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                                                                 Wright Plot 
                                                               AKA Cox, Upper Byrds Creek and Woodland Plot

                                Richwood Township, Richland County, Wisconsin  USA

                                           

Tales The Tombstones Tell - Republican Observer - February 14, 1957

                                                                   The Wright Cemetery

    Also located in the town of Richwood is what is known as the Wright cemetery, located on section 24. It is on land, owned back in the long ago, by L. J. Wright, who donated the land for burial purposes. It is located north of the village of Byrds Creek, some two miles a bit east of the school house which has "Byrds Creek School" painted upon it. This burying ground is located perhaps 300 feet from the road and cannot be seen from the highway as it stands upon a hillside and is quite hidden from view. It is enclosed by a wire fence, part of which has been knocked down.

    Years ago a church stood near the site. It was a U. B. church and now there are no signs of it except a few stones that may have been a part of the foundation.

    I. J. Wright, who donated the land for the cemetery, settled in Richwood in 1855 where he purchased 300 acres of land. He took part in the Civil War and became a second lieutenant. He sold his farm and moved to Muscoda, later to Tennessee and then back to Muscoda. He was ordained  as United Brethren minister, serving for some time as a circuit preacher. He no doubt organized the little church which was located near the cemetery which bears his name.

    One of his sons was Dr. J. C. Wright, born March 19, 1859 in Richwood, attended the country schools, the Muscoda high school and Rush Medical College in Chicago, from which he graduated in 1882. He began the practice of medicine at Excelsior and continued there for many years, moving to Antigo where he remained until his death. Dr. Wright was well known in Richland county.

    In this cemetery is buried William T. Wright, another son of I. J. Wright. He was born March 11, 1848, and passed away in April 1871. When the G.A.R. post at Excelsior was organized in 1882 it was named William Wright Post No. 51, and, according to the county history, had a membership of 53. Regarding him we now quote from the county history: "William Wright, the gallant young soldier in whose honor the was name, was a son of I. J. Wright, and was born in Ohio. He came to Wisconsin with his parents and assisted in tilling the soil. When the Civil War broke out he enlisted in Co. B, 25th regiment and served until mustered out of service. Returning home he attended school at Sextonville. He was united in marriage with Mary Barnes, and engaged in farming until his death. Mr. Wright was a whole souled, good hearted fellow, surrounded by a wide circle of friends. His name was chosen for the name of Post 51, at the suggestion of Edward Dosch, who was his 'chum' in early days."
     When the post was organized Edward Dosch was chosen as adjutant.

    Another Civil War veteran to be buried in this cemetery is J. W. Austin, who was a member of Co. H, 5th Wisconsin Infantry. He has a government marker for his headstone. Mr. Austin enlisted June 15, 1861. He was wounded at Rappahannock Station and also at the battle of Cold Harbor. He was mustered out July 30, 1864. Co. "H" was mostly made up of Richland county men and one of the captains was Jeremiah J. Turner of Viola, who was killed in action May 3, 1863, at Fredericksburg, Virginia.

    Others who have gravestones in the Wright cemetery are Joseph Cox and his wife Matilda. Mr. Cox died September 20, 1880, at the age of 83. His wife was born in 1805 and died March 20, 1874, an infant, John, son of W. and M. Wright, died in 1871 and a two year old boy Paul H., son of A. and H. Shannon, died November 25, 1872. From the dates upon the stones it can be learned that the Wright cemetery is an old burying ground.

S. F.


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