Tombstone Tuesday: Christopher G. LYNCH

This elaborate tombstone in Easton, Md.’s Spring Hill Cemetery caught my eye because of its blueish hue, which stood out from the granite and marble surrounding it, and because of of its elaborate carvings:

The inscription on his stone indicates that Lynch fought as a Confederate soldier in the Civil War as part of the Chesapeake Battery of the Maryland Artillery.

Lynch’s gravestone is a veritable sampler of cemetery symbolism. The cannons on the stone may be meant to commemorate his military service. The anchor could have several meanings. According to this site on gravestone symbols, the anchor could mean hope or eternal life and/or could indicate the deceased was a sailor or even a Mason. According to the Association of Gravestone Studies (yes, there is such a thing; link opens a PDF), the anchor may also symbolize strong faith or steadfastness.

The wreath of flowers could mean victory or honor. The gravestone also features a bundle of wheat and a Lily of the Valley; the former represents harvest and the later, innocence or purity.

Tombstone Tuesday: Edward R. TRIPPE

Taken at Spring Hill Cemetery in Easton, Md.:

The inscription at the top reads In Hoc Signo Vinces:

The phrase means “by this sign thou shalt conquer,” and it is used by the Knights Templar among others.

Tombstone Tuesday: The Cannons

This headstone, found in Spring Hill Cemetery in Easton, Md., is interesting to me for a couple of reasons: the symbols accompanying the husband’s name and the lack of a death date for the wife (and I’m pretty sure she’s dead, otherwise, she’d be 132 years young).

I did some preliminary searches and was not able to find information about Mary Virginia Kirk Cannon’s death. Some might suggest that perhaps she remarried and was therefore buried with the subsequent husband. However, she would have been 81 when Everett Cannon died — that doesn’t completely rule out another marriage, but I think it diminishes the likelihood quite a bit.

There are other possible scenarios — perhaps she moved far away before she passed and was buried elsewhere. Or perhaps her family couldn’t afford to have her stone engraved with her death date.

Turning back to the symbols on the grave. The one on the left-hand side represents the Shriners, a group of Master Masons. The symbol on the right-hand side looks like the Rotary wheel symbol to me. I’d never seen either symbol on a grave before.

Shriner's Symbol

Rotary Wheel

52 Weeks to a Better Genealogy: Inter-Library Loan

I’m late (again) for this weekly series, but I’m also going to take a different spin on the original mission from We Tree:
“Learn about your local public library’s inter-library loan (ILL) policy. Pick a genealogy-related book that you want to read that is not in your library’s collection. Ask the librarian how to request the book from another library. Find the different library systems from which you can request books through your own library, as this can dramatically increase the number of genealogy books to which you have access. If you have a genealogy blog, write about your experience with requesting items through your library’s ILL service.”

I’ve used and am a huge proponent of inter-library loan (ILL) services. Through my volunteer work with the Internet Public Library, I constantly refer patrons to their local libraries because even if their library doesn’t have a particular book that they may need or want, they usually can request it via inter-library loan.

The state of Maryland actually maintains a fleet of vehicles for this purpose (and if I could find my spring 2008 class notes, I could tell you exactly how many). The other morning, I saw a van belonging to the Eastern Shore Regional Library heading west on Route 50 here on the Shore. I wonder if they were transporting books for the ILL program.

Here’s how the ILL loan process works at my library: once I determine that a book I need is not available in my library’s catalog, but is available at another library in the system (either via WorldCat [more on this in a future post] or on Marina, the state’s library holdings database), I simply call or email the library and ask them to request the book for me. They also can request books from out-of-state institutions, but there is a $5 charge for this (still cheaper than having to buy your own copy of most books!). The hitch is that if a book is in high demand, you may have to wait a while before it becomes available to send your way.

I’ve also used the ILL system within the University System of Maryland libraries. I work on the College Park campus, but when I needed a book at one of the campuses in Baltimore, I was able to request that it be sent to one of the libraries on the College Park campus for me to pick up. Way more convenient!


Tombstone Tuesday: John J. JUMP

Tombstone for John J. JUMP

I saw this unusual tombstone for John J. JUMP at Easton’s Spring Hill Cemetery a couple of weeks ago. I originally thought he may have been a sailor, because the wheel on his tombstone sort of resembled a ship’s wheel, but this may not be the case. In researching symbols on tombstones, I learned that a broken wheel can simply signify a life cut short.

John J. Jump | Born Oct. 26, 1847 | Passed from Earth to Heaven | Dec. 6, 1882 | Aged 35 years

That would certainly be the case for Jump, who was only 35 when he died.

Tombstone Tuesday: William Shepard and His Many Wives

I returned to Spring Hill Cemetery in Easton, Md., over the weekend and happened upon a row of graves that turned out to be for one man, his three wives and one of his sons:

William H. Shepard (Jan. 28, 181?-Jan. 8, 1869)

Rebecca A. Thompson (Jan. 21, 1819-Aug. 14, 1849)

Isabella V. Thompson (Jan. 20, 182?-March 21, 1858)

Elizabeth A. (Aug. 12, 182?-Aug. 11, 1892)

William W. Shepard (July 31, 184?-June 4, 187?)

Unfortunately, many of the dates are wearing away and were too difficult for me to discern. I haven’t been able to find much out about the Shepards and the Thompsons. In the 1850 U.S. census on Ancestry.com, Isabella appears in William H.’s household with two other Thompson women and his children. I don’t think she is William’s wife yet (it’s only a year after Rebecca passed away) — Isabella’s name isn’t immediately after his in the schedule, as one would expect if she were the wife. Her last name is listed as Thompson and not Shepard.

I find it interesting that the Thompson women have their maiden names listed on their tombstones. I wonder if Rebecca and Isabella were sisters. It is probable that they were related in some way, and I don’t think that was unusual back then. My guess is that when Rebecca married William, she brought family members with her to live with them. When Rebecca passed away, William married one of those relatives (I haven’t been able to find proof any of this yet, it’s just a hunch).

I’m wondering if Elizabeth A. took Shepard’s last name as her own and that is why there is no other surname on her tombstone. She was not one of the Thompson women living with Shepard up to this point. Even though she survived into the 1890s, I’ve been unable to find her in any of the censuses so far. She would have been in her 50s when William H. passed away. I don’t know how likely it is that she would have remarried, but I suppose it’s possible.

William (senior, I’m assuming) is listed as a slave owner in 1860 according to the slave schedules in the U.S. census that year. In that year, William H. is living with three daughters and still has a Sarah Thompson living with him. It doesn’t appear that Elizabeth was on the scene yet.

William W. can be found living with his father in 1850, but by the 1860 census he is apprenticed to a master painter and is living with him and his family instead.

52 Weeks To Better Genealogy – Challenge #2

I’m lucky that the Easton branch of the Talbot County Free Library system houses the county’s Maryland Room. I’ve used the Maryland Room several times to access resources like county land records, the vertical file, rare biographies and more.

Talbot County has a rich history and this is reflected in the Maryland Room’s collection, which features manuscripts by James Michener (author of Chesapeake) and also papers related to Frederick Douglass.

The Maryland Room also houses photo collections, genealogies, map collections and ephemera representing the region’s history. It is an impressive archive and worthy of a visit to see what’s there even if you don’t have a particular project to work on.

I’ve gotten to know the Maryland Room’s librarian, Becky Riti, as she has helped me with my research projects many times. I was able to return the favor earlier this year by helping her to scour the vertical file and local history books for Easton history tidbits to be included in the town’s tricentennial calendar (2010 marks Easton’s 300th anniversary).

Early History of the Tylor House

The Tylor House, Built in 1888

The Tylor House located on South Washington Street in Easton, Md., was completed in 1888 by Wilson Tylor and his wife, Elizabeth Needles Tylor. The alley behind the house is named Tyler’s Lane, most likely after the property. The family name is spelled both Tylor and Tyler in various records.

Wilson Tylor was born in June of 1856 and died in 1941. He was the editor of the Easton Gazette, predecessor of the Easton Star-Democrat, from 1885-1912. In a May 2007 column in the Tidewater Times, Harold W. Hurst called Tylor “a dignified and learned man, he made his paper into one of the most respectable and influential publications on the Shore.”1 Tylor was raised in Denton, Md. He wrote the column “Denton 70 Years Ago” for the Denton Journal.2

After Tylor retired from the Easton Gazette, he operated a small printing press in a meat house on the property on South Washington Street.  He filled in the names of graduating seniors on diplomas for the Board of Education.3 Perhaps the structure in question is the shed that remains on the property today.

Historical marker for the Third Haven Meeting House

Tylor and his wife were Quakers. Wilson Tylor was at one time in charge of the Friends’ School in Easton. He and his wife are buried along with several of their relatives on the grounds of the Third Haven Meeting House, located only a block away from the Tylor House on South Washington Street.

Wilson M. Tylor Headstone

Elizabeth N. Tylor's Headstone

More can be learned about the Tylor family in The Tylors of Talbot and Caroline County, by Laurence G. Claggett. The book is available at the main branch of the Talbot County Free Library in the Maryland Room. Claggett was the Tylors’ grandson. Sadly, he passed away earlier this year.

An extended family history about the Tylors’ ancestors also was written by Claggett. Two Lives Entwined: Jonathan and Rebecca (2008) is also available at the main branch of the Talbot County Free Library. Tylor claims that his mother, Rebecca Morgan Huyck, was a grand-niece of Betsy Ross (a.k.a. Elizabeth Griscom), who famously sewed the first American flag.4

On page 74 of The Tylors of Talbot and Caroline County, there is a photo of the Tylor home*. It appeared much as it does today, except the front porch extended across the length of the home. The book says:

“In 1887, they bought a tract of land from Brookletts Avenue to the old railroad tracks on which they built the large Victorian… The house cost slightly less than $5,000.”5

After the Tylor children were grown and moved away, the house was divided into two parts. The Tylors occupied one part with, according to Claggett, “the north half being occupied at times by Capt. Frey, the Martin McHales, the Willard Daves, the C. Leslie Hammonds, among others.”6

After the Tylors passed away, their children sold the home to Mary Clough, who divided it into apartments.7 The property was and often still is used by nurses working at the hospital across the street.

Outlines of the house can be found in Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps starting in the year 1919. The lane behind the house was already called Tyler’s Lane according to that year’s map.8 The property has had three different house numbers since then.9

The Tylors are found listed at the property in the 1930 U.S. Census. The house at the time was valued at $20,000.10

Tylor House Front Porch Pillar

*Photos of the home may also appear in Quakerism on the Eastern Shore by Kenneth Lane Carroll and 75 years of caring: a history of the Memorial Hospital at Easton, Md., 1907-1982 by Dickson J. Preston (p. 173). Both of these books are also available at the Talbot County Free Library in Easton.

More details about the Tylors and how I performed this research project can be found here at my blog (use tag: Tylor). Interested in having me research your property? Email me.

All photos and text by Melissa Corley (c) 2009. All rights reserved.

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Source List

Claggett, Laurence G. The Tylors of Talbot and Caroline County. Easton: Self-published, 1989.

Claggett, Laurence G. Two Lives Entwined: Jonathan and Rebecca. Easton: Self-published, 2008.

Digital Sanborn Maps 1867-1970. ProQuest. Digitial images. http://auth.esrl.org:2248/ : 2008.

“Eastern Shore Newsmen: 1830-1980.” Transcript by Tidewater Times, at“Tidwater Times,” Tidewater Times. http://www.tidewatertimes.com/HaroldW.Hurst-May2007.htm : 2007.

Maryland. Talbot County. 1930 U.S. census. Digital images. HeritageQuest Online. http://persi.heritagequestonline.com : 2009.

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Reference Notes

  1. “Eastern Shore Newsmen: 1830-1980.” Transcript by Tidewater Times, at “Tidwater Times,” Tidewater Times (http://www.tidewatertimes.com/HaroldW.Hurst-May2007.htm : accessed 10 October 2009); citing original publication in Tidewater Times, May 2007.
  2. Laurence G. Claggett, The Tylors of Talbot and Caroline County (Easton: self-published, 1989), 73.
  3. Ibid, 74.
  4. Laurence G. Claggett. Two Lives Entwined: Jonathan and Rebecca (Easton: self-published, 2008), 80.
  5. Claggett, The Tylors of Talbot and Caroline County, 74.
  6. Ibid.
  7. Ibid.
  8. Digital Sanborn Maps 1867-1970. (ProQuest, 2008), 10, “Sanborn Maps of Maryland, Easton, May 1919”; digital images, The Sanborn Company (http://auth.esrl.org:2248/ : accessed 10 October 2009).
  9. Digital Sanborn Maps 1867-1970. (ProQuest, 2008), 14, “Sanborn Maps of Maryland, Easton, January 1927”; digital images, The Sanborn Company (http://auth.esrl.org:2248/ : accessed 10 October 2009).
  10. 1930 U.S. Census, Talbot County, Maryland, population schedule, Easton City Ward 4, p. 182 (stamped), enumeration district (ED) 21, sheet 10-A, dwelling 246, family 282, Wilson M. Tylor; digital image, HeritageQuest Online (http://persi.heritagequestonline.com : accessed 10 October 2009); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm T626, roll 879.

Tombstone Tuesday: Rev. Robert William Goldsborough (1800-1857)

goldspriestside-sm

Another tombstone in Easton, Md.’s Spring Hill Cemetery that caught my eye is that of Robert William Goldsborough (1800-1857). His gravestone/monument is unusual compared to those around him.

goldspriestname-sm

He was a priest who helped erect St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Hillsboro, Md. (see the historical marker for the church).

goldspriestbott-sm

Goldsborough was a UPenn alumnus (classes of 1821 and 1824). He and his wife, Rebecca Hammond, are mentioned in Genealogical Notes of the Chamberlaine Family of Maryland (Eastern Shore) (p. 89-90; available on Google Books).

goldspriestsaying-sm

The engraving on his monument reads “Faith wrought by his works & by his works was faith made perfect.”

Tombstone Tuesday: What Happened to William Hayward?

I wandered through Spring Hill Cemetery in Easton, Maryland, this past Sunday afternoon and came across this gravestone, which reads “In Memory of William Hayward, Born Feb. 10, 1876, Died June 8, 1880, from the effects of a cruel accident.”

Willie Hayward's Gravestone

Willie Hayward's Gravestone

I’m usually drawn to the gravestones of children anyhow — it’s saddening to think they died so young and you can’t help but wonder about the circumstances. This stone’s engraving really piqued my interest. My morbid curiosity got the better of me — I simply had to try and find out what happened.

Unfortunately, there isn’t easy access to old archives of the Easton, Md., newspaper (The Star-Democrat) online. What I can access from my computer at home only goes back to 2005. I tried a couple of searches in Baltimore Sun databases, thinking that a sensational incident might have earned coverage in that paper, but didn’t have any luck.

Next, I tried the archives of The Denton Journal, through the web site of the Caroline County Public Library (I’ve done research there and so my library card code works on their site as well). Really noteworthy Easton-based stories often made this paper, even though the events happened in the neighboring county.

Searching for “William Hayward” in quotes between 1880 and 1881 didn’t return any results, but when I removed the quotes, I found what I was looking for.

The article was actually about “little Willie Hayward” (luckily, the name William appeared elsewhere on the same newspaper page). The headline says it all: “Gored to Death by a Bull.” The article gets pretty graphic. I’m only including a portion here.

Masthead

Masthead

Gored to Death by a Bull

Gored to Death by a Bull

“Gored to Death by a Bull,” The Denton Journal, 12 June 1880, p. 1, col. 3; digital images, Caroline County Public Library Electronic Databases (http://www.caro.lib.md.us : accessed 25 October 2009), The Newspaper Archives of the Denton Journal.

The article simply placed Willie in the wrong place at the wrong time — the bull was being driven down one of the streets of Easton, and after becoming spooked, charged and gored the little boy. Willie’s injuries were so grievous that he died a few hours later.