Trains provided accompaniment during yesterday afternoon's brief sign dedication program at the County Farm Cemetery --- as they most likely have been doing for so long as there's been a cemetery there right along the tracks. Two, an east-bound coal and a west-bound mixed freight, in under half an hour.
It was a little distracting, but appropriate as 17 of us gathered to say a few words about the sign that recognizes by name 38 people buried here, all but five in unmarked graves. There were a few words about "poor farm" and cemetery history, we took turns reading aloud the names on the sign, little Ellie Masters decorated the five marked graves and Fred Steinbach closed with a brief litany from the Book of Common Prayer. The sign is a joint project of the Chariton Historic Preservation Commission and the Lucas County Genealogical Society.
Fourteen of the 17 are grouped around the sign above (from left): Bill Marner, Frank Mitchell, Karen Patterson, Mary Ruth Pierschbacher, Carol Marner, Ilene Chuch, Dru Thorne, Sherry Steinbach, Fred Steinbach, Ellie and Hilary Masters, Ray Meyer, Alyse Hunter and Janet Clark. Darlene Arnold and Bob Sims had to leave a little early. Here's Ellie, below, scattering flowers.
Headed out to the cemetery Sunday morning to help attend the shelter house for a couple of hours, I grabbed the card table I'd promised to bring --- but forgot the camera. That means I missed the opportunity to take a picture of my counsins Laura and Pete Morici and Laura's dad, Ernest Miller, who are spending the Memorial Day weekend in Lucas County. It was great to see them --- next time I'll remember the camera.
We had a good turnout at the shelter and people seemed to enjoy seeting the interior of the little building, the lemonade and cookies and examining the cemetery interment records, which go back to the beginning in the 1860s.
By the time I got back with a camera after midafternoon lunch, the crowds and thinned, but here's Carol and Bill Marner examining the records as Frank Mitchell looks on (above) and another view of the shelter's interior.
We all enjoyed just sitting on the breezy front porch, unaltered since the shelter was built during 1929. It's one of best front porches in town.
Here's Ev Brightman, of the genealogical society, engaged in a little story-telling.
Although the shelter's locked --- except on special occasions --- the front porch always is open and anyone in need of a time-out just to sit and ponder is welcome to climb the steps and do just that.