While doing research on something completely unrelated, I stumbled upon this picture titled Anderson Grave, Mt. Olivet Cemetery. One of my favorite things to do when I come across old pictures is to try and recreate them. It doesn’t happen very often so I get pretty excited when I’m able to do it.
Matt and I headed to Mt. Olivet Cemetery one Saturday morning and we met with the cemetery records keeper so she could point us in the direction of the Anderson family plot. Mt. Olivet Cemetery is a beautiful cemetery with an unusual origin, if you haven’t had the chance to check it out yet, you should.
She showed us the general area on a map and we headed off to try and find this specific plot. It’s not as easy as it may sound, but after wandering around in the general area for a bit, we found the Anderson headstone.
One thing you might have noticed, other than the trees have all gotten so big that you can’t see the mountains anymore, is that the headstone is now facing east, when in the original picture it was facing west. Odd, right? That is one of the reasons why it took us a little longer to find it!
According to the headstone, the Anderson family plot contains four members of the Anderson family:
Isabelle Dillingham died on May 5th, 1911 from tuberculosis. She was 22 years old when she died and was the daughter of Frederick and Mary Jane Anderson.
Her father, Frederick Anderson Sr. died four years later on June 27th, 1915 from stomach cancer. He was 70 years old and his occupation was listed as a miner. His burial was held on June 30th, 1915.
John James Anderson, son of Fredrick and Mary Jane died on July 24th, 1922 from pulmonary tuberculosis and was buried on July 27th, 1922. John was a widower at 41 years of age and died in the county hospital.
Mary Jane Anderson died from a stroke on June 8th, 1924, and was buried on June 10th, 1924. She was 73 years of age. I could find no mention of their deaths or burials in any of the local newspapers.
So who’s funeral was that picture taken at? None of the dates listed on the headstone match the date of the photograph. Was the date on the photograph wrong? Seems oddly specific to be an error. I did some more digging and found that there was another son, Fredrick Anderson Jr. who died on October 25th, 1916 at the age of 37. He also died from tuberculosis. According to his death certificate, he was buried in the Anderson Family Plot on October 28th, 1916.