of the North Manchester Historical Society, Inc.

Volume XXI Number 4 November 2004

The Cemeteries of Chester Township, Wabash County, Indiana

(With thanks to the Revised edition of Lester H. Binnie's Cemetery Records for Chester Township, Wabash County, Ind.)

1. Concord Cemetery is located south east of the intersection of Wabash County Road ll00 N and 700 E or about six miles southeast of North Manchester. It is enclosed with a fence and is about 200 feet square, and well kept. It can be reached by taking a lane going east from road 700 E. Common names found in this cemetery are Brookover Culler, Jenks, Bitner, McCutchen, Conde, Bolinger and many others. Noted for a fine specimen of conglomerate, weighing maybe 500 lbs at the north end of the cemetery between the last two rows. It has no inscription.

2. Daniels Cemetery is at the northeast corner at the intersection of Wabash County roads 700 N and 500 E or two miles south and two miles east of Servia. It is a plot about 100 feet square, not consistently cared for and many stones are on the ground, many are broken, some in several pieces, and some collected in a pile. Common names are Daniels, Kellogg, and Dillon. One stone for Margaret Dillon, a daughter of G. and E, probably represents the second white death in Chester township. See Helm's History of Wabash County, 1884, p. 275.

3. Fairview Cemetery is located on both sides of County Road 300 e near the intersection with County Road 1000 N. The section on the west side of the road is the oldest part. One section of this cemetery was the site of the former Fairview Church of the United Brethren in Christ, A.D. 1871 and there is a sign showing this near the highway. Another significant inscription can be found on the stone of Christian Mylin, "This ground was donated to the United Brethren in Christ for a Church and Cemetery b. C. Mylin, Feb. 24, 1871. Some of the stones that bear dates prior to 1871 were moved here from the Holderman Cemetery in North Manchester. Common Names Hippensteel, Krichbaum, Winesburg, Fannin, Frederick, Aughinbaugh, Bowers, Frushour, Hoover, Kennedy, Morford, Wright, Geyer, Schroll, Krisher, Stands, Coble, Steller, Allisbaugh and others.

4. Greenwood Cemetery, sometimes called the Comstock Cemetery because of the large number of the Comstock family buried here, occupies a hilltop about a half mile west of Liberty Mills or a short distance west of Highway 13. It is on the south side of County Road 1450 N. It is about one half acre, well fenced and cared for. The Comstock family is grouped generally by generations beginning with a double pillar arch on the hilltop, and a circle below and a second circle of foot stones. Other Comstocks are in the near rows.

The Cemeteries of Pleasant and PawPaw Townships

Chester Township boundary is Highway 13 on the west side of North Manchester so many citizens of North Manchester lie in cemeteries in Pleasant township. This is especially true for Pleasant Hill, the Cripe cemeteries and the Old German Baptist Brethren cemetery. This report uses much information from Lester Binne's Cemetery Records for Paw Paw and Pleasant Townships Wabash County, Indiana.

German Baptist Brethren cemetery located about one half mile north of the intersection of State Roads 13 and 114 along Highway 13. The land for the adjacent church and the cemetery was donated by Henry Cripe and the first burial is said to have occurred on February 7, 1885. A number of stones were moved from other older cemeteries in the community but likely no bodies were exhumed. The cemetery is well cared for and currently used. Common names found there Butterbaugh, Cripe, Metzger, Blickenstaff, Renicker, Blocher, Frantz, Boocher, Long, Miller, Ulrey, Karn, Heeter.

Pleasant Hill Cemetery, located one mile west of the intersection of State Roads 13 and 114. It is an endowed cemetery, very well maintained and currently used. It joins the church yard of the West Manchester Church of the Brethren. This brick church is the second building to be built on this site. The cemetery was established about 1880, but it contains several stones that were moved in from other locations. Common names found in this cemetery: Lautzenheiser, Heeter, Butterbaugh, Boyer, Crill, Warner, Cupp, Ulrey, DeLauter, Penrod, Blickenstaff, Frantz, Ohmart, Grossnickle, Harter, Garber, Buckingham, Landis Brookins, Miller, Neher and many others. Otho Winger, President of Manchester College for thirty years and members of his family lie in this resting place.

Old Cripe Cemetery located on a hilltop about one mile west of the intersection of State Roads 114 and 13 at North Manchester, it is on the north side of Road ll4 overlooking Clear Creek. This stream was an important mill stream in pioneer days. The cemetery is about 60 x 70 feet, fenced and now overgrown with native trees and myrtle. All of the adult buried there are believed to have been German Baptists. Some bodies may have been moved to other cemeteries but it is not clear if bodies were removed or only stones or perhaps only bodies and not stones.

Common names include Cripe, Butterbaugh, Boyer, Crill, Miller, Albright, Myers, Frantz, Isenbarger, Karn, Grossnickle.

Rose Hill Cemetery, sometimes known as the Luthrean or North Pleasant Cemetery. Located on the south side of the Wabash - Kosciusko County Line, near Wabash County Road 300 w. The cemetery and church yard occupy about an acre of land. A stone, built into the red brick church building reads, "North Pleasant Church, 1881. Common names: Bussard, Oldfather, Isley, Penrod, Ayres, Feigley.

Laketon Cemetery, first known as the Ijamsville Cemetery, located at the intersection of County Roads 950n & 200 w. about a half mile south of Laketon in Pleasant Township, Wabash County, Indiana. The cemetery is on the west side of 200 w and across the road from the Christian Church, built in 1901. Common names are Thompson, Bender, Fites, Fogerty, Tryon, Ogden, Kelly, Grisso, Weaver, Knouf,Lautzenheiser, Wertenberger, Sholty, Hoover, Moyer, Rager, Rooney, Werner, Palmer, Lindsey, Pettet, Mylin, Sickafus, Ferry, Ulsh, Marshall, Frederick and others.

Shiloh Cemetery, located about one half mile north of the junction of County Roads 700 w and 850 n in Pleasant Township. This was, once, the location of a Presbyterian church. The cemetery has had no maintenance for several years and is overgrown with bluestem, a tall prairie grass. It is fenced but many stones are broken or down. Common names are Keim, Ulsh, Stanley, Chinworth, Larrew, Brundige, Lukens, Schuler.

South Pleasant Cemetery, located at the intersection of County Road 1400 n and State Road 15. The east part is the oldest and it is separated from the new part by a white frame church now occupied by the United Methodist denomination. The cornerstone shows: "Pleasant Church 25 June, 1874." Common names are Drudge, Ihnen, Hileman, Young, Seitner, Leffel, Kroft, Jontz, Clinker, Gamble, Miller, Haney, Rager, Dillman, Groninger, Eichholtz, Hively. Shellenberger, Larrey, Noftzger, Weimer

Abshire Cemetery located in an open field about 600 ft southwest of the intersection of County Roads 600W &500 N in Pawpaw township. The plot is about 50 feet square, covered with bluegrass and several hickory trees. It has been abandoned for many years and none of the stones are standing. Most of them were found in a pile under one tree. Abraham Abshire, 1800-1892, and his wife, Hannah Neff were early settlers near Roann, Ind. They were natives of Franklin County, Virginia, near Boones Mill. Shelby Arthur came to this area from the same place and at about the same time and were members of the German Baptist church near Roann. Abraham was a son of Edward Abshire and a grandson of Luke, both of whom died in Franklin County, Virginia. Names, Abshire, Garver, Neff.

Alger Cemetery, located about 2 and a half miles southeast of Laketon on County Road 750N in Paw paw Township. Beautiful and well kept on a hilltop about 300 feet north of the road. There are two very large yellow poplar tree near the entrance and four very large red cedar in the enclosure. Common names Baker, Poole, Baer, Alger, Sickafus.

Gamble Cemetery, located 2 miles south of Roann, just east of the intersection of County Roads 400s & 700 E. in Paw Paw Township. This cemetery is completely overgrown with myrtle and rose briers. It is fenced except on the side next to the road. Names; McCoy, Bryan, Gamble.

Jack Cemetery, located about a half mile east of County Road 600W and about a half mile south of County Road 500 N on the south wide of Paw Paw creek. It appears to have been in use from about 1840 to 1914 but is now subject to grazing livestock. It is said that some stones were removed to the I.O.O.F. cemetery north of Roann. Names: Flint, Oswalt, Garver, Jones, Watson, Jack, Denning, Boblet.

Long Cemetery, located two Miles west and about one mile south of Urbana, on the west side of County Road 200W on the south side of Paw Paw creek. This cemetery in very poor condition. Names: Watts, Baker, Dunfee, Gray, Latchem, Long, Wellman, Lambert, Freeman, Purdy, Guynn, Amber,Merrick, Alger, Siders, Slee.

I.O.O.F cemetery located one mile north of Roann, on the east side of County Road 700 W at the former site of Bethel Church (Winebrennerian.) The present cemetery is endowed, well maintained and large. Some of the older stones were apparently moved here from older cemeteries in the vicinity. Names: Ashton, Steele, Smith, Bookover, Peters, Pottenger,

Bickel, Squires, Kidd, Schuler, Halderman, Wiles, Abshire, Dillman, Walker, Whitmeyer, Lambert, Favorite, Hoffman, Yocum, Oswalt, Yarian, Grogg, Crist, Rantz, Beamer, Hettmansperger, Lukens, Riggin, Jones, Van Buskirk, Keim, Meyer, Ivins, Worrel, Story, Butterbaugh, Martindale, Burson, Crist, Swihart, Bryan, Flora and many others.

Reed Cemetery, located on the south side of County Road 400 N. about two miles southwest of Roann. According to Helm's History the land was donated by Ezekiel Reed. The fenced area is about 100 ft square. It has had no maintenance for several years and some of the stones are down or missing. Names: Brower, Weaber. Reed, Riddle, Showalter, Wray.

Roann Cemetery, located at the south end of the covered bridge. Very well kept. Names: Deardorff, Gipe, Butler, Abshire, Neff, Miller, Drollinger, Squires, Signs, Smith.

Stockdale Cemetery, about one mile northwest of Roann on the west side of Squirrel Creek The area is fenced but the gate is open and the land was being used for pasture. Names: Bonewitz, Burdge, Black, Lewis, Croft.

Krisher Cemetery located about one and a half miles south of North Manchester at the intersection of State road 113 and County Road 1100 n. About 75 x 200 feet, usually well keep. Appears to be a very early cemetery established before Henry Heeter owned this land in the early 1850s. The southwest corner of the plot is low and no graves are there.

Some common names: Frederick, Walters, Fanning, Heeter, Krisher. David Walters marker here but body lies in Hampstead,Texas. Oaklawn Cemetery, located on Beckley Street, south of ninth street in North Manchester, First burial here in 1878 and currently in frequent use. At least 86 stones here are known to have been removed from the abandoned Holderman Cemetery on Market Street and at least 16 stones removed from the Harter Cemetery, abandoned and now a parking lot.

The South End of Oaklawn Cemetery is the oldest part and that section has a large number of mature hardwood trees.

Most of the names in Manchester's history are represented here including Maple, Messmore, Harter, Heckathorn, Strickler, Eichholtz, Wells, Wagner, Roadarmel, Kuhnle, Heeter, Flook, Noftzger, Bonewitz, Lautzenheiser, Kircher, Kyler, Cowgill, Burge, Church, McFann, Strauss, Ballenger, Sellers, Miller, Switzer, Young, Baker, Keesley, Sincroft, Lower, Grossnickle and many others. It should be noted that two Manchester College Presidents - David Howe, the first president and his lst wife Delilah, and Vernon Schwalm and his wife, Florence are buried at Oaklawn. Also Andrew Cordier and his wife Dorothy Butterbaugh Cordier are resting at Oaklawn.

Swank Cemetery is just north of North Manchester on the east side of Highway 13, overlooking Swank Creek. Is is about 100 by 200 feet in size and contains several large trees. It is well kept. Common names are Swank, Auker, Shively, Smith, Cook, Stoneburner, and others.

Union or Pleasant Grove Cemetery lies at the intersection of County roads 1300 n and 400 e about two miles east and a mile north of North Manchester. There is a small brick church on the north side of Road 400 e. The cemetery was likely begun by the Simonton family. It is very old and the stones are worn and often broken. Common names are Parrett, Ruse, Calhoon, Simonton, Hidy, Tilman, Baugher, Feagler, Abbott, Banks, Naber, Dunbar, Baublett, Liggett, Flinn, Cook, McCutchen, Halderman, Heeter, Shock, Seymor, Pinney, Rinehart, Boocher, Sellers, Hogmire, Houser, Simpson, Kitterman, and Simpson. There are many Civil War soldiers buried in this cemetery.

Holderman Cemetery, the oldest cemetery in North Manchester, located on the East side of Market street. North of Fourth Street established about 1840 by Allan Holderman, included burials to the 1890s. It was not incorporated and did not receive consistent care. The use of the cemetery was likely free to the public. About 1955 the stone were removed for safety reasons and placed in a pile in the northeast corner of the plot. In September 1969, Lester Binnie recorded the inscriptions from the 185 stones he found there. Other stones were found in 1982 when the town of North Manchester began gathering data for the construction of a suitable memorial on the site. At that time intensive research in old newspapers and other old sources was conducted by Keith Ross, Ron Woodward and others yielded names of persons almost certainly buried there.

By crosscheck it was found that at least 86 stones for persons who were first buried in the Holderman Cemetery were removed to other cemeteries, including Oaklawn and Fairview and others. It is quite clear that some persons were buried at Holderman for whom no stones can be found.

A memorial which incorporates some of the stones found in the cemetery has been built. The plot - about 100 x 500 feet - is now a landscaped park and memorial area. At the south end is the site of the restored Thomas Marshall birthplace.

Some names found in this cemetery: Frame, Holderman, Helvey, Lavey, Lautzenheiser, Mowrer,Ogan, Place, Thomas, Weidner, West, Williams, Willis, and Marshall.

Early Furniture Making in Indiana

In the early years of settlement, Indiana was blessed with a good variety of trees and lumber suitable for the manufacture of furniture. Many of the early craftsmen bought lumber from the east with them also. The 1850 census listed 1872 men in the State with occupations of chairmaker or cabinetmaker. Of these, thirty-four were in Wabash county and eight in Chester township.

Tools were powered in several ways. Some were powered by a dog walking inside a wheel. A few were powered by water. Perhaps horse power was most common. The earliest furniture makers settled along the Ohio and the Wabash. Some were active before Indiana became a State in 1816. The list of articles which were made is impressive and could be summarized by saying they made everything used in the house and on the farm. Rolling pins were a common order from a housewife, or a cradle or a case for a clock. Chairs were the most common furniture need and some men only made chairs. Orders for coffins may have led to the custom of combining furniture making with undertaking.

A few craftsmen specialized in making handles using ash lumber. The Baldwin Handle company in North Manchester was active into the early 1900s when the local supply of ash was exhausted.

Some establishments experienced disastrous fires before the days of better fire control.

Some of this early furniture has no identifying marks; others have initials carved into the wood on the inside or back of the object. In general, the quality of craftsmanship compared favorably with that being done in eastern states and some shows the marks of excellent skills.

Events of 1884 in Wabash Co.


11 Dedication of new Presbyterian Church

M. E. Church at Fort Wayne considering move to Wabash

30 Indian children from Dakota arrive at Whites Institute

18 James Siders paints interior of Skully's Saloon a rich crimson.

Underwood Manufacturing prepares to move to Wabash

The Laketon Herold, C. A. Richards paper, kurflummixes

Bridge at Rich Valley collapses with Milo and Ephraim Pearson and two wagons.


8 Adams, Steele & Elward take possession of the Lagro elevator

15 D Thompson & Sons determine to introduce the roller process into their mills.


7 Saw Mill and planning mill of S. B. Rittenhouse at N. Manchester destroyed by fire.

21 Wabash Literary Association organized

28 Brady & DuBois Dry Kiln burns at North Manchester

J. C. Gochenour's store at Somerset burgled.


4 Pleas & Small sell their stock of millinery to Eva Harter

18 GAR Post established at Somerset

25 Organization of the TriCounty Fair Association at North Manchester


23 The Burr Robbins show in town

29 S. Wilson's slaughter house east of town burns


6 Progressive Euchre craze strikes Wabash

13 Sons of Veterans Post organized in Wabash

19 Bark Louse gets in its work on maple trees

26 C. W. & M. road builds a new passenger station in Wabash


11 Robinson circus in town


8 Joe Lindsey swallows his store teeth

30 James Donaldson's barn collides with a train on the Wabash Road and gets worst of it

L. B. Baker proposes to number the houses of Wabash


3 Tri County Fair held in North Manchester

17 M. E. Church at Ijamsville dedicated

24 Electric light extinguished in Wabash by wild geese

Greer and Morse Falls Avenue Grocery destroyed by fire


28 L. W. Monson dedicates a new church at Pleasant View

December 26 Second Adventists notify public that the crack of doom will be heard January 5th

Copied from the Newsletter of the Wabash County Genealogy Society, FAMILY BRANCHES

Questions and Comments

l. How does a barn collide with a train?

2. How does one swallow store teeth?

3. Note the frequent fires.

4 Note that the Tri County Fair Association was organized and the Fair held soon after.

5. How many held their breath for the crack of doom?