The earliest burials occurred down over the hill from the current location. Here the first church and graveyard were laid out. Later, due to the “rising of the creek, which swept away early graves” (as recorded in, Pathfinders) the church members moved the graveyard and the church to higher ground, where all that appears now is the remains of those buried there.
Photo taken by Rena Glover Goss in the Holmes Cemetery during a spring 2006 cleanup. L to R: Tammy Hosenfeld and Flora L. VerStraten. An old slate style tombstone and footstone dug up from underground.
Above: Terry Hosenfeld, left lifting a large tombstone using a tri-pod and strap. John Borkowski, right and several inmates and community service workers, assisting. Holmes Pioneer Cemetery, Smithfield Twp.
Above: Tombstone reset which is a Carter family member. It was face down and we were unable
To help chapter members and anyone else that may not understand the magnitude and mission of the Chapter Cemetery Preservation – Restoration Committee, we include the photos below. Flora VerStraten and Tammy Hosenfeld took these photos in Holmes Cemetery in late September of 2007. These photos are examples of our ability to save not only old pioneer tombstones, but to lift, reset, save, and read more modern tombstones. Those tombstones made of granite, that sit on unlevel ground tend to slide from their bases and may remain face down for decades. It is important to read these tombstones. If our chapter were not involved with the preservation-restoration portion of this project, many newer tombstones (dating 1900 up), with legible inscriptions now, would be gone in just a few short years. The two stage photos show how this is done. We don’t have access to large machines to lift tombstones. This is all done with volunteer manpower and includes using jacks, a tripod, sling, and a lot of manual labor!
Category: Ohio physical, cultural and historic features; Feature Name: Holmes Cemetery, Type: Cultural, Class: Cemetery, County: Jefferson, FID: 1041676, Coordinates: Latitude 40.2184029 and Longitude -80.8525882.
Scott/Dougherty/Stringer/Bines/Haynes/McKendry and Allied Families
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