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                                                                        Cazenovia Cemetery
                                                                       Aka  Hillside Cemetery
                                              Westford Township, Richland County, Wisconsin  USA
                                           

Tales The Tombstones Tell - Republican Observer - June 13, 1957

                                                     The Cazenovia Cemetery

    On the top of a hill overlooking the village of Cazenovia is the cemetery wherein are buried many of the early settlers of the area and burials are still being made in this old burying ground which dates back to 1858 when Jonah Pomeroy was laid to rest atop the hill which looks down upon the village. Mr. Pomeroy, his tombstone says, was 77 years of age. By his side is his wife Gad, who died in 1863 also at the age of 77. The county history places Mrs. Pomeroy as the first person to be buried here yet the tombstones bear the above dates. Mrs. Pomeroy had an odd first name, one you wonder, how come. We never heard it before; it was, as you will note Gad.***
   *** April 19, 2010 CORRECTION Jonah Pomery is Johannah Harris wife
          of Gad Jr. Pomeroy. Marker abbreviated to “Jonah” due to limited
          engraving room.


    The Cazenovia cemetery, says the county history, was laid out in
July, 1862, by Joshua McCaskey, under the supervision of the town board (of Westford). The land was donated by Allen Perkins. It may have been that Mr. Pomeroy was laid to rest before the cemetery was laid out and thus his wife was the first burial in the new cemetery.

    The village cemetery is well kept and is a credit to the community. While we were in this burying ground Mr. and Mrs. J. J. Marshall, who are Cazenovia residents, came to pay a visit to many of their departed relatives and friends. Mrs. Marshall, who knows much about the burying ground, told us of some of the old citizens who sleep away the years here. Mrs. Marshall gave us valuable aid in our visit to the hilltop.

    Ernest Fuller and Bert Fuller, little children of W. and A. J. Fuller, are sleeping side by side. Ernest was born July 2, 1876, and died on January 16th the following year. Bert was born August 23, 1878, and died August 11, 1879. On the stone it says:

            "They are little graves but others care,
             For a world of hopes are buried there."

    Soldiers of the Civil and World Wars are buried here. Daniel Wright, born November 8, 1840, and died April 10, 1910, is one of the war for the union veterans. His wife Eliza, born in 1842, and died August 11, 1908, is by his side. He was a member of Co. F, 3rd Wisconsin Cavalry. He enlisted February 1, 1862, giving his address as Ironton; mustered out February 17, 1865, his term having expired. Others in the Cazenovia area, who served in Co. F, 3rd Wisconsin Cavalry are buried here and will be spoken of later on, but one of these is Edward West, an other Joshua Bible, who enlisted November 4, 1861, and was mustered out February 17, 1865; Ludgar Pheonix, giving Cazenovia as his home, entered service November 23, 1861, and was discharged on April 1, 1863, on account of disability.

    Henry Fuller, born June 8, 1818, and died July 2, 1885, was a member of Co. B, 12th Wisconsin. His enlistment date was September 27, 1861, and he served until July 16, 1865. He was in the Veterinarian Corps. Jane, his wife, is on the lot, she was born December 23, 1813, and died April 3, 1873. Concerse Pierce, born in 1832, was a member of the 95th Illinois Volunteers. He died in 1901 and on the same lot are his parents Mr. and Mrs. Dryden Pierce.

    World War veterans buried in this cemetery include Ray Mallo, born in 1887, and died in 1919. His tombstone says he was with the United States army of occupation. Joseph Jelinek was a private in Co. 7, Service United States. He was born in August, 1892, and died in October, 1918. Frank Kostka, Cpl., Co. A 123rd Inft., born 1892, died in 1918, is here with his other comrades. The most recent burial of World War veterans, was that of Theron Ewing, World War I, who died in 1956. He is
 buried on the same lot with his parents Ellsworth and Lezetta Ewing. Ellsworth was born in 1866 and died in 1952. Lezetta was born in 1868, and passed on in 1921. Robert West, World War veteran, is here. He belonged to Co. A, 32nd Division, 128th Inft., and is a grandson of Edward West, Civil War veteran.

    Edward West, spoken of above as a soldier, was born in New York, January 17, 1824, and in April 1848, was married to Sarah Fuller. Mr. West must have been a restless man, one who liked to travel, for soon after his marriage they came to Wisconsin, locating near Janesville where he engaged in farming until 1850, when he started for California, arriving six months later. He worked in the mines until 1853 when he returned to New York, stayed a few months and again went to California. He returned to New York in 1855, and then came to Richland county to the town of Westford.

    In 1863 he bought a house and lot in Cazenovia and moved his  family there. After getting them located in their home he enlisted in the army, joined Sherman in his march to the sea. The war over, he returned to Cazenovia. Mr. West is spoken of as being a sort of "Jack of all trades," as be followed several trades, blacksmith, carpenter and joiner, brick mason, plasterer, and was a good workman at them all. He died, so his tombstone says, October 12, 1897, at the age of 72 years, 8 months and 25 days. A verse on his monument reads:

            "He has the soldier's recompense,
             His is a patriot's grave,
             Where calm in death reposes
             Our noble comrade brave."

    One thing they say about Mr. West is that he never applied for a pension until toward the last, when all soldiers were granted pensions. His name was sent in and he received a small monthly check.

    Through the kindness of Mrs. J. J. Marshall, we have been furnished with a complete list of the Civil and World War veterans buried in the Cazenovia cemetery. She is the secretary of the Cemetery Association and her aid in preparing the list has been of great value.

    In addition to the above Civil War veterans the list includes:

    Henry Langdon, Co. F, 51st Infantry; Samuel Bond, who enlisted in the 13th Battery Light Artillery, July 8, 1863. He became ill and was left sick in a Milwaukee hospital June 27, 1864. Others on the list are John Resenbeck, 6th Wisconsin Volunteer; Henry Swenink, who enlisted in August, 1861, and was discharged March 4, 1864 on account of disability; Thomas Smith 173 Ohio Infantry; James Williams 6th Wisconsin Cavalry, and Samuel Wells, Co. F, 3rd Wis. Cavalry.

    Allen Perkins owned the land upon which Cazenovia is located. He entered it in 1848 and in 1855 it was surveyed for Mr. Perkins by Solon Rushmore, and the village sprang into being. In looking over the history of the place it becomes quite evident that Allen Tinker was the leading spirit of the village in the early days. He was born in the state of New York on April 2, 1815, and when ten years of age, his parents died. He worked hard as a lad, learned the blacksmith trade and was able to carry on. In 1835 he was married to Betsy Montgomery, who was born in New York, December 29, 1812. They journeyed through life together until 1886 when Betsy died at the age of 73. Mr. Tinker lived until July 27, 1894, when he went to join Betsy at the age of 79 years, three months and 25 days. He and his wife came to Richland county in 1855, settling in the town of Westford where he opened a blacksmith shop. In 1857 he went to La Crosse but returned and when the town of Westford was organized he became the first town chairman. He was also one of the first justices of the peace. He was the second person to open a blacksmith shop in
 Cazenovia; was the second postmaster in the village, a member of the First Methodist church; the first class leader and held that position for many years; he also was superintendent of the first Sunday school. Back in the long ago there was no hotel in the village but the public was taken care of by Mr. and Mrs. Tinker until 1875, when J. W. Thompson opened a hotel. The first millinery shop in the village was opened in the Tinker home back in 1867 by Addie Boyd. It is quite evident that Mr. and Mrs. a Tinker had much to do with the early day doings in the village. They were worthy pioneers indeed.

    They left behind them at the close of life's journey, worthy descendants, some of whom still reside in Cazenovia. While up to the village not so long ago we met Charles Bible, who for many years represented the village on the county board. In talking with him we happened to mention Allen Tinker when Charles spoke up and said "Well, he was my grandfather." Sure enough, Charles' mother, Mary J. Tinker, became the wife of Joshua Bible, Charles' father. These, along with two daughters, are up on "Cemetery Hill."

    Joshua Bible was a Civil War veteran, born in 1839 and died in 1926. Mary Jane, his wife, was born in 1842, and breathed her last in 1923. Charles, their son, gets about in a wheel chair, but despite this handicap, he makes the best of things and it is sure a pleasure for us to renew old friendships.

    Otis L. Gleason has a marker in the cemetery as does his wife, Mila. He was one of the first settlers of Cazenovia, born in Massachusetts in 1811. When he was eleven years old he and a brother started out selling notions, coming to Wisconsin. He came to Richland county in 1854. In 1849 he was married to Mila Butterfield, widow of David Fuller. They had one child, Effie May, who became the wife of Ira Banks.

    N. R. Kline, another of the pioneers, is buried in this cemetery. He died in 1882 at the age of 62. He was Mrs. Fred Moyes' father and came to Cazenovia about 1855. One of the oldest persons to be laid to rest here was Thomas Blakeman who passed on April 15, 1875, at the age of 80 years. Other members of the Blakeman family are close by but we were unable to read the inscriptions upon the tombstones.

    One of the old time tavernkeepers in Cazenovia was Henry Rebillard Sr., and his son Henry Jr., kept tavern at Hub City 40 or 50 years ago. Both father and son are in this cemetery. A daughter of Henry Sr. is also on the lot. She died in 1879 at the age of 14. On her marker it says:
            "What to us is life without thee,
             Darkness and dispair alone
             When with sighs we seek to find thee,
             This proves that you are gone."
    Mr. Rebillard was a Frenchman, and another of the same nationality in the cemetery is Peter Bonhotel. Peter, so his marker says, was born in 1835 and died in 1882.

    Fred Specht, a German, is "up on the hill." He was born in 1840 and died in August, 1904. The inscriptions on his monument are in German and all we could make out were the date of his birth and of his death.

    John Marshall, born in 1831, and his wife Anna, born in 1845, found the end of the trail in the village cemetery. They are the parents of J. J. Marshall who happened in the cemetery when we were there on this visit. Mrs. Marshall pointed out the graves of many of the pioneers and was very kind to us. We have since learned that she is the secretary of the Cazenovia cemetery association. In search of more information we stopped at the Marshall home on May 7th but found no one at home. George Stevenson and William Moll, brothers-in-law of Mr. Marshall, are on the same lot.
     Another Frenchman to find a final resting place here, is Ludger Pheonix, one of the early settlers of Westford, who was born in the province of Quebec, September 29, 1831, and in 1855 he came to Richland county, locating in the town of Westford where he built a rude log cabin and went to Dane county where he married Mary Tooley. They commenced life in the log cabin. Seven children were born to them. It was January, 1869, when Mrs. Pheonix closed her eyes upon earthly things. In 1870 Mr. Pheonix was married to Eliza Lutz. Eight stones mark the burial places of members of the family, and as fate would have it, Mr. Phoenix and his wife Eliza passed away within several hours of each other and both were laid to rest on the same day in 1901.

    Among the early day settlers were Mr. and Mrs. Nels Nelson. Mr. Nelson was a native of Denmark and his wife, whose maiden name was Mary Swensen, was Norwegian. Mr. Nelson first took up his home in Mineral Point and engaged in the business of a wagon maker which trade he followed at Cazenovia. The Nelson family, which he headed have long been identified with the business life of the village, and today, John, a son of the pioneer, is in the furniture and undertaking business there. Kenneth Nelson, a grandson, is a resident of Richland Center, associated with the Pratt Funeral Service. Mrs. Isabelle Nelson, mother of Kenneth, is in the cemetery, and another member of the family, James Nelson, also is there. James was a resident of Richland Center at the time of his death.

    Years and years ago some old papers came to light which indicated that royal blood flowed in the veins of the Nelson family and that they were of noble birth in the generations far back over the years in the dim past. James Nelson took interest in the old papers and if they be true or not has never been proven.

    Names upon the tombstones include Banks, Simpson, Woodman, Nehls, Storey and others.

    Also laid to rest in this village burying ground are John Anderson and his wife. Mrs. Anderson was a daughter of Moses Bible, early settler. Mr. Anderson served, and served well, as assemblyman from Richland county. His popularity in his home town can be proven by the fact that in the election he received all but two or three votes in the village of Cazenovia which was at that time a Democratic stronghold, and Mr. Anderson was a candidate of the Republicans.

S. F.


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