We've now made three visits to the Miller/Claypool cemetery in Mathias, WV, and taken pictures all three times. This page documents what we found there and gives access to a number of the pictures and the details of the various gravestones. (The page describing our original 2004 trip's findings may be found here, and the 2006 here).

The following map is based on a quick hand-drawn map I did at the cemetery during the 2006 visit, using the poles in the chain link fence as reference points. It should not be taken as a strict survey, but it gets the positioning pretty close. I have pictures taken from just in front of each fence pole, if anyone wants to verify the details. The map is clickable. It is a revised version of the 2006 map. It reflects the modern markers added by an unknown party in about 2005, two of which we have since moved.

Unknown stone labelled 'James (1701)' Displaced Footstone labelled 'Jane'. Unknown Claypool labelled 'Rachel' John Claypool James Claypool Margret Claypool's Grave GC and CC footstones Unreadble Fallen and Broken stones by 'E. Howard' Real Jane Claypool Grave James Claypool (1701) Ann Dunbar Cahoon Eleanor? Blizzard Miller-Claypool Cemetery
Clicking on any named grave should display a page about that grave.

Text color Usage
Slate Gray Observed Facts
Blue My earlier errors
Medium Grey Remaining ~2005 alterations
Light Grey Alterations removed in 2013
Between our first two visits, there were some changes. One of the original stones had been reset in the ground and 4 modern markers were set at the feet of it and the three stones next to it. What we discovered during our second visit demonstrated to me that a number of errors were made by whoever reset the stone and added the new markers. The new markers are indicated in lighter and medium grey in the map above.

Our discoveries also indicate that my own earlier identification of two stones badly defaced by time and weather were wrong. In one of these I agreed with whoever added the modern markers. In the other we disagreed. My two errors are shown in blue in the map.

The Adventures of James and Jane

We returned in 2013 with three goals:

  1. To measure the fallen stones of James '01 and his wife Jane for future conservation
  2. To place two temporary markers at the sites of James'01 and Jane's fallen stones
  3. To find out what would be required to move the incorrect modern stones
We not only accomplished those goals, but succeeded in moving the incorrectly placed markers for James and Jane to their approximately correct locations, near the temporary markers.

Who's Who

Pedigree of Grave Occupants With the exception of Elenor Blizzard, the well-attested named graves on the map above form a moderately tight family tree. We have James and Jane, their three sons John, James and George, George's wife Catherine and young James's wife Margaret and her sister Ann. Ann's niece completes the set, though we don't yet know how precisely to connect her. In the chart to the right I've added Rachel, whom the layer of the modern markers proposes is present and James Cahoon, just to provide Ann's surname. Both are grayed out slightly.

Clearly the story is incomplete. The two left most graves (and here I take the stone stone recently reset to be a part of the same grave as the tall stone beside it) are as yet unidentified. My guess would be that they are a married couple, perhaps William and his wife Martha Dunbar, he being the elder brother of James, John and George and she being the sister of Margaret and Ann. That leaves us the mystery of where Rachel's grave is, though. As Martha remarried, William and Rachel are a real possibility. But all this is speculation unless we can find evidence.

Location of the Cemetery

View Larger Map
The map to the right shows the location of the cemetery. It is up the hill on the west side of the road. It is not visible from the road and is no longer marked with a sign, so finding it can be a bit of a chore. The picture below shows the view as you travel north on rt. 259. There is a footpath to the left of our van, and the cemetery is on the bluff directly behind the car.

Good luck!