Family History with a Twist
On Saturday morning I rolled out of the house to run some errands. On my way I dropped Secret Agent Man off along the side of a winding country road. Standard pathways out in our end of the county. When I arrived back home Secret Agent Man was waiting for me....told me to hurry up....he had something to show me.
Now, before I begin this tale, you should know that he relayed this same line to me a few years ago and drove me out to dig a rusty, old milk can out of a ditch. Yes, I still have the milk can.
So, I hopped into our Suburban and off we drove, to a hillside about five minutes away from our house and the grave site of one of my ancestors. You see, I am lucky enough to have an archaeologist as a relative. A retired archaeologist who devotes his time to not only researching/writing books on our family history, but literally digging it up as well. Mr. P, (the archaeologist), wrote a book about James Monay/Money Sr., and located his grave in our county. James Monay had his last name, "Americanized", and locally it is spelled/pronounced, "Money".
In his quest to provide a proper grave site for James Monay/Money Sr., he accidentally unearthed a collection of children's graves. While out running my husband saw Mr. P working up on the hill and went over to have a chat.
And, what a chat it turned out to be. It seems there was a yellow fever outbreak in our county in the early fall of 1822. Documented only in our state capital city of Frankfort, it is a relatively unknown piece of history locally.
Each grave has been measured and marked by Mr. P. He has identified that some graves have as many as three children buried side by side. He took the time to explain about the different levels of soil, how he measured the graves, and how he determined the number of children that were in each. He also explained that during such an outbreak of disease, that coffins would not have been utilized, thus the narrow graves.
He also discussed how he has been out at different times during the solstice/seasons to measure how the graves are pointing in reference to direction.
I left in awe and truthfully a bit speechless. So much history literally at my backdoor.