The McDonough County Cemetery Marker Project
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The McDonough County Cemetery Marker Project

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The McDonough County Historical Society of McDonough County, Illinois, locates cemeteries in the county and marks them so the cemeteries will not be lost and so that those who came before us will not ...

The McDonough County Historical Society of McDonough County, Illinois, locates cemeteries in the county and marks them so the cemeteries will not be lost and so that those who came before us will not be forgotten.
The following are 75 cemeteries located in McDonough County, Illinois
that have been marked out of the approximate 110 cemeteries in the county.
Historical Society Markers have been photographed with people who care about that cemetery.

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  • Press ReleaseNovember 14, 2009Blandinsville Township  -  Jan Shoemaker, Anderson and Huff Cemetery supporter, recently accepted a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.Anderson and Huff Cemetery is in south-central Blandinsville Township in McDonough County. John Huff, who died in 1875, was a veteran of the Civil War. He is buried among approximately 60 graves. His headstone reads: “We Loved Him, But He Died.”Current Blandinsville resident Jan Shoemaker, has her great great grandmother Rebecca Huff buried in this cemetery,One of the oldest headstones marks a grave from 1857. Two of John Huff’s sons married Anderson sisters. Anderson family graves outnumber the Huff’s. Anderson and Huff Cemetery is still active and beautifully maintained by the Blandinsville Township cemetery committee headed by Laura Melvin.The cemetery sign project is supported by Clugston-Tibbitts Funeral Home in Macomb and Blandinsville, the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseAugust 2, 2010Walnut Grove - Arberghast-Pearce Cemetery is located in Section 26 of Walnut Grove Township.  Martha Walker, age 20, was the first to be buried there in 1838.  The Pearce name derives from Jesse Pearce who donated the land "for use as a burying ground."  There are four Pearce family members recorded buried in this cemetery. Jesse Arbogast farmed four miles north of the cemetery in the 1870s. But there are no Arbogasts (or Arberghasts) recorded as being in the cemetery, offering a mystery for the origin of that half of the name.There are five veterans of the Civil War in the cemetery, the most famous, Charles Allen Gilchrist, the only Civil War general buried in McDonough County.Gilchrist was born in 1834 in Vermont, his grandmother a niece of Ethan Allen. He studied surveying and engineering at Knox College and taught in a one room rural schoolhouse in McDonough County.In 1853, he surveyed the route for the Northern Cross Railroad from Galesburg to Quincy. He was elected McDonough County Surveyor in 1855. He created the plat maps for many towns in the county.Gilchrist volunteered to join the 10th Missouri Infantry as a Captain in 1861.  He scored so high on the officer’s exam, he was promoted Colonel of the 12th Louisiana Colored Infantry headquartered near Vicksburg, Mississippi. Frustrated by the lack of medical support for his troops, Gilchrist rode a mule to the headquarters of General U.S. Grant to make a direct appeal for more surgeons.After the siege of Blakley, Gilchrist praised his men and wrote that their success “was a convincing proof that the former slaves of the South cannot be excelled as soldiers.” Before the war ended, he was promoted to Brigadier General.The Gilchrist family moved back to Carthage in 1867 where Gilchrist opened a lumber business, the Carthage Shoe Factory, and an engineering business with towns and railroads as clients.In the 1880s, he moved to South Dakota, Texas, and Wisconsin, helping build railroads and pipelines.His wife, Lucy Ellen, died in 1898. Gilchrist brought her body back and buried her in Arberghast-Pearce Cemetery. He moved to New York City where he continued to invent and manufacture parts for the railroad industry. After he died in 1906, his body was brought back to Arberghast-Pearce Cemetery.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home, the McDonough County Genealogical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society. 
  • Press ReleaseJanuary 15, 2010Bethel Township  -  Leon Bainter, Dick Lacey, and Jim Frisbie (left to right), three members of the Archer-Bethel Cemetery Board, recently (before the snow storms!) accepted a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.Archer-Bethel Cemetery is southeast of Fandon in northwest Bethel Township in McDonough County. There are 15 veterans of the Civil War buried among approximately 600 graves.One of the oldest headstones marks a grave from 1838, the accepted date when the cemetery was founded. Archer-Bethel Cemetery is still active and beautifully maintained by a private cemetery association trust fund. Two other members of the board unable to be in the photograph are Craig Rigg and Gary Shelley.The cemetery sign project is supported by MidAmerica National Bank, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Hire Township, IL - - The Rev. Mike Deblois, pastor of Argyle Bible Church west of Argyle Lake State Park, accepts the newest sign in a project marking cemeteries sponsored by the McDonough County HIstorical Society.The Argyle Cemetery, northwest of Colchester, has grave markers dating back to 1836 as a part of early churches in the area.There is one veteran of the Black Hawk war (1857) and seven veterans of the Civil War.Their stones are among over 550 graves in this still active and beautiful cemetery cared for by members of the Argyle Bible Church.The cemetery sign project is supported by the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Immediate ReleaseColchester, IL-  The Atkinson Cemetery, on property acquired by Argyle Lake State Park in the 1980s, is one of McDonough County’s more interesting historical cemeteries.The state park employees installed a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society. Robin Hinchee, Argyle Lake site superintendent, approved the sign, Kenny John, site technician, erected the sign, and Bridget Napolitano, natural resources coordinator, researched the history of the cemetery.The cemetery plot seems to have been on land owned by the extended Atkinson family. The first burial in 1839 was Job Yard, first husband of Frances Atkinson. Thus the name Atkinson Cemetery. McCords owned adjacent land.John McCord, his wife Mary Willard McCord, nine children, and Jack his “Black Man,” settled in Emmet Township in 1832.The grave marker for “Jack, the Black Man of John McCord, aged 45 years, died about 1870,” still rests next to the graves of John and his wife Mary McCord.Also in this cemetery is the grave of William Willard, father of Mary McCord. William was a veteran of the Revolutionary War. He enlisted in Leesburg, Virginia in 1778. He died in Emmet Township in 1846 at age 97.The last burial was in 1878. There are 19 recorded names known to be buried in the Atkinson Cemetery.The cemetery sign project is sponsored by the McDonough County Historical Society and the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee.
  • Newest Cemetery SignDavid Ridge, Annette Hall Morgan, and Debbie John recently accepted a new sign at the Bailey Cemetery donated  by the McDonough County Historical Society.David, Annette, and Debbie represent their families and extended family members who rest in this beautifully maintain cemetery just south of Macomb.Although the northern and oldest part of the cemetery has markers that date to 1841 (Robert Sloan), it was not deeded as an official cemetery until 1857.There is one Civil War veteran buried among over 100  graves in this still active cemetery. An American flag flies high above every day.The cemetery sign project is sponsored by the McDonough County Historical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee.
  • Press ReleaseAugust 11,  2010Hire Township  -  Norma Banks Runner, descendant of relatives in the Banks Cemetery, recently accepted a new sign to mark the site donated  by the McDonough County Historical Society. The cemetery sign project is supported byDodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home,the McDonough County Genealogical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, Richard and Marilyn Jackson, and the McDonough County Historical Society. The Banks Family Cemeteryby Norma Banks RunnerThis inactive family cemetery is located in the southwestquarter of section 30 in Hire Township four miles southwest of the Village of Blandinsville in McDonough County. There are 12 markers remaining for the 13 people buried between 1844 and 1887.My great, great grandfather Vandiver Banks (1804-1876) cameto McDonough County in 1835 among the early settlers of Hire Township. He and his wife, Loraner Sharpe Banks, moved to Illinois from Kentucky. He purchased land and built a house in section 30 of HireTownship. He was a successful carpenter and farmer, acquiring considerable property. Vandiver and Loraner had 11 children, five of whom died at early ages and rest in the family cemetery. The first burial was their five year old son George Banks, who died in 1844. The grave markers for Vandiver and Loraner Banks, whileworn, are still legible. He died in 1876. Loraner was the last person buried in the Banks cemetery in March 1887.There are seven stones with the name Banks on them.The land once farmed by Vandiver Banks, as well as the cemetery, is still in the family.  This cemetery is maintained by the family.
  • Press ReleaseMay 8, 2010Three AmeriCorps volunteers who have been working this year for Mississippi Valley Big Brother, Big Sister, added another service project to their resumes. On an unseasonably cold and windy Saturday morning they attacked the Barber Cemetery with loppers, hedge shears, shovels, and rakes.Sarah Medina of Macomb, a military wife about to relocate to Ft. Hood, Texas to join her husband returning from Afghanistan, Jennifer Cook, a newly minted Masters graduate from the Recreation, Park, and Tourism Administration department at Western Illinois University, and Stephanie Bieschke, a May graduate from Monmouth College, offered to help the McDonough County Historical Society with its cemetery cleanup projects.Barber Cemetery is located on a bulge in road 700 East on the border of Colchester and Chalmers Townships south of the new highway in McDonough County. It is an inactive and neglected cemetery with approximately 20 family graves.The original cemetery, established by the Barber family in 1835, covered about an acre of land. Only a few markers were visible when this crew arrived. But by the time their hands were numb from the cold, 14 headstones and about 10 footstones could be seen and counted.Some of the larger monuments were too heavy to lift up and restore to their original position. But these volunteers did uncover the marker for William Lucas, a Civil War veteran. The three then moved to the more protected Lower Cemetery to trim back some of the fast growing brush around markers in this much larger family plot.Medina, Cook, and Bieschke gained much satisfaction and knowledge from a productive and rewarding project.
  • August 27, 2007Bardolph, IL- The Bardolph Cemetery, established in 1856, has a new sign identifying this beautiful family, community and historic site.On Sunday, August 26, George Sewell, treasurer of the cemetery board, accepted the sign from the McDonough County Historical Society, represented by Gil Belles, president. “This sign is a welcome addition to our cemetery,” Sewell said. “We are proud of our history and heritage. We appreciate the recognition by the Historical Society.”According to Belles, this is the third sign donated to a county cemetery that was unmarked. Camp Creek and Old Macomb were the first two in this continuing project of the society.“Much local history can be found in cemeteries,” said Belles. They are worth preserving and identifying.” Belles pointed out that veterans of the Revolutionary War, War of 1812, and Civil War can be found in McDonough County cemeteries.Some of the headstones in the Bardolph Cemetery are dated before 1856. That is the date the current land was officially deeded to the cemetery.Some of the older stones and graves were moved from a smaller plot north of the current site.The current Bardolph Cemetery is administered by ThermonKepple, president, Marge Lynn, secretary, and Sewell, treasurer.
  • Colchester, IL --Keith Moore, adjacent land owner and volunteer caretaker, accepts a new sign for the Bean Cemetery east of Colchester.This new sign is part of a project marking cemeteries sponsored by the McDonough County HIstorical Society.Historical records indicate that approximately 110 people were buried in this family cemetery between 1838 and 1922.In this attractive cemetery lies Captain Joseph Barnes Bacon, a veteran of the War of 1812. He died in 1858 or 1860, both dates recorded on official documents.At least one veteran of the Civil War, Francis Clayton, still has a visible veteran’s marker.The cemetery sign project is supported by the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseJuly 1, 2010Chalmers Township  -  Craig L’Hommedieu, volunteer with the McDonough County Historical Society, recently installed a new sign for the Bowlin-Wayland Cemetery donated by the society. The  Bowlin-Wayland Cemetery is located along N700 in south centralChalmers Township 2.5 miles east of Fandon in McDonough County. It is an inactive and neglected cemetery with approximately four family graves.The original cemetery, established by the Bowlin and Wayland families in 1870, covered about a quarter acre of land. Only a few markers remain on this much smaller plot.The families were related through marriages. Wesley Wayland was the last person buried there in 1874.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home in Macomb, the McDonough County Genealogical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseAugust 13, 2010Hire Township  -  Neal Null, member of the Hire Township board, recently accepted a new sign for the Central Cemetery donated by the McDonough County Historical Society. Central Cemetery is in the southeast corner of section 19 in Hire Townshipthree miles southwest of the village of Blandinsville in McDonough County.  The Central Christian (Disciples of Christ) church was dedicated acrossthe road in 1888. The church sold the building in 1950.The first burials were Francis (September) and her husband Jessie White (October) in 1890. Rock Creek Methodist Episcopal church (1850-1971), located two miles east, also used the Central Cemetery.Central Cemetery is occasionally active and beautifully maintained by Hire Township.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home in Macomb, the McDonough County Genealogical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • August 3, 2009Eldorado Township  -  David Hynek, secretary-treasurer of the Chockley Cemetery trustees, and Penny Lawyer, cemetery supporter, recently accepted a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.Chockley Cemetery is in southeast Eldorado Township in McDonough County. There is one veteran of the War of 1812, one veteran of the Black Hawk War (1832), and eight veterans of the Civil War buried among approximately 300 graves.Two unusual stone pillars commemorate and honor the veterans from World War I and  WW II.One of the oldest headstones marks a grave from 1837, but the land was not deeded as a cemetery until 1857.  Chockley Cemetery is still active and beautifully maintained by a private cemetery trust fund.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home in Macomb, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • November 10, 2009New Salem Township  -  Craig L’Hommedieu, volunteer with the McDonough County Historical Society, recently installed a new sign for the Clark-Evans-Woods Cemetery donated by the society.Clark-Evans-Woods Cemetery is located along the Burlington Northern Santa Fe railroad tracks in north central New Salem Township south of the new grain depot in McDonough County. It is an inactive and neglected cemetery with approximately 10 family graves.The original cemetery, established by the Clark family for an infant daughter in 1843, covered about a quarter acre of land. Only a few markers remain on this much smaller plot.The three families were related through marriages. Sarah Clark was the last person buried there in 1909.The cemetery sign project is supported by Clugston-Tibbitts Funeral Home in Macomb and Blandinsville, the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseAugust 10, 2009Scotland Township  -  Maurice Litchfield, property owner (right), and Wes Henness, Craig Cemetery locator and guide (left), recently accepted a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.Craig Cemetery is in south-central Scotland Township in McDonough County. There is one veteran of the War of 1812, Richard Craig (1795-1886), and one from the Civil War, Daniel Miller, buried among approximately 25 family graves.One of the oldest headstones marks a grave from 1847. The Craig family lived in Industry and owned farmland north of that city.Craig Cemetery is not active and needs a cleanup.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home in Macomb, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseOctober 14, 2010 Eldorado Township  -  WIU Professor Tom Green of Macomb, agronomist and cemetery historian, recently cleared weeds and brush for a new sign donated by theMcDonough County Historical Societyfor the Dailey Cemetery.The Dailey Cemetery is located in northwest Eldorado Township in McDonough County. It is an inactive and abandoned cemetery founded in 1844 containing approximately 10 graves interred from then to 1867.Thomas Dailey (1783-1854), born inWest Virginia, moved to Eldorado Township in 1836. He owned and farmed 160 acres. When his wife Sarah died at age 72 (1862), she had buried two daughters and her 71 year old husband in this family cemetery.Their daughter Rebecca married George Greenup. He and his mother Catherine also rest in this plot.The cemetery sign project is supported by theMcDonough County Genealogical Society, theMcDonough County Highway Department, Niemann’s County Market and Pepsi, Gene and David Raymond, and the McDonough County Historical Society.  
  • Press ReleaseAugust 21, 2008Industry, IL -  Bob France, trustee of Industry township and Doddsville Cemetery, accepts a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.The Doddsville Cemetery is on the southern edge of the county. There are two veterans of the War of 1812 and 16 veterans of the Civil War buried  among approximaztely 400 graves.One of the oldest headstones marks a grave from 1839. Samuel Dodds buried two of his daughters in 1849 and 1850. According to Elsie Archer, he deeded the land as a cemetery in 1866. Dodds was buried there in 1874.One corner of the Doddsville Cemetery contains the graves from the Irish Cemetery, relocated by the Amax Coal Company in 1981 when it had an active mine in Bethel Township.The Doddsville Cemetery is beautifully maintained.
  • Press Release--November 18, 2009Blandinsville Township - - Martin Diestler, local historian and genealogist in Blandinsville, accepted a new sign for the Duncan Cemetery provided by the McDonough County Historical Society. Diestler found some interesting stories while researching this rural cemetery west of Blandinsville.Duncan Cemetery is inactive but beautifully maintained by the Blandinsville Township cemetery committee headed by Laura Melvin.The cemetery sign project is supported by Clugston-Tibbitts Funeral Home in Macomb and Blandinsville, the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the  McDonough County Historical Society.Duncan Cemetery by Martin DiestlerIn 1840, President Martin Van Buren raised revenue by selling government land in Illinois.  Two halves of the SW quarter of Section 31 in what later became Blandinsville Township were purchased by two settlers from White County, Tennessee:  Joseph Duncan and his father- in-law, Isaac Harris.  Perhaps because of limited choice in the sparse population, the Duncan children, of whom there were 10, often married into the same families as their brothers, sisters, and cousins. Thomas and James married Susan and Melvina Marlow. Cosby,  Sarah, and William Duncan married Mary, Thomas, and Lurena Atwater. The Marlows and Atwaters, like the Duncans, came up from White County.The SE corner of Joseph Duncan's farm was not well suited to  agriculture. It sloped with dense woods. In that quiet, green acre,  however, Joseph provided the final resting place for many of his children and grandchildren.  Beginning in 1851, when two  grandchildren, Cosby and Laura, were buried there, until 1900 when his nephew, James, followed his wife Melvina to his grave, at least 14 Duncans, three Atwaters, three Chapins, a Steele, and a Marlow (all of them related) found their final resting place in what became known as the Duncan Cemetery.  Although there is no headstone surviving, it appears likely that Joseph himself was buried in the Duncan Cemetery around 1880.There are stories of tragedy and comedy to be found among the gravestones.  Elijah Marlow left his wife, Nancy Smiddy and eight children (the youngest not yet walking) to fight for the Confederate Missouri 11th Infantry.  In 1863, at age 42, he was killed. He now lies beneath a small flag in the Duncan Cemetery.  His daughter, Melvina, married James Duncan, and his son, Jasper, worked on James  Duncan's farm.On a much lighter note, Elias, son of Joseph Duncan, returned from the Civil War and, at age 28, he eloped with Nancy Woodside from LaHarpe.  They were married on a Mississippi riverboat on her 16th birthday.  Her father's efforts to reach the river and stop the boat from sailing were thwarted when Mr. Woodside “nearly run an old mule to death trying to get to the dock to head them off, but was too late.”  Elias and Nancy, nonetheless, stayed married through the rest of their lives and raised eight children.Since 1900 the cemetery has had no known burials and few visitors.  Truly those buried there have been allowed to rest in peace.
  • Press ReleaseJanuary 8, 2010Bethel Township - - , cemetery association trustees, accepted a new sign for the Dunkard Cemetery provided by the McDonough County Historical Society. Fentem and Parks (on the right) both have grandparents in the cemetery. Parks recalls some interesting facts and stories while reminiscing about this rural cemetery south of Colchester.  Dunkard Cemetery is still active and beautifully maintained by the cemetery trustees.  The cemetery sign project is supported by MidAmerica National Bank, the McDonough County Highway Department and the McDonough County Historical Society.======================================================Dunkard Cemeteryby Merle ParksA group of families emigrated from Virginia to McDonough County in the latter part of the 1800s. I’ve been told that this group organized the German Baptist Church of the Brethren in September 1879 with 35 members. They built a church building in Section 18 of Bethel Township in 1882 at a cost of $1075.68.There were burials there west of the church building beginning in 1882. On August 19, 1901, William M. Harbacher and his wife Susan deeded the cemetery ground to the church for the sum of one dollar.There are probably more descendants from the Reed Family buried in Dunkard than from any other family. Some other prominent family names are Carson, Dulaney, King, Parks, Stump, Wetzel, and others.Perhaps the name Dunkard emerged as a slang term in the community for the cemetery because of the belief of the German Baptists for total immersion baptism.The cemetery is still active and well maintained. It was not always well maintained as it is now. I remember in the 1930s a day was set aside when many descendants of the families came with scythes, axes, and other tools to clean up the cemetery.Sometime in the 1940s I believe, Grace Fentem, a descendant of the Reed family, raised money for regular mowing by sending post cards to descendants of those buried requesting donations. When ArlinFentem was a boy, he rode his bike from Colchester and mowed the entire church and cemetery grounds. It took two days to mow before power mowers.Eventually a monetary fund was collected so that the interest generated was enough to pay for mowing.The last church meeting was held July 16, 1961 and the property was transferred to the cemetery association May 2, 1962. The building was razed shortly after that.
  • Press ReleaseDecember 18, 2009Eldorado Township  -  Linda  Windsor recently accepted a new sign for the Foster’s Point Cemetery donated  by the McDonough County Historical Society.Foster’s Point Cemetery is located in the northeast corner of Eldorado Township in McDonough County. It is an inactive cemetery founded in 1830 with approximately 65 graves interred from then to 1934.Linda Windsor, living nearby, learned of this neglected cemetery and purchased it from the county and became its historian and caretaker.There is one veteran of the Revolutionary War buried here, Jonas Hobart who fought for independence. There is one veteran of the War of 1812 and six who fought in the Civil War, including Adam Immig, a Prussian who came over to fight (unclear for which side) and settled near Foster’s Point.Moses Foster (1811-1887) fought beside Captain Abraham Lincoln when they were driving out the Native Americans from southern Illinois. He married three times and all of his wives rest near him.Windsor has restored a beautiful cemetery with a rich and fascinating history.The cemetery sign project is supported by Table Grove State Bank, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseJuly  29 , 2009Tennessee Township  -  Charles and Walter Lewis and Charles Irish (left to right), trustees and caretakers of Friendship Cemetery, recently accepted a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.Friendship Cemetery is in the northwest corner of Tennessee Township in McDonough County. There is one veteran of the War of 1812 and seven veterans of the Civil War buried among approximately 80 graves.Three majestic cedar trees commemorate the veterans from World War I, and three pines were planted to honor WW II veterans.One of the oldest headstones, from the Mourning family section, marks a grave from 1840.  Friendship Cemetery is still active and beautifully maintained by the Lewis brothers using a small private cemetery trust.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home in Macomb, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseFandon, IL -- Several dozen volunteers were pleasantly surprised while they were cleaning up and clearing the Gibson Cemetery west of Fandon.Roger Frowein, president of the McDonough County Historical Society brought them a new sign for the cemetery.Pat Cordell (right), a member of the cemetery board, invited Betty Shoopman (left), a person with a lot of family in the cemetery, to accept the sign with him.This well kept cemetery has almost 300 graves. It was deeded as a cemetery in 1843. Several markers date to 1840. The marker of Sally Griswold commenorates an eye witness to the Revolutionary War period.
  • Press ReleaseSeptember 24, 2008Blandinsville - - Laura Melvin, Blandinsville Township Supervisor, accepted a new sign for the Glade City Cemetery donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.The Glade City Cemetery has 54 veterans of the Civil War and one from the Spanish American War. It is a large and active cemetery deeded in 1887.Blandinsville Township maintains seven cemeteries through a cemetery tax.The cemetery sign project of the McDonough County Historical Society depends upon the cooperation of Jerry Hughes of the McDonough County Highway Department. The project is partially funded by a grant from the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee.
  • Immediate ReleaseVillage of Good Hope - - Tim Bradford, sexton for the Good Hope Cemetery, proudly accepts the newest sign in the cemetery marking project sponsored by the McDonough County Historical Society.The Good Hope Cemetery is on the east side of highway 67 just north of town at 1950N.It has grave markers dating back to 1846 and was deeded as a cemetery in 1878.There are two veterans of the Spanish American War and 28 veterans from the Civil War among over 1700 graves in this beautiful and still active cemetery.The cemetery is maintained by the Village of Good Hope.The cemetery sign project is supported by the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press Release - November 26, 2007Macomb, ILBernard Lewis (left) and Bob Moore, members of the Guy-Pleasant View Cemetery board, accepted the newest sign in the cemetery marking project sponsored by the McDonough County Historical Society.This beautiful and well kempt cemetery sits on a high bluff two miles west of the Spring Lake Park entrance. It was established in 1849 one mile east of Pleasant View church in Emmet township. Some of the earliest markers memorialize members of the Guy family, hence its more familiar name, Guy Cemetery.“The 1928 certificate which created the cemetery trust documents the more official name, Guy-Pleasant View,” commented Lewis when the sign was commissioned by the historical society.The historical society has enlisted the volunteer help of Jerry Hughes of the McDonough County Highway Department who has the expertise and equipment to install the sign posts.The Quality of Life Advisory Committee awarded a cost sharing grant to the historical society for the new signs.
  • July 12,  2010Walnut  Grove Township  -  Janice Hamilton King, descendant of relatives in the Hamilton Cemetery, recently accepted a new sign to mark the site donated  by the McDonough County Historical Society. This abandoned family cemetery is located 1.75 miles east ofHighway 67 on N1800 southeast of the Village of Good Hope in McDonough County. There are approximately 56 remaining markers for the 75 people buried between 1844 and 1870.Levi Hamilton (1802-1882) came to McDonough County in 1835 and helped found the Walnut Grove Cumberland Presbyterian Church in 1838 in his home. That church, before it burned down in 1854, had this adjacent cemetery.The grave marker for Harrison Hamilton (1826-1867), Levi’s son, while damaged is still legible. He died in 1867.There are five stones with the name Hamilton on them.Janice Hamilton King lives on land once farmed by the Hamilton family. She is a direct descendant of Levi and Harrison, and Harrison’s son Joseph.One of the monuments memorializes Civil War veteran Albert Bennet, Company I, 78 Illinois Infantry. His body may have been moved to the Good Hope Cemetery.All of the cemeteries in Walnut Grove Township are maintained by the township.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home, the McDonough County Genealogical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseDecember 2, 2009Eldorado Township  -  Q. Douglas Baily, president of the Harris Cemetery Association, recently accepted a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.Harris Cemetery is in northeast Eldorado Township in McDonough County. There are four veterans of the War of 1812, and fourteen veterans of the Civil War buried among approximately 950 graves.One of the oldest headstones marks a grave from 1847, but the land was not deeded as a cemetery until 1848.  Harris Cemetery is still active and beautifully maintained by a private cemetery association trust fund.The cemetery sign project is supported by Table Grove State Bank, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Gerald Thrapp, current owner of the land on which the Hays Cemetery lies, accepted two new signs installed by the McDonough County Historical Society.  The Hays Cemetery is on the northern edge of Hire Township, 1.5 mileseast of Blandinsville, deep in the dense woods south of Route 9.The Thrapp family found the Hays Cemetery after they purchased the wooded property. Their discovery set off a chain of events that has culminated in the restoration of this abandoned and neglected family cemetery.The Hays family cemetery has been inactive since 1868, with the attendant neglect taking its toll in fallen trees, limbs, and aggressive weeds. An ornamental iron fence still surrounds this small family plot with eleven known burials. Erect stones mark the resting places of six members of the  William H. Hays family, the earliest marker for Elizabeth,  who died in 1842, just before her 17th birthday.Jefferson Hays was born in Kentucky in 1808. In 1832, he moved to Hire Township with two brothers, William and Thomas.  When he died in 1857, Jefferson was buried in the family cemetery (but his headstone is missing or covered with mud and weeds). The markers for his brother William (died 1845) and William’s wife Susan (died 1857) are erect.Two other family names are represented on these headstones: Boyles and York.While clearing the area around the cemetery plot the Thrapps believe that they have found evidence of other graves outside of the fence.The cemetery sign project is supported by the McDonough County Genealogical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, Niemann’s County Market and Pepsi, the Gerald Thrapp family, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseOctober 26, 2010Emmet Township  -  Descendant Douglas R. Head of Overland Park, Kansas, recently visited several county cemeteries and arranged  for a new sign at the Head Cemetery donated by the McDonough County Historical Society. The Head Cemetery is located in northwest Emmet Townshipin McDonough County. It is an inactive and abandoned family and community cemetery. It was founded in 1836 and contains approximately 16 graves interred from then to 1876. There is an old wooden gate and arch which still holds up the deteriorating wire fence surrounding the plot.James Head (1780-1863), born in Virginia, moved to Emmet Township on Christmas day in 1832. He farmed until 1855 when he moved to Macomb. James and his wife Isabella (1790-1876) raised 12 children. They both rest in the Head Cemetery.Their son Thomas W. Head sold two acres of his land for use as a public cemetery (Spring Creek) where he and his wife Isabel are buried.There are seven infant graves among the 16 headstones still visible in the Head Cemetery. In 1973, a few markers were located just outside the fenced area.The cemetery sign project is supported by the McDonough County Genealogical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, Niemann’s County Market and Pepsi, an anonymous donor, and the McDonough County Historical Society. 
  • Press Release July 17, 2010 Walnut Grove Township  -  Marlin Pendell and Brent Payne, Trustees of the Hickory Grove Cemetery, recently accepted a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society. Hickory Grove Cemetery is northeast of Good Hope in northern Walnut Grove Township in McDonough County. There are six veterans of the Civil War buried among approximately 200 graves.One of the oldest headstones marks a grave from 1847, although the accepted date when the cemetery was officially founded is 1874. There are many markers between those two dates.This beautiful and well maintained cemetery has been inactive since 1978. In 1839, at the junction of N2200 and E1400, pioneer farmers established the Shiloh Presbyterian Church. The church eventually dissolved in 1863, merging with the Walnut Grove Presbyterian Church. The Hickory Grove Cemetery is one-half mile north of this location.This corner has also been called Sorghum City, drawing attention to the Sorghum Mill erected in 1860 by C.C. Whittlesey in Section 16.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home, the McDonough County Genealogical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseJuly 25, 2010 Tennessee Township - - Accepting the McDonough County Historical Society sign for Hills Grove Cemetery are two of the longest-serving trustees of the Hills Grove Cemetery Association board.   John Cuba, left, served as a trustee on the board for 57 years.  Cuba served as secretary-treasurer of the board from 1951 until 1992, retiring as trustee in 2006.  Gerald Waddill continues to serve as a trustee on the board, serving since about 1985. The current president is Marlin Duncan with Mary Jane White as secretary/treasurer.Mary Jane White recounts some of the history of this rural cemetery southwest of the Village of Tennessee. Hills Grove Cemetery is still active and beautifully maintained by the cemetery association. The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home, the McDonough County Genealogical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, Richard and Marilyn Jackson, and the McDonough County Historical Society.  Hills Grove Cemeteryby Mary Jane WhiteSecretary/Treasurer Isaac Holton graduated from the University of Vermont in 1814. He read law with his brother John in Massachusetts and taught school in Vermont and Maine. He traded a church pew in Bangor, Maine for 160 acres in McDonough County. He came to McDonough County in 1835.  Holton started the Hills Grove Seminary, the first school in the area.  He platted the village of Hills Grove.  Hills Grove was awarded a post office in 1839. Hills Grove Cemetery was on land which was owned by Isaac Holton but was separate from the village of Hills Grove.  The first recorded burial at  Hills Grove Cemetery was that of Isabel H. Conant in 1841.  Isaac Holton was buried at Hills Grove Cemetery in 1850 as the fifth burial.  In 1863 Isaac Holton’s widow, Phoebe A. Holton, deeded the land for the cemetery to Samuel A. Knott and Ambros/Ambers Owen, Trustees ofHills Grove Cemetery and their successors of McDonough County.  The deed was recorded in 1864.  There were 20 burials between 1841 and 1864 which indicates it was an established cemetery well before the land was deeded to cemetery trustees. Roswell Tyrrell, who is known as the first settler of Tennessee Township, is buried in Hills Grove Cemetery.  Tyrrell was born in 1798 in Connecticut and came to live in what is now Tennessee Township in 1831, having purchased the land in 1826 while living in Fulton County.  Tyrrell was a veteran of the War of 1812.  Charles Fulkerson served in the Navy during the War of 1812.  Several veterans of the Mexican War, the Civil War, World War I, World War II, and the Vietnam War rest in Hills Grove Cemetery.  Flags of the United States are placed on each grave for Memorial Day by members of the Hills Grove Cemetery Association board of trustees.  Hills Grove United Methodist Church holds a service each year at the cemetery on the Sunday morning of Memorial Day weekend to honor the veterans buried at Hills Grove. Hills Grove Cemetery is a private cemetery managed by the volunteer board of trustees of the Hills Grove Cemetery Association.  Maintenance and improvements are provided by private funds held by Hills Grove Cemetery Association.  There are about 300 burials at Hills Grove Cemetery.
  • Press Release - June 9, 2008Jerry Hughes accepted the newest sign in the cemetery marking project sponsored by the McDonough County Historical Society.The Hillsborough Cemetery north of Blandinsville is in the far northwest corner of McDonough  County.This small and well kept cemetery sits atop a green grassy slope. Although some markers indicate earlier burials, the land was deeded as a cemetery in 1849. Hughes has many relatives in this cemetery, and his expertise with the county highway department assists installation of the signs.Hillsborough is still an active cemetery, mixing the very old markers with some newer ones.The Quality of Life Advisory Committee awarded a cost sharing grant to the historical society for the new signs.
  • Press ReleaseJanuary 2008Tennessee Township - Diana Kreps and her uncle Don Logan accepted a new sign for the Hutchinson Cemetery in the southeast corner of Tennessee Township.Logan, secretary/treasurer of the cemetery board, has served on the board for fifty years. He and Diana have many relatives in this active cemetery maintained by Don’s son, Deron.There are five veterans of the Civil War among the almost 300 grave stones. Some of the markers date back to the 1840s. The land was deeded as a cemetery in 1875.The new sign was installed by Jerry Hughes, sign specialist with the county highway department. The cemetery sign project is sponsored by the McDonough County Historical  Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee.At the next meeting of the historical society, Monday, January 12, at 7:00 p.m., in the Western Illinois Museum, Gil Belles will present a slide show “Recognizing Our Ancestors: Cemetery Sign Update.” Everyone is welcome. 
  • Press ReleaseDecember 26, 2009Industry Township  -  Paula and JereGreuel, members of the Industry Cemetery Board, recently accepted a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.Industry Cemetery is on the north edge of the township of Industry in McDonough County. There are 27 veterans of the Civil War and one veteran of the Spanish American War buried among approximately 2000 graves.One of the oldest headstones marks a grave from 1880, but the land was not deeded as a cemetery until 1893. Industry Cemetery is still active and beautifully maintained by Industry Township.The cemetery sign project is supported by Table Grove State Bank, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • July 15, 2010Larkins Cemetery gets new sign!WALNUT GROVE TOWNSHIP- Ralph Wolf,owner of property that includes the Larkins Cemetery, recently accepted a new sign to mark the site donated  by the McDonough County Historical Society. This inactive cemetery is located in the NW quarter of SectionThree, Walnut Grove Township in McDonough County, 3.25 miles east of Highway 67 on road N2400. The Wolf home is directly across the road. The quarter acre memorial area still retains some wire fencing most likely set in 1991 when Jay Payne, township road commissioner, and the Good Hope 4-H, under the supervision of Steve and Eileen Worthington and Penny Young, cleaned up the cemetery. John W. Larkins and his wife Lydia, bought the NW quarter ofSection 3 in 1854, and hence the cemetery name (although recent locals have dropped the “s”).There are nine Larkins resting in this cemetery, where only seven of the 20 markers record adults and 13 mark the graves of infants and children. The last burial was in 1886.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home, the McDonough County Genealogical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseImmediateBlandinsville--Dave Wilson, sexton for all seven cemeteries in Blandinsville Township, accepted a new sign for the Liberty Cemetery 1.5 miles north ofthe city of Blandinsville.The cemetery was started in 1832 next to the Liberty Christian or Disciples of Christ church. The church was abandoned in 1849, but the cemetery was active until 1951.There are four Civil War veterans and one Spanish-American War veteran among the 240 grave sites.The sign was donated by the McDonough County Historical Society. It was installed by Jerry Hughes of the McDonough County Highway Department.The cemetery sign project is partially funded by the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee.
  • Press ReleaseAugust 5, 2010Macomb -- Earlier this spring, 34 students from four universities devoted the first morning of their weekend conference at WIU restoring the neglected Lower (pronounced Lah-wer) Cemetery in southern Colchester Township. This week, the McDonough County Historical Society installed two signs, onenear a rough roadway access, and one at the cemetery entrance. Margaret Foster, on whose farm the cemetery is located, accepted the signnear the highway. She suggested the second sign as a tribute to her late friend and neighbor Vera Cordell. Both were long time members of the historical society.Vera Cordell, a rural resident who lived close to the Lower Cemetery,  cared for the cemetery until it deteriorated beyond her control. Her great grandparents, Benjamin and Mary Boyd, rest in the Lower Cemetery. Vera’s son Pat accepted the sign at the cemetery entrance deep in the woods southwest of Colchester.The Lower Cemetery was established in 1841 with the burial of Lucy Horrell, whose majestic tall monument was raised from the mud in April. Government headstones mark the graves of four veterans of the Civil War, William Blanchard, William Hill, S.P. Martin, and Alvin Martin. Many of the 40 markers in this large plot were covered with decades of mud and grass. Many were knocked over by falling trees, tree limbs, deer, and scratching cattle. Dan Oliver, resident manager of the Foster Farm, used his chain saw to help the students clear off many layers of accumulated debris. Roger Frowein, past president of the historical society, brought shears, shovels, loppers, and hoes for the students to use.Many student volunteers were touched by the death dates of very young infants, sometimes more than one to a family. Others were struck by the intricate and artistic designs engraved in the stone. Some were frustrated by the inability to read the weathered names or dates inscribed in often soft stone.There are five members of the Lower family in this cemetery. The last burial was Ella Pittman Lower in 1936.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home, the McDonough County Genealogical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, Richard and Marilyn Jackson, and the McDonough County Historical Society.In addition, Pat Cordell (son of Vera), Margaret Foster, and the Foster Farm sponsored the second sign to commemorate the dedication of Vera Cordell who honored this final resting place of early pioneers in our county.
  • Immediate ReleaseWaknut Grove Township - - Jack Zimmerman, supervisor of Walnut Grove Township and administrator of Lynn-Hageman Cemetery, proudly accepts the newest sign in the cemetery marking project sponsored by the McDonough County Historical Society.The Lynn-Hageman Cemetery is on the south side of highway 2100N atop a hill looking over Crooked Creek.It has grave markers dating back to 1856.There is one veteran from the Civil War among the two dozen family graves in this beautiful cemetery.This cemetery along with four others, is maintained by Walnut Grove Township.The cemetery sign project is supported by the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press Release - for Stevens and Martha Miler GravesiteAugust 14, 2009(Note: GaroldParkins is with a G, NOT Harold misspelled. Martha Miler is only one L - NOT Miller).Two sites, two signs.Colchester and Chalmers Townships  -  GaroldParkins and his twin sister Sheryl ParkinsVoorhis, caretakers of Stevens Cemetery, accepted on their birthdays a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society. Dan Voorhis, Sheryl’s husband, also helps tend the cemetery grounds.Stevens Cemetery is in east central Colchester Township in McDonough County. There is one veteran, Aaron Peck, of the War of 1812 buried among approximately 20 graves in this old family cemetery.One of the oldest headstones marks a grave from 1870. Stevens Cemetery is not active but beautifully maintained by relatives of those buried there.William and brother Charles Stevens, buried here on their family farm in the 1880s, were prominent businessmen in Colchester. Their grandsons owned the exclusive Stevens Hotel in Chicago and an upscale haberdashery on State Street.William Stevens’ mother-in-law, Martha Miler, followed her daughter Mary from Indiana to Illinois. She died in 1840 and was buried alone on a private grave site just north of Fandon.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home in Macomb, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • January 12, 2008Macomb, ILThe Mound Chapel Cemetery board of trustees proudly accepted the newestsign in the cemetery marking project sponsored by the McDonough County Historical Society.  This well kempt  cemetery at the corner of highways 41 and 95 has grave stones dating back to 1855 when it was a Methodist church cemetery. The land was deeded as a cemetery in 1874."We are very proud of our rural and family cemetery," said Howard Daniels (left),one of the trustees on the board.George Swartzbaugh (right), president of the board, thanked Jerry Hughes of theMcDonough County Highway Department, for putting the sign in the ground.LociePensinger is the third member of the board.The Quality of Life Advisory Committee awarded a cost sharing grant to the historical society for the new signs.
  • Colchester, IL -  Milt Sullivan, supervisor of Colchester Township, which now has responsibilities for Mt. Auburn Cemetery, accepted a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.The Mt. Auburn Cemetery is in the northern part of the city. There are a few veterans of the War of 1812, 62 veterans of the Civil War, and one from the Spanish American War buried among the approximately 3,520 graves.Some of the oldest headstones mark graves from the 1860s. The land was deeded as a cemetery in 1881. The Mt. Auburn Cemetery is still active and beautifully maintained by the Colchester Township.The cemetery sign project is supported by the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press Release-- November 24, 2009Colchester Township  -  Howard Kreps recently accepted a new sign for  the Neece Cemetery donated  by the McDonough County Historical Society.Neece Cemetery is located in south central Colchester Township in McDonough County. It is an inactive family cemetery founded in 1838 with approximately 20 graves interred from then to 1928.When Howard Kreps purchased his rural home he discovered this abandoned and neglected cemetery on his land. The headstones are in  good condition and can be read, although the area is full of trees and brush.In 1992, Macomb police officer Gary Tilden, with his wife Vivian, and friends Tom Carey, Randy Allison, Joe Richbark and Steve Richbark, cleaned up this cemetery. They found the marker of Civil War veteran Oscar Florey, husband of AdaNeece.The earliest known burial in 1838 was Mary D. Neece, first wife of Jesse Neece who moved into McDonough County in 1821.Andrew Jackson McCown's parents are in the Barber Cemetery. Jack and his wife, FideliaNeece, rest in the Neece Cemetery.The cemetery sign project is supported by Clugston-Tibbitts Funeral Home in Macomb and Blandinsville, the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseHire Township - - Neal Null, a member of the Hire Township Board, accepts a new sign for the New Hope/Old South Cemetery in northernHire Township south of Blandinsville.This large cemetery deeded in 1838 has over 600 graves and is maintained by a township cemetery maintenance tax.The sign was donated by the McDonough County Historical Society and was partially supported by a grant from the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee. The sign was installed by Jerry Hughes of the McDonough County Highway Department.
  • Press ReleaseDecember 29, 2009Macomb  -  Gary Rhodes, sexton of Oakwood Cemetery, recently accepted  a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.Oakwood Cemetery is the city of Macomb in McDonough County. There  are seven veterans of the War of 1812, 268 veterans of the Civil War,  and four veterans of the Mormon War buried among approximately 14,000  graves.One of the oldest headstones marks a grave from 1857 when the cemetery was established and incorporated by William H. Randolph (1813-1864), a prominent businessman and political leader in nineteenth century Macomb (who is buried there).The original eleven acres had been an orchard on the farm of Randolph’s father-in-law, Thomas A. Brooking.Additional land was added sporadically from 1880 to reach its current size.Many historically significant Macomb citizens rest in Oakwood including William “Uncle Billy” Allison, Sarah Allison, and Harmon Allison, conductors in the Underground Railroad. Carter Van Vleck, C.V. Chandler, and William L. Broaddus, were officers in the Civil War. Sanford Daniels, a former slave who, after freedom, lived in Macomb until 101 years old, and Alfred Bayliss and Samuel B. Hursh, leaders at Western Illinois State Normal School (now WIU) are also in Oakwood. There is even a paupers corner.Oakwood Cemetery is still active and beautifully maintained by the city. Rhodes is the current sexton.City taxes are levied for its operation, along with charges for grave sites. Macomb Public Works maintains Oakwood and the Old Macomb Cemetery on Wigwam Hollow Road.The cemetery sign project is supported by Mid-America National Bank,  the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press Release - ImmediateBlandinsville Township-  Gil Belles, director of the cemetery sign project of the McDonough County Historical Society, used a late fall day to mark Old Bedford Cemetery in the far northwest corner of Blandinsville Township.Jerry Hughes, sign specialist for the McDonough County Highway Department, installed the sign on this attractive cemetery, begun in 1839 by the Bedford Christian Church, and deeded as a cemetery in 1877.There is one Civil War veteran among over 250 artistic and unusual grave markers made of many materials.The cemetery sign project is possible through the cooperation of the McDonough County Historical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, and a grant from the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee.On Monday, January 12, at 7:00 p.m. in the Western Illinois Museum, Belles will speak at a meeting of the historical society on “Recognizing Our Ancestors: Cemetery Sign Update.” Everyone is welcome.
  • Press ReleaseJuly 22, 2010 Macomb - Marion and Ken Keudell, members of the McDonough County Historical Society, draw attention to the newest sign in the cemetery marking project of the MCHS. Old Macomb Cemetery lies on the west side of Wigwam Hollow Road.Like many cities with deep roots in early nineteenth century United States history, Macomb has an outdoor archive full of fascinating information. Our Old Macomb Cemetery has the potential of drawing descendants, students, and visitors interested in family and community genealogy, local history, prominent citizens, immigration trends, impact of disease, and artistic sculpting. Sadly, much of this potential is being lost to neglect and weather. Headstones once erect and connecting the past with the present, lay flat, damaged and gradually disappearing under soil, grass, and weeds.Genealogist Marge Harris once documented at least 315 burials on the basis of incomplete records.  There were probably more. The first burial in the Old Macomb Cemetery, in 1830, was the young daughter of Peter Hale, who owned the land and a log cabin on it. She fell into a fire and burned to death.Hale sold the two acres to a merchant William Bailey and Dr. Charles Hays. They in turn sold the property to Robert Garrett in 1835. One year later, Garrett sold the land to the county to be used as a public cemetery. Scattered among the visible headstones are several with distinctive artistic sculpting and inscriptions as well as bearing the initials “JL” near the base. Theses stones with elaborate borders and short poems were created by pioneer stone carver John Long.In one of his essays about the Old Macomb Cemetery, John Hallwas reminds us that Long’s “hand-carved headstones are the oldest historical artifacts in McDonough County that can be connected with the person who produced them, and they lend a quaint character to the long unused pioneer burial ground.”The MCHS, by drawing attention to the 110 cemeteries in McDonough County, hopes to raise the collective consciousness of our community to its obligation to these resting places of our ancestors. It seems a bit peculiar that we go to such lengths and expense to honor our deceased parents, children, and siblings, but with such cavalier abandon neglect the resting places of our earlier forebears who were once the objects of similar love, compassion, respect, and honor.Before more stones are damaged or buried, some volunteers need to restore this historical landmark cemetery to a more acceptable condition. Markers need to be reset, many need to be repaired, and countless need to be unearthed.The Old Macomb Cemetery has two veterans of the War of 1812, two from the Mormon War, 11 Civil War, and one who served in the Black Hawk war. The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home, the McDonough County Genealogical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society. Ken Keudell, secretary of the MCHS, and his wife Marion encouraged this new sign at the Old Macomb Cemetery.
  • March 20, 2008Macomb, ILHelen Lewis accepted the newest sign in the cemetery marking project sponsored by the McDonough County Historical Society.The Old St. Paul Cemetery on Quail Walk Road, was given to the catholic church by Patrick McGinnis in 1860. Helen Lewis of Macomb is his great granddaughter.This small and well kept cemetery sits atop a hill one-half mile north of highway 136. Only a few grave stones remain, all dating back over 100 years. Most of the original graves were moved to the newer St. Paul Cemetery off North Lafayette Street in the 1880s.This spring an effort will be made to uncover and reposition other fallen and half buried stone markers Bernard Lewis, Helen’s brother, volunteers his time to keep the weeds and brush under control.The Quality of Life Advisory Committee awarded a cost sharing grant to the historical society for the new signs.
  • Press ReleaseAugust, 2009Industry Township  -  Peggy Pennington Foster and Dr. Jon Dively, accepted a new sign for the Pennington Cemetery donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.Pennington Cemetery, not to be confused with Pennington Point Cemetery, is on the Dively farm in the center of Industry Township in McDonough County. Peggy’s great-great grandparents, Thomas J. and Mary J. Pennington are buried in this family cemetery.Thomas was a veteran of the Black Hawk War and a friend of Abraham Lincoln. The first burial in 1869 was Morris Pennington, the nine year old son of Thomas and Mary. Peter Smith, a veteran of the Civil War, is buried  among approximately 25 graves.The last known burial was in 1919.In 1980, Jon Dively Jr. restored the cemetery for his Eagle Scout project under the supervision of Peggy’s husband, Dick Foster.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home in Macomb, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseAugust , 2009New Salem Township  -  Jim Smith, sexton of Pennington Point Cemetery, recently accepted a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.Pennington Point Cemetery is in west central New Salem Township in McDonough County. There are seven veterans of the War of 1812, three from the Black Hawk War (1832), and 28 veterans of the Civil War (three from the Confederate Army) buried among approximately 1200 graves.One of the oldest headstones marks a grave from 1834. It was deeded as a cemetery in 1836.Pennington Point Cemetery is still active and beautifully maintained, recently becoming a responsibility of New Salem Township.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home in Macomb, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseSeptember 27, 2009Bethel Township  -  Members of the Gene Raymond family recently accepted a new sign for the Pioneer Cemetery donated  by the McDonough County Historical Society.Pioneer Cemetery is located in the center of Bethel Township in McDonough County. It is an inactive cemetery founded in 1838 with approximately 45 graves interred from then to 1906.Gene Raymond (behind sign) has his great grandfather G.F. Raymond and great grandmother Sara Raymond buried next to his grandfather James Raymond in this cemetery.Gene’s sons David (far left) and Gary (far right) help clean up the fenced in acre with about 45 grave sites. Gene’s daughter Judy Raymond Brooks (second from right) encourages their work.When the members of the Raymond family first cleaned up this cemetery about ten years ago, they found the marker of Civil War veteran  Talmon Husted.A bronze plaque imbedded in the concrete gate post pays tribute to those resting here: “Erected in honor of the pioneers who cleared away the forests and destroyed the abiding places of the wild beasts so that civilization might occupy the land”The cemetery sign project is supported by Clugston-Tibbitts Funeral Home in Macomb and Blandinsville, the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseSeptember 8, 2008Prairie City, IL -  David Havens, Kenny Garrett, and Kevin Walter (left to right), trustees of the Prairie City Cemetery, accept a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society on September 7.The new Prairie City Cemetery is in the northeastern corner of the county. There are two veterans of the War of 1812, 54 veterans of the Civil War, and one from the Spanish American War buried among the approximately 5,520 graves.Some of the oldest headstones mark graves from the 1850s. The land was deeded as a cemetery in 1866. The Prairie CIty Cemetery is still active and beautifully maintained.
  • Press ReleaseOctober 12, 2009Bethel Township  -  A.J. Bourn of Macomb, church and cemetery historian recently accepted a new sign for the Primitive Baptist Cemetery donated  by the McDonough County Historical Society.Primitive Baptist Cemetery is located in north central Bethel Township in McDonough County. It is an inactive cemetery founded in 1847 with approximately 15 graves interred from then to 1889.Primitive Baptist Church was organized in 1831 by John Logan, who, according to church historian Robert Webb of Carthage, preached one of the first church sermons in McDonough County. Benjamin Matthews deeded this property for a church and cemetery in 1847. He and his son Jacob are buried here. Jacob’s great greatgreat grandson Charles K. Matthews currently lives in Bonner Springs, KS.One of the fenced family plots memorializes several infants with a statue of a small girl, circled by stone carved roses, with the inscription “Bloom in Heaven.”The cemetery sign project is supported by Clugston-Tibbitts Funeral Home in Macomb and Blandinsville, the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Immediate ReleasePublicity ReleaseRural Macomb - Craig Rigg recently accepted a new sign for the Rigg Family Cemetery located seven miles south of Macomb in Bethel Township.Craig and his brother Curt maintain this cemetery that was established in 1840 by Nancy and Samuel Rigg for their family.A family platt of the cemetery shows 35 Riggs buried into the 1950s.The map shows a “Mrs. Jones” and a “Jones Baby” creating a mystery to the  Rigg brothers today. Many of the original marker stones are difficult to read.The cemetery sign project is sponsored by the McDonough County Historical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee.
  • Tennessee, IL - - The Rev. Richard Pricco, parish priest at St. Paul Catholic Church in Macomb, accepts the newest sign in a project marking cemeteries sponsored by the McDonough County HIstorical Society.The Sacred Heart Cemetery, north of Tennessee, has grave markers dating back to 1850 and was deeded as a cemetery in 1865. The last burial was in 1962. Father Pricco serves as administrator of the cemetery.The first church connected to the cemetery was St. Mary’s Catholic Church, a part of the congregation that came from St. Simon Church in Fountain Green. Later the name was changed to Sacred Heart Catholic Church.During that early period, Abraham Lincoln’s uncle Mordecai had family in Fountain Green. Two of Mordecai’s granddaughters, Emily Lincoln and Rowena Lincoln Bowan, worshiped in Tennessee and both are buried in Sacred Heart Cemetery.Their stones are among over 175 graves in this beautiful cemetery cared for by volunteer Bernard Lewis.The cemetery sign project is supported by the Community Quality of Life Advisory Committee, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • May 7, 2010Macomb, ILSt Paul CemeteryJerry Billeter, board member of the Cemetery Association of St. Paul Catholic Church in Macomb, accepted the newest sign in the cemetery marking project sponsored by the McDonough County Historical Society.The Old St. Paul Cemetery on Quail Walk Road, was given to the catholic church by Patrick McGinnis in 1860.  Most remains from that first St. Paul cemetery were moved to the current site in 1869 when Peter Crawford and other parishioners bought six acres (for $480) from Joseph Burton closer to the north end of Macomb. The burial dates on the headstones show that many were moved from the Quail Walk Road site to this new cemetery, which blends its date of establishment with the original cemetery site (1860).The Rev. Richard Pricco, parish priest at St. Paul Catholic Church, serves as administrator of three cemeteries, Sacred Heart near Tennessee, Old St. Paul on Quail Walk Road, and this still active and well maintained cemetery on North Lafayette Street.Father Pricco continues a cemetery tradition initiated by Monsignor Michael Haddigan (pastor at St. Paul 1948-1973) by celebrating a Memorial Mass in the cemetery on Memorial Day. This custom honors all of the deceased of the parish as well as those who served in the armed forces.This year the celebration will be Monday, May 31, at 10:00 AM.St. Paul Cemetery has seven veterans of the Civil War and two from the Spanish-American War resting among approximately 1300 graves.  The cemetery sign project is supported by MidAmerica National Bank, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseJuly 20, 2009Bethel Township  -  Ralph Wickert, president of the Scott’s Cemetery Trustees, accepts a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.Scott’s Cemetery is in the southwest corner of Bethel Township in McDonough County. There are two veterans of the War of 1812 (John Foster and Hugh Wear) and 22 veterans of the Civil War buried  among approximately 800 graves.One of the oldest headstones marks a grave from 1836. John Scott donated the land for the cemetery in 1836.Scott’s Cemetery is still active and beautifully maintained, funded by a perpetual trust.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home in Macomb, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseDecember 1, 2010SIMMONS CEMETERY CLEANUP AND SIGNMacomb - Macomb High School senior Joe Howard learned about the cemetery restoration project of the McDonough County Historical Society early this spring. He consulted with some leaders of his Scout troop which set off a chain of events that culminated in completion of his major project to reach Eagle Scout. The Simmons family cemetery has been inactive since 1922, when SpringLake was created. The lake project flooded the county road used to access this cemetery. The isolation and consequent abandonment and neglect took its toll in fallen trees, limbs, and aggressive weeds.  Howard learned that members of the Historical Society would be enthusiasticsupporters of his proposal to reclaim and restore this old family cemetery whichis on property owned by the city and administered by Spring Lake Park. After several Saturdays of chain saws, weed whackers, loppers, stoop labor,and the cooperation of a few fellow Scouts and friends, the Simmons Cemetery has emerged as an expansive and restored cemetery.  Most headstones are standing erect surrounded by a dense woods. The McDonough County Historical Society recognized the work of Howard byerecting its most recent sign at the edge of the newly cleared plot in the middle of a forest a half mile north of Spring Lake shore.The earliest burial was Joseph E. Landsdown in 1855, at age 54 years old.  The last interment was John Joshua Simmons in 1922.  An older Rowan L. Simmons was a veteran of the Civil War who died in 1906. Ten of the 31 headstones mark the graves of young children or infants. Twelve members of the Simmons family rest in this deeply wooded and secluded plot.Howard is president of Scout Venturing Crew 5203. Dr. Shea Trost serves as Crew Advisor and Tom Green supervised this Eagle project.The cemetery sign project is supported by Niemann’s County Market and Pepsi, the McDonough County Genealogical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society. 
  • Press Release  December 23, 2010  Macomb - In August, Tucker Hays completed cleaning up and reclaiming the Simpson cemetery, a project that will be submitted as his major requirement to reach Eagle Scout. The Simpson family cemetery has been inactive since 1918, with the attendantneglect taking its toll in fallen trees, limbs, and aggressive weeds.  After several Saturdays of chain saws, weed whackers, loppers, stoop labor,and the cooperation of a dozen fellow Scouts and friends, the Simpson Cemetery emerged as a beautifully restored cemetery.  The headstones are standing erect surrounded by an ancient wire fence supported by original concrete posts.In August, the McDonough County Historical Society recognized the work of Tucker Hays by erecting a new sign at the edge of the newly cleared plot in the middle of a forest a half mile north of the Animal Shelter.The earliest burial was an infant in 1842. The last was William M. Simpson, a veteran who died in World War I in 1918.  An older William T. Simpson was a veteran of the Civil War who died in 1878. Seven of the 16 headstones mark the graves of young children or infants. Ten members of the Simpson family rest in this deeply wooded and secluded plot.Tucker felt that the remoteness of this historical site required a second sign at the edge of the forest near a newly created footpath leading to the resting place. The members of First Presbyterian Church agreed and sponsored a second sign for the Simpson Cemetery, erected last week.Tucker is a member of Scout Venture Crew #1. Mitch Standard serves as Scoutmaster and Mike Burdick supervised this Eagle project.The cemetery sign project is sponsored by the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseOctober 11, 2008Emmet Township, IL -- -  Fred Kitch accepts a new sign for the Spring Creek Cemetery donated by the McDonough County Historical Society. Fred and his brother Steve are volunteer sextons of the cemetery on the northern edge of Emmet Township.There is one veteran of the War of 1812 and eight veterans of the Civil War buried among the approximately 400 graves.Some of the oldest headstones mark graves from the 1830s. The land was deeded as a cemetery in 1867. Spring Creek Cemetery is inactive but beautifully maintained by the Kitch brothers. 
  • Press ReleaseJuly 8,  2010Industry Township  -  Mike Woodside, owner of property that includes the Mordecai Springer Gravesite, recently accepted a new sign to mark the site donated  by the McDonough County Historical Society.  This single monument cemetery is located two miles south ofthe Village of Industry in McDonough County, near the former site of the Cross Roads or Pleasant Grove school, church, and lost cemetery. Springer was buried in November 1887 at age 76.  The 12’ x 12’ memorial area still retains some of the originalwire fencing attached to old but solid concrete square fence posts.Mordecai Springer’s family came to McDonough County in the 1840s, appearing on the tax lists as large landowning farmersin Section 26 of Industry Township. This area was once called Carter’s Settlement.Pioneer families came to this area in the 1820s and built a log fort for protection against the Native Americans. No trace of the fort exist, but concrete steps remain for the Cross Roads Methodist Episcopal Church which was due south of the Springer grave.Mordecai married Parmelia Vail in 1863. Their son Charles Springer lived in the Industry area until his death in 1932.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home, the McDonough County Genealogical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press Release - for Stevens and Martha Miler GravesiteAugust 14, 2009(Note: GaroldParkins is with a G, NOT Harold misspelled. Martha Miler is only one L - NOT Miller).Two sites, two signs.Colchester and Chalmers Townships  -  GaroldParkins and his twin sister Sheryl ParkinsVoorhis, caretakers of Stevens Cemetery, accepted on their birthdays a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society. Dan Voorhis, Sheryl’s husband, also helps tend the cemetery grounds.Stevens Cemetery is in east central Colchester Township in McDonough County. There is one veteran, Aaron Peck, of the War of 1812 buried among approximately 20 graves in this old family cemetery.One of the oldest headstones marks a grave from 1870. Stevens Cemetery is not active but beautifully maintained by relatives of those buried there.William and brother Charles Stevens, buried here on their family farm in the 1880s, were prominent businessmen in Colchester. Their grandsons owned the exclusive Stevens Hotel in Chicago and an upscale haberdashery on State Street.William Stevens’ mother-in-law, Martha Miler, followed her daughter Mary from Indiana to Illinois. She died in 1840 and was buried alone on a private grave site just north of Fandon.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home in Macomb, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseAugust 25, 2008 -When Ben Burdick first saw the Stickle cemetery last winter, a trigger in his mind set off a chain of events that has culminated in his major project to reach Eagle Scout.The cemetery has been inactive since 1958, with the attendant neglect taking its toll in falling trees, limbs, and aggressive weeds. Ben asked property owner Larry Graves if he would object to a cleanup  project at the cemetery site. Larry and his wife Mary were enthusiastic supporters of this proposal.After four Saturdays of chain saws, weed whackers, stoop labor, and the cooperation of two dozen Scouts and friends, the Stickle Cemetery has emerged as a beautiful and restored center of local history.The McDonough County Historical Society recognized the work of Ben Burdick and the cooperation of Larry and Mary Graves by erecting its most recent sign at Graves’ driveway, about a tenth mile from the site.The Stickle Cemetery has one veteran from the War of 1812 and one Civil War veteran. The Stickle family built a home on the land where there was once a roadside inn used by Abraham Lincoln in 1832 and 1858.
  • Press ReleaseJanuary 20, 2010Chalmers Township - - George Burton, a cousin in Good Hope of the Burton brothers, accepted a new sign for the Strader-Nankivel Cemetery provided by the McDonough County Historical Society. Tom Burton tells an interesting story while researching his family tree and finding this rural cemetery east of Fandon.Strader-Nankivel Cemetery is inactive and recently maintained by the Burton relatives, Tom and Steve from Washington state and brother Bob from Idaho, and cousin George from Good Hope. The earliest head stone is from 1838. There are about 60 markers from then until 1902, the date of the last burial.The cemetery sign project is supported by Table Grove State Bank, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.Strader-Nankivel Cemeteryby Tom BurtonColbert, WashingtonIn May 2006, my two brothers, Steve and Bob, and I began an Internet search for the resting place of our grandfather’s birth mother, Laura Alice Nankivel, we thought from Macomb, Illinois. We knew nothing of her life or circumstances. As it turned out, Laura died five days after giving birth to her fifth child who died at birth. Laura was 25 years old. The year was 1878 and our grandfather was three years old.Using the Internet, I was able to locate great grandmother Laura and our Nankivel relatives in the Strader-Nankivel Cemetery. I contacted George Burton, our newly found cousin in Good Hope. He gladly did the scouting, contacting, locating, and verification of the abandoned and neglected cemetery. We are indebted to George for his persistence and then gracious invitation to his semi-annual Burton Reunion in June 2006.Five members of our family attended this reunion hosted by George and his wife Liz. They took us to the cemetery deep in the woods behind the home of Becky Cramer, who graciously allowed us access.We did some modest clearing and discovery of head stone identification of many of our relatives. Steve, Bob, and I decided that another trip was necessary.The June 2009 Burton Reunion brought us back to enjoy our extended family and work on the cemetery, which had been a victim of the local winter ice and wind storms. George, our local host in Good Hope, organized some friends, Jack and Susan Pace, Mary Vogler, and Becky Cramer who gathered tools and enthusiasm to make the project work.We spent three days sawing fallen trees, clearing brush, raking debris, and discovering the perimeters of this isolated graveyard. We left our ancestors with a much better looking resting place and have a stronger connection to their lives in rural Macomb.And thanks to the McDonough County Historical Society, the cemetery has a new sign!
  • Press ReleaseSeptember 13, 2009Mound Township - Leona Waller recently celebrated the new sign at the Upper Mound United Brethren Cemetery in west central Mound Township. Waller is a local historian and member of the McDonough County Historical Society and the McDonough County Genealogical Society.The cemetery was deeded in 1853 although headstones have earlier dates. In the 1860s, it was associated with the Upper Mound United Brethren Church, once located nearby.  There is one veteran of the Civil War and one from the Spanish-American War buried among the 250 graves in this beautiful hilltop and carefully maintained cemetery.Howard Daniels, George Swartzbaugh, and LociePensinger serve on a board of trustees caring for the cemetery.The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home in Macomb, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseDecember 30, 2009Industry Township  -  Before our snow storms, Tim Eifert accepted a new sign for the Vail Cemetery donated  by the McDonough County Historical Society.Vail Cemetery is located on the eastern edge of the village of Industry in McDonough County. It is an inactive family cemetery founded in 1839 with approximately 75 graves interred from then to 1916.After Tim Eifert purchased his home, he discovered this abandoned and neglected cemetery across the street. The headstones are in good condition and can be read, although he had to clear the cemetery of tree limbs and brush.Over the years, Eifert became the unofficial sexton mowing for the distant relatives of the Vail family. Currently, the village assumes this responsibility. But Eifert remains an interested historian of the cemetery.The earliest known burial in 1839 was Thomas B. Vail. A relative, Samuel Vail was a veteran of the War of 1812. Thomas J. Vail and Ira Arnold were veterans of the Civil War.The cemetery sign project is supported by Table Grove State Bank, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseJanuary 14,  2010Industry Township  -  Vera Wheeler and Richard Russell, members of the cemetery board of trustees, recently accepted a new sign for the Vance Cemetery donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.Vance Cemetery is located a mile east of the Village of Industry in McDonough County. It is an active cemetery founded in 1835 with approximately 180 graves interred from then to the present.There are four veterans of the Civil War and one from the Spanish American War resting in the beautiful and well maintained Vance Cemetery.James Vance, Sr., came to McDonough County in 1826, and was the third white man to settle in the county. He was one of the first commissioners of McDonough County when it was organized in 1831. He was also a Justice of the Peace. Vance died in his home in 1835 and was buried on his farm in what is now known as Vance Cemetery.His daughter Martha, one of 12 children, married John Wilson in 1828, the first couple to be married in McDonough County. Both Martha (d. 1881) and John (d. 1886) rest in Vance Cemetery. The cemetery sign project is supported by Table Grove State Bank, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Press ReleaseMay 16 2011Emmet Township  -  Marge Harris, descendant of relatives in, and trustee of, the Walker Cemetery, recently accepted a new sign to mark the site donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.This family cemetery is located in the west central quarter of section eight of Emmet Township in McDonough County. There are approximately 160 markers for the people buried between 1851 and 1969.The first burial was Jane McGraw in 1851 even though the Walker Cemetery was not officially established until March 1853 on land deeded as “west half for a school, east half for a cemetery” by James and Julia Walker. There are two veterans of the War of 1812, William Shryack (d. 1860) and William Wood, who died five days after his wife Mary. The Woods are memorialized on a common headstone from 1854.Six veterans of the Civil War rest in the Walker Cemetery, three of whom died in uniform: Benjamin Bugg (d. 1863), Flavius J. Sypherd (d. 1864), and Thomas F. McGraw (d. 1865).Cemetery historian Marge Harris recalls that in 1974, the Walker Cemetery, seven miles northwest of Macomb, was completely fenced (1200 feet of new materials) as the first county project of the American Bicentennial Administration. The current maintenance of this inactive but attractive  cemetery is supported by voluntary donations to a small trust fund. Six deer were voluntarily trimming the grass on the day the sign was installed.The cemetery sign project is supported by ClugstonTibbitts Funeral Home (Macomb and Blandinsville) and the McDonough County Historical Society.
  • Bethel Township - - Carol and her brother Richard Hendrickson,family descendants, accepted a new sign for the Waymack Cemetery provided by the McDonough County Historical Society. Carol from Rock Island, Dick from Columbus, Indiana, and brother Robert from Colorado have great, great grandparents in the cemetery. Carol and Dick recall some interesting facts and stories while reminiscing about this rural cemetery south of Fandon in Bethel Township.Waymack Cemetery is inactive but maintained by the familythrough a local nursery. The cemetery sign project is supported by theMcDonough County Genealogical Society,Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home,the McDonough County Highway Departmentand the McDonough County Historical Society.===============================Waymack Cemeteryby Carol and Dick HendricksonA group of families emigrated from Tennessee to McDonough County in the 1840s. Two families, the Wormacks and the Masons, started farms in the area. Jacob Wormack, son of Buckner, and Nancy Mason, daughter of Adin and Mary Mason, married in McDonough County on March 5, 1840. They were both buried in the Waymack Cemetery in 1863 and 1893, respectively.Two of their eight children, Adan and Francis, rest beside them, both dying at an early young age. There are more descendants from the Wormack Family (also spelled Womack and Waymack), buried in cemeteries in and surrounding McDonough County.The cemetery is inactive and maintained. It was not always well maintained as it is now. We remember in 1997 a day was set aside to attempt to locate the cemetery. We asked a local farmer, Albert Mullett, who took us to the site. It is in the NW 1/4 of Section 9.  We found only two stones on that trip but resolved to return and cleanup the area.In November 2001, we returned with many descendants of the family bringing scythes, axes, and other tools to clean up the cemetery. More corn crop now totally surrounded the plot we discovered in 1997. After locating the two stones found earlier, we cleared weeds and brush and probed the area with a steel rebar. We found more stones just beneath the ground surface. These newly reclaimed stones reflected the three spellings of the name: Wormack, Warmack, and Waymack. We got another surprise finding a grave marker for Jeremiah Barbon, hand chiseled on the flat side of an oval shaped rock (1843-1864). We cannot connect him to our family.With the help of original underground slabs, we organized the headstones in a way that we suspect accurately positions their original location.We installed a sturdy wooden fence to protect the grave site for  future descendants of Jacob Waymack.Our family is proud to have the McDonough County Historical Society mark our family cemetery with a new sign.
  • Press ReleaseImmediate - October 12. 2010Macomb - Dick Jackson, local historian and genealogist, with his wife Marilyn cosponsored a new sign for the White Flock Cemetery installed by the McDonough County Historical Society. This well maintained cemetery is in the northeast corner of Lamoine Township.The first burials were in 1839, but the land was not deeded as a cemeteryuntil 1871. There is still an occasional funeral at this beautiful site.There are two veterans of the Civil War resting here, Charles Turner and Joseph Bayles. Seven of Bayles’ 16 siblings served in the Civil War, one killed in action.Joseph also served in the Mexican War before enlisting in the Union Army from Illinois. He was taken prisoner and incarcerated at Andersonville, where a fire nearly blinded him. He escaped in 1864, and continued to serve even though being wounded several more times. The White Flock Church was built near the cemetery in about 1866.  A fragment of an undated newspaper article attributes the name to Hannah Wilson Stookey, who, with her husband Benjamin, organized the church. “Mrs. Stookey suggested that since all in the community were white with no other color or nationality, and since the people seemed to flock together very well, they should call the church White Flock and . . . establish a Congregational Christian Church.”There are almost 100 pioneer citizens of McDonough County resting in this hilltop cemetery.The cemetery sign project is supported by the McDonough County Genealogical Society, the McDonough County Highway Department, Niemann’s County Market and Pepsi, Richard and Marilyn Jackson, and the McDonough County Historical Society
  • Press ReleaseJuly 22, 2009Bethel Township  -  Charlie McDaniel, Mike McDaniel, and Janet McDaniel Blue (left to right) , caretakers of the Willey Cemetery, accepted a new sign donated by the McDonough County Historical Society.Willey Cemetery is in the far southeast corner of Bethel Township in McDonough County. Rachel Lemley Willey, daughter of Revolutionary War veteran George Lemley, and Steve Willey and Peter Owens, veterans of the Civil War, are buried  among approximately 30 family graves.One of the oldest headstones marks Mary Willey’s grave from 1841. Willey Cemetery is sporadically active and maintained by relatives. The cemetery sign project is supported by Dodsworth-Piper-Wallen Funeral Home in Macomb, the McDonough County Highway Department, and the McDonough County Historical Society.

The McDonough County Cemetery Marker Project The McDonough County Cemetery Marker Project Presentation Transcript

  • The McDonough County
    Cemetery Marker Project

    A Project of
    the McDonough County
    Historical Society,
    Macomb, Illinois
  • The McDonough County Cemetery Marker Project
    has been coordinated
    by
    Gil Belles
    of the
    McDonough County Historical Society,
    Macomb, Illinois
  • Produced by
    Heather R. Munro
    sponsored by
    The
    McDonough County
    Historical Society,
    Macomb, Illinois
  • The Historical Society locates cemeteries in the county and marks them so the cemeteries will not be lost and so that those who came before us will not be forgotten.
  • The following are cemeteries located in McDonough County, Illinois
    that have been marked by the McDonough County
    Historical Society
    Markers have been photographed with people who care about that cemetery
  • Amy Fansler, Juanita Bryan, Jessica and Jordan Fansler
  • Jan Shoemaker
  • Galen Olson
  • Leon Bainter, Dick Lacey, and Jim Frisbie
  • The Rev. Mike Deblois
  • Robin Hinchee, Bridget Napolitano, Roger Frowein and Kenny John
  • David Ridge, Annette Hall Morgan, and Debbie John
  • Norma Banks Runner
  • Roger Frowein
  • George Sewell and Gil Belles
  • Keith Moore
  • Craig L’Hommedieu
  • Fred and BaleighHarn
  • Gil Belles
  • Neal Null
  • David Hynek and Penny Lawyer
  • Craig L’Hommedieu
  • Wes Henness and Maurice Litchfield
  • Tom Green
  • Bob France
  • Martin Diestler
  • ArlinFentem and Merle Parks
  • Linda  Windsor
  • Charles and Walter Lewis and Charles Irish
  • Betty Shoopman and Pat Cordell
  • Laura Melvin
  • Tim Bradford
  • Bernard Lewis and Bob Moore
  • Janice Hamilton King
  • Q. Douglas Baily
  • Gerald Thrapp
  • Marlin Pendell and Brent Payne
  • John Cuba and Gerald Waddill
  • Jerry Hughes
  • Diana Kreps and Don Logan
  • Jere and Paula Greuel
  • Ralph Wolf
  • Dave Wilson
  • Pat Cordell
  • Jack Zimmerman
  • Howard Daniels and George Swartzbaugh
  • Milt Sullivan
  • Howard Kreps
  • Neal Null
  • Gary Rhodes
  • Gil Belles
  • Marion and Ken Keudell
  • Helen Lewis
  • Dr. Jon Dively and Peggy Pennington Foster
  • Jim Smith
  • David Raymond, Gene Raymond , Judy Raymond Brooks, Gary Raymond
  • David Havens, Kenny Garrett, and Kevin Walter
  • A.J. Bourn
  • Craig Rigg
  • The Rev. Richard Pricco
  • Jerry Billeter
  • Ralph Wickert
  • Joe Howard
  • Tucker Hays
  • Fred Kitch
  • Mike Woodside
  • GaroldParkins and his twin sister Sheryl ParkinsVoorhis
  • Ben Burdick with Larry and Mary Graves
  • George Burton
  • Leona Waller
  • Tim Eifert
  • Vera Wheeler and Richard Russell
  • Marge Harris
  • Carol and her brother Richard Hendrickson
  • Roger Frowein
  • Dick Jackson
  • Danny Pittman
  • Charlie McDaniel, Mike McDaniel, and Janet McDaniel Blue
  • The
    End