The Descendants of James Stone is a non profit organization comprised of descendants of James Stone and his wife, Elizabeth Guest. The group was formed in the early 1980's and was created from an annual cleanup effort at the Stone Family Cemetery in Comanche County, Texas. Although the organization has changed over the years, its purpose remains the same:
In the early days, attendees brought mowers, rakes, and hoes and the only break from working on the cemetery grounds was a brief lunch break. Due to the age and physical problems of so many of the family,
a local caretaker was hired to maintain the cemetery in 1998. Since then, our group meets anually on the Saturday following Mother's Day. Now, we relax, visit, and enjoy a good meal with "oldtime" members of the group and new folks alike. Thanks to the internet, previously unknown cousins make the trek to Comanche County each year. Recent reunions have included people from as far away as California, Nebraska, and New Mexico!
THE STONE FAMILY CEMETERY
Situated on land once owned by Col. William Stone -- second son of James Stone and Elizabeth Guest -- the cemetery is located about 1.5 miles south of the village of Proctor. The oldest headstone is that of William's grandson, Benjamin James, who died in December 1858. The most recent burial was in 1933. The cemetery encompases about two acres.
At Proctor (HWY 67/377), exit east on FM 1476. Go about 1.5 miles, then turn right on dirt road and cross the railroad tracks. On reunion days, just follow the signs!
The parcel orginally consisted of 640 acres, which William Stone purchased from G.W. Gentry in 1851. Gentry had secured a deed to the property in 1847. In January 1880, Stone sold 440 acres of the land to has son-in-law, Henry R. Martin. Another 200 acres was sold to J.B. Ewing in November, 1893. After William's death in 1900, the final 200 acres was sold by his heirs. William Stone and his second wife, Malinda Ratliff, are both buried at the cemetery.
Sand driven by north and west winds buried some of the headstones over the years. But, most have now been uncovered. An old, rusty barbed wire fence was also covered by windblown soil, which enabled cattle to freely roam the grounds. Several tombstones were damaged or broken by the cattle. About two feet of dirt and the old fence along the north and west sides of the cemetery were removed in 1999. A new fence has been erected.
cemetery contains twenty-nine tombstones. There are also approximately
50 graves which are unmarked or are marked only by fieldstones. SEE
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