Clock Tower

Out of the Clock Tower



Hello and welcome to the Greene County Archives' blog, "Out of the Clock Tower".  Please join us as we share information on archival issues, news, special events, and highlights from our collection.

Before the archives program began in Greene County in 1996, permanent records were stored in every conceivable space, in basements, garages, and closets. Usually they were in boxes of various shapes and sizes, although seldom adequately labeled, but occasionally they were just in loose piles of books and papers. Most notable were the old records stuffed into the clock tower of the County Courthouse, where they shared their home with pigeon droppings.

Now, there is a clean, environmentally controlled, well appointed location for the county archives, where our historical records are housed in standard sized boxes on steel shelves. We have taken note of their journey in the name for our blog.

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May 02

Pioneer Family Cemetery in Xenia Township

Posted on May 2, 2019 at 3:51 PM by Melissa Dalton

In 2004, an archaeological investigation was conducted in an area south of the City of Xenia in search for a suspected small family cemetery.

Fig. 1 Archaelogical Dig (JPEG)
Fig. 1 The Archaeological Investigation (Archaeological Investigations-Gray & Pape Inc.)

Prior to the investigation, a fragmented grave stone was found in the area with the words inscribed Rachel….. Wife of…. This large tract of land (Virginia Military Survey #2242) was located south of State Route 35 between Union Road and State Route 380. The parcels of land (Virginia Military Survey #2242 and #2240) were originally purchased in 1808 by Alexander Stowe.

Fig. 2 1874 Atlas edited (JPEG)
Fig. 2 1874 Greene County Atlas – Xenia Township (Greene County Archives)

After Alexander’s death in 1840, the property was subdivided among his three children, Joseph, 100 acres in Survey #2242; Richard 50 acres in Survey #2240 and Elizabeth, 35 acres in Survey #2240. When the archaeological investigation was completed in 2004, it failed to uncover any remnants of a cemetery in the suspected area in Survey #2242. However, there is a deed record that references a cemetery (graveyard or burying ground) on Richard Stowe’s property in Survey #2240 which is south of Survey #2242.

In 1856, Richard Stowe and his family were looking to move westward to Illinois and sold their fifty-three acres to C.T. Jones. The deed states “exception therefrom forever, the grave yard on said premises as now enclosed and supposed to contain nine square poles of the above tract of land….”

Fig. 3 Deed 1 edited (JPEG)
Fig. 3 Richard Stowe to C.T. Jones 1856 Deed Vol. 32 Pg. 592 (Greene County Archives)

The graveyard contained nine square poles which is about half an acre. Thirteen years later, C.T. Jones sold the property to Joseph M. St. John. In the deed record it asserts, “excepting preserving a burrying ground of about 9 poles in the tract acquired from Richard Stowe & wife…..”

Fig. 4 Deed 2 edited (JPEG)
Fig. 4 C.T. Jones to Joseph M. St. John 1869 Deed Vol. 48 Pg. 413 (Greene County Archives)

We believe that it is more likely that the Stowe family cemetery was located on Richard Stowe’s property and not his brother Joseph. The father, Alexander Stowe, his wife Frances, and their son, Joseph were probably buried on the land owned by Richard Stowe. We believe this area is located at the corner of State Route 380 and East Krepps Road.

Fig. 5 Survey Gis edited (JPEG)
Fig. 5 Current Aerial View of State Route 380 and East Krepps Road (Greene County GIS)

Their remains were later reinterred at Woodland Cemetery in Xenia.

Fig. 6 Alexander Stowe gravemarker (JPEG)
Fig. 6 Alexander Stowe – 18 Dec 1769 – 11 Mar 1840 (FindAGrave.com)

However, it is still a mystery as to why the stone for “Rachel Stowe” was found in the area where Survey #2242 is located. Unfortunately, we were not able to find any records to show if a cemetery existed on this plot of land. We also have not been able to verify who Rachel Stowe was. Perhaps she married into the Stowe family or was a cousin of Alexander Stowe.

Until Next Time!

Sources:
- Gray & Pape Inc. Cultural Resources Consultants, Final Phase I Archaeological Investigations of the Suspected Stowe Cemetery Plot Located South of the City of Xenia, Greene County, Ohio, 2004.
- Greene County Archives
- Greene County GIS
- FindAGrave.com


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