When we vacationed on the Cape as a large entourage, we always took time to walk though the Duck Creek Cemetery in Wellfleet, This beautiful graveyard is home to graves dating back to well before the Revolutionary War. The headstones from that particular period of time are almost impossible to read, having sat in place for nearly 300 years. The history that lies there, and the history that has passed before them! It is a wonderful and fascinating piece of land to wander through.
Bruce and I spent part of an afternoon revisiting the Duck Creek Cemetery. Below are some photos of that visit and a bit of background information on a particular group of children interred there.
The three headstones pictured below are of the Atwood children. A fourth headstone lies on the ground nearby.
All four of them died in 1849. I did a little internet sleuthing to see if I could discover what may have been going on here in 1849, particularly in August, when three of them died within two weeks of one-another. I am always amazed at what can actually be found with a bit of digging - even what was actually written on their headstones. I wish that I could have learned more, but what I did find was that the cause of death was only listed for one - and I couldn't determine which one - dysentery. While it stands to reason that this would also be the cause for the other three, I read that there was also a cholera outbreak in North America in 1849. What harsh times, and to lose four children in such a short period of time - what their parents' grief must have been.
|"Apphia C. Atwood, daughter of Lewis & Apphia Atwood, died Feb. 12, 1849, aged 2 yrs. 9 mos.|
'We see thee still that cheek of rose
Those lips with dewy fragrance wet
That forehead in serene repose
Those soul lit eyes, we see them yet.' "
The Atwoods had four other children. Interestingly, another was named Apphia, after the mother - whose name is spelled Appia and Apphia in different locations.
- Hannah Atwood was born in 1833, with no date of death listed
- William Atwood was born in 1835 and died in 1879
- Maria Atwodd was born in 1838, with no date of death listed
- Apphia Atwood (the second child named after her mother) was born in 1851 and died in 1878
A few other photos in closing ~