Sunday, November 6, 2011

Drawn to this Infant's Grave

Yesterday my husband and I drove 15 miles to the neighboring town of Florence, Colorado to photograph a grave at Union Highland Cemetery. While there, we drove slowly around the cemetery and this little headstone caught my eye. It marks the grave of Lester Yost, who died Feb. 22, 1898 at the age of 1 year, 6 days. We stopped to photograph the headstone because my husband has a great-grandmother whose name was Yost. I saw that Lester's  parents were Lewis and Mary Yost.


When I got home I looked up Lewis and Mary Yost in the 1900-1930 censuses at Ancestry.com. I also found memorials on FindaGrave for Lewis and his second wife Effie. I learned that Lester's mother Mary was Mary Ann Patrick and that she died suddenly on September 14, 1910 after the family had moved from Florence, Fremont, Colorado to Craig, Moffat, Colorado. 


In 1900 Lewis and Mary still lived in Florence with their daughters Viola, born August 1892 and Mabel, who was born April 1898. That tells me that Mabel was born to Lewis and Mary Ann two months after their little one-year-old son Lester had died. That just tugs at my heart strings. The census indicates that Lewis and Mary had been married 8 years, so must have married in 1891 or 1892. It says Mary had 2 children and 2 were still living. Someone forgot about little Lester!


By 1910 Lewis and Mary had moved to Craig, Colorado and their household consisted of daughter Emma, born 1905, son Lewis Jr. born 1907 and Lawrence, born 1909. The census says Mary was the mother of 8 children, only 6 of whom were still living. Viola is not listed...perhaps by age 18 she was married. Mabel would have been 12 and she isn't listed either. Perhaps another loss through death? 


So we see that Mary was the mother of Viola, Mabel, LESTER, Emma, Lewis and Lawrence. If she gave birth to 8 children, she and Lewis by 1910 had lost 2 other children too. 


A brief obituary for Mary Ann Patrick Yost says that upon her death, she left 6 children, the youngest being age 2. That would be son Lawrence. I just haven't done enough research to figure out specifically who all her children were. 


By 1920 Lewis had remarried a woman named Effie, who was 3 years his junior. He was still residing in Craig, Colorado at the time of his death in 1942.


The thoughts that goes through my mind are "Does anyone remember little Lester? Do any of Lewis and Mary's ancestors ever think about his abandoned little grave with the multi-cracked headstone at Union Highland Cemetery in Florence, Colorado?" My husband and I noticed and took a few minutes on my 64th birthday to pay attention to Little Lester. 

1 comment:

Harriet said...

There is something about the graves of small children you just seem to be drawn to them. Our family visited a cemetery a few years ago, while my husband and I looked for family graves my children went to the area of children's graves. They called us over with questions, why so many children, some from the same families. Very sad.