St. Deroin Cemetery

We like visiting old cemeteries and reading the headstones. It’s a glimpse into the past, and we wonder about the people there and what their lives were like.

By 1800’s standards, Dr. Rice (above) lived a long life.

Sometimes we see stones like this one above – homemade, probably because they couldn’t afford to buy one.

More often than not though, we find ourselves noticing all the young children’s headstones.

Little Merritt was only 5 months old.

Infant and child mortality was high, so when Jonathan’s parents saw him into his 16th year, they may have thought him in the clear. Losing a 16 year old boy on the farm must have been quite a blow.

I wonder what 12 year old Gertie died of?  An infection? An accident? Or was it a disease like typhus, diphtheria, or typhoid?

Dulcena may have died of disease too, but since her stone indicates she was the wife of John Bratton, and only 15 years old, it would be a safe guess to say her death had something to do with childbirth.

“Our Sweet Little Dora” was almost 2 years old. They were probably planning her upcoming birthday, and then she was gone. Don’t stones like this one break your heart?

John was only 8 1/2.

Albert was only a year old.

Can you imagine burying 2 of your children? E.P and Samantha laid Chester to rest when he  was only a month old. And then a few years later, they buried his brother Frank, only 2 1/2 years old.

Tommie was only 4 1/2 years old and Willie not quite 5 months.

I just can’t imagine the pain the parents of all these children went through.

Aren’t we privileged to live in a time where we have vaccines and antibiotics?

– All these pictures were taken at the little cemetery of the ghost-town of St. Deroin, Nebraska. The cemetery and town are located in Indian Cave State Park. For more information and directions, click HERE.