Watsontown Cemetery

October 3rd, 2007

Watsontown Cemetery

Preliminary steps were taken at a meeting at Peter Schaeffer’s house for establishing the Watsontown Cemetery Association. George Burns was elected president with A.B. Latshaw as secretary and Silas Rambach as treasurer. Original Stockholders included: Silas Rambach, Christian Gosh, Simon Lantz, Samuel Whitman, Samuel Miller, George Burns, F.S. Witman, Wm. H. Follmer, Joseph Hollopeter, Enos Everitt, A.T. Goodman, Peter Schaeffer, A.B. Latshaw, John Bly, Wm. Cooner, Robert Johnson, O.S. Kramer, Joseph Albright, Joseph Everitt, Jno. Y. Ellis, and Cyrus Brumbach.

It was decided to purchase a piece of ground east of town from Peter Scheaffer for said cemetery. The tract of land consisting of approximately 8 acres of land at $125 per acre. The layout of the new cemetery would be based on that of the Turbotville Cemetery in the shape of a rhomboid.

The charter for the Cemetery Association was read and adopted on August 1, 1866. The official date of organization took place on November 5, 1866 with the same officers of the temporary organization re-elected to their same positions along with Joseph Hollopeter, F.S. Whitman, A.B. Shaw, Peter Schaeffer, Silas Rambach, and D.S. Kramer as managers.

The first person interred was Mrs. Joseph (Mercy) Everitt who died February 18, 1867; the second Mrs. George (Eliza) Burns who died January 11, 1868. Among the first transfers from the old burying ground were the remains of the Watson family. On January 15, 1870 the services of Samuel Daughtery was procurred as sexton of the cemetery. His duties were to open and close the graves and keep the cemetery in a neat and pleasant condition. He was succeeded on May 6, 1878 by George Rank. By 1895 the original stockholders had been paid in full principal and intent and from this point on all lot holders would become stockholders being eligible to vote for the officers of the Cemetery Association consisting of a manager and six directors elected each year.

Numerous improvements were made to the original land over the years. On February 12, 1879 it was agreed to build steps over the new fence in the ravine along the new road; a house was erected for the sexton in 1884; installation of concrete steps at southwest corner of the cemtery was approved at the April 15, 1902 meeting; and on May 17, 1902, the Soldiers Monument was unveiled with appropriate services.

On August 13, 1959 the Watsontown Cemetery Association gave authorization to the officers to transfer the holdings of the Association over to the Borough of Watsontown provided that the Borough accept. It was the concensus of opinion that the operation of the cemetery by the borough government would be more efficient and desirable than to have it operated by volunteer services of individuals. Those serving as officers at the time of the transfer included Fred H. Carson, president; Charles A. Nicely, secretary; Jacob H. Wagner, J. Nyce Patterson, Mason S. Wagner, Ira Frantz, William S. Savidge, and George S. Sterner, managers. In June of 1960 the transfer was completed and the cemetery continues to be owned and maintained by the Watsontown Borough.

Those who have served as president of the Watsontown Cemetery Association include:

George Burns 1866-93 J.C. Fowler 1930-37
A.T. Goodman 1893-01 W.A. Nicely 1937-39
George H. Shannon 1901-17 Charles A. Nicely 1939-57
D. Frank Wagner 1917-30 Fred Carson 1957-60






[Cited: The Record and Star, Silver Anniversary Edition, 1907, pg 6; The Secretary’s Minute Book of the Watsontown Cemetery Association, 1866] Last Modified: 09.07.07

22 Responses

  1. William Dela Rishel Says:

    I would be ever so greatful if you could send me a digital photo of my grandparents, George “DeLa” and Jennie Wolfe, as well as my parents Mr and Mrs. Robert S. Rishel.
    Thank you very much.

  2. Heather Truckenmiller Says:

    Many of the burials for this cemetery are listed on FindAGrave, and if you request a photo of a tombstone at findagrave, a volunteer may be able to get it for you.


  3. Tammy Sofield Says:

    I am trying to locate where my grandparents were buried and Find a Grave does not have a record. According to the newspaper obit from April 1958, my grandfather was to be buried at Watsontown cemetary. His name was William K Duchman. His wife Clara died 1 year later but no mention of her burial. Is there somewhere I can confirm if they are there? My father is now deceased so I am unable to ask him. Thanks.

    Comment by James Robison: According to Joseph and Sarah Meiser’s book, Northumberland County Pennsylvania Burials Vol. VI, page 164, there is listed a Wm. K. Duchman 1902-1958 and Clara M. Duchman 1901-1959. There is also an Erma E. Duchman, 2/13/1930-10/12/1930.

  4. Tammy Sofield Says:

    I may be coming up for a weekend race in 2 weeks. Is there any contact information for the cemetary. I would like to see my grandparents gravesites. I am not very familiar with the area and have never been to the cemetary.

    Comment by James Robison: Got your message and sent a reply, but your email is set up only to approve emails from people you have agreed to ~ so hope you get this message before your race.
    The best thing to do is check in at the borough hall and ask them for the location. They have a list of all the plot owners and will be able to give you an idea of where they might be. One thing is ~ the borough hall is not open on the weekend.

  5. John Foster Leach Says:

    My Greatgrandfather and Grandmother were Oliver and Hattie Heimbach. They had three children before 1900, two died. Can you help with any names or dates of birth or death. They lived in Watsontown at one time on Sand Street. Thank you. John Leach

  6. eric keefer Says:

    I bought 114 e brimmer ave. house next to cemetary. where can i find info who lived here originally.

  7. Kera Lovett Says:

    I’m looking for the final resting of an good childhood friend of mine. Her name was Laura Marshall, who was killed in 1981 at the age of 10 in a plane crash withh her father, Dr. John Marshall and his wife and a dog name “Sammy”. According to the local paper the “the Free-Lance Star” in Fredericksburg, VA this was where they were buried. I was wondering what the exact address is the cemetary located and if they are buried, where in the cemetary they are buried. Thanks!

  8. Marlene Pegg Says:

    My GGGrandparents Owen and Mary (Turk) Hart and two children are listed in the 1870 census in Watsontown. Mary died about 1872 and is buried in the Watsontown Cemetery. Owen later lived with his daughter Lizzie in Riverside, Northumberland Co., where he died in 1896. Obituary material says he was taken to Watsontown for burial. I have found Mary’s tombstone there, but no stone for Owen. Are there cemetery records that show if he is buried beside her? Would it be possible to get copies of their burial records? I will be happy to pay for them.

    Comment by James Robison: I don’t believe records go back that far, but any records would be in the possession of the community and located at the Borough Hall.

  9. Kathi Wertman Says:

    This is for Marlene Pegg-I have transcribed the old part of the cemetery (over 4000 names) and am working with the borough to add lot #s, section and grave #s to the data base.

    Mary, as you know, is buried in Lot 6, section 4, grave 1. No Owen. Buried in the same lot and section are Myerlys. I have her listed as a Myerly, not a Turk? Would love to know which is correct so I can adjust the information. Thank you!

  10. Marion Bucher Snyder Says:

    I am trying to verify the name of the cemetery where my parents are buried – Marion Muir Bucher and Harold F. Bucher- I remember the cemetery as being on a hill but cannot remember the name. Thank you

    Comment by James Robison: Harold F. Bucher 1889-1956 and Marion Muir Bucher 1894-1974 are both buried at Watsontown Cemetery along with their daughter Anna M. Bucher March 26, 1926-April 1, 1926. In addition, the following are buried at Watsontown: George B. Bucher 1862-1926 and Sarah Follmer Bucher 1863-1933; Esther R. Bucher 1892-1988; Harold F. Bucher, Jr. 1922-1974. This information comes from a book by Joseph A. Meiser and Sarah Roadarmel Meiser entitled Northumberland County Pennsylvania Burials, Vol. VI, pg 159. I also know that the Buchers were members of Trinity Reformed Church in Watsontown (now the United Church of Christ) which might help you find more information. Good luck!

  11. David Hilkert Says:

    I am searching for the gravesite for a relative, Samuel Howard Hilkert (died 1954). Some older family members believe he was either buried in Watsontown Cemetery or in Hartleton, Union County. There seem to be no records of him in Hartleton. Any records for him in Watsontown? Thanks for any help!

    Comment by James Robison: According to findagrave.com, Samuel Howard Hilkert, born March 25, 1877 and died February 15, 1954 was buried at Hartleton Cemetery

  12. Jere Arment Says:

    I know I said something about this on the Trinity Church page and hate to be a bother, but the book “Northumberland County Pennsylvania Burials”, does it say anything about Daniel Carl and his wife, family? I’m guessing he died in the 1880’s or early 1890’s. Was born about 1815. Any help appreciated and grateful for. Have a blessed Sunday!

    Comment by James Robison: In rechecking, the “Northumberland County Pennsylvania Burials” which was compiled by the Meiser’s, on page 336 there is listed a Daniel Carl, Jr. born in 1816 and died July 7, 1893 and his wife Hannah Carl, born 1819 and died September 4, 1902. They were buried at Paradise Cemetery in Lewis Township.

  13. Heather Jenkins Says:

    I am looking for my Grandmother’s burial site. Her name was Harriet Pfleegor and she is buried by her father and mother James and Caroline Hill. Grandma died in 1985. Any help would be appreciated.

  14. Missy Stevens Says:

    Is there a list of all the names of people buried at Watsontown Cemetery ? My mother-in-law’s mother’s death record has her buried there. We’d like to make a trip to visit the grave, but want to be sure that it is there ! Her name is Marian Richardson Steenberg. Many thanks for your help.

  15. Lisa Myerson Says:

    My friend, Carolyn Hayes (Fisher) Healey passed away this month, and asked to have a plaque placed with the Hayes plot at Watsontown cemetery. I am trying to find out if this is possible.

    Comment by James Robison: I am sure it would be possible. Contact the Watsontown Borough Office and they can answer your questions and direct you who to contact regarding a plaque. Their telephone number is 570-538-1000

  16. Jeannie Kowalik Says:

    I have been searching for my 2nd gr-grandfather and grandmother’s (Edward Lee and Catherine Waltman) graves at Watsontown since 1997. Just found her death certificate showing she died in Feb 1910 and was buried in Watsontown Cemetery. Edward’s death is unknown, but some records indicate it was before 1900.
    Edward’s parents Solomon and Mary Waltman are buried at Watsontown alongside two of Edw’s daughters, Maggie Zeller and Nellie Ione Muffly. All of them have tombstones. There are two unmarked graves in that plot that I believe may be Edw and Catherine. Does the book “Northumberland County Burials” list either Catherine or Edward Waltman? Appreciate any help! Thank you.

  17. Steve guffy Says:

    Looking which house Andrew guffy lived on first street in watsontown

  18. Tammy Grier Says:

    In previous responses, James Robinson has listed “Northumberland County Pennsylvania Burials” as a reference. I haven’t found it online at WorldCat.org or in print. The nearest print is a 301 mile drive so an alternative for locate the plots for my family members would be much appreciated. Happy New Year!

  19. john Leach Says:

    Can someone help with the parents of a Franklin P. Heimbach?
    His grave stone says born 1900 died 1904 son of A.I. and Mary. I am trying to figure out who his father was. Thanks.

    Comment by James Robison: Could he be Augustus Heimbach who I located in the 1900 Federal Census Records? If so, he was born August 1873 and was married circa 1897 to Mary who was born October 1873. He was the son of John and Sarah Heimbach and lived in Snyder County according to the 1880 Federal Census.

  20. Mary Ellen Swickine Says:

    Does someone maintain the physical records of the cemetery and if so who can I contact?

    Comment by James Robison: The physical records of the Watsontown Cemetery are kept at the Borough Office since they own the cemetery and provide for its care.

  21. Mary Ellen Swickline Says:

    Can you provide any information concerning Samuel Daugherty 1806-1886 and Nancy Daugherty 1809-1863. Specifically looking to find out if their parents names are listed on an internment card, if any.

    Comment by James Robison: You might check with the Watsontown Borough who has the internment cards. They’re a bit sketchy with information, but you might find what you are looking for.

  22. Margaret Young Says:

    I am trying to locate the gravesite for my grandparents. Their names are John & Margaret Bowman. He passed away in 1983 and she passed away in 1992. I tried find a grave and there is no record. Thank you.

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