Friday, December 2, 2011

Gone on before

The gravestone for Patience Beardslee (d. 1870) is a handsome example of a clasped-hands marker.

Notice that one hand is a woman’s; the other, a man’s. It is sometimes suggested that the grasping hand (here, the man’s) represents the spouse who was first to die welcoming the other to Heaven.

Is that true in the case of Mr. and Mrs. J. G. Beardslee (Beardsley)?

The epitaph on Patience Beardslee’s stone declares that she has “gone on before.” In addition, the 1880 U.S. Federal Census appears to show Mr. J. G. Beardslee (Beardsley), then 70 years old, with another wife.

Wife of
Aug. 25, 1870
Aged 58 yrs.

Not dead but gone on before.

The 1870 Federal census shows both Patience and Job G. Beardsley living in Union County, Ohio. The census taker visited their home in July. Patience died in August.

1870, Claibourne Twp., Union Co., Ohio

1880, Claibourne Twp., Union Co., Ohio

Claibourne Cemetery, Union County, Ohio

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