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Thomas J. Saunders Family at Indian Springs State Park Cemetery

The original acreage of Indian Springs State Park was "acquired" from the Creek Native American tribe in 1825, and has operated as a park ever since.

My one and only visit to a cemetery located within the boundaries of Indian Springs State Park at Butts County, Georgia was back in September 2007. More than a decade ago, there was a ton of overgrowth, broken tombstones, stones knocked off their bases, crumbling surrounding structures, and general disrepair. Rumor has it, the condition of the cemetery only worsened.

An article in the Jackson Progress-Argus (Georgia) dated 25 March 2014 stated two organizations -- the Friends of Indian Springs State Park and the Butts County Genealogical Society -- were working together to begin restoration of the cemetery. Following are two images captured for Google street view two years later in 2016:



These images, as well as another article from another year later (2017), suggest progress is slow. I know it's thankless work to a large ex…
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Miss Emma Bradley: One Where the Dates Do Not Align

Emma's gravestone in Indian Springs Cemetery at Butts County, Georgia may not have been added until well after her death. Or the carver made a mistake. The death date on the stone and an obituary in a newspaper are a few weeks apart.


Macon Telegraph (Georgia)
Friday, 25 January 1907 - pg. 2 [via GenealogyBank]
Death of Miss Emma Bradley.
INDIAN SPRING, Ga., Jan. 24. -- Miss Emma Bradley, formerly a resident of this place, died at the home of her sister, Mrs. William Faulkner, near Crump's Park, Macon, Ga. Miss Bardley [sic] was an estimable woman, and the news of her death is a profound sorrow to her relatives and friends. Her remains will be brought here for interment in the family lot at the public cemetery. Funeral services will be conducted at the home of her niece, Mrs. T. J. Sanders.

First Talbot County, Georgia Soldier Killed in Korea

Roy Knox Culpepper, according to his tombstone, was born 2 April 1934. Army records, describing his service during the Korean War, suggest he was born in 1932. I think Roy might have fudged his age to get in.

I wish he hadn't.

According to a news item in the 13 September 1951 Butler Herald (Georgia) -
After basic training at Ft. Jackson, S. C., he went to Camp Hood, Texas. He was with Co. A Sixth Medium Tank Battalion. Pvt. Culpepper left San Francisco July 18, 1950 for overseas duty.
He lived barely two months more.

Butler Herald (Georgia)
12 October 1950 [via Georgia Historic Newspapers]
First Talbot Soldier Reported Killed in Korea

Talbotton, Ga., Oct. 8 – Seventeen year old Roy Knox Culpepper is the first Talbot county soldier to be killed in the Korean War.

His parents, Mr. and Mrs. C. R. Culpepper were notified of his death by the Department of Defense Sunday.

The classmates of the young soldier are planning a memorial service. He would have been a senior this year but instead …

Green Whiddon Duggan (d. 1921) - Death Certificate, Obituary, & Tombstone

Green Whiddon Duggan was born August 1862 at Washington County, Georgia to John Corlie Duggan and Francis E. Gheesling. Green married Ella L. Dunham at Washington County on 20 November 1892, but I haven't found any children attributed to them.Green was usually occupied as a farmer. In the early months of 1921, he contracted Typhoid Fever and was dead before Spring.Macon Telegraph (Georgia)
Friday, 18 March 1921 - pg. 11 [via GenealogyBank]DEATHS AND FUNERALSGREENE W. DUGGAN
Greene  W. Duggan  of Washington county died at his home near Warthen, Ga., after a brief illness of typhoid fever. He was 58 years of age.Besides his wife, he is survived by one brother, J. C. Duggan of Warthen, and three sisters, Mrs. J. E. Fulghum of Macon, Mrs. E. J. Forrester, and Miss Alice Duggan of Sparta.Mr. Duggan was one of Washington county's most prominent citizens. The funeral will take place Friday morning from the Baptist church at Warthen, of which he was a deacon.He Trusted In Christ, There…

The Redfern Family and Cylindrical Grave Pots

I still sometimes get surprised by what trying to tell tales of tombstones can uncover. Yesterday, I was interested in John Redfiern (or Redfearn, and later Redfern) of Washington County, Georgia mainly for the way he pronounced and spelled his surname. Then I discovered – thanks to Joy Smith and her public family tree – this nugget from Washington County, Georgia Tombstone Inscriptions (pub. 1967) compiled by Elizabeth Pritchard Newsom. It was under the heading of "A Strange Headmarker."The second was a strange but enduring object used as a headstone to mark a grave. It was a glazed piece of turned clay pottery shaped like a bell jar, about sixteen to eighteen inches tall and nine to ten inches in diameter at the base. Near the base the sides flared into a slight lip or flange, and this, covered with earth, gave it great stability. The domed top offered the greatest possible resistance to breakage from falling trees and limbs which damage many slabs and monuments. The botto…

From Redfiern & Redfearn to Redfern

I did a bit of a double-take while photographing a few tombstones at the Bethlehem Baptist Church graveyard in Warthen, Washington County, Georgia. I've only seen the "usual" spelling of REDFERN. Was this a mistake?John Redfiern was born 17 August 1827, likely in North Carolina, to Branson and Emeline "Milly" Redfearn. John married Mary P. Baker before 1860, and the couple had at least three children:Minerva (b. abt Sept 1859)John Robert (b. abt 1861-1862)Martha "Mattie" (b. abt 1862-1868)I found John and family in census records for 1860, 1870, 1880, and 1910. In three of the four takings, the surname was spelled Redfear/n. This might be a testament to how the family pronounced their name. 1910 was the only instance of the four where the spelling was Redfern.John died after the taking of the 1910 census, in the month of September. His tombstone noted him to be "A good citizen, patriotic soldier and consistent friend." (John served with the …

Lozier Lot at Bethlehem Baptist Graveyard

In March 2010, almost nine years ago, we went camping at Hamburg State Park near Warthen in Washington County, Georgia. It's a beautiful little place on Hamburg Lake, which is fed by the Little Ogeechee River. On our last morning there, I tried to get up with the sun and have my own amateur photo shoot. Here's an image I like from that early rise.After we left the park, we stopped by the Bethlehem Baptist Church Graveyard for a look-see. I have family from the Washington County area, so am always on the lookout for kin in the local cemeteries. I distinctly remember being rushed on that morning since my companion – having just dismantled the campsite and loaded the car – wasn't in the mood for one of my cemetery jaunts. (God bless him, he's been on several.) I was able to hurriedly snap a few photos, though.According to ExploreGeorgia.org, "Bethlehem Baptist Church (circa 1790) is the oldest baptist church, perhaps the oldest existing church of any denomination, i…


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The hand of the Lord came upon me and brought me out in the Spirit of the Lord, and set me down in the midst of the valley; and it was full of bones. Then He caused me to pass by them all around, and behold, there were very many in the open valley; and indeed they were very dry. And He said to me, "Son of man, can these bones live?"

So I answered, "O Lord God, You know."

Again He said to me, "Prophesy to these bones, and say to them, 'O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord!' Thus says the Lord God to these bones: 'Surely I will cause breath to enter into you, and you shall live...'" (Ezekiel 37:1-5, NKJV)