----- ............Cemetery Walk: An afternoon of discovery! Every stone has a story. And they are waiting to be told........... -----

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Tomochichi (to-mo-chi-chi') (c. 1644 – October 5, 1739) was a seventeenth century Creek leader and the head chief of a Yamacraw town on the site of present day Savannah, Georgia. He remains a prominent character of early Georgia history. As the principal mediator between the native population and the new English settlers during the first years of settlement, he contributed much to the establishment of peaceful relations between the two groups and to the ultimate success of Georgia.

Tomochichi and nephew Toonahawi
Tomochichi died on October 5, 1739, and while sources differ over his exact age, historians and contemporary observers generally agree that he was in his late nineties.

His gravesite was desecrated and destroyed in 1883 by the Central of Georgia Railroad when they constructed a monument to their founder, William Gordon, directly on top of Tomochichi's grave. Outraged by this insult to Tomochichi, Gordon's own daughter-in-law, Nellie Gordon, had a new monument to his memory, a large granite boulder with a decorative copper plate, was installed southeast of the original structure on April 21, 1899, by the Colonial Dames of America.The Georgia Historical Commission later placed a large marker in Savannah's Wright Square, which details the achievements of the Yamacraw chieftain.             Extracted from Wikipedia.

Wright Square
Savannah, GA

More information at:
New Georgia Encyclopedia

I purchased a walking tour book that included a photo of his original burial mound. If I can find it in the public domain I will edit this post.

Monday, September 26, 2011


Life got a little easier when I got my Droid X2 last month. It can do so much more than my old BlackBerry. I finally got around to setting up some features to allow me to keep up with my blog reading, friends and family without being tethered to a laptop or desktop.

New Books

I added a few new books to my bookshelf. I saw some beautiful cemeteries while in Savannah last week.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Colonial Park Cemetery

I took some cemetery walks on my vacation to Savannah, GA this week. Updates are on the walks page under GA: Chatham.

Our hotel was in the historic district and within walking distance to Colonial Park.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Horace King: Emancipated

A few articles I found on Horace King

Realizing that King could be taken from him to settle debts with his creditors, Godwin arranged with Robert Jemison to petition the Alabama General Assembly for King's release from slavery. Jemison succeeded, and on February 3, 1846, Horace King became a free man.
Alton Telegraph [IL]

Daily Sentinel and Gazette [OH]

Carroll Co Times [GA]

Carroll Co Times [GA]

Educated at home by private tutors and on the job by their father, the King boys learned their father's trade by working with him in the Godwin construction and milling firms during the Civil War. Following the war, King and his sons formed their own construction business, the King Brothers Bridge Company. Later, Annie Elizabeth also worked for the family firm.
Atlanta Constitution [GA]

Thursday, September 15, 2011

300th Cemetery Walk

I'm sure my number is higher but my count includes the cemeteries I photographed between 1999 to 2004 for my genealogy research and those I began photographing in 2004.

Returning home last weekend we stopped in Arkansas. On our way to dinner we took a quick stroll through Forrest City Cemetery. My list notes this as cemetery number 300.

I'm excited about the cemeteries on my list to visit next week. Stay tuned for a report on those!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Coffins at the Kansas State Fair

You can find just about anything at the state fair...including a custom coffin. We have a new business in town called 'Til We Meet Again. They have a display at the Kansas State Fair.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Horace King: Slave & Master Bridge Builder

A part of my hometown history...

I learned about the relationship of John Godwin and his former slave, Horace King, during my search for cemeteries in Phenix City, Alabama. While Phenix City is my birthplace I was raised across the Chattahoochee River in Columbus, GA.

During a trip home I found the Godwin Cemetery and visited the grave of John Godwin and photographed the headstone placed there by his former slave, Horace. I knew I also needed to find and visit Horace's grave in LaGrange, GA. On my latest trip home I made time to travel to LaGrange to find and visit the grave of Horace King.

I was saddened by the sparseness of the cemetery and found Horace and his son, Marshall, buried beside a tree next to the creek bed. There were few marked graves in this large piece of ground outside of the confederate cemetery referred to as Stonewall Jackson Cemetery.

I kneeled down and cleaned the debris from their graves and told him how I had learned about him and wanted to visit him. That much has been written about him and the new 13th Street bridge connecting Alabama and Georgia is called the Horace King Friendship Bridge.

Standing at the head of Horace's grave looking
toward the Confederate Cemetery
After I returned to Kansas I discovered his wives are buried in the Godwin Cemetery. I will visit them when I return home in a few months. The documentary listed below states the King wives are buried close to the Godwin plot by the two cedars. I reviewed my photos and see the location.

Horace King 9/8/1807 - 5/28/1885
His headstone is marked wrong with the year 1887
1st wife: Francis L. Goode
2nd wife: Sally Jane McManus

Alabama Heritage

New Georgia Encyclopedia
Born as a slave of African, European, and Native American (Catawba) ancestry in Chesterfield District South Carolina, King moved with his master, John Godwin (1798-1859), a contractor, to Girard, Alabama, a suburb of Columbus, where Godwin had the contract to build the first public bridge connecting those two states. King probably planned the construction and directed the slaves who erected that span. Godwin apparently realized King's intuitive genius as a builder and nurtured those skills. During the early 1840s King served as superintendent and architect of major bridges at Wetumpka, Alabama, and Columbus, Mississippi, without Godwin's supervision.
John Godwin allowed King and his other slaves a great degree of freedom, and in 1846 he freed King, perhaps to protect this valuable asset from his creditors. King might have simply bought his freedom, but the relationship between the former master and slave remained the same. After Godwin's death in 1859, King erected a monument over his grave that declared "the love and gratitude he felt for his lost friend and former master."
Horace: The Bridge Builder King documentary by Tom C. Lenard
As shared by his descendents, researchers and historians on YouTube
Part 1. Be sure to watch all 6 segments.

Other links with information on Horace King:

New book

I added a new book to my cemetery bookshelf:

Monday, September 12, 2011

Where should it go?

While I am working on the information and photos that I want to share about my Mama via the Memory Medallion I won, I also have to decide where it will be placed on her headstone.

Where would you place it? Here is my Mama's headstone:

I won!

I guess now I will have to stop saying I never win anything. Because I did!

I recently made another trip home to address a few more needs for Daddy since he returned home after his hip surgery and stroke. While there I wasn't able to find time for blogging but I did comment/enter the drawing Memory Medallion held on their facebook page. The great thing is not only did I win but so did every person that commented.

I came home to find it waiting in my mail. Thank you, Memory Medallion!

I already knew where I would place it if I won....on my Mama's headstone. I have a few months before I plan to head back home so I should be able to get my information and photos uploaded before placing it on her headstone.

Here is what I received.