TL;DR -- For a decade, we looked into the question of Where is Thomas? That query was with respect to the location of his remains. After reading about and listening to lots of comments and ideas, we decided to dig deeper. Lo and behold, we find that the place where Thomas was buried was torn apart 190 years ago or so. Stones were moved without regard to bodies which were left. Then, the land was contoured for traffic dragging the bones about. Or, they were thrown in the river bed that was being filled. Some remains and stones may have moved to two areas. Harmony Grove Cemetery is close; but, the Trask plot is closer. God only knows.
A decade ago, we first asked the question of "Where is Thomas?" after visiting the cemetery in Salem, MA and coming away disturbed. Then, we slowly gathered data and kept asking. Where is Thomas? Finally, we heard on a phone call (Maine Gardner) about tales of missing graves. Okay, what does that mean? Well, we kept gathering related material. Too, we got familiar with the area. Actually, Ann's childhood house is within a stone's throw of where the Gardner Burial plot was. Let's say, using a hefty arm. However, it was almost as high on the side of the hill as was Thomas when he sat by his tree and said that he liked the view of the water (7 Oct 2019, Gallows Hill - look at the painting in this post).
Later, we noticed that Dr. Frank had mentioned the issue in his books quoting Samuel Pickering Gardner's comments about the problem. A summary post (28 Feb 2019, Another twist) tied things up. And we took our attention out to the wild west.
| Showing Google view, with annotations, |
mapped to Sidney Perley's sketch of the
area around Gardner Burial Plot
But, it is time to re-address this theme due to the hard sleuthing of Melissa Davenport Berry. She runs a FB group titled Early Quaker History and Genealogy as well as the New England Family Genealogy and History group.
Recently, we were looking at FB as there is a lot of activity there related to New England. Melissa who writes for several publications has just reported on some research. The following four bullets are her blog reports with comment. We need to thank Melissa. Also, it is time to clear the air on this. We'll handled the Gardner part.
- Salem Uproar over Dilapidated Tombs - This is about the same time as the turmoil related to Gardner Hill. Names involved are "Derby, Bowditch, and Sargent." It was said that people were horrified.
- Salem Uproar over Dilapidated Tombs, Part II - "Lindall, Browne, Kitchen, and Turner families" are mentioned.
- Salem Uproar over Dilapidated Tombs, Part III - Just naming additional families opens up the area to look at: Weld, Boardman, Wolcott. Wait, John and Elizabeth Gardner are mentioned, as is Putnam, to boot.
- Salem Uproar over Dilapidated Tombs, Part IV - Nathaniel Bowditch got involved and raised public interest.
That Nathaniel Bowditch's name was mentioned and got our attention. Okay, we'll get back to this theme. Somehow, we need to get the message across about the incidents as well as figure some way to get Thomas (and Margaret) Gardner recognized when the 400th comes up (or before).
Remarks: Modified: 07/23/2021