MOUND-Warren County - Fountain County INGenWeb Project

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MOUND-Warren County

Mound Cemetery

Source: Attica Ledger 7-2-1917

Doubtless many residents of the country north of Attica have wondered where Mound Cemetery got its name and how it came to be used as a cemetery in the first place. The mound is a peculiar formation rising some 15 or 20’ above the surrounding land and forming almost a complete circle. This, together with the fact that it is located four miles or more form any river or creek has given rise to the belief that it was the work of prehistoric times but there is nothing but speculation to support this. It is located about 70 rods north of the old Martindale home a fine old farm house, built of red sandstone, quarried form a ledge near Black Rock, and itself quite a landmark. The mound lies right at the cross roads and instead of cutting across it the roads circle it enclosing inside the circle about 4 acres. It has been used as a burial ground since before the Civil War and is the most popular cemetery in that vicinity. Job X. Mills of Pine Village, write for The Ledger the following story of how the mound became a graveyard and incidentally touches upon several other interesting matters in that connection.

One evening in March 1859 Jesse Martindale and myself were sitting on a rail fence near the mound, being on our way back to the school house to attend a “last day” entertainment when jesse made the remark to me that when he died he wanted to be buried on this mound. He was near 19 years old and I gave little thought to it at the time but when less than a month later the young man was fatally burned in a kerosene explosion that occurred while he was filling a lamp the remark was recalled. Two weeks before his death young Martindale had helped to dig a grave on the Mount for an infant daughter of Jacob and Mary Gunckle (sic) and another child named Hackett had been buried there before that, so that his grave was the third dug on the mound, and really marked its beginning as a cemetery. I attended the young man’s funeral. Two names attached themselves to the place and it has been known both as the Mound Cemetery and the Martindale cemetery all these years. It is located only a mile northwest of the East Union chapel where a cemetery had been established some time before and where Jacob Harman (sic) laid out the Harman cemetery adjoining it. The latter was a private burial ground and is enclosed by a high stone wall.

Mound cemetery is located two and ¾ miles northwest of Chatterton.  The latter community was traversed by Gen. Harrison’s army on its way to and from the battle of Tippecanoe (Nov 7, 1811). A well established legend has come down to the effect that logs were cut by the army to erect a form for a supply base a mile and half west of Chatterton but Harrison changed his mind and the station was not built. One of his soldiers died and was buried there. This was near the Beaver Cat and Pigeon Roost pond, where in pioneer days the wild pigeons came in such flocks they obscured the sun. I was born in a log cabin near this old army trail and these stories are among the earliest recollections of my childhood.  

The cemetery at Pine Village was started in 1831 in much the same way that the one at the Martindale mound was. A little daughter of Isaac Metsker, a pioneer of the region, died and was buried on the hill overlooking Pine Creek and near a small mound, also popularly attributed to the Mound Builders. This is a much smaller mound, being only about 30’ in diameter but it is located on top of the hill in a place that natural action of the elements could hardly have placed it About a ¼ of a mile almost directly north of it is another of the same size, located in a grove on the opposite side of the creek. This used to be known as the Metsker grove and was the scene of many camp meetings 4th of July celebrations, rallies, etc. It is possible these mounds were Indian burial mounds and there are stories told of bones and trinkets having been dug out of them but these are not authenticated. At the time the Metsker child was buried Chicago was merely an Indian trading post on the shore of Lake Michigan. Another child was buried there not long after and then five adults, one of them named Moses Runyan were buried about the same time, they have died from hydrophobia, resulting from the bite of a mad wolf. The four graveyards of Adams Township contain more graves than there are persons now residing in the township.

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