Saturday, August 6, 2011

Rectangle, oval, dove

The marker at the grave of Sarah Reynolds (d. 1972) is simple but elegant: rectangle, oval, dove.

Feb. 14, 1872
Æ 70 y. 9 m.
& 27 d’s.

Who is Sarah Reynolds? A quick search on yields Federal census records for 1870, 1860, and 1850. All three records place Sarah (but no husband) in Union County, Ohio. This is not a surprise because she is buried in Union County as well.

In 1870 and 1860 Sarah (born in New York) is listed as head of household, with another woman, Sarah Bell, in the household. In 1870, Sarah Reynolds is “keeping house.” In 1860, although there is no occupation listed for Sarah Reynolds, Sarah Bell is shown to be a “Servant.”



In 1850 Sarah was living with the Lester Webster family. No occupation is listed for Sarah. Housekeeper? Nanny? Friend? Family?

1850 provided the index to her death record—and I am confident it is our Sarah, even though there is what would be a transcription error that lists her age as 10.

It is telling that her parents are not named in her death record. No nearby family members or friends who knew her parents’ names? Then again, perhaps it was information not normally collected for an older person.

Milford Center Cemetery, Union County, Ohio

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