Decoration Day

Campbell County Decoration Days

Sunday, May 30, 2010
Bakers Forge Memorial Cemetery

Sunday, June 6, 2010
Pond Cemetery in Demory
Grantsboro Baptist Church Cemetery

Sunday, June 13, 2010
Woodward Cemetery

If you know of more Decoration Days please email me the date and place. Also, if you have pictures that you can scan and send of Campbell County Decoration Days that you would like to see posted please email these as well! Thanks!

Campbell County Decoration Day
Bakers Forge Memorial Cemetery
by Joseph Stephens

In recent years, "Memorial" has often been omitted when people refer to one of Campbell County's most historic cemeteries. Baker's Forge Memorial Cemetery, a TVA re-internment cemetery, was established in 1934 while Norris Dam was under construction as a memorial to the members of the Captain Archibald Myers Post of the Grand Army of the Republic.

"Memorial", also differentiates the re-internment cemetery from the Old Baker's Forge Cemetery-located in Sugar Hollow near where the Baker family operated a forge in the 1800s. The Old Baker's Forge Cemetery which straddles the shoreline of Norris Lake is only accessible on foot or by boat. It has not been maintained since most of those buried there were re-interned at Baker's Forge Memorial TVA in the 1930s.

The Grand Army of the Republic was a Union Veterans organization. When the Meeting house, which was also Sugar Hollow Baptist Church, was sold to TVA the proceeds went toward the purchase of property to be used as a re-interment cemetery. George Ridenour, who oversaw their establishment of Baker's Forge Memorial Cemetery, grew up in Sugar Hollow near the Old Baker's Forge Cemetery.

As late as the early 1930s, a few members of the GAR post would still meet at Sugar Hollow Baptist Church on Memorial Day and march to the Old Baker's Forge Memorial Cemetery where they would place flowers on the graves of Union Soldiers. The last meeting of the Captain Archibald Myers GAR Post was held in a grove of trees on the property of Nicholas B. Grant in Demory. This year, seventy years after the establishment of Baker's Forge Memorial Cemetery as a memorial to the members of the GAR, on Sunday May 30, their descendants will be gathering at Baker's Forge Memorial Cemetery to place flowers on the graves of Post Members and other family members buried at Baker's Forge Memorial Cemetery.

Union Veterans Interned at Baker's Forge Memorial Cemetery

Silas Arthur
85th IN Inf.

Sgt. Silas Ballard
Co. C. 1st TN Inf.

Cpl. George W. Brown
Co. C. 49th TN Inf.

James Brown
Co. C. 49th KY Reg.

Joseph Chadwick
9th TN Cav.

Stephen A. Ford
6th TN Inf. Co. F

Stephen D. Ford
Co. A. 1st Inf.

Nicholas B. Grant
Co. F 6th Inf.

Alexander Heatherly, Sr.
Pilot, Union Army

Cpl. George W. Heatherly
1st TN Inf.

John Heniger
Co. B 11th Cav.

Wm. W. Heniger
Co. B 11th Cav.

Sgt. John Housley
Co. H. 9th TN Cav

Issac Jones Co. H
9th TN Cav.

George Miller
Co. H. 9th Tenn Cav.

David Love
Co. C. 1st TN Cav.

Milton Malicotte
Co. C 4thTn Cav

Anthony Montgomery
Co F 6th TN Cav

Wm. Asbury Morton
Co. B llth TN Cav. & Co. H. 9th Tn Cav

Jordaon Powell
Co. C. 7th TN MTD Inf.

Moses M. Raines
Co. K. 9th TN Cav

John Ridenour
Co. F 6TN Inf.

Sgt. Wm. Robins
1st TN Inf.

Nicholas Sharp
Co. F 6th TN Inf.

David Shoffner
8 Tenn. Cav

David Spangler
Co. C 5th KY Cav

B. F. Roach
Co. F 6th TN Inf.

M. B. Rosier
Co. C 3rd TN Cav

Cap't Kate Summers

Lorenzo D. Summers
Co. C 9th TN Cav

John Williams
Co. C 4th TN Inf.

Charles Williamson
Co. C. 49th Ky Inf.

John Willoughby
Co. B. 1st TN Inf.

Rufus Shelby
Co. 6 2nd TN Cav.

History of Memorial Day

Memorial Day was originally known as Decoration Day. It was a time set aside to honor the nation's Civil War dead by decorating their graves. It was first widely observed on May 30,1868, to commemorate the sacrifices of Civil War soldiers, by proclamation of General John A. Logan of the Grand Army of the Republic.

In Logan's decree the 30th of May, 1868, was designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers, or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the Civil War. The proclaimation stated that "In this observance no form of ceremony is prescribed, but posts and comrades will in their own way arrange such fitting services and testimonials of respect as circumstances may permit".

During the first celebration of Decoration Day, General James Garfield made a speech at Arlington National Cemetery, after which 5,000 participants helped to decorate the graves of the more than 20,000 Union and Confederate soldiers buried in the cemetery.

This 1868 celebration was inspired by local observances of the day in several towns throughout America that had taken place in the three years since the Civil War. In fact, several Northern and Southern cities claim to be the birthplace of Memorial Day, including Columbus, Mississippi; Macon, Georgia; Richmond, Virginia; Boalsburg, Pennsylvania; and Carbondale, Illinois.

In 1966, the federal government, under the direction of President Lyndon Johnson, declared Waterloo, New York, the official birthplace of Memorial Day. They chose Waterloo—which had first celebrated the day on May 5, 1866—because the town had made Memorial Day an annual, community-wide event during which businesses closed and residents decorated the graves of soldiers with flowers and flags.

By the late 1800s, many communities across the country had begun to celebrate Memorial Day and, after World War I, observances also began to honor those who had died in all of America's wars. In 1971, Congress declared Memorial Day a national holiday to be celebrated the last Monday in May.

Also see History of Memorial Day

Letter to Mrs. Lydia Bixby that President Lincoln wrote upon learning of the
death of her sons in the Civil War.

Executive Mansion Washington,
Nov. 21, 1864

To Mrs. Bixby,
Boston, Mass.

Dear Madam,

I have been shown in the files of the War Department a statement of the Adjutant General of Massachusetts that you are the mother of five sons who have died gloriously on the field of battle. I feel how weak and fruitless must be any word of mine which should attempt to beguile you from the grief of a loss so overwhelming. But I cannot refrain from tendering you the consolation that may be found in the thanks of the republic they died to save. I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of freedom.

Yours very sincerely and respectfully,
A. Lincoln

Eulogy for a Veteran

Do not stand at my grave and weep.
I am not there, I do not sleep.

I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.

I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the Gentle autumn rain.

When you awaken in the mornings hush,
I am the swift uplifting rush
of quiet birds in circled flight,
I am the soft stars that shine at night.

Do not stand at my grave and cry,
I am not there, I did not die.

-Author Unknown



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