Settle Cemetery Preservation Is on the List of MARC projects
(Saturday, October 20, 2012) – Cemeteries get overgrown so quickly, they need tending for their protection. Preserving Settle Cemetery is a long-standing commitment for the descendants of the Douglas, Settle and Martin families and the MARC.
And it was a beautiful day for the annual Settle Cemetery clean-up in Reidsville. The Rockingham County Historical Society has cared for this cemetery for decades: transcribing and repairing headstones, mapping the graves, clearing paths, cutting back overgrowth, and retelling the history to make sure the people and the place are remembered. This year was no exception.
We arrived to find that a large tree had fallen and was blocking the path to the cemetery. Luckily Milton Hundley was there with his landscaping equipment, so we worked together clearing the path and cleaning around the headstones for a while.
Afterward, we relaxed while Bob Carter and Charles Rodenbough told the history of the land and the people. They explained where we were, who was buried there and their connections to each other and the community. We talked about the importance of their story to Rockingham County’s history and to antebellum scholarship. It was an engaging and interesting morning in a beautiful and peaceful place.
Charles Rodenbough gave a progress report on the ground-penetrating radar component of the Settle Cemetery project. The goal is to discover if there are unmarked graves in the central area of the family plot and if there are any indicators that Governor Alexander Martin’s resting place is at Settle Cemetery as suspected. Charles has been working with the MARC Board and UNCG to get the plan in place. Things are progressing nicely.
Then we roamed the cemetery, marveled at its size, took notes, did some stone rubbings, assessed future needs, remembered the dead and enjoyed each other’s company. It was an ideal Saturday morning for family and historians.