Time and neglect have taken their toll on this old cemetery.

    This cemetery index comes from the L'Anguille Valley Memorial Association reading and a reading done on March 31, 1999 by Debra L. Beheler and Betty Zane Darland-Tucker. The McWilliams Cemetery is about 1 mile northwest of Galveston Cemetery on the west side of cemetery road and about 1/2 mile off the road behind a housing addition and large field.


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Mc Williams Cemetery


A mile and a half north of the town of Galveston, a mile and a half southeast of the town of Lincoln, a mile and a quarter west of the Cass-Miami County-line, two and a half miles north of the Cass-Howard County-line, less than a quarter of a mile south of Deer Creek (a stream immortalized by the poet James Whitcomb Riley), and in the NE 1/4 of Section 21 of JACKSON TOWNSHIP CASS COUNTY, or NE 1/4 of Sec. 21, T 25 N, R. 3 E., 2nd P.M., Indiana

Fieldwork done June 29 and Aug. 20, 1940, by R. B. Whitsett, Jr., 500 Front St., Logansport, Member Indiana Historical Society Committee on Pioneer Cemeteries and Churches, and of Cemetery Research Committee of

   L'Anguille Valley Memorial


Logansport, Indiana

with some checking (of fieldwork) done on August 20, 1940, by F.H. Wipperman, member L.V.M.A.,     222 1/2 Thirteenth St., Logansport.

Though no longer on any road, this cemetery is reached by a grassy lane with leads west (to its northern edge) from the north-and-south "black-topped" Onward-to-Galveston Road (which passes about a quarter of a mile east of this cemetery's east edge).  This lane is on the south terrace-rim of Deer Creek and overlooks its grassy bottom lands (and former channels).


   Because of the prevalence of a black fungus [or lichen or other plant-growth] on the stones, and of the usual other troubles, the copyist in many instances found it exceedingly difficult to decipher the inscriptions on particularly the older ones of the slabs.  In a number of instances, he called upon an intelligent older gentleman to read the inscriptions [independently]; and then compared carefully the two readings, and discussed and then compared carefully the two readings, and discussed with the gentleman any discrepancies that were found, the two copyists then reaching an agreement - after further study, together of the puzzling names or dates.  One of the greatest troubles was                solving the intricacies of lettering that is of the somewhat "fancy" style, or that shifts from one style to another.                Peculiar spellings -- uncommonly frequent here, likewise have been a source of difficulty, especially when a stone is badly weathered.  ...  This cemetery is about twenty miles distant from the homes of the copyists; and this fact accounts for the interval which elapsed between the two days devoted to fieldwork.  Neither copyist has any relatives or friends buried here; but persons living not far from this cemetery seem to have had some unpleasant contacts with snakes, and were averse to making a canvass (on that account), especially a s this cemetery is in a rather wild and lonely region, and not within calling distance of any farmhouse or even public highway.

   On authority of Freeman Daggett, and old resident of this vicinity, local historian Dr. J. Z. Powell "Hist. of Cass Co., Ind." [1913] says the first person buried in this cemetery was WILLIAM DALE, in 1843, that gentleman having met with an accident; and a Logansport physician having been unable to find his way through the forests (during the night) so great a distance, in time to save his life.  [Mr. Dale seems to have no marker.]


Robert L. McWilliams, on July 1, 1850, deeded to the commissioners of Cass County 1/2 acre out of the E. 1/2 of the N. E. Sec. 21, Jackson township for a burial ground. On December 14,1888, the heirs of R. L. McWilliams platted an addition adjoining the grounds on the east, and James McWilliams Now controls the sale of lots in this addition. This is a very old burial place, probably the first white person buried in the township lies in this graveyard. It is finely located on the south bank of Deer creek on the edge of an open woodland, is fenced and has some evergreen trees and good monuments but is poorly kept at this time, 1907. The road used to run along the north side of the grounds but has been changed, and is now reached by a private driveway, a quarter of a mile east to the road, running south to Galveston.


First burial was William Dale in 1843. Mr. Dale cut his foot with an ax. His brother went to Logansport, eighteen miles distant for a doctor. It was dark when he reached there and it was impossible to find their way back along the Indian trails after night as there were no regular open roads and not a half dozen houses between Logansport and Galveston. The messenger was thus compelled to stay all night in town and by daylight next morning the doctor and messenger started for the long journey through the forest to Mr. Dale's cabin; but before their arrival Mr. Dale had bled to death. He was the first white man to die in the township and the first buried in McWilliams' cemetery.


Freeman Daggett, who died recently, lived in the neighborhood at that time, gave the writer an account of this fatality. About the same time Daniel Bickel and Mr. Frush were buried here. A son of Peter Frush, 1848, and daughter of J. and M. Dixon , 1850. This is the resting place of many old pioneer families as the Bickels, Graves, Sperrys, Winns, Frushes, Logans and Dixons.
G. W. Maines, Company H, Twenty-ninth Indiana
William Speece, Company H, Ninth Indiana; died, 1894.

The cemetery is barely visible behind the trees on March 31. Once the trees leaf out and the crops grow, the cemetery will be invisible again.


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