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mike reeves (#47684672)
 member for 5 years, 8 months, 27 days
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Bio and Links
Bio Photo Ancestral interest in the Reeves and Joneses of Butts and Troup Counties, Georgia, respectively. Progeny also descendants of the Blackwoods and Fords of Talladega County, Alabama.

Talladega County was formed after the Indian Removal Act of 1830 and Treaty of Cusseta in 1832. Compilers of published county cemetery records, Carolyn Lane Luttrell and Joseph W. & Francis S. Upchurch, observed decades ago that stones had "...disappeared through erosion of time, vandalism, and bulldozers." As said of the Marble Springs Church site by E. Grace Jemison in "Historic Tales of Talladega": "There are now only a few people who have so much as a memory of the once sacred spot".

Antebellum planters and Victorian era (1837-1901) farmers often had burial plots upon their own land. Pioneer church consecrated ground lay fallow after congregations moved. The Alabama Maintenance of Abandoned Cemeteries Act (2007-408) allows access to grave sites by family and researchers who provide reasonable notice to property owners. State criminal law stipulates any person who defaces or removes a gravestone has committed a misdemeanor.

Early headstones of marble, state rock of Alabama, may bear a quarry name such as Herd Brothers and/or Richard Miller, first quarriers in the county. In 1845 Dr. Edward Gantt purchased the Sylacauga quarry subsequently named after him from John Herd. A 4' by 2' block of Gantt Quarry marble, marked "J. M. N. B. Nix & Co., Wetumpka, Ala.", was placed in the Washington Monument in Washington D.C. in 1851. An "A. Herd & Bros." invoice from 1855 reflects the cost of a 6 1/2' by 3' marble slab to have been $35, with clasped hands sculpted for $5 and letters cut at 5 cents apiece, for a total cost of $56.10 due within a year. Historian Kenneth M. Stampp recounted the annual wage of textile workers in the South during 1860 to have only been $145. After the death of the eldest Herd brother, George, in 1855 their business in Winterboro went to "H. P. Oden & Co.". Captain Henry Oden died at Vicksburg in 1863. Reconstruction era quarry marks were few, some "J. A. Bergin, Talladega, Ala." and "J. T. Nix & Co., Hopkinsville, Ky."

African-American headstones from the Victorian era are rarely encountered, less than a dozen at the oldest public cemeteries, Oakhill and Westview, in the city of Talladega. Vermont marble headstones were provided from 1914 thru 1931 to members of the Mosaic Templars of America (MTA), a black fraternal organization with members in half the states of the nation. Many of these MTA members, formed in local "Chambers", had endured slavery and witnessed emancipation. Chamber stones are approximately 27" in height and 16" in width, with a rounded and forward sloping top. "M","T","A" and "3V's", spaced within crossed shepherd staffs and encircled, is cut in relief upon the upper face of the stones. Shepherd staffs symbolized the Exodus out of bondage led by Moses and Aaron, and the "3V's" stood for "Veni, Vedi, Veci"; I Came, I Saw, I Conquered.

Those insured from 1890 thru 1930 by the Woodmen of the World (WOW) Life Insurance Society received marble tree stump markers approximately 4'-5' in height. Initially free to WOW policy holders, by 1900 a $100 rider was required to cover their expense. These sculpted stones were discontinued during the Great Depression due to their cost. The monuments are also seen with sawn and stacked logs. The WOW logo, ivy, and axes were carved onto the stone trees. Scrolls with names are often depicted, hung on ropes or attached to the trees, and "Dum Tacet Clamet"; Though Silent, He Speaks.

Sandstone from local quarries, such as at S. M. Jemison's farm on Kelly Creek, was used for headstones and obelisks from 1845 to 1875. Fieldstone and flagstone markers, some with etched names, are in rural and urban plots. Cast zinc and iron markers were used in the late Victorian era. Cement curbs, slabs, and stones have been in use since 1900. Whitewashing of cement produced an ersatz marble.

Cenotaphs are memorials in honor of deceased who lie elsewhere, such as the seventy-five Veterans Affairs (VA ) stones at Ft. Williams Military Memorial Park. The April-May 1926 edition of "Arrow Points" noted the chartering of the Fort Williams Memorial Association; "... to do honor to the Tennesseans long buried at old Ft. Williams on the Coosa". That was a dozen years after the construction of Lay Dam downriver of the fort and its "burial pits arranged in rows." An inscribed marble boulder and VA headstones for eighty soldiers were placed at the site during 1932-1937. In 1976 it was added to the Alabama Register of Landmarks. Nevertheless, in 2006 land developers said the cemetery was devoid of any graves and an "eyesore". Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) scans and trenching failed to disclose bones beneath the stones, which when moved allowed for construction of lakehouses with docks on Lay Lake. The Alabama Memorial Preservation Act (2017-60) prohibits removal of monuments which have been in place on public land for 40 years or more.

Skeletal remains of soldiers do actually lie beneath the "Battle of Talladega" (a.k.a. "Jackson Pyramid") monument at Oak Hill Cemetery. Half the remains of a score of Tennessee volunteers slain were recovered from their burial pit by the Andrew Jackson Chapter of the DAR and reinterred there in 1900. The sixty-four "Unknown Confederate Soldier" VA headstones in two parallel rows at Oak Hill also mark the burial places of soldiers, although they weren't unknown at the time of their deaths. Soldiers who died in the local hospital or conscript camp were buried with wooden markers identifying them, but the grave markers deteriorated in time until those beneath were "Known but to God".

An in-the-ground interment, marked or otherwise, is no longer the cultural norm in our society. Data from the National Funeral Directors Association reflects the cremation rate rose from 3.5% to 43% during the past fifty years, with almost 20% of Alabamians in 2012 having elected "ashes to ashes".

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Not marble, nor the gilded monuments
Of princes, shall outlive this powerful rhyme;
But you shall shine more bright in these contents
Than unswept stone, besmear'd with sluttish time.

Sonnet 55
Wm. Shakespeare (1564-1616)
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
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African American Victoria... (26)
Antebellum Planters (23)
Battle of Talladega (19)
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Messages left for mike reeves (206)[Leave Message]
Arthur Little
Absolom Russell Talledega Alabama
You took pictures of a monument that included Absolom Russell and his being a member of William Russell's Mounted Spy's. Absolom was also William Russell's son.

Can you give me a link to information on this monument? I've done a google and don't come up with much. Wondering why a monument to Tenn soldiers of War of 1812 was erected in Talaladega and always curious about my military ancestors.
Added by Arthur Little on Sep 17, 2017 4:27 PM
C Warren
Thank You
Thank you for all that you do Mr Reeves. God Bless you.
Added by C Warren on Sep 12, 2017 2:07 AM
Dianne
RE: Matilda Reeves Clemons
Transfer has been done
Added by Dianne on Sep 11, 2017 9:27 AM
Ingrid Bast
Looking for 2nd husband of Eveline Montgomery #89810424
Hi there! Eveline's second husband died in 1867. Is there any record of him being buried next to her? Most all of Joseph Turner's immediate family is buried at Eastaboga Baptist Church Cemetery. Just trying to find him. Thanks for any info. Ingrid
Added by Ingrid Bast on Sep 07, 2017 11:23 AM
Dianne
Matilda Reeves Clemons
I will give me a couple days! Not where I can ATM.
Thank you for contacting me.
Dianne
Added by Dianne on Sep 06, 2017 10:34 AM
Doug McBroom
Tombstone pictures
Many thanks from Rocky Mountain Country for taking the time to post a picture of John & Louise GROGAN ROWELL's tombstone for me.
Doug McBroom, Aurora CO (ROWELL Family)
Added by Doug McBroom on Aug 31, 2017 2:03 PM
John & Ruth Clackler
Abigail Morriss
mike,

Thanks for the photos of the monument and plot for Abigail Martin Morriss. I appreciate it very much.

John
Added by John & Ruth Clackler on Aug 06, 2017 11:21 AM
Maggie
Mary Lide
Mike, Thank you so much for the information on Julia. I have been helping with a DAR application for a Lide descendant and I'm sure she will be interested in this information.
Thank you again for taking the picture and for the further info on the daughter!
Maggie
Added by Maggie on May 28, 2017 3:44 AM
Frances B Maddox
Find A Grave Memorial# 179626550
THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THIS MEMORIAL.

HOUSTON AND AGNES HAD A DAUGHTER, JOANNA MARTIN, AND I WONDER IF YOU HAVE ANY INFORMATION ABOUT HER.

I UNDERSTAND SHE MARRIED BUT I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT HER MARRIED NAME IS OR IF SHE IS STILL LIVING OR DECEASED.

IF IN YOUR RESEARCHING AND PHOTOGRAPHING YOU RUN ACROSS ANY INFORMATION ABOUT HER PLEASE LET ME KNOW.

THANKS AGAIN FOR ALL THE GOOD WORK YOU DO.

FRANCES B. MADDOX
Added by Frances B Maddox on May 23, 2017 9:33 PM
Shane
RE: Blackwood Family
I know that part is so Otis and Florence adopted him so basically he would be their son by paperwork
Added by Shane on May 17, 2017 12:16 PM
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