Sunday, February 22, 2009

Hello Amos...Arkansas

My dad, J.R., and I decided to take a small Saturday afternoon trip to Amos, Arkansas, and to see what other excursions there would be on the way. On our way up Highway 126, we decided to go to the Old Cooper Cemetery about 2 miles south of Midway. Copper is a small cemetery. My great, great grandfather & grandmother, Burton & Sarah Girkin, are buried here at the center of the cemetery. Originally, they were natives of Jefferson County, Kentucky. Once they were married, they moved to Illinois and started a family. Burton's father & mother, Joseph & Luraka Gherkin, and grandmother Sarah Gherkin (born 1776) stayed in Kentucky. (...Notice the spelling of the name changed from Gherkin to Girkin...) In 1877, Burton & Sarah came in a covered wagon from East Nelson, Moultrie County, Illinois. The family moved to a farm in Baxter County owned by W. B. Jordan farm 6 miles northwest of Mountain Home, Arkansas. The family then moved to Trimble Flat, Baxter County in 1894 after Burton's death. They bought a homestead from the Suggs Family on Bruce Creek. Burton Girkin was born in Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky died in here in Baxter County March, 1879, only two y ears after being in Baxter County. Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky, and died February 15, 1901. Here is her obituary from the Baxter Bulletin.

Here is a list of their children:
  • Narcissus “Nare” Girkin: Born March, 1867, in Illinois. She married Mr. W.S. Perryman.
  • Joe H Girkin: Born March, 1869, in Illinois. He was a Baxter County Assessor and married Edna Pierce.
  • Martha “Mattie” Girkin Born September, 1870, in Illinois. She married William.W. King.
  • Charlie Girkin Born April, 1874, in Illinois. He married Jennie Kazar..

Today, their graves are only large pieces of unmarked limestone.
Family knowledge is the only thing that marks their resting place today.
Their graves are below.
According to Of Grave Importance, cemetery book of Baxter County, the oldest grave in the cemetery is of an A. W. Cooper, who was buried in 1864 and was reported to have been killed by "Bushwackers."

Next, we went on Highway 178 and went to Lakeview which was once called Amos. We pulled down the road pass the Lakeview City Hall and drove by the entrance of the Amos Cemetery. Dad want to see if the old Amos church/school house was still standing.
This what we found. It is located down the hill from the cemetery about 100 yards. Trees and brush are closing in on the old building. If you look closely, you can see the bell tower. Also, there is an addition to the front part of the building.

Here's the front view. Notice the broken tree limbs from the recent ice storm.

This is the Methodist Church that held the funeral of my great grandfather William Franklin McNeil and great grandmother Mary "Mollie" Girkin McNeil. This is also the school house that all the McNeil children, such as Eunice McNeil Anderson, went to. As you look through the door, you will notice a sheetrock hallway. This part is the addition made on to the building for extra classrooms in the early 1960's. Looking on in the background is the stage area with a hole in the back wall for the stove pipe. The building is completely stripped of every artifact and ornament. The floor is 70% gone and the area is sadly filled with trash.

Here is the view from the stage.

We then walked back to the Amos Cemetery to take a view of some of the family tombstones.

Great, Great Grandmother & Grandfather. Their foot markers are below.

My Great Grandmother & Grandfather's resting place.

This is the almost forgotten stone marker of W. Frank & Mollie McNeil's small children who passed away: Susan Geneva McNeil & Ralph Herman McNeil.

These three tombstones are some of the prettiest I've seen in a long time. They belong to two great, great aunts and my great, great uncle, Steve Wayland.

Great, Great Aunt Emma Elizebeth Wayland

Great, Great, Great Aunt Aseneth M. Wayland

Great, Great, Great Uncle Stephen J. Wayland. He is the brother to Thompson Henderson Wayland buried in the Norfork Cemetery.

These are the tombstones of Uncle William W. King & Aunt Mattie E. Girkin King. Aunt Mat was grandma Mollie McNeil's sister. The Kings lived on Trimble Flat in the late 1800's -1900's.
Later on we decided to travel on to Bull Shoals and visit Newton Flat Cemetery and then headed on to the Flippin Cemetery. While at Flippin Cemetery, I happened to find a long, lost aunt, Judy Francis "Fannie" Anderson Gibson. She was born in Gainesboro, Tennessee, and came to the Ozarks on a steamboat and landed on McBee's Landing.