11 January 2010

Tombstone Tuesday -- two tombstones for the same person, in two counties

Last week I put up the tombstone of Charles Arnold, our grandmother "Pi" 's great grandfather.  It was pretty darn hard finding her grandmother, the wife of Charles' son, Jacob Arnold, because Pi's grandmother's name was Mary Jane Smith.  Believe me, it doesn't get harder than looking for a Mary Smith.

The one clue we had was that Jacob Arnold had two wives and that his two wives were first cousins, and that his first wife was named Orilla Smith.  Well THAT is easier than Mary.  So I looked for Orilla Smith hoping it would lead me to Mary.  Eventually it did, but along the way I came across a phenomenon that may not be as odd as it seems -- two tombstones for the same person. Below is a very pregnant Mary Jane Smith with her husband, Jacob Arnold.

Orilla died at 33 in 1850 after having 5 children with Jacob Arnold.  She was buried in her father's family plot in the Copeland/Curtiss cemetery in Genoa twp, Delaware County, Ohio -- just on the edge of a 20th century reservoir.  Jacob then married her 1st cousin Mary Smith and had seven more children -- one of them being Pi's father Charles Eber Arnold.

When Jacob died in Madison township, Franklin County, Ohio, his children by Orilla erected an obelisk to him.  They put Orilla as his wife on one side.  So...Orilla has two tombstones.  Our Mary Jane Smith Arnold has a small plaque on the ground near the obelisk.  I leave it to others to explain it all.  I just present it here. And just for fun I present a picture of our grandmother "Pi" (named by my big brother Jack who tried to call her what she called him, "Sweetie Pie," and could only get out the "Pi" and the name stuck.)

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