Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Tombstone Tuesday :: William and maybe John and Susanna Phend

According to early family papers, John Phend (aka Johannes B'hend) passed away on December 22, 1859 and his wife Susanna (Kübli) Phend died on September 9, 1856. They were both reportedly buried in Hepton Union Cemetery, Kosciusko County, Indiana. However, I have not found any record of their deaths (way too early for "official" state death records) or even a record that they lived in northern Indiana. And the cemetery caretaker does not have record of their burial. Their son, Jacob Phend, moved from Greene County, in southern Indiana, to eastern Marshall County, in northern Indiana, in 1852 and it is possible that his parents were with him at that time. Hepton Union Cemetery is only about two miles from where Jacob's farm in Marshall County was located. In 1856, Jacob purchased a farm in Hepton while maintaining his farm in Marshall County.

The marker with the broken top on the left is that of William Phend, son of Jacob and Louisa. I suspect that the clump of flowers to the right marks the final resting place of John and Susanna Phend. This picture was taken on April 4, 2000 and you can see part of a broken marker on the left side of the clump of flowers. I've been to the cemetery several since the first time in 1986, in winter and in spring, but found only bits and pieces of a marker, none with any legible writing on them.

We'll probably never know for sure whether John and Susanna are really buried there or not, but it's comforting to some degree to think that they rest in peace beside their grandson.

William's gravemarker in Hepton Cemetery is broken off at the top so the first name is missing, but the remainder reads:
Apr. 5, 1875
AGED 19 Y. 7 M. 29 D.

William also died before Indiana began keeping death records and I haven't found an obituary for him either so I don't know what caused his death.

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