Sylvan Township, Richland County, Wisconsin
Tales The Tombstones Tell -
Republican Observer - November 13, 1958
It was springtime 1853 when William Ogden and E. B.
Tenney took up residence in what is now the town of Sylvan and they
became the first white settlers of that township. Mr. Ogden settled on
section 18 and lived there for years and years. Mr. Tenney also settled
on section 18 but some years later moved to Kansas. Mr. 0gden now rests
in the Sylvan cemetery which is not far distant from where he took up
his home back in 1853.
The Sylvan cemetery is quite an old one and adjoins
the church. It is a well kept burying ground and a new wire fence has
been installed. Many of the pioneers and members of their families are
buried here along with members of their families and other relatives.
One cannot help but notice the large number of fine monuments and
markers which have been erected there. Perhaps no other cemetery of its
size in the county has so many granite memorials as this one. Burials
are not so frequent these days, perhaps eight or ten a year.
Scattered throughout this cemetery are monuments
bearing the names of well known people such as Johnson, Orsburn, Ewing,
Felton, Thomas, Grim, Adkins, Bennett, Fowell, Hoke, Hartley, Van Fleet
and Fetty are just a few. Then there are others Koch, Sandmire, Elder,
McAfee, Sutherland, Kepler, Higgins, Hall, Heal, Buroker, McMillin and
Ogden first white settler of the town of Sylvan, is
buried near the west fence. Surrounding him are his wife and members of
their family. Mr. Ogden was born in New York state in 1822. In 1837 he
enlisted in regular army and served until 1841 when he was discharged.
He moved to Michigan, then to Wisconsin and came to Richland county in
1853. In 1842 he was married to Minerva Lyon, who died in 1863, and
later be married Abigale Briggs, a native of New York state. Mr. Ogden
served as a member of the regular army as mentioned above. He must have
enjoyed the life of a soldier for on Sept. 23, 1861, he enlisted in Co.
L 25th Infantry, and was promoted to corporal. He was discharged in
1862 and in 1865 re-enlisted in the 46th Infantry, serving until the
close of the war. He lived to a ripe old age, passing away March 7,
1905, at the age of 83. On his marker is a line which reads,
"Earth has no
sorrows that Heaven cannot heal."
His wife Abigail, died May 10, 1914, at the age of
72. There is a school house near the cemetery named the Ogden school.
A World War II soldier boy, Van Buren Bailey, is
buried here. His marker says, he was "Tec. 5, Medical Detention, 15th
Inft. Regiment." He was born Sept. 3, 1913, and died August 10, 1956.
John Dary, also a Civil War veteran, is here. He was
a member of Co. D 11th Wisconsin Infantry. This company was made up of
many Richland county boys. Mr. Dary, his record shows, enlisted Feb.
20, 1864, giving his address as the town of Rockbridge. He was wounded
at Fort Blakely and mustered out Sept. 4, 1865. Mr. Dary was born in
1832 and died in 1922. His wife, Margaret, was born in 1833 and died in
1909 at the age of 76.
Another Civil War veteran, William Searls is here.
He was a member of Co. B 92nd Regt., Ohio Volunteer Infantry. He was
born in 1832 and died in 1910. His wife's given name was Electa, who
was born in 1838 and died in 1907.
Madison Henthorn, born in 1842, and his wife
Marerett, also born in 1842, are buried here. They were among the
members of the Henthorn family, well known and highly respected
citizens of Sylvan, who did a great deal in helping develop that part
of Richland county.
Everett Lee Hall, soldier boy, Cpl. 353 Kansas
Infantry 89tb Division, World War I, died February 25, 1939, his marker
E.0. Ewing and his wife Mary, have a space in this
burying ground. He was born in 1854 and died in 1922, while Mrs. Ewing
was born in 1865 and died in 1885. On the marker it says:
lest ye be not deceived,
is not mocked."
William Fowell, born in 1829 and died in 1901,
and his wife, Rebecca, born in 1834 and died in 1907, have markers as
does John and Mary Porter, long honored citizens of Sylvan. Mr. Porter
was born in 1837 and died in 1918. Mrs. Porter was born in 1839 and
passed on in 1914.
Clarence Burns Jr., Pfc., 603 AAA, AW Bn., World War
II, is another service man who rests beneath the sod here. Clarence was
born November 9, 1928 and died March 3, 1952.
Delbert Scott Burns, World War veteran, a corporal
of the U. S. Marine corps, was born March 2, 1930, and died March 3,
1952, one day after his birthday. You will note from this that the
Sylvan cemetery contains many Civil and World War veterans. Pearl P.
Buroker is a World War I veteran, a private in 20 Co. Discharge Det. He
was born August 2, 1893, and died February 3, 1953.
William Henthorn, born in 1837 and died in 1912, is
a Civil War veteran. His wife, Louisa, was born in 1845 and passed on
in 1906. Thomas Pierce, who belonged to a Minnesota Unit in World War
was a Pfc. Btry. B 77 AAA, Gen. Bn., was born March 31, 1932, and died
August 1, 1956.
Another Civil War veteran, who at one time lived in
Richland Center, was Edgar Ward, a member of Co. B 33 Regt. He enlisted
from Boscobel December 10, 1863, and transferred to Co. B llth
Infantry, and was mustered out July 22, 1865. Mr. Ward was handicapped
in his later years by being blind. His wife, who before her marriage
was Rosanna McCord, was born in 1834 and died in 1888. Mr. Ward was
born in 1837 and passed away in 1915. On the marker for Mrs. Ward it
reads: "Mourn not for me."
One cannot help but note the names of the honored
dead that appear upon the stones. For instance McDowell, McCumber,
Eckhardt, Babb, Walker, Thayer, Wallace, Deckert, Hocking, Glick, and
Numbered among the Civil War veterans is Albert
Savage, born in 1843 and died in 1929. He was a member of Co. I, 12th
Wis. Infantry, enlisted from Sylvan August 14, 1862, and served until
May 31, 1965, when he was mustered out. Many Richland county men were
members of this company; Hartwell Turner of Viola, was the captain.
Mrs. Savage was born in 1851 and died in 1897.
Another Civil War veteran is Allen Wheeler, born in
1840, and died in 1924. On his marker it says he was "A friend to all."
His wife, Isabella, born in 1845, died in 1925, has this upon her
marker: "She lived for others." Close by is a marker for one of a later
generation, Jannine R. Wheeler, born July 26, 1925, and died a few
years later. On her marker is a part of a well known prayer which
reads: "I pray the Lord my soul to keep."
Charles H. Hebard Sr., and Charles Hebard, Jr., are
buried side by side. Charles Sr. was a preacher, born in 1850 and died
in 1935. Charles Jr., was born in 1917 and died in 1954.
The Eckhardt family were long time residents of the
town of Sylvan. One of these, John Eckhardt, and his wife Elizabeth,
are here. The marker upon Mr. Eckhardt's grave says he was born in 1821
in Hermanstein, Germany, came to America in 1854, married Elizabeth
Hillberry August 29, 1859, and died October 31, 1900.
A "down east" man, Jeremiah Freeman, has a marker
which gives but little information merely stating that he was "born in
Maine, died March 3, 1883, aged 70."
William Fish has a GAR marker on his grave so he is
another Boy in Blue buried in this high ridge cemetery. He was 72
years, eight months and four days of age when he passed on in 1907.
Betsey, his wife was 60 when the final call came.
Arthur Fish and his wife Alice, are among the
numbered dead. They lived to celebrate their 60th
wedding anniversary. Arthur was born in 1865 and died in l957. His wife
first saw the light of day in 1867 and her passing was in 1956.
Glen F. Jones, Cpl. Co. H, 39th Infantry, World War
II, is numbered among the soldiers to be laid away here. His marker
says he was born March 11, 1895, and died September 14, 1956.
Henry Mathews was born February 2, 1821, which
would make him 146 had he lived until 1957, but he died January 16,
1881, at the age of 59. His wife is not given a full name upon the
tombstone which marks their graves, it only says:
wife, 1842, 1911, aged 69."
Judson Cook, Civil War veteran, has two flags
engraved upon his tombstone. Mr. Cook was a member of Co. D 11th Wis.
Infantry. Mr. Cook, "Jud", as he was called by his many friends, was a
member of one of the early pioneers families of Sylvan. He was born in
Grant county May 30, 1845. His parents came from the east in 1831 and
passed through Chicago in a covered wagon when the place was but a
village and Lancaster had but two or three log houses. Mr. Cook's
father became the first sheriff of Grant county. The family came to
Richland county and here they spent the remainder of their days. "Jud"
was the eldest of the family of seven. When he was 16 he enlisted in
the army in 1861 and served until the fall of 1865. In 1866 he married
Alma Dean, a daughter of Dr. and Mrs. Luke Dean. She was born in 1846
and died in 1938. Mr. Cook passed on in 1928.
As stated in the beginning of this story that
numerous Boys in Blue sleep in this cemetery, we can now take note of
the truth of that statement. Michael S. McMillin is to be counted as a
Civil War veteran. He was a member of Co. D, 6th Infantry. He enlisted
March 20, 1865, giving his residence as Clayton, Crawford county. Mr.
McMillin was born in 1831 and passed away in 1892. Near him are laid to
rest other members of his family.
The Henthorn family, or rather, members of it, are
here with friends. Members of the family became widely known as good
citizens. One of these William, who was born in Ohio in 1837, came with
his parents to Sylvan in 1864. He engaged in business at Sylvan Corners
as a storekeeper and also served as postmaster at the "Corners" for
quite a number of years. This post office was established in 1856 but
no mail was received for over a year. Asahel Savage was the postmaster
at the beginning but he resigned and D. E. Clingensmith took over the
job, and a letter came now and then. William Henthorn was appointed and
kept the office at his store.
Another family to become prominent in early day
affairs of the township was the Grim family, a number of whom are
buried in this cemetery. Nathaniel Grim was one of the pioneer
settlers. He was born in Ohio in 1826. In 1856 he came to Sylvan. In
1850 he married Sarah Allen. Mr. Grim was also a Civil War veteran, a
member of the llth Wisconsin Infantry. He represented the town of
Sylvan on the county board and held other offices of trust.
Calvin Hall has a marker in the cemetery as do
members of his family. He was a native of the Buckeye state, born in
Monroe county, Ohio, in 1842. He too, served in the Civil War with the
36th Ohio regiment. Taken prisoner during a battle he spent eight
months in a rebel prison. He was married to Mary Barrett in 1865.
Among the prominent and well known families of
Sylvan were the Glicks. They were not perhaps among the earliest of the
settlers but came later on. Minor Glick was storekeeper at Sylvan
Corners for a long period and a sign above the door proclaims that he
is still on the job.
It is quite difficult to write in detail of all the
pioneers that are buried in any cemetery. There are so many of them in
the Sylvan burying ground that to make more than a brief mention would
fill several columns of a newspaper and we can only do the best we can
with the facts at hand.
Back to This Cemetery's Main Page