Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Wednesday's Child - John Fitzgerald Abbott

John Fitzgerald Abbott
April 18, 1914 - May 2, 1914

Calvary Cemetery
Lincoln, Nebraska

The body of John Fitzgerald, two-weeks old son of Mr. and Mrs. Chauncey Abbott, Jr., who died Sunday at Schuyler arrived in Lincoln this morning. Funeral services were held at St. Theresa's church, Thirteenth and M street, immediately following the arrival in the city. Interment was made in Calvary cemetery.

Source: Lincoln Daily Star, Lincoln, Nebraska, May 4, 1914

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Wednesday's Child - Maxine Dorothy Kelly

Maxine Dorothy Kelly
August 6, 1914 - September 15, 1915
Greenwood Cemetery
Greenwood, Nebraska

Little Maxine Kelly was my aunt, first-born child of William and Sina Kelly.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Association of Graveyard Rabbits

I want to thank everyone at the Association of Graveyard Rabbits for featuring this blog, Nothing But Tombstones, in one of their member profiles. I really appreciate the tip of the hat. Thank you!

Tombstone Tuesday - Harriet E Bower

Harriet E. Bower
Sheffer Pioneer Cemetery - Greenwood, Nebraska


JAN. 6, 1851
SEPT 23, 1899

gone but not forgotten

Monday, July 26, 2010

Harold and Marie Pilfold

Harold M. Pilfold and Marie E. Pilfold
Rosehill Cemetery - Waverly, Nebraska


JULY 5, 1918 - Aug. 22, 2007

DEC. 27, 1912 - MAY 19, 1999

Marie Pilfold was my Sunday School teacher when I was a young girl, about seven years old. Everyone knew Harold as "Shorty" and he ran the service station in Greenwood, Nebraska when I was a kid. I was wandering around Rosehill Cemetery one Sunday morning, walking up and down the rows of tombstones and came across Shorty and Marie's burial place.

Henry Clay Rector and Martha Hurst Rector

Henry Clay Rector and Martha Hurst Rector
Wyuka Cemetery - Lincoln, Nebraska

FEB 10, 1833 - AUG. 21, 1906

AUG, 30, 1830 - JAN. 7, 1922

Henry Clay Rector and Martha Hurst Rector's inscriptions are on one side of this monument. The inscription for their son, Ode E. Rector, and his wife, Nellie Kelly Rector are on the opposite site of the monument.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Ode E Rector and Nellie Kelly Rector

Ode E Rector and Nellie Kelly Rector
Wyuka Cemetery - Lincoln, Nebraska

APR 10, 1863 - FEB. 29, 1832

APR. 10, 1870 - JAN 4, 1935

This is the tombstone of Ode E Rector (Odin Ellis Rector), a long time pharmacist in Lincoln, Nebraska and his wife, Nellie Kelly Rector. They are buried at Wyuka Cemetery in Lincoln, Nebraska.

On the other side of this marker are the inscriptions for Ode Rector's parents, Henry Clay Rector and Martha Hurst Rector. Each of their graves are marked by stones inscribed "Father" and "Mother."

I've never found any evidence that Ode and Nellie had any children, which is why I was really taken with the additional stones marking their individual graves. Instead of the usual "mother" and "father" these stones displayed their initials.

O.E.R. - Ode E Rector

N. K. R. - Nellie Kelly Rector

Nellie Kelly was a sister of my great grandfather, Daniel Kelly. Daniel, his wife Mary, his parents and other members of the Kelly family are buried at the Catholic cemetery across the street from Wyuka, Calvary Cemetery.

This post originally appeared on my other blog, on May 18, 2010.

Nelson Atkinson

Nelson Atkinson
Sheffer Pioneer Cemetery - Greenwood, Nebraska


JUNE 20, 1869
28 Years


This is the first of my Tombstone Tuesdays featuring interments from Sheffer Pioneer Cemetery, north of Greenwood, Nebraska. Click here for my original post about this cemetery.

As I mentioned in my original blog post, none of those interred at this cemetery are my direct line ancestors, but many are what I call shirttail kin. Nelson Atkinson is one of those people, whose relationship to me is that he was the brother-in-law of my great grand aunt. You can't get more shirttail than that!

Nelson Atkinson was born in Rhode Island on June 20, 1841. He died June 20, 1869. According to the book, Sheffer Pioneer Cemetery: The Lives of Those Interred edited by Rose Anne Hockstra, Nelson operated a mill on Rock Creek, west of Greenwood. The book states, "There was a flood on June 20, 1869, and Nelson jumped into the water to try to dislodge a log jam. His brother Byde tried to jump in to save him, but he was held back by the other men there." Nelson left behind his widow, Lydia, and two daughters, Elcina and Matilda. A son, Nelson Jr., was born two months after his father's death. Lydia returned to Wisconsin, married and gave birth to eight more children. (source: Sheffer book).

Nelson's death is documented in the U.S. Federal Census Mortality Schedule of persons who died during the year ending June 1, 1870. He died at the age of 28 from drowning in Lancaster county, Nebraska.

Nelson was the son of John Atkinson and Ann Grunshaw.

This post originally appeared on my other blog, on June 15, 2010.

John Atkinson and Ann Grunshaw Atkinson

John Atkinson and Ann Grunshaw Atkinson
Sheffer Pioneer Cemetery - Greenwood, Nebraska

JAN. 14, 1892
91 YRS 8 M's. 16 D's.

John Atkinson


This is the second in a series of posts about interments at Sheffer Pioneer Cemetery, north of Greenwood, Nebraska.

John Atkinson was born in Lancashire, England in 1800 and arrived in the United States sometime before 1832. He was married to Ann Grunshaw, also of Lancashire, England. Both names are on the tombstone, although no dates are listed for Ann. She died 10 years after her husband and presumed to be buried by her husband.

The Atkinsons lived in Rhode Island, where their third child, Nelson Atkinson, was born. Another son born in Rhode Island was Samuel. After the family moved to Wisconsin, they had two more children, Byron and Eunice.

Byron Atkinson and Lillie Jones Atkinson

Byron Atkinson and Lillie Jones Atkinson
Greenwood Memorial Cemetery - Greenwood, Nebraska


Byron Atkinson and his wife, Lillie, are buried in the Greenwood Cemetery in Greenwood, Nebraska.

Byron's parents, John Atkinson and Ann Grunshaw Atkinson, are buried at the Sheffer Pioneer Cemetery, a few miles away. Their tombstone was featured on Tombstone Tuesday last week.

The tombstone of Byron's brother, Nelson Atkinson, is also at Sheffer Pioneer Cemetery and was featured on Tombstone Tuesday two weeks ago.

Byron was born in Wisconsin on March 5, 1850. According to his obituary, the family moved to Nebraska circa 1865, two years prior to Nebraska statehood.

1870 census records show Byron, age 20, living with his parents and sister Eunice in Lancaster county, Nebraska. He married Lillie Jones on September 23, 1873, according to Lancaster county marriage records. [source: Lincoln-Lancaster County Genealogical Society database]

Census records show Byron and Lillie starting their family and living in Oak Creek, Butler county, Nebraska in 1880 and 1885. In 1900, they lived in Brainard Village in Butler county. Daughter Ollie had moved out of the family home by this time, but children Charlie and Minnie were living with Byron and Lillie. Also living with the Atkinsons were Lillie's father, William Jones, a niece, Carrie Jones, and a nephew, Elmer Jones.

The 1910 census shows Byron and Lillie again living in Oak Creek, Butler county, Nebraska and by 1920 they had moved to Greenwood, Cass county, today about 20 miles north of Lincoln.

The information reported on the census records is interesting to me because Byron's 1931 obituary states that  he had resided in Greenwood for 16 years (probably accurate) and prior to that, he had lived in Lancaster county for 65 years. The census shows that he had lived in Nebraska for 65 years, but not in Lancaster county the entire time. Tip: Don't accept anything as fact without checking several sources!

Byron Atkinson
1850 -1931

Early Nebraska Pioneer

This post originally appeared in my other blog,, on June 29, 2010.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Edmund Franklin Landon

Edmund Franklin Landon
Greenwood Memorial Cemetery - Greenwood, Nebraska

1879 - 1935

Biographical - Obituary

Edmund Franklin Landon was born October 11, 1879 at Nebraska City, Nebraska, and passed from this life at Logan, March 13, 1935, at the age of 55 years, five months and two days. His mother, America Montgomery Landon, died when he was but a babe. He was reared to the age of 11 years in the home of an aunt, Belle Montgomery, now of Fremont, Nebraska. He spent the remaining years of his boyhood with his father, Daniel Webster Landon and his stepmother Mary Landon.

Early in his youth he took upon himself the responsibility of making his own way. In 1908 he was married to Bertha Wedmore of Orson and established a home at Calhoun. The greater part of his life was spent in the vicinity of Calhoun and Magnolia. To this union three children were born, Gerald, Louise and Genevieve. With the exception of tow years the past 12 years of his life were spent near California Junction.

His father, Daniel Landon, died in 1911, and a sister, Mrs. Maude Cauliflower, in 1926. He leaves to mourn his death three children, Gerald of Calhoun, Mrs. Louise Hanson of Council Bluffs and Genevieve at the home of her mother in Council Bluffs, one grandson, Richard Landon, three half-brothers, Webster D., and Edgar E. of Oakland, California, and Mrs. Henrietta Curran of Council Bluffs, and his aged and devoted stepmother, Mrs. Mary Landon of Council Bluffs, and many other relatives and friends.

It can be truly said of Mr. Landon that he was honest and willing to do all in his power to help a friend in need. He was industrious and hardworking, faithful in all his duties. He was friendly and kind.

Funeral services were held Friday afternoon, March 15, at the Yeaman Funeral Home, conducted by Rev. O. K. Schlesselman of the Evangelical church of Magnolia. Mrs. Edward Kersten, Helen said, Ralph Richardson and Edward Kersten, with Mrs. Walter Reep at the piano, sang those beautiful hymns, "The Old Rugged Cross," "Beautiful Isle of Somewhere," and "Nearer My God To Thee."

Interment was in the cemetery at Greenwood, Nebraska, beside his parents.

Source: The Logan Observer, Logan, Iowa, March 21, 1934

Note: I've yet to learn how he was nicknamed "Colonel."

Friday, July 23, 2010

Daniel Webster Landon and Mary Jane Walling

Daniel Webster Landon and Mary Jane Walling Landon
Greenwood Memorial Cemetery - Greenwood, Nebraska

BORN DEC. 28, 1856
DIED OCT 14, 1912

BORN SEPT. 21, 1863
DIED APR. 27, 1943


Daniel Webster Landon was the son of Daniel Landon and Anne Jane McVoy, making him the brother of my great grandmother, Emma Harriet Landon Bellinger. He was first married to America Montgomery and they had two children, Maudette and Edmund Franklin. After America's death, he married Mary Jane Walling and their children were Frank, Lenora Estell, Jennie, Hazel, Daniel Webster, Edgar, Henrietta, Tommy and Lawrence. Daniel was known as Webb Landon and he died in Council Bluffs, Iowa.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Greenwood Memorial Cemetery - Greenwood, Nebraska

Greenwood Memorial Cemetery - Greenwood, Nebraska

Many of my ancestors and other family members are buried at Greenwood Memorial Cemetery, just south of Greenwood, Nebraska. Among my relatives who are buried here include my grandparents, Bill and Sina Kelly; Sina's parents, John and Emma Bellinger; Bill and Sina's first born child, Maxine, who died as an infant; another of Bill and Sina's daughters, my aunt, Helen "Jerry" Dulin; my great great grandparents (Emma's parents), Daniel Landon and Anne Jane McVoy.

Each time I walk through this little cemetery up on the windy hill, I see the names of the people whose lives were intertwined with those of my family. I see many of Bill and Sina's friends; I see names of people my Mom went to school with; and now, I even come across the names of the kids I went to school with during the five years I lived in Greenwood as a youngster. Every time I visit this cemetery, there are more names that are familiar to me. It's marked the final resting place for many of my family for nearly 150 years.

I remember that as a child, I accompanied my mother and Grandpa Kelly to decorate graves every Memorial Day. There were no tombstones for the Kellys and Bellingers at that time. It wasn't until after Grandpa Kelly's death in 1968 that Mom, her brother and sister decided to use what little money was left to put up markers for their parents and the Bellinger grandparents and little Maxine. I'm glad they did because now there are headstones that mark their graves. I still think the day will come that I will be able to place a marker for Aunt Jerry. Somehow, I feel like I owe that to the memory of our family.

As a seven or eight year old, decorating the graves didn't have much meaning for me, but I always tried to not step on a grave. Since my Dad was the commander of the American Legion in Greenwood, we were usually always at the cemetery for Memorial Day services which included the firing of guns and the playing of "Taps." So there are always memories for me whenever I visit.

I think I'm going to have to make a visit there again very soon.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Jess Carl Petersen

Jess Carl Petersen
Wyuka Cemetery - Lincoln, Nebraska

NOVEMBER 13, 1915
SEPTEMBER 12, 1961


Jess Carl Petersen was born in Hardy, Nebraska, the youngest son of Jens Christian Petersen and Karoline Hansen Petersen. He was married to Thelma Grow. He died in Lincoln, Nebraska.

John Theodore Petersen

John Theodore Petersen
Baby Petersen
Spring Creek Cemetery - Ruskin, Nebraska

APRIL 1, 1906
JUNE 15, 1924
BABY OCT. 10, 1908

Inscription Note: Last name is misspelled on the stone.


John Theodore "Teddy" Petersen was the son of Jens Christian Petersen and Karoline Hansen Petersen. He was only 18 years old when he died. He lived in Nuckolls County, Nebraska in Ruskin and Nora.

Buried by Teddy is a sibling who died October 10, 1908.

FindAGrave memorials

John Theodore Petersen

Baby Petersen

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Kathryn Loder

Kathryn Loder
Rosehill Cemetery - Waverly, Nebraska

JUNE 23, 1940
OCT. 18, 1978
I-COR. 15: 35 - 58


Kathryn (Frances Kay)  Loder was born in Laramie, Wyoming, daughter of James Edwin Loder and Frances Elizabeth Goodhue. All three are buried in Rosehill Cemetery in Waverly, Nebraska.

Kathryn had a career in the theater and a few B films in the 1970s. In 1972, she staged a one woman show she had conceived called "Echoes from Gibran." One of her last credited roles was on the soap opera, Days of Our Lives, in 1978. She died of complications of diabetes and is buried next to her parents in Waverly.

Kay Loder's sophomore yearbook photo.
Source: The Comet, Stephen F. Austin High School, Austin, Texas, 1956

Read Kathryn's complete biography on the Internet Movie DataBase.

Lewis J Loder and Alice Walker Loder

Lewis J. Loder and Alice Walker Loder
Rosehill Cemetery - Waverly, Nebraska

FEB. 13, 1835 - FEB 24, 1923

DEC 19, 1842 - JAN 2, 1913

FindAGrave memorials

Samuel Loder and Christiana Loder - siblings

Samuel Loder and Christiana Loder
Rosehill Cemetery - Waverly, Nebraska

Son of L.J. &
Sep 12 1870
17 days

Daughter of L.J. &
Sep 10, 1870
1 year, 4 mos, 7 days


This brother and sister, born about 16 months apart, died just two days apart. Samuel lived 17 days and Christiana lived one year, four months and seven days. Their parents were Lewis J. Loder and Alice Walker Loder.

FindAGrave memorials

Samuel Loder

Christiana Loder

Willie Kelly - Calvary Cemetery - Lincoln, Nebraska

Willie Kelly
Calvary Cemetery - Lincoln, Nebraska

Son of
Born Mar. 4, 1886
Died Dec. 14, 1886


Willie Kelly was the son of William D. Kelly Jr. and Mary/Mollie Kelleher Kelly. Mollie was the daughter of Patrick Kelleher and Nora Nestor Kelleher, who are buried in St. Andrew's Cemetery in Tecumseh, Nebraska. Willie was the first born of the couple's two children. His sister, Mary (Mayme) was born two years later.

William D. Kelly, Jr. died in 1899 at the age of 38. In 1901, Mollie married his brother, Michael Kelly. Mike and Mollie had one child together, Edward, born in 1903.

William, Mollie and Michael are all buried in the same section at Calvary Cemetery in Lincoln, however, there are no visible tombstones. Willie is buried next to his grandparents, William D. Kelly, Sr. and Mary Casey Kelly.

Patrick Kelleher and Nora Nestor Kelleher - St Andrew's Cemetery - Tecumseh, Nebraska

Patrick Kelleher and Nora Nestor Kelleher
St. Andrew's Cemetery - Tecumseh, Nebraska

The large stone in the center of the photograph is for Patrick Kelleher and Nora Nestor Kelleher, his wife. Patrick came from Limerick, Ireland and Nora was from County Clare, Ireland. Some of their children retained the surname spelling of Kelleher; others changed it to Keleher, dropping one L.

MAR 17, 1836 - FEB 28, 1905

MAY 12, 1843 - DEC 1, 1907

Lessons learned from this cemetery outing
  • Sunny days provide beautiful backdrops for photographing tombstones.
  • Sunny days make capturing tombstone inscriptions difficult.
  • Always sketch at least a rudimentary map of the area of the cemetery you are photographing.
  • Always transcribe each tombstone you photograph while on site.

St. Andrew's Cemetery - Tecumseh, Nebraska

St. Andrew's Cemetery - Tecumseh, Nebraska

Entrance to St. Andrew's Cemetery

St. Andrew's Cemetery is located north of Tecumseh, Nebraska on "Old Highway 50." This highway is parallel to Highway 50, which is located to the East.

Cemetery Sign

My field trip to St. Andrew's Cemetery was to photograph tombstones for a fellow family history researcher who is related to the Kelleher and Nestor families who resided in Johnson County, Nebraska. We connected via about a year ago when she contacted me regarding one of my Kellys who had married one of her Kellehers. Actually, her Kelleher had married TWO of my Kellys. After Mary/Mollie Kelleher's first husband, William, died, she married his brother, Michael Kelly. Both men were brothers of my great grandfather, Daniel Kelly.

A friend of mine grew up in Tecumseh, so one sunny Sunday afternoon late last summer we embarked on a field trip to Tecumseh to photograph the tombstones of the Kelleher and Nestor families.

List of interments from US Gen Web

Surnames A - C

Surnames D - G

Surnames H - L

Surnames M - R

Surnames S - Z

FindAGrave interments

Anna May Bell

Anna May Bell
Sheffer Pioneer Cemetery - Greenwood, Nebraska

1870 - 1872

William and Elizabeth Sheffer

William and Elizabeth Sheffer
Sheffer Pioneer Cemetery - Greenwood, Nebraska

Wm. Sheffer

Wife of
Wm. Sheffer

FindAGrave memorials

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Sheffer Pioneer Cemetery - Greenwood, Nebraska

Sheffer Pioneer Cemetery - Greenwood, Nebraska

Entrance to Sheffer Pioneer Cemetery


I originally wrote about my field trip to Sheffer Pioneer Cemetery last month on my blog. It's rather secluded and you have to know where you're going to find it. Directions are at the bottom of this post.

I'm rather fascinated with this cemetery since it's one of the oldest in the area. Many of the earliest pioneers of Cass and Saunders county are buried here. None of my direct line ancestors are buried here, but several are shirt-tail kin. I believe there are less than 100 interments here and I attempted to photograph as many as I could. The growth was fairly heavy in some areas, so I did not wander through the poison ivy to get to a few of them. Perhaps on another day.

I was intrigued by the picnic grounds adjacent to the cemetery. Descendants of the pioneers still have an annual picnic celebration to honor their ancestors each year. The picnic tables are a permanent fixture at the cemetery.

The Loder Family tombstones

Each of the tombstones that I photographed at Sheffer Pioneer Cemetery will be posted on this Nothing But Tombstones blog in the coming weeks. I have about 70 photographs from this cemetery.

Directions: Sheffer Pioneer Cemetery is located halfway between Greenwood, Nebraska and Ashland, Nebraska. From Highway 6, turn north on 226th Street. Cross the railroad tracks and go about one mile to Country Club Road. The cemetery is located at the end of the minimum maintainance road beyond a private farm residence.

FindAGrave interments

LeRoy Pecht and Clara Laymon Pecht

LeRoy Pecht and Clara Laymon Pecht
Rose Mound Cemetery - Republic County, Kansas

1879 - 1932

1876 - 1941


LeRoy (Roy) Pecht was born on a farm near Hardy, Nebraska, possibly across the border in Republic county, Kansas. He farmed and for the last 16 years of his life was manager of the Farmers' Elevator in Holmesville, Nebraska. He married Clara Rosella Laymon on April 11, 1900. He was the son of John Crispin Pecht and Amanda Melvina Stover.

Clara Rosella Laymon was born October 2, 1876 in Grundy county, Illinois. She was the daughter of Civil War veteran John Laymon and his wife, Eliza Ann Olmstead. She died October 20, 1941 in Beatrice, Nebraska.

LeRoy and Clara had six children, two of whom died as infants. Those who grew to adulthood were Ruby (my grandmother), Clyde, Cecile Ann and Mildred.

FindAGrave memorials

William L Kelly, Sr and Sina Harriet Bellinger Kelly

William L Kelly, Sr and Sina Harriet Bellinger Kelly
Greenwood Cemetery - Greenwood, Nebraska

JULY 7, 1891
DEC. 31, 1968

APR. 3, 1889
NOV. 3, 1955

Tombstone Inscription

The year of birth for William is likely in error. More contemporary records from his younger years indicate his year of birth as 1892.


William Leroy Kelly is the son of Daniel Kelly and Mary "Minnie" Janice Welch Kelly. His grandparents were both born in Ireland. He was born in and died in Greenwood, Nebraska.

Sina Harriet Bellinger was the daughter of John William Bellinger and Emma Harriet Landon. Her grandparents were Daniel Landon and Anne Jane McVoy. Sina's funeral card states she was born in Fremont, Nebraska, which is possible since the Bellingers lived in Fremont for a while. She may also have been born in Greenwood, Nebraska.

Sina and Bill grew up together in Greenwood and married August 10, 1913. They had five children: Maxine Dorothy, Margaret Janice, Helen Marcella, William Jr, and Patricia Landon, my mother.

Sina and Bill were my grandparents.

FindAGrave memorials

Marion Baker and Ruby Pecht Baker

Marion Baker and Ruby Pecht Baker
Lincoln Memorial Park - Lincoln, Nebraska

1902 - 1985

1905 - 1991


Ruby Luella Pecht was born May 27, 1905 in Kansas, daughter of Leroy Pearl Pecht and Clara Rosella Laymon. Her first husband was Otto W. Petersen; she and Otto were my father's parents. They divorced before I was born.

Marion Baker was my step grandfather. He was born November 14, 1902 and spent most of his life in the area of Firth, Nebraska.

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