Wednesday, September 23, 2009

A Lesson in Indiana History-Part 2

If you've never driven through a covered bridge, you really should try it sometime.

Stopping in the middle and viewing the rough hewn beams and timbers can evoke images of a time long past. As we drove our Jeep through the bridge to the other side, I found myself wondering how many horse drawn buggies of yesteryear had clip-clopped over this sturdy old monument to history. I could imagine barefoot kids with picnic baskets and cane poles headed to Cornstalk creek to fish or play in the water on a hot summer day. Maybe Chief Peter Cornstalk and his people had even caught fish in this very creek? It was supposedly named for him. I was even beginning to think that maybe there really had been a Chief Peter Cornstalk after all!

Continuing on our journey, the country gravel road followed the creek twisting and turning for a while. To our left, fields of corn and beans were starting to turn golden for the upcoming fall harvest. We soon found ourselves at the proverbial fork in the road and had to decide which way to go. Should we veer slightly to the left and stay on what we learned was Cornstalk road or do we go right, which looked every bit as inviting. It didn't seem a hard decision as we both felt drawn to the left and with that, decided our muse was telling us to 'stay the course' and so we did.

Within no time we came upon a small wooded and somewhat overgrown meadow. Had the roadside frontage not been cared for and mowed, we might have missed another opportunity to visit history. There, not but a few feet from the road stood a small marker identifying the Cornstalk Cemetery, established, 1829.The temptation to explore the old gravestones was too great. The thought of tromping through weeds, poison ivy, burrs and stickers could not deter me from getting a closer look. I must admit though, the idea of slithery, crawly things hiding in those weeds did make me pause,
but not for long! I wanted to explore what was there.

Headstones of five Civil War Veterans from the Indiana and Virginia infantries


Look closely in the weeds toward the back of the picture and you will see headstones standing tall next to the trees and in the streaming sunlight

Grave stone of infant Mary Graybill, 4 months, 13 days
Died 1841


The largest and most ornate headstone in the plot. Dates on most markers were from the early to mid 1800's

As we wandered through the weeds and grave markers in the eerily quiet solitude of the place, one could only wonder about the people buried in this somewhat forgotten glen.
Who were they, what had their lives been like?

Although the stones we found in the Cornstalk Cemetery most certainly were those of settlers from the area, it made me more curious than ever to get home and Google Chief Peter Cornstalk. Who was he?

I'm guessing that my next Blog post will have something to do with that very subject!

1 comment:

  1. History is always a good way to remember and recognize our ancestors' achievements!


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