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                                                      Patch Acres Cemetery
                                                                    AKA Copenhefer Cemetery
                                                     Marshall Township, Richland County, Wisconsin  USA   

 
Tales The Tombstones Tell - Republican Observer -  December 6, 1956

                                                The Copenhefer Cemetery

    The little known burying ground, located, so the official records show, in the NE corner of NW 1/4 of NW 1/4 section 9 bearing 10 rds. range 1 W., which in other words E and W 2 rds N and S, town 11 N is a bit of land 10 rods long and 2 rods wide in the town of Marshall. It is on the Glen Patch farm, quite some distance from any road or highway. It stands neglected on the line between the Patch farm and the one owned by Charles Wilson.

    In this old time cemetery there are two tombstones; one small one, might have been a footstone, and the other bears two inscriptions. Both are dated 1855. We learn from Mrs. Glen Patch that there are probably seven persons buried there and sunken spots indicate at least four.

    According to the abstract of title shown to us by Mr. and Mrs. Patch, the land came into the ownership of Martin Copenhefer, father of "Bob", on November 15, 1854, by a land patent granted by the United States government.

    Martin Copenhefer was a native of Ohio and he came to Richland county from Indiana in 1854, entered land and remained there until 1880 when he sold the land and moved to Bloom City. He and his first wife, Cassa B., are buried in this cemetery, we are told.

     The one stone which bears any words is for Maria Marshall and her son Simon. He died first, the date being July 17, 1855. He was 20 years, 10 months and 23 days old.

    The inscription for the mother reads:

                   Maria
            Wife of James Marshall
            Died December 25, 1855
             Aged 55 Years, 24 Days

    Note the date, December 25th, Christmas Day.

    Probably the first death in the town of Marshall or at least one of the first, was that of Simon Marshall, and his mother passed away five months later. Simon and his brother John G., were among the first permanent settlers of Marshall. They came in 1852 from Ohio and settled on Sections 3, 4, 9 and 10. In the fall of 1852 their mother, Maria, then a widow, came to Marshall accompanied by two other sons Mahlon and George. They made their home together until 1855, when Simon died and the mother became sick. She went to live with her daughter, Mrs. John Hart where she died on Christmas Day. John G., who came here with his brother Simon, went to the mountains and later on moved to Tennessee. Mahlon died in 1879 and George remained on the old homestead, what is now known as the Alta Roudebush farm on highway 56, Mrs. Roudebush is a granddaughter of both Mr. Copenhefer and Mrs. Maria Marshall. Mrs. Marshall's son George, was Mrs. Roudebush's father, and Mr. Copenhefer was her mother's father.

    There never will be another other burial in the Copenhefer cemetery. The march of progress has left it far behind. Visits to it will not be numerous as the years roll by, in fact a person would have a hard time even find it unless they knew its exact location. Mr. Glen Patch, on whose farm it is located, led Frank C. Poynter and myself to the spot, hidden among the trees at the edge of a field. This field looked to us to be about the size of Texas as we started across it. On our return to the Patch home Mrs. Patch got out the abstract of title to the place which dated back to November 15, 1854. It had many interesting items and familiar names. One of the transfers was to L. D. Gage when he paid around $17 back taxes and took what was known as a tax deed. It is a sure thing $17 would not go far these days in paying back taxes for a couple of years on this now fine farm.

S. F.

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