Graves Day 1

18 April 2015

I started at Horton Cemetery, knowing a lot of my more immediate family was interred there. They are extremely organized with a large map and directory posted near the entrance. Their rows and columns are clearly marked so the plots are easy to find.

Upon leaving, I looked up nearby cemeteries. I wanted to go to Alcock Cemetery next, knowing that at least a handful of Johnstons were there. But upon clicking that icon, Google Maps took me to Willow Lawn cemetery instead. I believe the Shipps sent me there.

As I entered Willow Lawn (Plainfield), I was greeted with a LOT of Shipp graves. One I saw had just been buried February 2014, a year and 2 months ago. I believe this is the one I was sent to notice. This grave is in need of refilling and sod or grass seed. It seems nothing had been done with it since it was first filled in. There was still a (mostly decayed) “Grandfather” memorial wreath laying at the head. I need to find the family of this man, so I can notify them of the upkeep need.

I then went to Alcock. The Johnstons were easy enough to find, but I didn’t recognize the names. I suspect I will find them with a little more research.

A contact (distant cousin) said a lot of our Johnstons were buried in Richland Twp Cemetery, so that’s where I headed next. This cemetery is pretty out of the way and if I hadn’t been looking for it, I wouldn’t have found it. It is about ½ mile South of 346 on Ivanhoe Avenue. It isn’t marked in any way and is very small. I would estimate less than 50 marked graves. The Johnston memorial is prominent near the road. This is the only reason I knew I was in the right location. At the back of the cemetery there is a section of dirt (no grass) where multiple wooden crosses have been placed. They are not marked with names or any other indicators. They are small and fairly close together. I wonder if this has become a local pet cemetery. I need to look into the history of this location. I know my (#?)great grandmother started the cemetery with the burial of her 1st husband and 2 young children who all passed in 1961.

At this point, I realized I missed the graves of the Rusts when I was at the Alcock Cemetery, so I returned. I got out of the van and said, “Ok, Rusts, I know you’re here somewhere. Where are you?” It occurred to me to “let the wind guide me”. I let it push against my back as I walked the directions it was blowing. When the wind died down, I looked at my feet. I was standing next to the grave of Alonzo E Rust. I know my ancestors were with me.

On my way home, I noticed a sign for St. John’s Lutheran Church on 188 from 63 to Plainfield. I recalled seeing a Hazel Ihde being listed online, so on a haunch, I followed the signs to the church. Sure enough, the cemetery was across the road from the church. There seems to be a lot of children’s graves at this place. I found “Infant Dau of H & L Ihde” (who I believe are Herman and Louise), and Hazel. Hazel’s stone looks much newer than her early 1900s death date. I wonder who replaced it. I need to contact the church and see what information they can give me about those two graves.

All in all, I feel good about the work I have started with this Graves Project. I do feel very emotionally drained at this point. I also feel like the more answers I find, the more questions I have. Such is the life of a genealogist, I guess!

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