemed likely to be acted upon. This was in 1822, when the proper location for the new Court House, recently destroyed to give place to a more modern structure, was creating much discussion. On March 27th of that year, the citizens, by order of the Town Council, voted upon the following resolution:
"Resolved, by the Town of Marietta, in town-meeting assembled, that the Town do appropriate so much of the west side of the Mound Square as will be adequate to the quantity of land at present owned and occupied by the county at and near the present Court House, for the purpose of erecting the County buildings thereon."
There were 75 votes cast for the resolution and 116 against it.
The Rev. Daniel Story was the second person buried in Mound Cemetery. In 1804 he was carried there by loving friends, who appreciated the sacrifices he had made for their sake. On the monument erected by his relatives in Massachusetts seventy-four years after his death are the words, "He was the first minister of Christ who came to labor in the vast field known as the Northwest Territory, excepting the Moravian Missionaries." Mr. Story's life was not an easy one, for his pastoral charge included besides Marietta, the settlements which were springing up on the two rivers. In a little log canoe, he paddled down the Ohio to Bellepre (sic), or ascended the beautiful Muskingum twenty miles to Waterford, where the people, gathered in the shade of a fine old elm, heard him gladly.
Sunday in Marietta an hundred years ago was pre-eminently a day of worship. Our forefathers, in whose veins ran the blood of the Puritans, considered it a privilege to be able to attend divine service three times a day, and thought a sermon of two hours none too long. To prepare sermons for such an audience as gathered in the northeast blockhouse of Campus Martius was no small task, for many of the men who sat on the hard, wooden benches were graduates of Harvard or Dartmouth, and had listened to the most eminent preachers of the day. However Mr. Story gave universal satisfaction, and it is said that his sermons were practical and scholarly and fully equal to those of the best preachers of New England.
A few months after Mr. Story's death, in February, 1805, the same friends marched again to Mound Cemetery and laid to rest Col. Ebenezer Sproat, of the Massachusetts line. Col. Sproat was the first sheriff of Washington county and opened the first court ever held in the territory, which, according to Dr. Hildreth, was an august spectacle, conducted with great dignity and decorum. Col. Sproat, preceded by a military escort marched with his drawn sword and wand of office at the head of the judges, governor, secretary, &c, to the block-house of Campus Martius, where the court was held. The Indians, watching the little procession went its way up the Muskingum, admired greatly the commanding figure of Col. Sproat, who, being six feet, four inches high, towered head and shoulders above his companions. They always called him hereafter Hetuck, or Big Buckeye, and thus originated the title now applied to the natives of Ohio.
The next hero of the Revolution to be buried near the Mound was Lieutenant Joseph Lincoln, one of the "forty-eight immoatals." On an old fashioned tomb of sandstone in letters almost illegible can be traced these words: Here Are interred the remains of Joseph Lincoln A native of Gloucester, Mass. Who departed this life Sept. 21st 1807 In the 47th year of his age.
In 1811 Major Ezra Putnam, the oldest of the Pioneers, passed away. He was a soldier in the French and Indian War and was one of the officers in command of the provincial troops at the taking of Cape Breton in 1758.
A year later, General Joseph Buell, another of the Pioneer settlers, found here his last resting place. He was Sergeant in the U. S. Army in 1785, and arrived at Fort Harmar on the eighth of May of the following year. He took an active part in the affairs of the new territory and was made State Senator in 1803, Associate Judge in 1804 and Major General of Militia in 1805, which position he held until his death.
Not far from the graves of these old soldiers stands a plain, granite monument which bears this simple inscription: Gen. Rufus Putnam, A Revolutionary Officer And the leader of the Colony which made the First settlement in the Territory of the Northwest. Born April 9, 1738 Died May 4, 1824.
General Putnam's whole life is expressed in that one word, "Leader," for he was truly a leader of men. On the battle field, in the arduous enterprise of founding a colony in the wilderness, in the political life of the new state, in the civil and religious life of the little community where he dwelt, his was the mind that directed, his the hand that led. Well has he been called "The Father of Ohio!'' May her sons ever honor his memory.
Not far away from his old comrade-in-arms lies brave Comodore Whipple, to whom the honor is given of firing the first naval gun in the cause of American Independence. Commodore Whipple gave not only his services to his country but thousands of dollars which were never repaid. "It is presumed that no other one amongst the military or naval commanders of the Revolution expended as much for the men under their care, with the exception of that extraordinary and good man, the Marquis LaFayette." On the white marble monument erected in his memory by Mr. Nahum Ward can be read these words: Sacred to the memory of Commodore Abraham Whipple whose name, skill and courage will ever remain the pride and boast if his country. In the late Revolution he was the first on the sea to hurl defiance at proud Britain gallantly leading the way to arrest from the Mistress of the ocean, her scepter, and there to wave the star-spangled banner. He also conducted to the sea the first square-rigged vessel ever built on the Ohio opening to commerce resources beyond calculation.
Another naval officer who "dared-to hurl defiance at proud Britain" is buried in this interesting old place. A brown stone slab which rests about three feet above the ground on six stone pillars bears the following epitaph, in which an old error is evidently corrected: In Memory of Capt. Nathan Saltanstall 1727-1807 Was first Commandant of Fort Trumble. During the Revolution He commanded the Warren Frigate and ship Putnam, but was not Commodore of the fleet burned at Penobscot.
West of Captain Saltanstall lies another officer of the Revolution, Colonel Ichabod Nye, who cast in his lot with the little colony in the summer of 1788. The curious observer learns from his tombstone that He was the head of one of the first families which came from New England to Marietta where he continued to reside until his death, November, 27, 1840. At which time he had been longer resident the head of a family than any other person in Ohio.
Col. Nye had ever the good of the town at heart."He was intensely interested in preserving the ancient works and in 1837 called the attention of the citizens to the "Big Mound," which had been badly neglected for some years. The sextons had used the grounds as pasture for their sheep and the tracks made had been washed into great holes by the rains. Through Col. Nye's efforts over $400 were raised and the needed improvements made in the following year. Stone steps were placed on the north side of the Mound, which was restored to its original shape and protected by a railing at the summit.
In 1869 the remains of Capt. Josiah Monroe, of the Revolutionary Army, were removed from the first burial ground to Mound Cemetery. Captain Monroe was a member of the Ohio Company, and Marietta's first Postmaster.
Four other Revolutionary soldiers lie buried around the beautiful Mound, not so noted perhaps as those above mentioned but all worthy of our deepest gratitude. Andrew McCallister is one of these, who died in 1816, in the 75th year of his age. "A Patriot of the Revolution" and "Soldier of the Revolution" are the simple inscriptions on the stones which mark the graves of Capt. Stanton Prentiss and Nathaniel Dodge, tributes to their memory as expressive as a long list of glorious deeds would be. On a quaint little slab erected in memory of John Green, who died in 1832, is this quaint little stanza, which tells of a life well spent:
"A soldier from his youth, first in the cause
That freed our country from a tyrant's laws,
And then through manhood to his latest breath,
In the best cause which triumphs over death."
Here, too, lie thirteen soldiers of the War of 1812, for the little town of Marietta though in an isolated position heard her country's call and sent forth her sons gladly to the conflict.
"Major Alexander Hill recruited a company of infantry in Washington County for the U. S. service and was personally in command of the company when actively engaged in repelling the night attack of the British at Fort Erie in August, 1814." His tomb, which contains the above information, also states that he made the coffin for the first interment in the cemetery in 1801.
Soldiers of the Mexican War sleep in this hallowed spot and on Decoration Day the ground is dotted with little flags which mark the graves of the brave men who died to preserve the Union.
Side by side with the defenders of our nation lie men who in times of peace gave strength and character not only to their little village but to the great state of Ohio. A large sandstone monument is erected in memory of one of these patriots, Return Jonathan Meigs, third Governor of Ohio. He was a son of Col. Return Jonathan Meigs, a famous officer of the Revolution who commanded the third division in Benedict Arnold's terrible expedition to Quebec. It may not be amiss to give here the history of the name which was made illustrious by father and son. "At Middletown, Conn., just about one hundred and sixty years ago, Jonathan Meigs, a young man, was dismissed by his lady love, and more than once was this done. At last, when he was going away, looking back with the saddest of tears in his eyes, her heart relented, and in a soft voice came, 'Return Jonathan.' Hence their first born Return Jonathan Meigs."
Return Jonathan Meigs, Jr., at the age of twenty-three came to Marietta in 1788, and from that time was one of her most honored citizens. He was Governor during the War of 1812, and held more offices than any other man who ever lived in Washington Connty. On his tomb is the following inscription: Here lies The body of His Excellency Return Jonathan Meigs, Who was born at Middletown, Conn., Nov. 1765, And died at Marietta, March 29, 1825. For many years his time and talents were Devoted to the services of his country. He successively filled the distinguished places of Judge of the Territory Northwest of the Ohio, Judge of the Supreme Court of the State of Ohio, Senator in the Congress of the United States, Governor of the State of Ohio, and Postmaster General of the Uuited States. To the honored and revered memory of An ardent Patriot, A practical Statesman, An enlightened Scholar, A dutiful Son, An indulgent Father, An affectionate Husband. This monument is erected by his mourning widow, Sophia Meigs.
This beautiful tribute to Gov. Meigs was written by his friend, Dr. John Cotton, who sleeps near him in this White City of the Dead. Dr. Cotton was a worthy descendant of the famous John Cotton, the "Father of Boston." He came to Marietta in 1815 and for more than thirty years was one of her most successful physicians.
He was a man of fine education, having graduated with honor from Harvard College, and he used his knowledge for the benefit o f the community, often lecturing in public and ever trying to stimulate the cause of education. When Marietta College was incorporated, in 1835, he was one of the original trustees and for many years presiding officer of the board. In 1824 he represented Washington County in the Legislature and was elected by that body an Associate Judge of the Court of Common Pleas, which appointment was renewed from time to time until his death in 1847.
Long before Dr. Cotton passed away the little town mourned the loss of Dr. Jabez True, who for thirty-five years had lived the unselfish devoted life of the country doctor. Arriving at Marietta early in the summer of 1788, he built a little log office for his books and medicine a short distance from the bank of the Muskingum, and began his arduous work. It was many years after the settlement of the Ohio Company before roads were opened, but that did not preven t Dr. True from going on his errands of mercy. He was always ready to hear the call of the distressed, and would swim his horse across the streams, and follow the old Indian trails marked out by blazes on the trees, often at the peril of his life. Gentle, sympathetic, and generous, he was called the "Gaius" of Marietta by his loving friends, who ever cherished his memory.
Another physician rests in this old cemetery to whom we cannot be sufficiently grateful. Dr. Samuel Prescot Hildreth came from his home in Massachusetts to Marietta on horseback in 1806. He was a successful physician, an investigator and writer upon scientific subjects, but his fame rests chiefly on the two works entitled "Pioneer History" and "The Lives of the Early Settlers of Ohio." He collected the material for these volumes from old manuscripts and the lips of the few surviving pioneers, and by so doing preserved a great deal of important history and many valuable anecdotes, which otherwise would have been lost.
Somewhere in the shadow of the Great Mound sleeps David Everett, who came to Marietta in 1813, and was editor of one of the earliest newspapers, The American Friend, of which Timothy and Daniel Hand Buell were proprietors. He died in the same year, but the few months passed in the little town gained for him many friends who, we are told, "ever dwelt upon his remembrance with melancholy sensations." Mr. Everett was a man of great literary ability and an author. But while his essays on moral and economical topics have long been forgotten, a few lines of a little poem which he wrote for a small boy to speak at a school exhibition more than one hundred years ago, are often quoted, tho their origin is seldom known.
"You'd scarce expect one of my age To speak in public on the stage, And if I chance to fall below Demosthenes or Cicero Don't view me with a critic's eye, But pass my imperfections by. Large streams from little fountains flow, Tall oaks from little acorns grow."
It is impossible to record in this sketch even the names of all the noble men who have passed away after years of usefulness, and are now sleeping in this old burial ground; but a few more of the oldest inhabitants must be mentioned because of the prominent part they took in everything which pertained to the welfare of Marietta.
Mr. Nahum Ward was a gentleman of the old school. All who remember him speak of his polished manners, his generous nature and his great hospitality. He had the honor of entertaining the Marquis de La Fayette in his home when that famous General was traveling down the Ohio in 1825. He added much to the beauty of our town by planting many of the fine shade trees, and in 1857 he built and endowed the Unitarian Church, which still remains from an architectural standpoint the finest building we possess.
Three generations of the Woodbridge family are buried here. Judge Woodbridge, the first merchant of the Great Northwest, came to Marietta early in 1789, and was for some time a partner of the ill-starred Blennerhassett. His son, Dudley Woodbridge, Jr., who continued his business for more than fifty years, sleeps beside him, and his grandson, George Morgan Woodbridge, "poet, philosopher, statesman, orator, each in all and all in each," passed away last spring, after eighty-six years of active life.
Here are the graves of Col. Ichabod Nye's sons, Arius and Anselm Tupper, who were born in Campus Martius in the last decade of the eighteenth century. Growing to manhood and then to old age in the little town which gave them birth, they were esteemed by all for their strength of character, well stored minds and honest hearts. They were both much interested in religion, and the Episcopal Church of Marietta owes its being to the influence of Mr. Arius Nye.
Much that is interesting could be written concerning Caleb Emerson, Charles and Samuel Shipman, Colonel Mills, Major Hart, Jason Curtis, William Warren, John Lewis, Weston Thomas, Louis Soyez, Daniel Protsman, James Dunn, Theodore Scott, James Booth, Samuel Maxwell, J. E. Hall, Wyllis Hall, William Fay, Daniel Bosworth, David Skinner, Daniel Hand Buell, Major Clark, Judge Whittlesey, Captain Burch, and General Hildebrand.
Their names, though now seldom heard, are remembered with reverence by the old citizens of Marietta who realize how much the present generation owes to their lives of service.
Many quaint old epitaphs can here be found, though often faulty in rhyme, always expressing the sentiments so characteristic of our forefathers, a firm faith in the Unseen and a realization of the shortness of life.
Their keen sense of responsibility can be seen from the following lines which are inscribed on a number of tombstones.
Behold and see 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.
All you that to this stone draw near To be informed who's interred here If rich or poor think soon you must Like us be summoned to the dust.
In its early days Mound Cemetery was far removed from the noise and bustle of the little village, but the years have brought many changes, and the once sequestered spot now lies in the very heart of the city. The hum of the electric car disturbs its calm repose, and the merry voices of school children as they pass to and fro echo round the beauful mound. But its gates seldom open to admit the silent procession of mourners, for the streets of this City of the Dead have been thickly settled for many years.
NORTH OF MOUND.
1. Colonel Robert Taylor.
2. General Joseph Buell.
3. Major Ezra Putnam.
4. General Rufus Putnam.
5. Andrew McAllister.
6. Rev. Daniel Story.
7. Colonel Ebenezer Sproat.
8. Commodore Abraham Whipple.
9. General Benjamin Tupper. 10. Major Anselm Tupper.
1. Lieut. Robert Lincoln.
2. Major Alexander Hill. (1812.)
3. Captain Saltanstall.
4. Nathaniel Dodge.
5. Gov. Meigs.
6. Col.Ichabod Nye.
SOUTH OF MOUND.
1. Captain Stanton Prestiss.
2. John Green.
Graves of Captain Monroe and Captain Rogers not marked.
[Sketch of Mound Cemetery, Marietta, Ohio by William Dawson Cotton, 1900 - Transcribed by AFOFG]
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