Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Wednesday's Child: Angels and Lambs

Wednesday’s Child is one of the daily blogging prompts at Geneabloggers that features gravestones of children. 

You’ve seen them – tombstones adorned with lambs or cherubs or angels.  There is no mistaking these markers as the resting places of beautiful lives cut short. 

 Image from Google Images

I’m always drawn to those little tombstones and wonder if there is anyone left to visit them.
                            Image from Google Images

My family is no stranger to the heartache of burying a child.  James Henry Jollett (1894-1909) was the only son of my great-great grandfather James Franklin Jollett and his second wife Eliza Coleman. On the day Henry died, he and his father were on the way to the train station to meet Eliza who was returning home after visiting family. Some of Henry's friends stopped him and invited him to go swimming with them. His father said he shouldn't go since Eliza would be expecting them. Henry promised to be back in time to meet the train. Unfortunately while swimming, he got caught in a current and his friends could not rescue him.

James Henry is buried in the Harriston United Methodist 
Church cemetery in August County, Virginia.

Teenagers!  I’m sure Frank wished he could just take back that moment when he gave in to Henry’s pleas.  Then when I think what it must have been like for Eliza to return home to such dreadful news, I can’t help thinking about my mother-in-law’s similar situation. 

She had been enjoying a visit with one of her daughters who had moved to New York City.  Lord knows she didn’t have the easiest life raising 8 children and tending the chickens.  She needed a vacation.  She deserved it.  She didn’t need to hear her precious Jay Robert (1955-1967) had drowned in the neighbor’s pond during an afternoon of fun with friends who, like Henry’s friends, could not rescue him. 

Jay Robert is buried in the 
Mt. Olivet Church 
of the Brethren Cemetery 
in Timberville, Virginia.

I never knew my great-grand uncle and brother-in-law.  Their lives were short, but they mattered.    


  1. What a beautiful post! Im from Nashville and maybe its morbid....but I love going into the old cemetaries and looking at the beautiful tombstones. There is so much history in them!

  2. whew girl that was a teary post! When we visited Henry's grave site it was so very sad. I can't even imagine how "Pap" and Eliza must have felt!