Saturday, June 20, 2015

White Oak Cemetery

Today's Walk Through the Tombstones is at White Oak Cemetery in Bloomington, Indiana.  This cemetery is kind of a hidden gem near downtown.  It is just off of 7th Street and in very good condition.  

This cemetery is maintained by Bloomington Parks and Recreation and is only one of two that is  (the other being Rose Hill Cemetery).  The number of interments ranges from 350-626.  I am not sure which is the more accurate number as some of the stones were broken and some seemed to be missing when we were there.  The cemetery was established in 1837 and was originally known as the United Presbyterian Cemetery.  The oldest grave in the cemetery is that of Christopher Moffett who died in 1811.

We visited the cemetery on January 17, 2015.  It was a cold day but the sun was shining brightly.  Our stroll through the cemetery was a pleasant one.  

These are pictures of the front and back of the Pioneer Memorial.  It commemortates early settlers who were buried in the smaller, family cemeteries throughout Monroe County who are now lost or destroyed.  It lists 132 early settlers that were buried from 1815-1947.  Some of these names may be reflected at Allen's Creek Cemetery which is over in the Hoosier National Forest.  Many of the graves from smaller cemeteries in that area were moved there to save them when the US Army Corps of Engineers were building Monroe Lake.


Our first stop today is at the grave of Mary Ammermon.

Born: 1789
Died: August 19, 1865

I have not found any information on her as of yet.  There is no listing for her birthplace or where she lived, nor is there any familial information.


Next is the marker for Robert Barr Campbell.

Born: July 30, 1820, Clark County, Indiana
Died: November 4, 1849, Bloomington, Indiana

He was educated at Indiana University, gaining a Bachelor of the Arts degree and a Master of the Arts degree.  At the time of his death in 1849, he was studying Theology at the Theological Seminary of Associated Reformed Presbyterians Church in Oxford, Ohio.  

Robert is mentioned in the book "Indiana University, Its History, 1828-1890" written by Theophilus A. Wylie, 1890.


This is the grave of Sarah Cherry.

Born: 1786
Died: April 17, 1879

She was married to David Cherry (?-1861), who is also buried in White Oak Cemetery.

The open book on her marker likely symbolizes her faith, but could also symbolize good deeds done in life being recorded.

Her obituary was printed in the Bloomington Courier, April 29, 1879:

"Mrs. Cherry, aged 94 years, died suddenly on Tuesday last at 2 o'clock p.m.  She died sitting in her chair and was, apparently, well a few moments before.  The funeral too place today (Saturday) it is believed 15 years ago today when her husband was buried."

She had three children:
Eliza A. Cherry (1815-1864) - buried in White Oak Cemetery, Monroe County, Indiana.
John J. Cherry (1821-1880) - buried in White Oak Cemetery, Monroe County, Indiana.
Margaret Cherry (1823-1895) - buried in White Oak Cemetery, Monroe County, Indiana.


Here we have the grave of Martha Jane Bonner Millen.

Born: July 14, 1809, South Carolina
Died: February 28, 1843, Monroe County, Indiana

The willow tree on her grave likely symbolizes sadness or mourning.

Her son, John C. Millen is also listed on the stone.

Born: 1842
Died: 1843

She was married to William Moffatt Millen (1801-1892) who is also buried in White Oak Cemetery.

She is shown as having three children:
Martha M. Millen (?-1841) - buried in White Oak Cemetery, Monroe County, Indiana.
Eliza H. Millen (1831-1895) - buried in White Oak Cemetery, Monroe County, Indiana.
John C. Millen (1842-1842) - buried in White Oak Cemetery, Monroe County, Indiana.


Now to the grave of Lettitia "Letty"P. Strong Moffett.

Born: September 11, 1808
Died: May 27, 1875

She has an open book on her grave marker which probably symbolizes her faith or possibly good deeds done in life.

She was married to John Moffett (1799-1868), who is also buried in White Oak Cemetery.

There were three children born to the couple:
Christopher D. Moffett (?-1811) - buried in White Oak Cemetery, Monroe County, Indiana (this one is suspect as the death date doesn't really work out).
David Moffett (1842-1921) - buried in Greenwood Cemetery, Pinellas County, Florida.


This is the gravestone of Sarah A. Owen.

Born: March 14, 1831
Died: August 6, 1885

Her stone is inscribed "Sarah A. wife of W.D. Owen Died Aug 6, 1885 Aged 54Yrs 4 Ms 23 Ds --- Our Mother"

She was married to W.D. Owen, but I have no information on him or any of her family.


This is the grave of J.A. Robertson.

Born: 1816
Died: September 14, 1865

As you can see the stone was broken and laid against itself.  By the death date, it is possible that J.A. served in the Civil War, but I have no records to prove that.  It is only speculation.  I plan to do some research to see if I can find anything on him.  

If anyone has any information on J.A. Robertson, please email me or leave a comment.


Here we have the headstone for Mary Ann Robertson.

Born: April 2, 1817
Died: August 21, 1851

Her stone is inscribed "daughter of W & M Robertson".

Looking at the dates for Mary Ann and for J.A., it is possible that they are related, though I can find nothing pointing to that as being true.


Moving on the grave of Martha Dickey Turner.

Born: August 25, 1781, Ireland
Died: January 23, 1865, Bloomington, Indiana

She was the wife of James Turner (1770-1849) who buried next to her in White Oak Cemetery.
She had one son with James:
Thomas Turner (1808-1890) - buried in West Union Cemetery, White County, Illinois.


Here are the graves of Rosanna and John J. Woodburn.

Rosanna Woodburn: 
Born: 1811
Died: August 25, 1867

John J. Woodburn:
Born: 1808
Died: October 30, 1874

There is no further information on their family, whether or not they had children or when they were married.


This is the gravestone for the Infant Wylie.

Born: unknown
Died: August 3, 1854

The Infant shares a grave with Dixon H. Wylie, who was probably a brother.

Born: 1847
Died:  November 17, 1854

There is no information about these children, though it is noted that they died in the same year, only months apart.


Here is the grave of Isabela Johnston.

Born: unknown
Died: November 26, 1878

She was the wife of D. Johnston.

Unfortunately, I can not find her or her husband in the interment records for this cemetery.  


We now stop at the grave of James Turner.

Born: January 2, 1770, Pendleton, South Carolina
Died: June 24, 1849, Bloomington, Indiana

He was the husband of Martha Dickey Turner (1780/1865).  They are buried next to each other.

They had one child:
Thomas Turner (1808-1890) - buried in West Union Cemetery, White County, Illinois.


 These are all graves that I cannot read in the photos that I took or that were too damaged for me to make out.  The top one on the left looks like the last name is Horbison, but I can find nothing that matches that.  The top right one is that of a soldier, which is denoted by the flying flag on the stone, but I was not about the move the stone to take a look at the other side. 

 The bottom left has a hand with the forefinger pointing up.  This generally symbolizes going home to heaven.  In some instances it will be carved above or below the hand.  The bottom right is covered by grass on the sides and was difficult to read.  The one below I took mostly because it was visually interesting and I did not at the time think to take a photo of the front.



If anyone has any information on any of these graves, or has a photo request, please email me or leave a comment.

I hope that you have enjoyed your walk through White Oak Cemetery.

Please visit this listing at Find-A-Grave.


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