Bonsack Cemetery

Bonsack Cemetery

 

Locality: Roanoke County                  Temporal Period:                  19th and 20th centuries

Realty Map:          40.14-2-16                              Cultural Affiliation:              Euro-American

USGS Map:           Stewartsville                         Landform:                              Ridge top

Grid Locus:            B-6                                          Elevation:                              1060 feet

UTM Easting:       600250                                    Aspect:                                  South

UTM Northing:    4131340

 

Site Dimensions:  50 by 385 by 109 by 449 feet

 

Survey Description: Site consists of a large, community cemetery with a minimum of 134 interments.  Majority of graves marked with inscribed marble and granite markers.  All graves oriented to the southeast.  Cemetery consists of a 19th-century section (about 50 by 179 feet) and a 20th-century section.  Older section contains minimum of 61 graves.  Historic plantings include boxwoods, cedars, pines, periwinkle and yucca.  Thick carpet of periwinkle and honeysuckle hindered grave identification and presence of additional graves is possible.  This section also contains a cement block enclosure faced with rock.  Numerous dislodged grave markers are stacked in the northwest corner of enclosure.  This part of cemetery is not maintained and is overgrown honeysuckle and briars.  Newer section is still active, well maintained, and covered with mowed grass.  Plantings include flowering bulbs.  This section contains more than 70 interments.  Site was field inspected, photographed, and headstone inscriptions were transcribed and compared to previous site documentation.  Site size was derived from local realty maps.

 

Surveyed By:        T. Klatka & D. Richardson

Survey Dates:       8/97, 3/98

 

Field Notes:           _x_Yes   ___No

Photographs:        _x_Yes   ___No

 

Reference(s):         Kagey, Deedie Dent

1983  Community at the Crossroads: A Study of the Village of Bonsack of the Roanoke Valley.  Privately printed, Roanoke, Virginia.

 

Roanoke Valley Historical Society

                                1986        Roanoke County Graveyards Through 1920.  Privately printed, RVHS, Roanoke.

 

Works Progress Administration of Virginia, Historical Inventory, Roanoke County, Virginia, Document #8.

 

Additional Comments: Assigned temporal period based on death dates observed on inscribed headstones.  In the old section these dates range from 1839 through 1966, and in the new section the dates range from 1916 through 1997.  Site is not marked on the USGS Stewartsville map sheet, but it is marked on local realty maps.  Represented in this cemetery are grave markers created by four different commercial makers who operated in the Roanoke region during the late 19th century through the early 20th century.

 

Due to the historic development of this large cemetery it is sometimes treated as two cemeteries.  The Roanoke Valley Historical Society (1986:  4, 19-22) report on county cemeteries documented each part as separate cemeteries referred to as the Bonsack Cemetery and the Baldwin-Bonsack-Gish Cemetery.  Following Kagey (1983) and Roanoke County realty maps, the cemetery is treated here as a single cemetery that contains an 19th-century section and a 20th-century section.


Bonsack Cemetery (continued)

 

The older part of this cemetery was initially surveyed in 1936 by the Works Progress Administration of Virginia and recorded as the “Bonsack Cemetery in Document #8 of the Historical Inventory of Roanoke County, Virginia.  The WPA file listed inscriptions from the mid to late19th-century grave markers for Sarah Bonsack, Susannah Hershberger Bonsack, John Bonsack, and John H. Berry.  Although none of the observed grave markers exhibited 18th century dates, the cemetery was thought to date back to 1790.  This section of the cemetery was described as about ½ acre in size, in poor condition, and contained family sections marked by iron, wood, and cement fences.  These fences are no longer present, although a fence constructed of cement blocks faced with stone encloses part of the cemetery.   The WPA documentation also mentions the presence of uninscribed “rough stones for markers;” however, no fieldstone markers were observed during the 1998 field inspection.

 

The RVHS report provides biographical information derived from 59 graves in the older section and three graves that predate 1920 in the recent section.  Kagey (1983: 200-204) provides biographical information derived from 54 graves in the old section and 62 graves in the new section.  The following information was also derived from headstones in the cemetery and supplements the information provided by the RVHS and Kagey.

 

New Section:

 

Ollie V. Atkinson                                  Majorie V. Atkinson                                            (Mattie)

1890 - 1969                                             1915 - 1939                                                             Martha E. Atkinson

(metal alloy marker)                              (metal alloy marker)                                              Aug. 17, 1860

Feb. 15, 1950

 

Annie Atkinson Stanley                     Norris P. Stanley                                                  Daniel P. Stanley

Dec. 6, 1892                                           Virginia                                                                  1886 - 1937

Aug. 7, 1995                                          PFC Engineers                                                      At Rest.

World War II

Sept 8 1919     Aug 3 1944

 

Pearl Mills Bowles                               Marvin E _______                                              Flora M. Mills

1911 - 1992                                             1904 - ______                                                       Nov. 18, 1882

(metal alloy marker)                                                                                                              Oct. 6, 1963

Gone, but not forgotten

 

William T. Mills                                    Evelyn Marie                                                        Josaphine Mills

May 5, 1880                                           Cornelissen                                                           Daughter of

Mar. 19, 1958                                         Dec. 4, 1932                                                           W.T. & Flora Mills

Gone, but not forgotten                      Jan. 20, 1935                                                          Born

Asleep in Jesus                                                    May 12, 1917

Died

Sept. 12, 1932

Gone but not forgotten

 

Claudine J. Jones                                 Juanita C. Jones                                                   Herbert S. Jones

Oct. 10, 1925                                          Nov. 13, 1909                                                        Virginia

Jan. 18, 1989                                          Aug. 6, 1974                                                          PVT MG TRP 15 Cavalry

World War I

July 4 1889     Feb 21 1958


Bonsack Cemetery (continued)

 

Carrie Moorman                                   Clarence H.                                                            Thomas M. Jones

Jones                                                      Huck                                                                       Apr. 12, 1848

Oct. 20, 1884                                          1896 - 1952                                                             July 4, 1934       

Feb. 10, 1969                                                                                                                         Bettie C. Jones

Nov. 20, 1851

Flora Bonsack                                       Eula Jones                                                             July 17, 1940

Ligon                                                      Smith

1854 - 1925                                             1878 - 1930

 

Ruth Jones                                            Clinton H. Partello                                                Glen Smith

Moorman                                               Virginia                                                                  MACH.  1 CL

1892 - 1930                                             PVT U.S. Army                                                     U.S. Navy

World War I

Feb 2 1889    Dec 24 1954

 

 

Max Brugh Jeter                                                   Jeter                                                        James Sual Jeter

Feb 20 1914    Jan 17 1987   Jacob B.                 Hattie P.                                 Infant Son of

CMM U.S. Navy Retired                     Apr. 2, 1874           Jan. 2, 1889                            Richard & Genevee Jeter

Apr. 21, 1940         July 8, 1927                            Sept. 8, 1958

 

Sophia H. Baldwin                               James T. Baldwin                                                 Sallie B. Baldwin

July 4, 1876                                            Jan. 8, 1873                                                            Wife of

April 16, 1962                                        Apr. 6, 1958                                                           Edgar J. Vinyard

(Headstone)                                                          March 6, 1871

James E. Baldwin                                                  February 23, 1935

Virginia

PFC 324 Inf. 44 Inf. Div.                                      Emma L.

A.P. Foutz, Sr.                                       World War II                                                        Wife of

Jan. 14, 1862                                          Nov 10 1912 Dec 24 1944                                    A.P. Foutz, Sr.

Oct. 25, 1927                                          (Plaque at foot of graves)                                   Died Mar. 9, 1920

 

Annie Ola Synder                                Virginia I. Kessler                                 KESSLER

Nov. 17, 1906                                        1913 - 1935                                                             (Large marker)

Sept. 17, 1925

SNYDER

 

Sudie Kessler Sutphin                         John William Kessler                                           Margaret S. Kessler

June 8, 1915                                           Dec. 18, 1877                                                         Sept. 17, 1882

Oct. 3, 1937                                            Mar. 20, 1951                                                         Nov. 29, 1956

 

Clara Mae Kessler                                Vivian J. Wright                                                   Brenda Gayle Blankenship

Nov. 25, 1917                                        Born Feb. 9, 1911                                  August 22, 1947

Nov. 29, 1973                                        Died Feb. 9, 1916                                                  August 12, 1965

Asleep in Jesus

 

Allen Catron                                         Julia King Catron                                                 Maurice Blankinship, Jr.

May 3, 1856                                           Feb. 11, 1853                                                         “Nugget”

Oct. 12, 1920                                          Jan. 5, 1948                                                            Oct. 31, 1950  July 3, 1983


Bonsack Cemetery (continued)

 

Alfred W. Harvey                                John M. Wills                                                       Mrs. Emma Mae Paitsell

Sept. 11, 1868                                        ___________                                                      1890 - 1959

Jan. 7, 1932                                            May 4, 1921                                                           (Metal alloy marker)

He is not dead but sleepeth               (Broken marker)

 

James Grover                                        George R. Bishop                                                 Ethel Divers

son of                                                     July 13, 1880                                                          1898 - 1988

J.E. & Ethel Wheeling                         Apr. 25, 1947                                                         (metal alloy marker)

Dec. 31, 1919                                         Minnie V. Bishop

Apr. 9, 1921                                           Jan. 15, 1878

“Budded on earth to                            Feb. 7, 1942

bloom in heaven  

 

James P. Baldwin                                  Sarah G. Bell                                                          Emma B. Baldwin

April 30, 1847                                        Wife of James P. Baldwin                                   Oct. 5, 1869

Jan. 5, 1926                                            Sept. 24, 1841                                                        Dec. 25, 1958

April 8, 1921

 

BALDWIN                                            Geo. G. Gish                                                          Nannie Baldwin

(large marker)                                        Mch 17, 1863                                                         Wife of Geo. G. Gish

Sept. 3, 1914                                                          Aug. 10, 1868

Aug 21, 1931

 

Our Loved Ones                                   Edgar J. Vinyard                                                   Oscar S. Burger   

GISH                                                       March 17, 18979                                                   Mar. 2, 1905

(large marker)                                        October 23, 1937                                                   July 3, 1926

               

George N. Smelser                                Our darling baby                                                  Allie B. Smelser

Aug. 16, 1894                                        Herbert Kelley                                                      May 12, 1903

Sept. 25, 1957                                        June 15, 1920                                                         June 22, 1967

Safe in the arms of Jesus                    Apr. 30, 1923                                                         Asleep in the arms of Jesus

 

Kelley                                     Smelser                                                                  Crook

Lula Holdren         George M.             Robert Lee                                                             Ruth McCauley

May 7, 1888           Dec. 28, 1876         Aug. 22, 1923                                                        July 31, 1923

Oct. 23, 1963          Apr. 26, 1964         Jan. 7, 1959                                                            Jan 7, 1959

 

James Randolph Smelser                    Willie G. Burger                                                    John S. Burger

PVT U.S. Army                                     July 10, 1977                                                          May 4, 1872

World War II                                        Aug. 31, 1929                                                        June 24, 1944

Sept  25, 1920   Jul 16, 1977

 

Burger                                    Jacob Pawpaw

Doars M.               Virdie O. Jan. 4, 1857

1908 - 1958             1907 - ____           Dec. 7, 1929


Bonsack Cemetery (continued)

 

Old Section, inside enclosure:

 

Sarah Har                                               Uninscribed marker                                              In memory of

dy Daughter                                                                                                                          John Bonsack

of Jonathan                                                                                                                           Born in Frederick Co., Md.

Hardy. & Reb                                                                                                                        Dec’r 9th 1790

ecca His wife                                                                                                                         Emigrated to this state 1816.

E. Sarah . . .                                                                                                                            Aged 68 years, 2 mos. & 11 days

(stone sunken, remainder                                                                                                   (Epitaph faint; maker’s mark -

of inscription illegible)                                                                                                        Gaddess  Lynchburg”)

 

In memory of                                         In memory of                                                         In memory of

John H. Berry                                        Susannah Hershberger                                       Salome.

Died.                                                       Wife of John Bonsack Decd.                               Wife of  

Feb.y 6th 1859;                                     Died April 24, 1888.                                              William Whitmore

Aged about 69 years.                          Aged 88 yrs. 10 ms. & 26 ds.                              and daughter of

(maker’s mark:                                       (maker’s mark:                                                       John & Susan Bonsack

 Gaddess Lynchburg”)                      “V.&B. Salem Va.”)                                              Born May 2nd 1829

Aged 22 years

11 months and 13 days

(maker’s mark:

“J.B. Gaddess & Bro.

Makers, Lynchburg”)

 

Sacred to the memory of                     Dr. Benjamin Elliot Jeter                                      Susan Ann Bonsack

John A. Pogue M.D.                            Born in                                                                   Wife of

Born                                                       Bedford Co. Va.                                                    Dr. B. E. Jeter

Mar. 6, 1842                                           Nov. 28, 1824                                                        Born in Roanoke Co., Va.

Died                                                        Died                                                                        Aug. 14, 1834

Jan. 11, 1898                                          Jan. 31, 1903                                                          Died

Aged                                                                      July 16, 1906

78 yrs. 2 mos. 6 dys.                                            Aged

71 yrs 11 mos. & 2 dys.

 

Willie L. Jones                                      In memory of                                                         In Memory of

Sept. 29, 1886                                        Price W.                                                                 Catherine

Dec. 31, 1915                                         Infant son of                                                         Daughter of

Jacob & Sarah                                                      John & Susan Bonsack

Bonsack                                                                 Born

March 29, 1848                                                     Dec. 6, 1836

Died                                                                        Died

Jan. 30, 1849                                                          Sept. 6, 1839

Aged 10 months & 1 day                                    Aged 2 years

And 9 months.


Bonsack Cemetery (continued)

 

In memory of                                         In memory of Salome W.                                     Bonsack

infant daughters                                   & Elizabeth Bonsack                                           Apr. 9 1899

of                                                            Died Jan’y 15 1854:                                               Sept. 1 1907

David & Mary                                      Aged                                                                      Mother’s Man

Plaine                                                     3 months & 15 days

1849.

 

Lelia Saunders Walker                                        Bonsack                                                 John Bonsack

1873 - 1961                                             Samuel E.               Ola S.                                      Born

1858-1924               1872-1966                               January 1, 1832

Died

February 18, 1877

 

In memory of                                         In memory of                                                         Lucien Herbert Bonsack

infant son of                                         Mary Catherine                                                    Born

John H. & Mary Bonsack                   Daughter of                                                           Mar. 7, 1877,

Born                                                       Jacob & Sarah Bonsack                                      Died

April 5, 1871                                          Born Jany 20th 1856                                              June 1, 1911

Died                                                        Died Dec’r 31st 1859

April 6, 1871                                          Aged 3 years 11 mos. & 11 days

(maker’s mark:

Gaddess Lynchburg”)

 

Albert                                                     Eliza                                                                        In

son of                                                     Daughter of                                                           Memory of

J.A. & Anna M. Bonsack                   Jno. & E.B. Pogue                                                E.B. Pogue

Born Feb. 25, 1884                                Born                                                                       Wife of Dr. Jno. A. Pogue

Died June 19, 1884                               Dec. 7, 1874;                                                          Born

(maker’s mark:                                       Died                                                                        Mar. 21, 1851

“J.H. Marstellar. Roanoke.”)              Feb. 4, 1875.                                                          Died

Jan. 1, 1875

 

Sarah                                                      Jacob Bonsack                                                     Nathaniel Bonsack

wife of                                                    Born                                                                       Born Oct. 30, 1826

Jacob Bonsack                                     April 25, 1819                                                        Died

and daughter of                                    Died                                                                        June 13, 1879

Michael & Susan Whitmore               Mar. 3, 1889                                                           Aged 52 yrs. 7 mo. 13 das.

Died Oct 15 1881

 

Old Section, outside enclosure:

 

In memory of                                         In memory of                                                         Rosa P. Baldwin

Daniel Stoner sr.                                     Samuel Stoner                                                       June 30, 1878

Born. May 19th 1770                             Born May 19, 1805                                               Feb. 2, 1880

Died January 31st                                  Died Aug’t 29th 1915

1838.                                                       (maker’s mark:

(maker’s mark:                                       Fagan Maker Salem”)

“Fagan Maker Salem”)


Bonsack Cemetery (continued)

 

Benjamin Perkins                                                  George G. Baldwin                               Infant Baldwin

Born July 1794                                                      June 14, 1874                                         1897 - 1897

Beneath this Monument are deposited            Nov. 16, 1894

the remains of Benjamin Perkins

He was born in Goochland Co. Va.                   Samuel H. Dent                                     James Dent

July 1794 and died in Roanoke Co. Va.             Son of J.B. & Elizabeth Dent              Son of John & Lucy Dent

Oct. 30, 1852                                                          Died July 10, 1865                                Born (illegible)

He was an honest and upright man                  Aged 19 yrs. 11 mo. 9 days                Died Aug. 23, 1884

and was esteemed by all who knew him

He lived in peace and good will with all mankind

and died in full confidence of his Salvation.

This monument is erected                                  John G. Dent                                         James L.

in accordance with the wishes                           Born                                                       Son of H.J. & H.M.

of his wife, Eliza Perkins                                      May 2, 1824                                           Dent

(maker’s mark: “J.B. Gaddess & Bro.                Died                                                        Died July 27, 1862

Lynchburg, Va.”)                                                 Jan. 27, 1862                                          Aged 1 yr. 1 mo. & 10 ds.

 

Thomas                                                                  In memory of                                         Green B. Foutz

son of                                                                     Lucy K.                                                  Died Aug. 9, 1894

H.B. & Elizabeth                                                   Daughter of Thos & Kate                   (Large monument

Dent                                                                       Only                                                       inscribed FATHER)

Aug. 23, 1881                                                        Born July 25, 1866

Aged 30 yrs. 6 mos. 5 da.                                    Died Novr 15, 1878

 

Sabina Weaver                                                     Geo. G. Gish                                          Nannie Baldwin

Born June 9th, 1850                                             Mch. 17, 1863                                        Wife of Geo. G. Gish

Departed this life                                                  Sept. 3, 1914                                          Aug. 10, 1868

Sept. 7, 1854                                                                                                                          Aug. 21, 1931

 

Frederick Murry                                                   Elizabeth Murry                                    Squire Cheatwood

Departed this life                                                  Departed this life                                  Born 1806

on the 19th Feb. 1849                                          On the 25th Oct. 1844                          Died Aug. 4, 1894

Aged 87 years                                                      Aged 74 years

 

Annie                                                                     Effie Cline                                              In memory of

Wife of Jacob Pawpaw                                        Daughter of R. & N. Bishop               Lizzie C. Burton

1866 - 1907                                                             Died                                                        Born March 22, 1841

July 8, 1898                                            Died Oct. 2, 1861

Aged 12 yrs. 9 mo. 28 days

 

Luella M.                                                               In memory of                                         Infant Baldwin

Daughter of                                                           Willie R.                                                 1897 - 1897

Will & Elizabeth                                                   Son of                                                    (metal alongside fieldstone)

Kropff                                                                    Roland & Vina J. Kropff

Born                                                                       Born Sept. 7, 1891

Oct. 9, 1861                                                            Was killed Nov. 19, 1896

Died

Nov. 23, 1896


Bonsack Cemetery (continued)

 

Inscriptions recorded by Kagey and RVHS, but not observed during 1998 survey:

 

Herman A. Bonsack / 1904 - 1907

In memory of Jesse W. Jeter / son of Dr. B.E. & S.A. Jeter / killed Oct. 3, 1876 / by the explosion of a defective engine / at Abingdon, Va. A.M. & O. RR / Aged 21 yrs. 2 mo. and 20 days

In memory of Alice Cary / infant Daughter of / Dr. B.E. & S.A. Jeter / died July 21, 1862 / aged 16 months & 21 days.

Rueben R. Jeter / Born Dec. 3, 1867 / Died Sept. 20, 1890

May Stanley / July 7, 1872 / Mar. 22, 1888

Martha A. Foutz / Wife of Green B. Foutz / Died May 23, 1887 / Aged about 68 years / (maker’s mark: V. & B. Salem Va.”)

Maria Hayth / infant daughter of William S. & Lucy M. Minor / Born Mar. 28, 1850 / Died October 25, 1850 / 6 months, 27 days.

Susannah Gwaltney / daughter of Zachariah & Ester Gwaltney / deceased 1831 / (transcriptions in Kagey and RVHS vary)

 

 

Inscriptions recorded by Kagey (1983), but not recorded by RVHS and not observed during 1998 survey:

 

John W. Bonsack / Born September 18, 1846 / Died March 29, 1926

Delia W. Bonsack / Born Jan. 2, 1848 / Died April 19, 1925

Laurie Percey Atkinson / 1886 - 1965

 

Kagey (1983) listed complete inscriptions from the following two headstones for which only incomplete information was available during the 1998 survey:

 

Marvin E. Mills                     John W. Wills

1904 - 1968                             June 1, 1877

May 4, 1921


 

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