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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Old Cemeteries

Well, I seem to have a fascination for odd things, among them is a fascination for old cemeteries.  I love walking through old cemeteries and  searching for pieces to my big genealogy puzzle.  Recently I traipsed through one of the oldest cemeteries in Mountain City.  While I did not find anything that fit into my "genealogy puzzle"  I did find a few interesting things.

This marker did not note the date of birth or death and I have no idea who W.E.M. Roberts is.  I searched for the census records but there was no mention of him.  I did find the history of the 2nd W VA Calvary very interesting.

The 2nd West Virginia Volunteer Cavalry Regiment was a cavalry regiment that served in the Union Army during the American Civil War. The 2nd West Virginia Cavalry was organized at Parkersburg in western Virginia between September and November 1861. The regiment was composed almost entirely of volunteers from Ohio, with 9 companies organized from the counties of Lawrence, Meigs, Jackson, Vinton, Washington and Morgan. The regiment participated in the Grand Review of the Armies and was mustered out on June 30, 1865. Out of this unit, came 3 recipients of the Congressional Medal of Honor. Private Joseph Kimball, of Company B, received his Medal of Honor for "capturing the flag of the 6th North Carolina Infantry" on 6 April 1865. Private Bernard Shields, of Company E, who "captured the flag of the Washington Artillery" on 8 April 1865 at Appomattox, VA. Major William Kimball whose "distinguised services in raid, where with 20 men, he charged and captured the enemy's camp, 500 strong, without the loss of man or gun" at Sinking Creek, Va on 26 November 1862. The 2nd West Virginia Cavalry suffered 4 officers and 77 enlisted men killed or mortally wounded in battle and 115 enlisted men dead from disease for a total of 196 fatalities.

Another grave marker I found very interesting was one of Matthias M. and his wife Mary Fyffe.
Matthais Miller Wagner (aka M.M. and Tice): b. February 15, 1801, in Roan Creek Valley, Johnson CO,TN, d. June 13, 1887, in Mountain City, TN, m. March 9, 1830, in Athens, McMinn CO, TN. 13. Mary Salina Fyffe: b. February 16, 1808, in Yadkin River Valley, Wilkes, CO, NC, d. November 17, 1889, in Mountain City, TN.

Mr. Wagner was a charter member ofThe First Baptist Church of Mountain City.  It is the oldest congregation in Johnson County, Tennessee.  The church was founded on April 20, 1794, at the foot of Rainbow Mountain, the left fork of Roan Creek, as the Roan Creek Church of Christwas housed in a log building. The mother congregation was the Three Forks Baptist Church, Watauga County, North Carolina.

The Church, which served as headquarters for the Confederate Army during the Civil War and on two different occasions for school purposes, has a history older than the county in which it is located.

Before the Civil War members of the Roan Creek Church moved to Taylorsville (now known as Mountain City) and built the present Baptist Church, calling it at the time Taylorsville Baptist Church. When Taylorsville became Mountain City the name of the church was changed too.

Mathias M. Wagner donated a site for the Church and also contributed to the building. On May 25, 1858 a committee comprised of David Kitzmiller, Phillip M. Kiser, and Isaac R. Wagner contracted Bartlett Wood for brick and bricklaying, and with Isaac McQueen for lumber and carpentry work. The building cost $1,240.
The Civil War brought hard times to members of the church and they were unable to finish paying for the building. On October 5, 1861 a committee comprised of John Blankenbecker, R Moore, and Moore Robinson gave the deed of trust to Bartlett Wood and Isaac McQueen to secure the balance due them for labor and material used in building the church.
An old deed shows that payments were made to McQueen as follows: A horse valued $125 and another valued at $115, paid by Mathias M.Wagner; $15 paid by David Kitzmiller and $10 paid by Abraham Johnson. The deed also showed that McQueen himself donated $10 to the debt.

A little over a year later - November 13, 1862, the church was sold a public auction to the highest bidder for the sum of $550.

The purchaser was Mathias M. Wagner. In 1885 Wagner and his wife deeded the church back to its trustees with provision "that if the said property shall cease to be used by the said church (for a reasonable time) as a place of worship, that said property shall revert to said M. M. Wagner and his heirs, free from incumbrance and this conveyance shall be null and void."

The church is still located on the same site and is a familiar landmark that marks the downtown business section of Mountain City.

While doing research on Mathias M. Wagner I found an old photo of his house.

This is a picture of Matthias Miller Wagner. It was taken in Baltimore probably between 1820 and 1840

Genealogy is a very fun and interesting hobby and I love doing the research especially when I find a challenge.  My challenge now is to find more information on Mr. Wagner and to find birth and death dates on W.E.M. Roberts.

That's it for today!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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