TSGS Cruiser Blog

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Stumbling Along in a Cemetery

As anyone that has known me for very long, they know I do not often stumble when I am walking through a cemetery.  However, yesterday (23 April 2016), I was in a cemetery I have never been in before.  I was not there looking for family members.  I could not help myself, though, to look around at the tombstones and marvel at the history behind each and every stone.

My wife, Becky, and I traveled to Logan County, Kentucky to honor a Revolutionary War Patriot who fought in that war.  I do this as a member of the Sons of the American Revolution Color Guard.  We are generally invited by the family of a RW patriot to honor and mark the grave as an American hero.  We carry many Colonial flags and place wreaths as part of the ceremony.  A well-documented biography is read to those in attendance.  With much fanfare including music and musket salute, we honor that true patriot of American Independence.  I belong to the Ohio Valley Chapter that meets at Willard Library in Evansville, Indiana.  I descend from a Revolutionary War Patriot Thomas West, Jr. who migrated from Chatham County, NC around 1807 and settled in northeastern Christian Co., KY in the area known as the Ovil Community.  My father, Gaither Glennis West, was born there in 1918.

Logan County & Christian County are separated by Todd County.  There are some of Dad's family buried in Logan County, but not in the area of where we went yesterday, at least as far as I knew.  With my family being in Christian County since the very early 1800s, I have many relatives with many surnames living there with some buried in Christian, Todd & Logan counties.  Some of the surnames of my direct ancestors are: Ragers, Phipps, Flatt, Martin, Williams, Rogers, Woodis, Blalock, Black, Buckner, Simpson, as well as West.  In addition I have kinfolks with surnames of Henderson, Cannon, Powell, O'Daniel, Tucker, Dossett, Hightower, Morris, Perkins - just to name a few!  Okay, I need to get to the point of this blog.  My 2nd. great grandmother was Margaret G. Woodis the daughter of William H. Woodis who was 95 when he died in 1913.

Now, back to yesterday's trip to Lewisburg, KY in the Mt. Pleasant Cemetery where we were honoring Reuben Browning of the Rev. War, we parked a little distance away from where the ceremony was to be held.  Becky and I carried several items like the wreaths and the Indiana State Flag that I would be carrying as part of the Color Guard of 16 SAR men from Tennessee and Kentucky (I was the only Hoosier).  We walked along this one roll of graves several times to get everything to where it was needed. One trip, I stumbled as I stepped into a mole trail.  As I recovered, I almost stumbled over a grave marker with the name Woodis!!!  Thomas A. Woodis (and his wife Martha C. Woodis) born in 1852 making him about the right age to be Margaret's brother.  I would have to check my records!  This Thomas died in 1950 making him 98 years old when he died!!!

When I got home I checked my files finding many years earlier I had discovered that Thomas A. Woodis was living in Lewisburg, KY when his father had died.  And, that I found where he had died in 1950 and was buried in Mt. Pleasant Cemetery!  I had this information for over 20 years and did not realize that he or any of my family would be buried in this cemetery.  I am known as Indiana Bones, a cemetery geek... I guess that is why I nearly stumbled over this grave marker!  Indiana Bones (AKA: John G. West)

1 comment:

Ben West said...

Thanks, John,

for sharing. This was a Providentially serendipitous genealogical moment. That must have been fascinating! This is the reaction that I had when I found out that my Traughber ancestors on my great grandmother's side lived not far from the Wests and Herndons in Logan County, Kentucky.

Best,

Ben