Last week I went to a few cemeteries in Oneida County, NY looking for relatives from the early 1800s. My Nicholas Groat died in 1818 and left a fantastic will that named all of his children and some grandchildren. It was a great help putting the family together. One person he didn’t mention was his wife, Maria Wheeler. So I think that she had already died. There was a woman in Nicholas’ household in the 1810 census over aged 45 so Maria probably died between 1819 and 1818.
I started my search in the Westernville Cemetery (Town of Western) near where Nicholas lived. Nobody on my search list was buried there. Next I when to the smaller Frenchville Cemetery. I knew Asa Beckwith, husband of Nicholas’ daughter, Sarah was buried there from a listing on Find-A-Grave. I found a tombstone for Asa laying on the ground but no stone for his wife, Sarah. This is a very old cemetery. In fact one of the oldest tombstones is Asa Beckwith’s father, Asa, who died in 1800.
Next stop was the North Steuben Cemetery in the Town of Steuben. I went there because of an undocumented record that I had found on the internet. It said that Catherine Groat and her husband Nathaniel Fitch were buried there. Catherine is another daughter of Nicholas and Maria Groat. This cemetery has about 1000 burials even though is not even close to any houses. It was amazing quiet with only one car passing by in the 45 minutes that I was there. I did find tombstone for Nathaniel (died in 1837) but not Catherine who supposedly died in 1848. There was an space next to Nathaniel but it didn’t look like there had ever been a tombstone there.
Another daughter of Nicholas and Mari was my 4th great grandmother, Magdalena Groat and her husband Thomas Race (also spelled Reas). According to the 1840 census they were living in the Town of Western and they would have been aged about 70. So it seems reasonable that they should be buried in that town. But I couldn’t find any tombstones for them either.
I came back with only minor success. I really was hoping to find Nicholas & Maria Groat and Magdalena & Thomas Race. I wonder if the wives of Nathaniel Fitch and Asa Beckwith ever had any tombstone. It is entirely possible that the missing people only had field stones marking the graves. Finding tombstones from the early 1800s seems to very difficult.