Bayham Township, Elgin County, Ontario, Canada
DATA ENTRY & INDEX: M. F. DOAN
PROOF READING: MARGARET DAUGHARTY
Revised and formatted for the Internet and Mobile Devices 20 August 2017 by Bruce C. Johnson Jr.
Latest Revision 31 July 2006 by Carol VanHarn
Copyright by the Ontario Genealogical Society, Elgin County Branch 1999
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HISTORY OF KETCHABAW CEMETERY
by Florence Marchant Bradshaw 1991
Abigail Vincent Ammerman Burns (1792-1872), daughter of the United Empire Loyalists Elijah Vincent (1795 – c 1835) and Abigail Bayeux, received the land the cemetery is located on from the Crown in 1840. It has been in the family ever since and is now designated a Century Farm.
Not long after the Ammerman’s came to Bayham township from the Niagara area, the Katzenback / Ketchabaw family arrived, coming from Dundas County, Ontario by way of the Springfield, Ontario area, and in the 1830’s the families intermarried.
The earliest surviving monument with inscription in this cemetery is that of great great grandfather John Ammerman (1788-1829). Thereafter burials appear to have been made regularly at consistent intervals of about one every one to four years between 1847 and 1901 as calculated by dates on monuments which survive.
Great uncle Thomas Ammerman (1819-1901) seems to be the last to have been buried, as he had pre-planned, in the family cemetery. After 1901 family burials began to be made in the Eden cemetery.
The eighteen year period between John Ammerman’s death in 1829 and the next surviving memorial inscription in 1847 leaves a time lapse inconsistent with the family’s mortality pattern. It may be that John Ammerman died in the Niagara area prior to the family moving to Bayham township and that a monument was erected in his memory after their arrival. However, I have learned that when the cemetery was tidied up a number of years ago, intact stones which were outside the wire enclosure were brought together and placed inside the enclosure. At that time a hole was dug in which all the broken stones were buried. The discarded stones undoubtedly pertained to at least some of those family members not as yet accounted for in my research but who may be buried in that cemetery. Also there is evidence that some Vincent relatives had secured land in the area as early as 1828 so Abigail and John Ammerman may well have been there that early as well.
In the fall of 1896 Great Uncle Thomas Ammerman had an imposing tombstone with his picture on it erected in the family burying ground, “in readiness for himself and his friends”. Our mother Jessie Richardson Marchant (1887-1985) remembered that when she was twelve years old she went especially to see that grand monument which everyone talked about. It would have been about a mile walk north from her current residence at Straffordville along the sandy road through a deep gully and thence back into the woods to the burying ground.
When Mother revisited that cemetery some forty or fifty years later with her son George Marchant (1919 – ) it was still back in the woods among the trees. By 1975 when I first discovered the cemetery, many of the trees had been removed leaving it standing in the open except for the corn or whatever crop might surround it during the growing season.
Hugh Ketchabaw (1913 – ), a second cousin, and others of his family still live on the farm in their separate homes, farm the land and maintain the cemetery. Hugh and his daughter Juanita recalled for me that the Ammerman’s had been buried inside the wire enclosure of the cemetery, and the Ketchabaw’s on the outside.
The picture of Thomas is long gone as is the top obelisk portion of his monument. Otherwise it and the other gravestones which survive were in reasonable condition with decipherable inscriptions which I recorded in 1975 before time and the elements rendered them unreadable.
1. White marble.
Thos. BURNS/died/Oct. 3, 1854/AE 78 ys./ Hurd Hamilton
2. White marble.
In/memory of/Thomas/son of/John & Abigail/KETCHABAW/who died/Feb. 11, 1851/aged 2 yrs 10 ms & 11 ds.
3. White marble.
Abigail/wife of/Thomas BURNS/died Sept. 20, 1872/aged 81 yrs 7 mo/& 6 days.
4. White marble, willow motif.
In memory of/Mary A./dau of Anson & Nancy/BURNS/died/Sept. 16, 1868/AE 14 ms & 23 ds.
5. White marble.
John AMERMAN/died/Feb. 6, 1829/aged/41/yrs & 6 ds.
6. White marble.
In memory of/Anna Maria/daughter of/John & Abigail/KETCHABAW/died March 18, 1859/AE 2 ys & 10 ms & 8 ds.
7. White marble rectangular slab, willow motif.
In memory of/William H./son of/John & Abigail/KETCHABAW/who died/June 13, 1861/AE 1 yr 1 mo 13 d
8. White marble rectangular stone, willow motif.
In memory of/Abigail/daughter of/John & Abigail/KETCHABAW/who died/Aug. 14, 1850/AE 5 m 14 d
9. White marble rectangular stone.
Lewis AMERMAN/died/May 17, 1847/aged 34 yrs 4 mos/& 3 ds.
10. White marble rectangular stone.
Elizabeth/wife of/Elijah DAVIS/died/Dec. 3, 1852/AE 17 ys.
11. White marble rectangular stone.
In/memory of/James AMERMAN/who died/Oct. 19, 1854/aged 44 yrs.
12. Grey marble obelisk, flower motif.
(NE) ThomasAMMERMAN/ died/Oct. 3, 1901/aged 83 yrs/4 ms & 14 ds.
(NW) In memory of/Abigail/wife of Thos. BURNS/who died/Sept. 20, 1872/aged 81 yrs/7 ms & 6 ds/BURNS
13. White marble rectangular stone; rose motif; face up on ground.
Alzina/dau of/Samuel & Abigail/BALDWIN/died Mar. 1875/aged/ 11 mos 15 days/ Gone to be an Angel.
14. White marble, lamb motif, face up on ground.
Alvaretta/dua of/ Zackeus & Marilla KENNEDY/died/June 19, 1871/aged/ 15 days/ Sleep on sweet babe/ And take thy rest/God called thee home/He thought it best.
15. White marble, face up on ground.
In/memory of/Jacob KETCHABAW/who died/ Feb. 28, 1866/aged 77 yrs. Presented by George & / Jacob KETCHABAW.
16. Marble scroll, pointing finger.
Sandy S./died Dec. 29, 1883/aged 4 yrs 5 mos/Charles H./died Nov. 17, 1889/ aged 18 mos/children of L. & M. KETCHABAW/We loved thee tender little ones/ And would have wished them stay/But let our Father’s will be done/ They shine in endless day.
17. White marble, clasped hands, broken stone, face up in ground.
In/memory of/William KATING/died Dec. 20, 1875/aged /20 yrs 8 mos/ & 12 days.
18. White marble.
In memory of/ Uretta /dau of/ Zackeus & Marilla / KENNEDY /died Jan. 4, 1876/ aged 2 yrs & 7 mos/ (verse illegible)
19. White marble.
Agnes J. / daughter of/Samuel & Abigail/ BALDWIN/died May 23, 1867/AE 3 yrs.