Dave & Dot's 25th Anniverary Tour

Week 3 - Eagleville, MO

Friday, October 19th - A few days in the life of a pioneer . . .

We started out early today visiting several cemeteries. The first one we stopped at was Westley Chapel in Martinsville. Here we found Joseph & Mary Wright. Mary was my great, great, grandfather Almond's daughter. We then went to the West Eagleville Cemetery and had not planned to walk the cemetery but did anyway and boy am I glad I did! We discovered, quite by accident, the stones of the parents and other family members of my great-grandmother Melissa M. Barber who was married to my great-grandfather Samuel Volney McHenry had been buried here. We also found a stone that appeared to have the name of Annie McHenry. After some research and a couple of phone calls, we think this might be the stone of Elizabeth Angela McHenry who had died at an early age from burns.

We then visited the Masonic Cemetery at Eagleville. Charles & Stella McHenry are buried there. Charles is the brother of Samuel. We also discovered the stones for Winnie Stevens. Winnie is Charles daughter. We also saw Luther & Lillian Sturdevant. Lillian is Winnie's daughter.  To all of you, it is probably very confusing but to me it's Gold!

Some of the stones had become pretty illegible and so Shelly showed us how she cleans the stones using shaving cream. It breaks down the moss and other particles and fills in the engravings so that they stand out better and makes them legible. The rain eventually washes away the residue from the shaving cream and leaves behind a fairly clean stone ready for the next discoverer to come along and decipher.

Shelly then took us into the town of Eagleville to a restaurant called the Square Meal for lunch and we met a few of the locals. We then went by Almond's home, the one he built. It has been changed and modified over the years and doesn't really look like it did back in the late 1800's.

Our final stop on our cemetery tour was the Yankee Ridge and visited the site of Slade Purdun (no relation). This young boy was cut down at the age of 10 by brain cancer. That was nearly 2 years ago but the stone had just been placed and it was absolutely beautiful! The company that created the stone had etched a photo of Slade onto the stone, preserving forever his memory. It was a brand new process and one which I am sure will take off across the country.

We also stopped by John Taraba's home and caught him harvesting his beans. He later came over to Shelly's and we verified several names and dates on our list of McHenry's. In all, it was a very good day of family history hunting. I know that when I get all this new information included in my files at home, it will answer a lot of questions about my family. What a great day!